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Good sleeper gone bad

(2 Posts)
ClippetyClopClop Mon 15-Feb-16 11:26:50

My little boy is 8 months old and was a good sleeper when he was tiny - without any particular encouragement from us, he was sleeping through for 9-11 hours a night from about nine weeks until he was four months. He used to feed very frequently in the early evening and then zonk out.

Then the four month sleep regression kicked in and it's been up and down since then, he still sleeps through occasionally but more often than not doesn't.

He moved into his own room just before six months (so 2.5 months ago) and initially it went well with him mostly staying in there from going to sleep around 7.45/8pm (he's breastfed and I feed him to sleep/drowsy) until around 5am when he'd wake up hungry, come in with us, feed and go back to sleep in our bed for 2-3 hours before waking up for the day between 7 and 8. As recently as two weeks ago he had a decent stretch of doing this.

Now, however, more often than not he's waking around midnight. We always try to settle him in his cot at first but usually he'll wake up again after 5-10 minutes. Usually we manage this about three times before giving in due to tiredness, bringing him to our room and co-sleeping. He always zonks out as soon as he's in my arms until waking up for a feed 3-5 hours later. He's getting hungry earlier than before though - it's now more like 3.30/4 than 5 which, while I know not bad for a breastfed baby, is definitely a regression for us.

So, two things:

- How would you try and get him to stay in his cot for longer? Do we need to bite the bullet one night and keep resettling him over and over until he gets it? Maybe sleep in his room to do it or would that be a mistake? I definitely won't leave him crying at all.

- How would you deal with his need for a feed getting earlier? He hasn't taken brilliantly to solids, he's having three "meals" a day but sometimes this is barely any food, still far more interested in milk, so I'm thinking it's genuine hunger because he's not filling up enough for his age/size?

FATEdestiny Mon 15-Feb-16 19:17:57

(1) Yes, just bite the bullet. This will be tied in with the method that he goes to sleep when first going in the cot.

I would suggest moving the breastfeed to the start of the bedtime routine - so big feed downstairs, then upstairs, bath, PJs, story or whatever and into cot awake and settle to sleep in the cot. Use the same in-cot settling methods at night time for any wake ups.

I would without question be sleeping next to the cot until baby is fully and consistently sleeping through. Its the reason I had baby's cot in my room until 9-12 months old with all of my children. None co-slept though, but always had the cot next to my side of the bed for all settling.

(2) Sounds to me like genuine hunger. Until weaning is fully established I would go with the flow in terms of night feeds.

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