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4 month sleep regression! Share your experiences please!

(38 Posts)
Riri85 Tue 03-Feb-15 10:36:46

Hi everyone,
We are currently going through the hell on earth known as the four month sleep regression and I am tearing my hair out (it's a couple of weeks in)
Just to give you an idea of our situation-
LO goes down after a feed between half 6/7 drowsy but not asleep
We then dream feed her last thing before we go to bed
Typically she wakes around 2/3 for another feed
LO then wakes around 4am crying and is awake (shouting/crying) intermittently until I give up and get her up at half 6ish after both me and the OH having been up and down like yo yos!
All of this has come after a good couple of months of LO going down at half 6/7 and waking once for a feed in the night then waking again at 8am!
LO does have a dummy at night and I am wondering if that has anything to do with it so we took it away for one night and it was awful-the only thing we could do to console her was give her the dummy!
Also we've tried leaving her to cry for 10 minutes or so but she just gets more distressed!confused
We have looked up tips for getting through the dreaded 4 month regression but have found there are hardly any!
I am considering using the CIO technique properly but would obviously rather not have to (although it's looking like the only option)
So what I am really asking is-what was your experience like? How long did it last? How did you maintain your sanity?
Answers on a postcard please!

Manyproblemsinthishouse Tue 03-Feb-15 10:48:43

We've just come out the other side (touch wood) it lasted 6 weeks for us and then last week she just slept through again and has done since!
We left her to cry by the end, it got louder but after 20 mins she was asleep. It is hard but will be over soon

Riri85 Tue 03-Feb-15 10:51:40

Manyproblems-thanks for the swift reply! I think leaving her to cry is going to be our only option sadly! confused
She just gets louder and it's so hard during your sleep deprived irritable irrational state to not go in and try to calm her but even when we do she's awake again within a few minutes! It seems like there isn't an end to it and it's only been a couple of weeks!

FelixFelix Tue 03-Feb-15 10:57:57

Unfortunately I think it's just one of those things that you have to ride out. My dd woke up hourly from 4 months until she was 8 months old. She was previously an ok sleeper, waking 3 times a night. It was horrendous. Then just one night it was like a switch flipped and she only woke twice. She's had periods of waking up to 10 times a night since but it's not lasted as long (teething/developmental leap/illness related I think) and currently she's down to waking once a night at 13 months.

Sorry my advice is a bit rubbish but we tried everything and nothing seemed to work. I know lots of people who had the same problem too, albeit for a lot less time than we did grin hopefully it won't last too long for you. It's amazing how easy it gets to function on 0 sleep.

Riri85 Tue 03-Feb-15 11:06:41

Thanks Felix-from reading other similar threads about sleep it does seem like a lot of people have just had to ride it out! You think you are getting somewhere then it all goes back to square one! �� but that's the nature of having a baby really I suppose-it's all unpredictable!

PterodactylTeaParty Tue 03-Feb-15 11:16:00

I wouldn't leave her to cry tbh, unless she's happy to just grumble herself to sleep after a few minutes - I know the waking is hell but 4 months is so young she won't understand that you're nearby and she's still safe.

My DD woke every 45 minutes all night for the first three weeks or so

PterodactylTeaParty Tue 03-Feb-15 11:20:07

Sorry, posted before I meant to!

Woke every 45 minutes all night for the first few weeks of the sleep regression, then less but still frequently for the next 3 or so, then back to only waking once/twice. It was awful - I was on my knees with exhaustion. We ended up getting a bedside cot attached to my side of the bed because I just couldn't cope with continuing to get up multiple times in the night. It was an absolute lifesaver.

There's another one at 9 months, btw. Gaaaaah.

Riri85 Tue 03-Feb-15 11:25:51

Pterodactyl-was going to say! From three weeks!grin
I know what you mean-4 months is young and most people say 6 months minimum-I am just running out of ideas! Perhaps moving her back in with us may work?
I have heard about the 9 month sleep regression (and apparently a 6 month one?) confused
Perhaps it's best to just accept that this is how it is and you can't control it!

Riri85 Tue 03-Feb-15 18:03:58

Anyone else with any tips or words of comfort-you are most welcome!x

FelixFelix Tue 03-Feb-15 18:06:34

Riri I would move her back in with you if it makes things easier. Dd was in a bedside cot until 6 months then her normal cot in our bedroom until 11 months. It makes the night waking slightly more bearable! You just have to do whatever you can to make things work for you.

Riri85 Tue 03-Feb-15 18:42:30

Thanks Felix-am beginning to dread the night that lays ahead already!confused

luckiestgirlintheworld Tue 03-Feb-15 19:21:51

It passes. Even if lasts bloody ages, it passes in the end. Just try not to stress and you won't remember it in a few months time.

For my DS it lasted a couple of months: until he was 6 months where I moved him into his own room and did a couple of nights of controlled crying and that stopped it.

But til then I don't think there's much you can do! Except take the stress out of it. Once I made the decision to not get worked up when he cried at night, it all became a lot easier.

Riri85 Tue 03-Feb-15 19:35:29

Luckiest-think you are right-acceptance is a big part of making it less stressful! Thank goodness for MN and knowing you're not the only one going through it!

