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I thought earlier bedtime was supposed to mean longer sleep!!!! Help!!

(39 Posts)
emeraldgirl1 Mon 02-Sep-13 07:59:12

DD is 5.5m, she has been a decent napper and ok ish at night though still needs a night feed obv. She uses to go down at 7.45 and has begun to wake consistently at 6.15 to 6.30 (with a night feed in middle)

But due to teething/growth spurt/who knows what she has been worse at naps and getting overtired. Barely able to function beyond 6.45 pm

So in line with current thinking I brought her bedtime forward, getting her into bed between 6.45 and 7. Asleep then by 7.15

ALL THAT HAPPENS is that she wakes half an hour earlier, at 5.45!!!!!

She is then utterly zonked by about 6.45 but still seems programmes to nap 90min after waking but by 7.15 she is also again overtired... And so the whole day gets off to a bad start!!

I thought earlier bedtime meant better, longer sleep!!!!!

Does it take longer to establish? Been doing it about 5 days...

A 5.45 wake up time is just hideous for me, due to time H needs to get off to work etc... That extra time til 6.30 just sets the day up properly... 5.45 doesn't work for any of us!!! It just makes DD tired ALL morning

Any advice???

nickelbabe Tue 03-Sep-13 09:57:38

after my post yesterday, DD woke up at 6!

so, I took my own advice and let her feed and snuggle until 8.
(i did also put the telly on and dozed on and off)

it was nice, though, felt like a lie-in.

and I know that she'll be tired a lot earlier today. (for her nap)

omama Tue 03-Sep-13 06:42:14

emeraldgirl - i've only skimmed through the other posts, the 2 naps in the a.m. stands out as unusual. I don't think its the timing of bedtime that is the problem, its the fact her first nap of the day is so very early, when most other babies are getting up. I fell into this pattern with my ds & he woke early for ages, soon as i twigged his nap needed to be later I got the early waking sorted out.

I would try & consolidate these 2 short morning naps into a single (slightly longer) morning nap at around 8.30/9am (approx 2hrs after her ideal wakeup time).

At the moment this will be difficult to achieve, given her wakeup time being so early, so I would suggest delaying her first nap by 5-10mins every few days. She should manage that ok without becoming too overtired. It takes a bit of time but in a few weeks she will be napping later, hopefully for a touch longer & you should see an improvement in wakeup times. Hth.x

KFFOREVER Mon 02-Sep-13 21:48:05

emerald ds is 6 months and has 4 naps a day. He too is an early riser no matter what time he sleeps. Early mornings kill but i let him play in his cot while i rest until he starts getting grumpy. This gives me 30-45mins extra in bed. Im a great believer that babies set their own routines and we go with the flow until they get a bit older.

CreatureRetorts Mon 02-Sep-13 21:37:14

Have you tried resettling her as if it were nighttime at the 545 wake up? So feed then straight back to sleep? Because it sounds like that's what she wants as opposed to 4 naps.

emeraldgirl1 Mon 02-Sep-13 21:32:33

thanks so much Creature

I think really I am just always torn about what to do with her second nap, the one between morning and lunchtime naps... she does really seem to need it as she conks out for 30 mins or 40 mins at 9.15 or 9.30 (not surprising if she's been up since 5ish...) but am always a bit concerned that she 'shouldnt' be having 4 naps a day... even though time-wise it might be the right amount, basically... don't know why I feel that but I do sometimes feel as if all I am doing is going from nap to nap with her... is hard to 'do' much in the way of trips out etc (nothing exotic, just to park and stuff) as a lot of the morning is spent on these two naps... she's not at all good at napping in her pushchair and anyway with my work situation I do really need ot be home when she naps so I can get on... anyway the end result, with the two morning naps, is that I feel as if the poor thing is just stuck at home going from one nap to the next...

I know it won't last though...

CreatureRetorts Mon 02-Sep-13 20:55:19

Sorry I wouldn't push it later (the morning nap). As she gets a bit older she might move it later but even then I'd only go as much as two hours after waking.

CreatureRetorts Mon 02-Sep-13 20:54:06

A short morning nap should counteract it so 30 mins seems ok. Then a longer midday one and a short pm one which she will drop as she approaches 9 months.

