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HOW TO GET 5 MONTH OLD TO SLEEP THROUGH

(45 Posts)
smegsmeg Tue 31-Jan-17 02:31:57

Really really need some advice.. I'm working 5pm - 1am and DP working 6.30am - 5pm and we're having to still get up 4 - 5 times through the night.

Mermaid36 Tue 31-Jan-17 02:44:07

Sorry, that's pretty normal. Sleeping through is a development thing and your baby hasn't learnt it yet. They are still only little to be expected to sleep all that time without any breaks/intervention

kineticmagnetic Tue 31-Jan-17 02:47:48

DD is 6 and a half and still not sleeping through most nights, if you find a way let me know.

At 5 months she was feeding awake all night

Jenijena Tue 31-Jan-17 03:20:28

I'm sorry, its crap, but it's normal. sad

Mummyamy123 Tue 31-Jan-17 03:30:04

Unfortunately there is no way. It will get easier though, with time 😫

ateapotandacake Tue 31-Jan-17 09:07:25

It's totally normal. Mine is 15 months and having a sleep relapse, he was sleeping through or waking once at 13 months but now is back to waking 3-4 times. He's learning to walk and starting to speak though so it's totally normal.
Sorry though. It is shit. It will get better and I hold onto the fact that teenagers sleep really well...

malvinandhobbes Tue 31-Jan-17 09:10:04

Nope. I've known people to sleep train, but it doesn't take at this age. You'll just have to do it again in two weeks after the next cold, teething, etc.

I have a six month old and we were up for hours last night with teething pain, I am due back at work next weekI extend my sympathies.

PonderLand Tue 31-Jan-17 10:53:14

My 8m old is still waking sad a comfort blanket tucked behind his head so his face can be snuggled into seems to help a bit, he suckles on it when his dummy falls out. I also moved him into his own room this week and that's helped as I don't wake him up turning over. But he still feeds every 3 hours night or day hmm

bikingintherain Tue 31-Jan-17 11:09:56

I'm going to go against the grain here and say it's not completely normal. and probably get flamed.

My first two DC slept through from about 15 weeks 7pm until 6ish am.

My third did not. She was never a very good sleeper, but by 5 months she was getting worse and worse. Until we were at a point of her waking every 30 mins in the night for about 3 weeks. DH and I were on our knees. At that age I do not believe in cc, it's not proven to work. But I remember saying to DH, we do something or we co-sleep.

It was always clear that she was not hungry every time, often when we tried a bottle she would pretty much refuse all but one a night.

We adopted the following approach.
*white noise
*naps always in the cot
*rubbing tummy to encourage her to sleep and to show her we were with her.

I'm not going to lie, she did not like it at first, but within a few days was getting much better and within 2 weeks was waking for 1 bottle a night.

I had numerous other friends with babies the same age as my youngest and her behavior was definitely not seen as normal by them, nor by our health visitor.

She went from being a baby who was regularly upset to a much happier baby. Looking back I think she was cronically exhausted like her parents.

Tatlerer Tue 31-Jan-17 11:55:17

I'm with biking. it's not unusual, but I wouldn't say it's normal either, and there are plenty of sleep training methods you can try if you want to change it (some don't, and that of course is totally up to them). We used a method called timed soothing (basically controlled crying, not cry it out which is completely different) at around this age and it worked well.

cathf Wed 01-Feb-17 12:02:27

Another one agreeing that it is not completely normal, and I think constantly 'normalising' poor sleep habits does no-one any good.
Not so long ago, three months was regarded the 'magical' age when most babies were expected to go all the way through the night. Now it seems to be getting towards a year, which I think is ridiculous.
I am extremely old-fashioned when it comes to babies and sleep, and I think a lot of the advice given to mums today actually promotes poor sleeping patterns for the child.
For what it's worth (and I am usually flamed here!), here's what I did with all three of mine and they all slept through by 12 weeks at the latest:
1. Strict bedtime routine, bath, bottle , story/song, bed
2. Distinctions between night and day, so baby slept downstairs during the day and no attempt was made to keep the noise down etc,
3. All three were put in their own rooms from the day they came out of hospital. During the night, the curtains were closed, but as they got older and had daytime naps in their cots, the curtains were kept open.
4. When they woke during the night, they were fed and changed in the dark, in complete silence. No eye contact, no talking, singing etc. The idea is that nighttime wakings are functional, not for fun
I realise this is all incredibly unfashionable now, but I do despair at some of the nonsense I read on here about 'baby-led' routines that go downhill fast.

cathf Wed 01-Feb-17 14:01:06

Following on from my post above, the habits that seem to be promoted as good practise today which were not 10-20 years go are:
Co-sleeping
Feeding to sleep
Room-sharing
Not being put down to nap, but being allowed to nap on someone
Using a sling other than as a means of transport
Interacting with baby at night feeds
No routine early on
Anything promoted as 'baby-led'

As I said above, all of this is deeply unfashionable nowadays, but I think it should be bourne in mind that following current advice seems to increase the likelihood of poor nighttime sleeping patterns.

munchkinmable Wed 01-Feb-17 18:22:29

The research from Swansea uni says only 20% of babies sleep through at 6-12 months and most wake at least 1-2 times so it is completely normal to be waking quite a bit at 5 months

bikingintherain Wed 01-Feb-17 18:42:03

The thing is waking once a night, is utterly different to the 4+ the OP was talking about.

Regularly waking that much isn't normal and can leave parents (and siblings) in a state if it goes on for any length of time.