Riri85 Fri 06-Feb-15 10:47:24


Riri85 Fri 06-Feb-15 11:54:52

I know I started this thread a few days ago but it's getting worse!
I am now in tears after a night of completely broken sleep-in the end LO was up after 20 minute intervals from around 4 (it could have been 3-can't even remember it's such a blur!) I don't know how much more of this I can take!
Put her down for a nap earlier and it took ages to get her to sleep and she only slept for 40 minutes even though she must be as tired as me!
I don't really expect any magic cures am just venting!��

luckiestgirlintheworld Fri 06-Feb-15 18:07:42

You must try and take the stress away. She's going to do this whether you get stressed by it or not. I was like you til my DH explained this to me....

Just flick a switch. You're not going to let it get to you any more. You're going to do what you need to do to get her to sleep. You're her carer. She needs to sleep and is struggling, so you need to help her. Your sleep doesn't matter any more. Just do what you need to do each time to help her, and in the end, after a few weeks, she won't need you to any more.

Once he said that and I did it, I found the 4 month sleep regression so much easier.

Just an idea. It's hard though, you have to commit to it. But it's a relief if you can!

Riri85 Fri 06-Feb-15 21:20:27

Luckiest-thank you again for your words of advice! The battle lies within me and how I decide to approach it-you're right!
I was just in such a bad mood all day today and on the verge of tears for the majority-couldn't shake it! But it's mind over matter! Tonight is a new night!

solenneguest Sun 08-Feb-15 20:18:10

Hi riri how was last night? I'm in the same situation as you and plan to sleep train my lo this week end coming. If you haven't already I would get Ferber's book from the library and even if you don't use cc read the chapter about sleep associations. Very informative and may help you think more objectively. Good luck :-)

solenneguest Sun 08-Feb-15 20:30:08

(I've come to the conclusion after much, much reading, that without some sort of cc you would only be replacing it one sleep association with another...)

Cakeismymaster Sun 08-Feb-15 22:37:32

Hi, my dd was sleeping 7-3 from about 12 weeks until 4 month regression hit following her vaccinations. She's now 17 months old and it never went away, sorry sad

Sofshiz Sun 08-Feb-15 22:56:33

Hey everyone. Im new to here and wanted to also get some advice on the 4 month sleep regression.

My LO is 19 weeks and for the past 3 weeks has been waking up every 45minutes-1 hour at night. She sometimes has a proper feed but mostly just comfort sucks and goes back to sleep in my arms and cries when I put her back in her cot. When I eventually manage to put her back to sleep in her cot (bedside cot) she only sleeps for a short time. I'm lucky if she sleeps for 2 hours at a time. I am exhausted and haven't had more than a two hour solid sleep in weeks! Most nights I end up in tears from waking up so much, mainly because LO is so hard to put back to sleep. She used to eat and go back to sleep with no problem but now it's a real battle putting her down without a massive cry.

She used to have nice long 2 hour naps during the day but they've also disappeared and now she naps for 40-45 minutes only.

I don't know what to do anymore. I tried the CIO method a few nights ago and swore that I will never do it again. I just couldn't handle seeing her cry that much. It did nothing for 45 minutes.

Oh I'm EBF too so I don't know if I need to wean her off using me as a dummy first or teach her how to self sooth or what?!

I really hope this is just a phase and really can't wait until it's over. I can't even think or talk straight anymore.

Sofshiz Sun 08-Feb-15 22:59:02

Oh also has anyone tried the pick-up-put-down approach for sleep training? Much success ?

solenneguest Sun 08-Feb-15 23:13:43

I've tried pupd and due to back pain couldn't carry on... Also my lo was getting more wound up by being picked up. I both the Ferber book and will be giving that a go as I really believe this to be the only way forward - is that what you used? Graduated checks?

Riri66 Mon 09-Feb-15 10:05:31

Hi everyone-wow it's heartening yet sad to hear there are lots of us going through the same thing!
Solenn-thanks for your reply-have got the Ferber book and me and the OH decided to give it a go on Friday night just gone-LO must have heard us hatching our plan as fri and sat night she woke once and shouted (didn't cry) for about 20 minutes then fell asleep!
Last night however-she woke around 10ish and screamed for 20 minutes in total-we used the Ferber CC technique-waiting 5 minutes another 5 minutes then 10 minutes before going in and she eventually stopped!
It was horrible to listen to but kept telling myself she's fed she's changed she's safe!
Would say it's worth a go solenn-keep me updated on how you get on and we can compare notes!

Riri66 Mon 09-Feb-15 10:11:25

Sofshiz-sorry to hear you're having a hard time too!
When you say you tried the CIO method do you mean you let LO cry and didn't go in at regular intervals (just trying to get a context-not judging at all!) if so then like Solenn said-maybe try the Ferber method where you go in at regular but extended intervals? That way LO knows you're there and haven't left them to fend for themself!
With the dummy idea it's a tough one-my LO is very reliant on hers but we have taken the decision to try and withhold it at nap/bedtimes as we were worried she was waking up wanting it! It's also another sleep association for them!
It's so difficult to know what to do for the best isn't it! Let me know how you get on Sof!

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