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4 month sleep regression

(24 Posts)
Newmother8668 Tue 21-Feb-17 10:15:49

So how long is this going to keep going? It's kind of weird, but at first it started with him waking up more through the night and then terrible naps. Now his night sleeping is much better and stretching out, but I can't get him to nap longer than 30 minutes. Even if I try to time it so he's not overtired. I'm so sick of it. Help!

Newmother8668 Tue 21-Feb-17 10:22:24

It's been 3 1/2 weeks of this progressing to this stage. I put him down in a dark room, white noise, etc etc, but he just snaps awake at 30 minutes. Every three days he all of a sudden has one nap for two hours and then back to 30 minute naps. I am compensating by ensuring an earlier bedtime as he's waking at 5am now every day, but nothing seems to help. I'm now worried that I think my baby may be mentally slow. He's so tired, crying, rubbing his eyes, but he refuses to sleep! It's so stupid!!!

MetalMidget Tue 21-Feb-17 11:15:16

My lad hit the 4 month sleep regression, was waking every 20 - 40 minutes.

He's now 7 months and wakes every 1-3 hours. He once did 5 hours.

I miss him sleeping 7-10 hours. sad

Newmother8668 Tue 21-Feb-17 11:19:21

Oh dear! That is even shorter! I just wish I knew what to do, but no matter how much I google, none of it is working and I'm worried that this is permanent!

MetalMidget Tue 21-Feb-17 11:47:13

On the plus side, my lad's daytime naps are usually more reliable, 1.5 - 2 hours a pop, and he usually only cries at night, right before bed (I think possibly because he's overtired and needs a better third nap, or getting to bed earlier?)

I dunno how much of it should just be met with a shrug and acceptance that they're babies. They've got so much going on - brain development, teething, etc.

Or maybe they're just gits.

Hgmother Tue 21-Feb-17 11:53:02

Don't panic! It's not permanent, It feels like it is... but it's not, promise! Just keep to the 'schedule' as much as you can and ride it out smile you're doing a great job... here have some MN wine wine

PotteringAlong Tue 21-Feb-17 11:56:57

It is a permanent change though. Even though their sleeping will improve eventually

Hgmother Tue 21-Feb-17 12:01:11

Yeah but the waking every 2 minutes is not permanent...

Newmother8668 Tue 21-Feb-17 12:02:27

I don't mind the permanent change that it won't be the same, I just wish he would
nap longer than 30 minutes.

FATEdestiny Tue 21-Feb-17 13:00:54

I just wish he would nap longer than 30 minutes.?

Why?

Not being flippant. Just wondering why you view your baby's (perfectly normal) 30 minute naps as a terrible, stressful thing?

Newmother8668 Tue 21-Feb-17 13:24:37

Ah mainly because he's still exhausted and crying but simply refuses to back to sleep. So he just gets really overtired and grizzly. I feel for him.

FATEdestiny Tue 21-Feb-17 14:35:22

OK - so you could just accept the 30 minute naps, but make them much, much more frequent. That would stop baby from being exhausted and over tired.

I would suggest you limit awake time to 40 minutes to an hour.

So when baby next wakes (from his 30m nap), look at the clock. 40 minutes from waking, start working on getting baby back to sleep. Baby much go back to sleep straight away. Maybe it will take 20 minutes. But either way baby is back to sleep within an hour of waking.

Short naps are normal at this age.

The key to avoiding over tiredness is to make them very frequent.

You make naps frequent by having very limited awake time between waking from one nap and going to sleep the next nap.

Newmother8668 Tue 21-Feb-17 15:18:31

Thanks fate, I was just trying to stick with one of those schedules, but I guess that doesn't work and my baby won't be one of those that sleeps for longer than 30 minutes, but all sites say that this is the least restorative sleep for baby? I feel like a terrible mother. Everyone else seems to have amazing babies that don't eat every two hours, that aren't bigger than all other babies and that don't nap terribly. My baby has never slept through the night ever, so I guess I'm not too disappointed.

FATEdestiny Tue 21-Feb-17 16:54:08

You seem to be stressing for no reason. The "schedules" you mention sound like they are for an older baby.

Do tell me a schedule that tells you 4 month olds sleep for 2 hours? Because none of the main sleep gurus do. You seem to be assuming your 4 month old is 9 months old...?

2 hourly feeding are perfectly normal. Especially so for a big baby. Calorie loading through the daytime means less night feeds - only a good thing.

Short, frequent naps are also normal. Longer naps are usual with the second half of te first year, not the first half.

