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Early riser, struggling to make it to afternoon nap and not eating

(8 Posts)
PickledLily Tue 25-Feb-14 09:20:43

Not sure if I should be posting here or in the sleep thread?

My DD (2) is an early riser (between 5 and 5.30, sometimes earlier) and when at home is ready for a nap by 10.30/11am. At nursery, they don't have their nap until 12.15, after lunch. DD generally lasts because she is a bit of a duracell bunny and keeps going if distracted, but she isn't eating her lunch and I suspect (from similar episodes at home) it's because she is too tired. Nursery offer her lunch again once she has woken from her nap, but she rarely takes it, possibly because she takes about 20 mins before she's interested in food after waking up.

At night, she goes to sleep by 7pm and we've tried all sorts of things to get her to sleep longer, but to no avail. She also has silent reflux, so some nights she wakes several times if the meds aren't doing their job, yet will still keep going until the afternoon nap but is a mess when I pick her up.

Anyone else had this, or have any suggestions to improve things?

PickledLily Tue 25-Feb-14 09:21:21

Doh, meant to post on the nurseries thread, but never mind!

minipie Tue 25-Feb-14 19:21:12

Have you tried a later bedtime? My DD (16 months) is also a Duracell bunny. She would wake at 5.30 if her bedtime was 7, however we gradually pushed it to 8-8.15 and she now sleeps till c.6.30/6.45 most days. This means she's better able to last through lunch. It was a bit painful while we were pushing her bedtime back, since she was still waking early for a while, but after a week or so the later mornings kicked in. Worth a try?

Other suggestion - is there any chance your DD would have a short (10 min) nap on the way to nursery, to tide her over till lunch - or is that just way too early for her to be tired? This might be the best solution on days when she's had a bad night?

TheScience Tue 25-Feb-14 19:24:11

I'd move her day time nap to the same time as nursery's. With any luck she will sleep later in the morning.

Also agree with minipie that 10-11 hours is enough night time sleep for many children so a later bedtime might help.

TheScience Tue 25-Feb-14 19:26:16

In fact I would probably just try to shift her whole routine back by an hour - so bed at 8pm, nap at 12pm, up at 6.30am. Treat it the same as you normally would the clocks changing.

PickledLily Wed 26-Feb-14 09:25:28

Thanks for the suggestions. I think you are right, I need to move her bedtime later. I know it seems obvious but it's not proved so simple in the past - it's taken 6 months to get it from 6 to 7pm confused.

During the day, DD is fundamentally a sleep avoider and there is no chance of her falling asleep on the way to nursery unfortunately, it's only a 5 min trip. I'll try to keep her nap later in the day at home, but she gets in a complete state and if I take her out to distract her, she falls asleep in the car/pushchair. I guess there is no easy answer.

minipie Wed 26-Feb-14 09:43:57

What we did while establishing 8pm bedtime was 2 naps. So a short morning nap at 9/9.30 and longer afternoon nap at 2pm - or (better) long morning nap at 11am and very short top up nap (requiring pram walk) at 5pm ish. this might work for you? although our dd was younger at that time (she was about 1yr).

YourDaughterHasaTattoo Wed 26-Feb-14 20:07:03

I know you said you've tried lots of things to get her to sleep later, but how about daylight? My DS was a terrible early riser (sometimes 4.30am boak). It was suggested his natural rhythm might be out if whack and to try getting him out in the daylight as close to bedtime as poss. I know it's hard at the mo with the early evenings, but I used to take DS for a 20min walk as late in the day as I could. Within a week it had pushed his wake up to 6.30 most days still to early for me mind. If you've tried this already ignore me grin

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