TBH there's little point messing with naps if she's hungry.

Yes my two had massive growth spurts around this age! T settled down and they got much better again.

nickelbabe Mon 02-Sep-13 20:35:18

bigkid you're right, we're all different. I just added my bit in case op was stressing at "having" to get it all done from a perception placed on her.

emeraldgirl1 Mon 02-Sep-13 20:35:15

Thanks Creature. I have been wondering if its a growth spurt as she is SO hungry...
Do you still think it might make sense to try to get her to do one longer nap in the morning rather than 2 short ones, though? The point being that (it seems on MN) there seems to be a lot of thought that a v early nap can actually prolong early waking as it's really a way for them to catch up on missed nighttime sleep... I've been enjoying the fact that she's like clockwork and will go down for a 30 min nap exactly 90min after waking as it gives me an opportunity to leap in the shower, get dishwasher on, laundry etc (bigkids, I am a BIT like you...) but maybe the answer is just try and keep her going til an hour or so later and see if she'll sleep longer then...

I am not good at going against DD's natural rhythms though, I hate to see her struggling to stay awake.

CreatureRetorts Mon 02-Sep-13 20:27:18

3 naps a day seems normal to me for a baby that age with the third nap being a short cat nap. There are sleep regressions which mess with sleep. Plus teething and growth spurts. The answer isn't to deprive them of sleep.

I would try feeding baby at the wake up and see if she goes back down.

bigkidsdidit Mon 02-Sep-13 20:24:12

Oh x post - perhaps not grin

bigkidsdidit Mon 02-Sep-13 20:22:57

It's great you're so happy with your routine Nickel

But I suspect the Op is like me, and doing the bare minimum at home would add to stress rather than relieve it. I like to get up at 6 and have a load of washing done, dishwasher on, laundry folded, lunches made, all ready before DS1 wakes up. It sets me up for a stress free day having a peaceful hour to myself smile

nickelbabe Mon 02-Sep-13 20:22:10

I do like my bed rest grin

emeraldgirl1 Mon 02-Sep-13 20:21:10

nickelbabe, that's v good advice re getting back into bed with her when she wakes early, a little rest would probably do me a lot of good at that time rather than getting up and feeling I need to play etc...

nickelbabe Mon 02-Sep-13 20:19:28

re entertaining herself. she didn't really have a choice, though.
I jist found ways to alter the things she did. books with noises, tings that move, etc

nickelbabe Mon 02-Sep-13 20:16:38

and don't worry so much about housework!

we put a load on before bed, hang it on clothes horse in the morning and leave it there until the next wash (we also have 2 clothes horses)

in the morning, I put dd on a mat in the bathroom to eat breakfast while I wash and dress (having had a feed before we get up), then I dress her and eat breakfast. then go to work.

dh makes lunch and our evening meals amd we very rarely hoover - we put a towel or messy mat on the floor where dd is, which gets flapped into the garden and thrown in the machine. she is changed on the same towel.

we clean the bath when we use it, the toilet gets a swish every few days and other stuff when we have time.

we can "be relaxed" about it because we do the bare minimum.
most cleaning is done Sunday afternoon and we share nappy changes.
I spend my evenings sitting on the settee feeding dd.

I suppose you have to decide what's most important as a family.

ps. even if you don't co-sleep, when your dd wakes in the morning, bring her into your bed. cuddle up, put the tvon if you need to, give her her milk while you're both still in bed. don't get up until you need to. you'll feel more rested even if you're not sleeping. and do the same in the evenings.

I do most of my paperwork and real work when dd is asleep or playing. thankfully when I have customers, she's happy to entertain them grin

I do have a sideline of sewing, and sometimes she has to have my full attention, so when she'll allow it, I sit her on my lap at the machine. (and she presses the back button randomly)
she tries to press my keyboard so I got her a toy computer to stop ger!

bigkidsdidit Mon 02-Sep-13 20:14:24

It does for my DS- if he gets overtired it seems to hang over till the next day - late bedtime means he sleeps less deeply and wakes earlier, and is then a grumpy mess.

emeraldgirl1 Mon 02-Sep-13 20:10:35

bigkids, thanks - and forevergreek too - so about 3 hours... I think I willl try v hard to consolidate her two short morning naps into one longer one (an hour ish) later in the morning than currently, and also see if I can get her to stick to a maximum of 2 hours in middle of day rather than sometimes more. That would help bring her pm nap forward I think, and that might help.

