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7 Month Old baby waking at 4.30am

(5 Posts)
newmum1april2015 Mon 09-Nov-15 08:19:57


Hoping someone has some advice as I'm stumped… my 7 month old son settles well on his own for bedtime and naps and sleeps fairly soundly until about 4/4.30am when he wakes and then doesn't go back to sleep. The odd thing is that he doesn't cry, he just lies there playing with his comforter - I can see on the video monitor that he does try to get back to sleep but can't seem to. I have tried going in and settling him with a dummy and with a feed but nothing seems to help. He does very occasionally go back to sleep after about 1.5 hours but more often that not he stays awake until I get him from his cot at 6am. I am not sure how to fix this and wondered if anyone has any ideas or advice. Just to give an idea of his day - he usually has a 90 min nap starting at 7am (if he hasn't gone back to sleep from 4.30am) and then he will usually have another 40 min nap and then a 90 min nap after lunch and then bedtime between 6.30 and 7pm. I'm wondering whether to push his bedtime back but then it's difficult as he won't sleep past 3pm anymore. I'm also wondering whether I should move his morning nap later but then he only tends to do a short nap if he is very overtired. So I'm a bit stuck!! Thanks in advance for any advice smile

WittgensteinsBunny Mon 09-Nov-15 15:04:12

Do you think he might be hungry? My 7mo still needs a couple of milk feeds in the night despite being really good at eating solids. She usually feeds at 1ish and 5ish. Although recently has begun to drop the 1am. Just a thought smile

newmum1april2015 Mon 09-Nov-15 19:02:25

Unfortunately doesn't seem to be hunger as he doesn't take a lot of milk when offered and it doesn't seem to make him go back to sleep or sleep longer. These babies are so hard to work out!

omama Mon 09-Nov-15 22:20:48

I'd say you definitely need to move your 7am nap later. He is taking a nap when many other babies are waking up (And I'm not being judgemental here - I did this too with my first & learned the hard way its not a good idea!)

Do it very slowly, just 5-10mins later every few days. I'd say you need to try & get the nap starting at more like 9am, so this may take a while. Once you achieve this it should encourage him to wake later & also enable you to then condense the two later naps into a single lunchtime/early afternoon nap. Hth

FATEdestiny Mon 09-Nov-15 22:31:00

I'd say hunger too. Not 'major' hunger that makes a baby shout for attention. But a grumbly enough stomach that it makes it hard for him to go back to sleep.

I assume he has breakfast when he gets up? An hour and a half earlier won't make much difference in terms of hunger - he's likely to be approximately as hungry at 4.30am as he is at 6.30 when he has breakfast.

It's quite telling that not long after eating breakfast he has a nap.

Does he take milk feeds OK at other times? It is not unusual for some babies to start refusing milk feeds once weaned. But in fact they do still need milk feeds so you have to get creating in finding ways to encourage drinking milk.

I would try introducing a dreamfeed at 11pm (or whenever you go to bed) because I find a half-asleep feed the easiest time to get milk into an older baby. This feed 5 hours after bedtime should help the hunger pains through to morning.

Also bear in mind that changes take a while to be established. You'll need to give it a couple of weeks to be established.

Alternatively you could feed quickly when just woke up and still dozy in the morning at 4.30am, instead of the dreamfeed.

Once you break the early wake up cycle, it becomes self perpetuating. When hes waking later then all his naps move later, which means bedtime can be later, which reaffirms the later mornings. It's just about breaking that cycle first.

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