Here's a schedule that might work, if you like schedules. It's called EASY. It is a repeating cycle of events that hapiens through the day. Literally all day (7am-11pm), every day. You adjust the times to suit your child, sounds like 90 minute EASY cycles will work for you:

E - Eat. Start with a full feed upon waking. Note the time.

A - Awake time. Limit to 60 minutes max. This includes the time it takes you to get baby to sleep. So it might just be a quick nappy check, kick on the floor, quick cuddle and back to sleep.

S - Sleep. I would suggest bouncy chair and dummy for daytime naps. Be relentless and unceasing. Keep bouncing and reinsertibg dummy until asleep

Y - You time while baby sleeps. Expect 20-40 minutes.

Then when baby wakes, you start again with E for Eat. Just keep on repeating the cycle over and over again from when you get up until when you go to bed.

As baby gets older, naps will extend naturally. Until then, keep them frequent.

Newmother8668 Wed 22-Feb-17 19:45:41

Tried the napping with only one hour of awake time. By the third 30-minute nap, he wouldn't sleep. I rocked him and he cried for three hours straight, then fell asleep for 30 minutes. After 10 minutes of play after that, he got tired and started crying and I had to put him down for another nap. It was worse trying that than waiting every 90 minutes or so. Poor thing. I had to hold him and give him a lot of cuddles. He has slept fine now at night. I think I'm going to have to try weaning him maybe. It may settle him as he's a really big baby!

Newmother8668 Wed 22-Feb-17 19:51:12

To be honest, I won't be trying weaning until the six month mark. I think I'm just going to have to just read the signs, feed him a lot and skip trying to schedule anything. That seemed to work best. As long as my baby is happy, I'm happy. I think I just need to not stress and just go with it.

MetalMidget Wed 22-Feb-17 20:13:59

Yeah, our boy is a big baby, and my mom kept on nagging for us to put him on solids from about three months (particularly Rusks, I think she's secretly working for Farleys). I started weaning at 26 weeks (not Rusks!), but it's not made any discernable difference to him sleeping.

FATEdestiny Wed 22-Feb-17 20:42:46

My youngest tracked the 91st centre line for all of the first 12 months. Frequent (2 hourly) milk feeds were routine for her, it's no big deal.

Weaning early will only make things worse.

Early weaning foods (fruit, veg, lean meat) are low calorie foods. Milk is high calorie. It's more milk baby wants.

I think I just need to not stress

This.

FATEdestiny Wed 22-Feb-17 20:43:21

Centile line. Not centre line.

Newmother8668 Wed 01-Mar-17 09:34:14

Hi Fate, so it's just not working trying to get baby down for 30 minute naps after an hour of wakefulness. I end up rocking him for almost two hours before he falls asleep. I'm doing the whole cuddling, feeding, dummy etc etc with white noise, dark room. Everything. Yet he still fights sleep as if I'm torturing him. Night sleep is fine. Nap times he doesn't even want them even though he's exhausted and rubbing his eyes.

FATEdestiny Wed 01-Mar-17 13:44:19

Is there any reason you can't do the naps in a bouncy chair?

Park yourself on the sofa (there is no real need to stress about dark rooms and silence for daytime naps at this age - that's more for older babies having longer naps) with the tv on and a cup of tea. Bouncer on floor in front of you, foot bouncing.

Just be relentless. Completely and fully relentless in your rhythmic, gentle foot bouncing constantly - while you watch tv.

- Main Feed
- 45 minutes floor time/play
- Offer what's left in the bottle
- into bouncer.

...think of Finding Dory.... "just keep bouncing, just keep bouncing..." (reinsertibg dummy as needed). Non stop. Constantly. You sit on the sofa, watching tv, boucing with your foot.

- keep going until 2 hours since main feed, then stop bouncing. If baby is asleep, leave until wakes up, feed, start again. If baby is awake, feed and start again.

Newmother8668 Sun 05-Mar-17 08:11:08

Hey Fate, just wanted to say thank you for your help. Yes, we have been doing his naps in the bouncy chair and I kept with what you said. It really worked, as he has now gotten annoyed with having too many naps and his naps started getting longer and longer quite naturally. Currently sleeping for an hour or more now!

FATEdestiny Sun 05-Mar-17 11:19:53

Great news smile

The next stage now naps have got longer is to start moving them into the cot or pushchair and having established morning nap time, afternoon nap time and teatime nap.

Newmother8668 Sun 05-Mar-17 11:36:12

Yea, the sad thing is my maternity leave ends when he hits six months old, so my nursery will be trying to do that. The good thing is that I will start off working only four days a week and then will reduce down again to three days a week. I keep crying every day about it.

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