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Help for my sister - baby doesn't sleep more than an hour at night

(7 Posts)
squidkid Fri 12-Jul-13 18:11:38

My lovely sister is a very patient and kind girl. Her baby is 7.5 months old and has never slept well at all. She was very itchy and had bad skin until quite recently - sister has been trying various exclusion diets and seems to have cracked it, the skin is great now. We all hoped this would improve sleep but it hasn't.

Baby basically doesn't go more than an hour at night without a feed. Sister bfs lying down and dozes through it. She is somehow coping but is obviously exhausted. She also really misses her evenings and spending time with her husband. She also has a 3 year old.

Baby eats decently and naps normally through the day. Now her skin is better she is a happy, easy baby, but she is so very clingy at night. Is there anything that can be done, or is it just a matter of waiting for her to outgrow it? She would not leave the baby to cry in any way.

I feel very bad as my baby sleeps mostly well (with no sleep training of any sort, and I take no credit for it). I wish I could help.

CreatureRetorts Fri 12-Jul-13 18:22:59

Sounds like my dd! Even with a three year old as well.

Is this your sister on an exclusion diet or both of them? (I'm guessing baby is on solids?)

Has she had her baby checked for tongue tie? Does she wind baby after each feed?

The one thing that helped was starting to put dd in a cot and on her tummy so I wasn't there every time she woke up. So I'd put her down in the cot at the start of the night and not feed again for a couple of hours (just resettled without feeding). Then we'd cosleep once I came to bed. Then the gaps gradually got bigger between feeds and I'd put her back in the cot after feeds then gradually she got used to being in the cot all night.
Dd still doesn't sleep that well but much better - she gets wind easily which wakes her up and is sensitive to her and my diet.

squidkid Fri 12-Jul-13 18:36:57

Sister & baby are both off wheat, dairy and egg - babies skin and mood is much, much, much better now. They are having allergy tests this week to see if anything can be reintroduced.

I don't know about tongue tie. Baby is growing fine, so I presumed she was getting enough milk?

squidkid Fri 12-Jul-13 18:39:32

That's interesting - thank you. I also started putting baby in a cot after full time co-sleeping until about 2 months - she took to it very easily though - she has always been a good sleeper except for developmental spurts. I want to help and sister was asking for advice today at a group we were at - but I don't want to patronise her or make out like my baby's sleep is due to anything I've done, because I know it isn't!

CreatureRetorts Fri 12-Jul-13 18:42:30

Tongue tie could mean she has a poor latch and takes down air, getting painful wind = wake ups. I still have to wind my dd after night feeds and she's 19 months! (her TT grew back a bit). I have an abundant milk supply so dd didn't have weight gain problems.
Has she stopped soya too? That gave my ds and dd dreadful silent reflux - much much worse than dairy shock

But part of it will be habit as well - and it is tricky to break but worth trying in the long run.

anothernamechangerreally Fri 12-Jul-13 18:53:11

I can't help but am in exactly the sane situation as your sister. Ds is 8 months tomorrow as hasn't slept more than 3 hours in a row since birth. Normally only 1.5 hours!!!! Also bf and am knackered. I shall watch for tips!

Nicknamefail Fri 12-Jul-13 22:43:10

I breastfed all night until a week ago with a 9mo and am now doing some sleep training. I will only feed 4 hourly overnight at the moment and dd is cuddled to sleep at other wake ups. It does mean less sleep initially as dd takes longer to get back to sleep with cuddling but she does go (I was skeptical before I tried) but at 5 nights even, already fewer wakenings. Obviously I have lots more steps to go before dd will sleep through but weaning off the association between only falling asleep feeding is the first step.

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