Alibaba, sorry, to answer your earlier q, I don't really know in God's name how earlier bed means later rising but countless people (on MN and in RL) swear to me that it does... nobody can ever quite explain 'how', though... smile

emeraldgirl1 Mon 02-Sep-13 20:07:41

Alibaba, DH works silly hours (mortgage to pay living in London, life is just ridiculous at times, isn't it???) and has to be out of the door at 7, he does the early shift on w/e but tbh my own sleep pattern is so shot now that I tend to be up anyway!!

I do need childcare but for the moment we are trying to manage without as we desperately need to build some savings up. My mum is helping a couple of days every two weeks but DD is a tricksy one and isn't brilliant, yet, at being left with her for stretches longer than an hour or so. I'm sure she'll get there but not just yet.

nickelbabe, oh, if only I had one of those amazing babies who will entertain themselves!!! DD is the opposite of that... though it's getting easier, actually, now that she is close to sitting up on her own and can sit in high chair for short stretches etc.

bigkidsdidit Mon 02-Sep-13 20:06:48

I used to do

9-10 ish
12-1.30 ish
4-4.30 ish

Then 7-7. So pretty much the same as forevergreek.

nickelbabe Mon 02-Sep-13 20:03:07


we also co-sleep, though.
she finds it hard to self-settle, so feeding to sleep works. it's the most sleep for the most people.

when she was small, I would put her in a bouncy chair for fun, and then I had a mat where she would stay. I always did work while she entertained herself.

byt she is really good at entertaining herself.
but I agree, it does get frustrating

I couldn't cope if we didn't co-sleep and I'm lucky that we go to bed at about 10/10:30 because dh is a postie.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Mon 02-Sep-13 20:02:03

Where is your partner in all this? Can he not take the early shift?

You need some childcare frankly as you cannot rely on her sleep.

DS2 has never napped a lot, he just doesn't need that much sleep.

Forever all children are different. Mine would have been awake half the night sleeping that much during the day at that age.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Mon 02-Sep-13 19:58:00

This is why we never put our kids to bed early.

Why on earth would earlier bedtime mean a longer sleep??

emeraldgirl1 Mon 02-Sep-13 19:51:52

Nickelbabe am v envious of your chilled approach and am glad it works for you but our situation isn't working for me and I am knackered beyond belief (coming at the early waking thing after 6 months of poor sleep with newborn). DD gets overtired and is miserable; I have no energy for doing things with her in a fun way.

I have deadlines for a job where I am self employed and I am too tired to concentrate having been up at 5 or 5.30 with no time to rest at all because I have to fit in housework etc.

I take three minute showers and haven't eaten breakfast or lunch that isn't grabbed and wolfed while doing laundry or hoovering for six months.

That is why it would be helpful beyond belief to get an extra forty five mins or an hour in thd morning when I can either sleep to get energy or get on with everything g I have to do without needing to take care of DD as paramount.

nickelbabe Mon 02-Sep-13 19:43:16

the thing is, though, why is it so important?

I have to get up for work at about 8 and leave the house at 9.

a typical day goes: if dd gas had a restless night, she'll be asleep when I go to work. she'll usually then wake up after half an hour
at half 11ish she'll be tired and feed to sleep.
nap (inmy arms!) for 1-2 hours.
awake until 4ish and then eitger will nap again or will fight sleep until it's time to close the shop at half 5 (she picks the most inconvenient time)
if she sleeps now she'll wake at about 7 and be awake until 8 or9.
tgen she'll feed to sleep again.
stay asleep until 2 or 3 then wake for up to 2 gours on a normal night.
then she'll sleep until 8ish.

that's when I'll leave her in bed until she wakes or it's time to go.

the point I'm making is that they are capable of regulating themselves and until they start school, why does it matter? the routines are more for the adults.
dd is 20 months old and she's pretty much been in control of her own sleeping all her life.she's happy, thriving and bright as a button.
and isn't so controlled by routine that it means she's happy to go along with any changes that happen.

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