I don't think it's unreasonable to look into and try different strategies with a real expectation of improvement.

cathf Wed 01-Feb-17 19:53:15

Munch, how old was the research? I would be genuinely interested to see how modern expectations compare with, say, 20 years ago, or even 10. I think anecdotally that sleep patterns have worsened due to the reasons I detailed above.

Biking, completely agree.

Onthedowns Thu 02-Feb-17 06:09:31

Advocating putting a baby in their own room from day one I don't think is clever advice? Room sharing therefore isn't old fashioned! I have a crap sleeper my DS was born prematurely, 3 weeks in scbu came home with horrific reflux and CMPA. Myself and husband spent 2 months taking it in turns sleeping 4 hours a night as he would only be held upright. We only have two bedrooms my DD was in other room! He still suffers reflux and has bad habits I am fully aware we have created some however when your chronically sleep deprived and have other children you do what you do to get sleep! I do believe some children are genuinely better sleepers than others. We are having building work down and DS will be going into his own room at 14 months which will bring another level of sleep issues. I think your 'routines and rules seem very cold to me!

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Thu 02-Feb-17 06:19:56

Well,15 years ago I did all the strict bedtime routine etc and DS still didn't sleep through. If you had one that did you were just lucky.

5 months is still very tiny and waking in the night IS normal.

Hellmouth Thu 02-Feb-17 06:27:37

My son has been sleeping through since 4 months.

He is now 7 months old and has always been formula fed. The trick to getting him to sleep through is big feeds during the day. He gets 8 oz every 2-3 hours. Sounds like a lot but he is on the 91st percentile and nearly out of 9-12 clothes! Generally goes to bed around half 8, usually awake by 6. he gets a bottle then usually sleeps for another hour unless he's going to nursery.

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Thu 02-Feb-17 06:40:33

Hellmouth yep,my DS was the same wrt milk but didn't sleep through. Parents like to attribute feeding and routine etc to the reason their children sleep through but it's usually just because they do, nothing else.

confusedandemployed Thu 02-Feb-17 06:49:54

I think at 5 months you can start gentle sleep training. I agree that along all the time at that age isn't normal. I also agree that just accepting all-night waking under the guise of "completely normal" is promoting unhealthy sleep habits.

If you're not already I'd start the following:
Naps downstairs in the light, bedtime upstairs in the dark (get blackout blind ready for lighter evenings)
Big feed last thing. Is he bf or ff?
Bedtime routine: bath, story, bed.
Set a time, say 7am or whatever suits, and treat all wakings before then as night time.
Perhaps look at a dream feed around 11pm to help him go through.

When he hits 6 months, you start weaning you can really tank him up with food and milk during the day so that you know he's not hungry at night. You can also start cc if that's what you choose. Note I said cc not cio...

Sorry just read that back and realised it sounds like I think you're a first time mum. Sorry. But I hope some of it is useful.

mewkins Thu 02-Feb-17 06:56:36

Hi, I swear by the Baby Whisperer sleep training method. Worked for both pf my very different babies..amd got ds sleeping through at 9 weeks. Stick with it. My eldest is now nearly 7 and is still a brilliant sleeper. She is also well adjusted happy little girl. Sleep is so important for the whole family so stick with whatever you choose and you will get there.

ActuallyThatsSUPREMECommander Thu 02-Feb-17 07:03:14

I agree that stocking them up with as much milk and sunlight as possible during the daytime can't do any harm. A five month old baby (or a three month old baby for that matter) should have "learned the difference" between day and night (biologically not intellectually). They may still be waking for a quick 3am feed but you'd look for that to be a quick roll over, grab baby, attach to relevant feeding apparatus, cuddle, wait until finished, return to cot with neither of you properly waking up.

A single half-awake feed during the night is normal for that age and has minimal impact on the parents' sanity. 4/5 wakings between 1am and 6:30am is not OK for that age and will wreck you if it goes on for month after month after month.

Hellmouth Thu 02-Feb-17 09:04:21

Dame I have noticed, though, that if he doesn't get his 8 oz every 3 hours, he does tend to wake up at least once in the night, but it will usually be after a good 4-5 hours sleep, and he'll fall right back asleep after the bottle without any help. Every baby is different though smile

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Thu 02-Feb-17 09:15:32

Hell Oh, I'm with you about doing everything you can to help and if I had my time again I would be sleep training at a year old but I think at 5 months they are too little too expect to go through the night on a regular basis and it's not anything the parents are doing 'wrong' as such.

cathf Thu 02-Feb-17 13:51:27

Dame, I am not suggesting the 'old way' was a magic bullet: Obviously there have always been babies who, for whatever reason, just did not sleep and you must have drawn the short straw sad
I suppose my point was/is that MOST babies will sleep, but need to be shown how to, and a lot of accepted wisdom today seems to encourage the very opposite.
I remember reading on here about a new mum who was co-sleeping with her baby (not out of desparation, but because she wanted to) and she gave a blow-by-blow account of her night, when she seemed be constantly waking the baby up by opening windows, going to the loo etc and the baby constantly woke her up in the interim.
The point being, that's fine if that's the way you want to deal with night wakings, but do not expect the baby to suddenly see the light as they get older and settle down to sleep through when they have been used to having mum/attention/milk on tap throughout the night.
Every time I post on this topic, there are always mums who come on and lambast me, usually something along the lines of 'I am not going to ignore my baby if he/she needs me' and there is always some goon who claims to enjoy the 'sleepy cuddles'.
Horses for course and all that but I cannot think of anything more depressing than a 3-4 year stretch of broken nights, and I think it's something that needs to be bourne in mind in the early days of 'sleepy cuddles' - is my behavoir going to encourage bad sleeping. If you're Ok with that, fine.

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