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What options are there for a baby who can self settle and sleep through- but only sometimes

(9 Posts)
missmargot Tue 11-Nov-14 11:21:05

DS has just turned 10 months old and I am so exhausted it's making me cry.

He can sleep beautifully for 12 hours straight and sometime does for weeks at a time, but then he hits a new stage (tracking pretty accurately against Wonder Weeks development leaps) and we are suddenly in sleeping hell with 10+ wakings per night.

For the past week he has been awake between 1am and 4am, firstly for a feed but then subsequently standing in his cot and crying because he's forgotten how to get down again or trying to crawl out of the end of his cot and hitting his head. He settles almost immediately once one of us has gone in, sleeps for 15 minutes and then repeats.

When he is sleeping well he goes down awake, falls asleep on his own and self settles during the night. Given he knows how to do these things I'm not sure whether CC or CIO would help, or would they?

Is it a case of riding it out until he starts sleeping through again or is there something we can try? Any advice much appreciated.

missmargot Tue 11-Nov-14 20:47:43

Any advice much appreciated

hollie84 Tue 11-Nov-14 20:56:05

I think this is just the way babies are tbh!

MrsHY1 Wed 12-Nov-14 09:17:24

Missmargot that does sound exhausting. I was/am in a similar boat with 11mo DD. Weeks worth of 7-7s (yes, I know I'm very lucky for anyone reading this wanting to poke me in the eye) then short phases of disruption. With DD it also seems to correlate to developmental stages but long awake periods in the night totally wipe you out don't they!!
I consulted a sleep expert about this and she said consistency was key in how wakings are treated. I realised I was revving DD up by crashing in too early (because it was so unexpected that she'd wake) so now I wait a good 5 mins first and properly listen to the cry. If it's whingey, shouty or punctuated by DD practising her vocabulary (!) I don't go in. Ditto if there are gaps of silence as this is a dead giveaway that DD is trying to settle herself. If the crying ramps up I go in and soothe, then leave as quickly as possible and return if required but this time after 10 minutes. So a variant of controlled crying. Usually though, if I'm patient about that first waking and don't go crashing in, all is well. Until the next phase!!

MrsHY1 Wed 12-Nov-14 09:19:19

Oh also, I'd maybe consider knocking out that night feed. If he goes for weeks at a time without it and given his age it's unlikely he needs it so he may be struggling to understand when he gets it and when he doesn't? Just a thought x

missmargot Wed 12-Nov-14 22:38:32

MrsHY1 I think you've hit the nail on the head! I do go in to him pretty quickly so I will try leaving it longer tonight, especially if there are pauses in the crying. Thank you.

MrsHY1 Thu 13-Nov-14 08:59:04

Fingers crossed missmargot! X

dancingwitch Thu 13-Nov-14 09:13:36

I hate to tell you this, but I think some babies/toddlers are just like this but, IME, they do grow out of it. My DC are now 5 and 2.5 and some of their friends have slept 7-7 from 13 weeks (say) and have never woken in the night unless they are vomiting; others have been up every night. Mine have done what it sounds like yours does. DC1 slept 8-6 from 6mo - 9mo only to then wake every night for three months due to starting the crawl, getting 8 teeth and going on a couple of holidays, then she slept through for a while again & then she got more teeth etc. At about 18 months she slept through for several months ago we thought we'd cracked it and felt so smug and refreshed we conceived DC2 only for DC1 to go through a period of night terrors. Unless ill, she has slept through every night since 27 months. With DC2, we felt really smug as he slept through from 6 weeks...but only for two weeks. He is now 2.5 and sleeps through - and has done for a while now - apart from a few weeks each time he gets a tooth. He only ever seems to get one tooth at a time so teething has caused us many disrupted nights!
Over the years we have tried not going in immediately, going in immediately but just sitting next to the cot, controlled crying, bringing him into our bed, getting into his cot bed & the only one which has ever worked is bringing him into our bed. And when I say "worked", I mean maximises our sleep.
Over the years, we have been desperate enough to get a sleep consultant in. Interestingly, of the three friends who have done it, only one of them has been pleased that they spent the money several months down the line ask with them, it did crack it. With others, it may have worked in the immediate term but, as soon as the baby got a cold, was teething, reached a developmental stage etc then they were back to square one.

missmargot Fri 14-Nov-14 20:51:10

dancing that's really interesting, I think you have a very good point and DS's way of dealing with development leaps is disrupted sleep.

I tried Mrs advice on Wednesday night, his crying was stop start and he did resettle himself. Half an hour later he was very obviously hungry but went straight back to sleep after his bottle and didn't wake again. Last night he slept 7-6. So better for now, hoping it lasts long enough for me to recharge my batteries and catch up on my sleep.

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