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please help with my 2 year old and lack of sleep!

(22 Posts)
bexbrown90 Thu 03-Jan-13 21:11:02

Hi I am wondering if anyone has any advice for my 2 year old ds and his lack of sleep! I'm utterly exhausted when he was in the cot he would take ages to go to sleep but would lay there quietly, now I am putting him to bed at 7 and he isn't going to sleep until after 11pm and then wakes up at 5am or even before and won't go back to sleep! I'm exhausted and a single parent. I have tried putting him to bed later and that doesn't seem to work either he is constantly grizzly from tiredness just won't give in at night even when I do stop his naps in the day. Please someone help. I don't know what else I can try. X thanks in advance x

MoonlightandRoses Thu 03-Jan-13 22:02:53

When he wakes up at five, is he bouncing around the place, or just calling for you? Small child here went through a phase of that around the age of one and a half - we took the tack of rushing in at the first whimper and offering some water and one hug, and then back into bed - took about four weeks to work (the first sleep through to seven was bliss!), and even now there's probably two-three weeks every few months where we have to start again, but it's better than every night.

The other possibility (and you could be doing this already) is getting him to be as active as possible for half an hour before supper, that way he's physically exhausted, but has time to calm down before bed.

Hope you find something that works soon - it's horrible when you're that tired.

JammySplodger Thu 03-Jan-13 22:04:29

That sounds very tough, we had a hard time with DS1 and sleep and I think the thing is to break the habits they get into.

Have you got a bedtime routine of some sort, bath, book, bed type thing? The book especially calms down our two, especially if they're over excited or over-tired.

The only other thing that really, really works for us was to kit them in full woollies and waterproofs and completely tire them out in the garden or down the park.

You have my sympathy. Lack of sleep's a killer (especially when you'd think that by 2 they should have got it sussed).

JiltedJohnsJulie Thu 03-Jan-13 22:24:41

What are his naps like in the day? Can't do links ATM but try googling 31 ways to get your baby to sleep. It is aimed at babies but there are still some good tips in there. There is a book which might help too, its called No Cry Sleep Solution for toddlers, your local library might have a copysmile

bexbrown90 Fri 04-Jan-13 03:43:51

Hi moonlight and roses. Yes, I do try and get him to be active as much as possible during the day and then when we are home he is always running up and down the hallway with his brother. And no at 5 he is wide awake bouncing around wanting to play with toys and ready to release more soon as his eyes are open he is wide awake. I have tried putting him back to bed with milk or water and a cuddle that seems to calm him down until he finishes the milk or water and then he is jumping around. I don't know where the energy comes from as he doesn't always eat that much. Thanks for the reply though x

bexbrown90 Fri 04-Jan-13 03:49:43

Hi jammp splodger, yes I do have a routine, it is always brush teeth, get pjamas on read up to two books and settle down with a cuddle and some milk and then into bed. As for exercising he gets pleanty of that. He is with the childminder 4 days a week 8-4 and is always on the go there and often do the half hour walk home to try and tire him out more. Sometimes its like he is tired but just fights it all the time and that's when he just jumps in and out of bed (as he climbed out the cot) where I keep putting him back telling him evenly its bedtime see you in the morning which is also more exhausting. Thanks for the reply though. X

bexbrown90 Fri 04-Jan-13 03:53:43

Hi jiltedjohnsjulie His naps are kept to a minimum now that was one of the first things I tried to stop. If he is with the childminder he will often have one for no more than half an hour and the rest of the time I am just keeping him awake and having a very grumpy child if necessary. Thanks for the reading materials I am going to the libary tomorrow to see if I can find that book and will also look at google then too. Thank you.

FergusSingsTheBlues Fri 04-Jan-13 03:56:53

Hi, i have the same problem, but two days ago my husband took him on a 1.5 mile walk which i was annoyed about.....guess what...he slept through fir the first time in over a month. We think weve been underestimating his need for exercise.

FergusSingsTheBlues Fri 04-Jan-13 03:57:51

Also we ditched his naps which helped, amd reward him when he goes through. Es not alliwed ceebeeebies if we wakes in the night.

bexbrown90 Fri 04-Jan-13 07:06:31

Thanks fergussingstheblues its not so much about him waking in the night, its more where he just doesn't sleep until late and then is up early. That bit in the middle is great he's soundo. Will try more exercise roday and see if that helps x

LisaMumsnet (MNHQ) Fri 04-Jan-13 07:31:57

Hi everyone, we're going to move this thread to the Sleep topic at the OP's request. MNHQ

forevergreek Fri 04-Jan-13 09:46:59

Just often exercise is underestimated. We went for a walk the other day with nearly 3 year old, we worked out later it was over 8 miles.

An adult can walk a mile in 15 mins so a few miles a day should be average really

JiltedJohnsJulie Fri 04-Jan-13 09:51:15

Think getting him outside on the days you have him might be a good idea. Try taking him our for a walk. Do you have a playground nearby where he can burn off some energy?

Try googling askdrsears wake up too early, that might have some tips toosmile

bexbrown90 Fri 04-Jan-13 10:09:09

Thanks for the tips. I have a playground about 10-15 mins away so that may be the next step! smile more exercise outside and hopefully that will help. Thank you. X

JiltedJohnsJulie Fri 04-Jan-13 10:13:26

Definitely lots of play outside. Looking after boys is a bit like looking after dogs, regular exercise, regular food, clear boundaries and lots of love smile

bexbrown90 Fri 04-Jan-13 12:45:10

Thank you, we spent 45 mins in the park today and was about half hour walk there and back so hoping that will help tonight. Although he wasn't interested in running around swings and steering a boat that doesn't move.... Although I was mean and only allowed 10 mins on the swings to try and encourage them to rub around more... X

JiltedJohnsJulie Fri 04-Jan-13 13:04:10

Sounds like a good plan. Do you have a garden? Maybe 15 mins outside again before it goes dark might help too? As well as the exercise the light actually triggers sleep inducing chemicals, well that's the theory anyway!

GoldPlatedNineDoors Fri 04-Jan-13 13:10:48

Would he understand a Gro Clock? Set the sun to come up for 7am and theres usually a little count down of stars before the sun appears - sun up = shout for mam.

Maybe the trick is not to get him to sleep longer but for him to.know that until X time is `stay in bed` time. A night light he can easily operate and some.books next to it might keep him entertained til morning.

JiltedJohnsJulie Fri 04-Jan-13 13:16:25

Think you are spot on Gold , looking back I think that's what we did with DS.

omama Fri 04-Jan-13 15:13:52

He sounds like he might be overtired. If you are avoiding letting him nap & he still isnt settling til 11pm & getting up at 5am thats way less sleep than he will really need. I would let him have a nap at least some of the time, sleep begets sleep & you may find he'll settle better as a result. I do this now with my 2yo, if he wakes post 8am its no nap & early bedtime 7pm, of he wakes pre 8am he naps at 1.30-2pm for a couple of hours & bed at 8pm. We tend to have 2 no nap days followed by a nap day & it works pretty well.

I think you prob need to combine this with some supernanny style rapid return so he understands bed time means bedtime, & like gold suggests, a groclock to encourage him to stay in bed til thr sun's up.


JiltedJohnsJulie Fri 04-Jan-13 15:42:49

Agree with you too omama it is far too little sleep and a nap just may work. The way you do it sounds good too. How is he getting on now bex?

MoonlightandRoses Fri 04-Jan-13 15:45:53

Just wanted to wish you luck tonight (well, early tomorrow am really) - hope the extra fresh air works.

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