Almost 4 months and still waking every 2/3h at night!(23 Posts)
I'm a 1st time mum so not sure whether my expectations are too high or if this is a problem.
My almost 4 month old baby is still waking 4 times at night..roughly every 2/3h!
He starts to stir in his cot and I pick him up. He then drinks about 50ml milk each time (sometimes less) and drifts back to sleep.
It's really tiring. A lot of my friends babies have started sleeping through the night.
Any suggestions? I know it's too early to start sleep training yet but if there's anything I can do to encourage him sleeping through then I would do so!
I assume you are formula feeding?
If that is the case, I would stop feeding at every wake up. Calorie load through the daytime by making feeds more frequent during the day, then night feeds are less likely.
Then develop a settling mechanism that isn't feeding, a dummy and cuddle for example. Try to resettle at every wake up. Yoy might still need to feed once or twice, but should also be able to resettle.
Having said all of that, your expectations are very high. The idea of wake ups only every 2 hours would be amazing for many babies and may continue for a long time to come.
In the kindest possible way you need to adjust your expectations & load up on
None of mine slept through the night until over 2, frequent wake ups went on until over one....
I went with cosleeping to maximise my sleep! If you're bottle feeding can your partner do a feed to give you a longer stretch of sleep? If you an get 4 hours in a row you'll feel amazing
I actually don't think your expectations for longer than a 2 hour stretch at 4 months is unreasonable. It sounds like he's not really waking up for a proper feed. I would start playing white noise when he goes to bed and then try switching that on as soon as he stirs. Babies are incredibly noisy sleepers and in their lighter sleep stages can really give the impression of being awake when they're not really.
I actually combination feed and do mostly breastfeeding overnight but my husband does occasionally help out and do feeds which is how I know that he only takes a small amount! He also only spends 5/10mins on the breast each time.
He really struggles to take large quantities of milk during the day (has about 60ml every 3h) he has severe reflux and we are under the dietician and he has to have a high calorie formula to keep his weight up. I have tried to get him to take more in the day but it causes him a lot of pain so it's a struggle.
I think the reflux might be a reason for the frequent wake ups at night too...think I might just have to accept it for now! Thanks for all your advice
Have you tried a reflux pillow? It's like a wedge of cheese shaped pillow you can put under the mattress in their cot / Moses basket and keeps them slightly inclined which helps with reflux.
I have a 6mo who sometimes wakes every 2/3 hrs through the night. Not all the time now though. Be kind to yourself and don't expect too much sleep, take each night as it comes and enlist the help of your DH with feeding to give yourself a decent amount of kip
has about 60ml every 3h
That's a tiny amount. In that case he definitely needs those night feeds. The read on for the wakes will almost certainly be calorific need.
Your nights are unlikely to be unbroken until the dietician has helped you with maintaining his calorie intake. For now, given his weight, feed every time in the night.
I think most four month olds wake this much don't they? Mine did. At four months, I was still surviving on no sleep. Neither of mine slept through reliably til they were 2. Sorry to say! But I also never left either to cry
My DS is six months and still waking intermittently during the night and he's a chunky FF baby. So it's not unusual. BF often do wake more regularly and if your little one is only taking 60ml every feed they will definitely need the night feeding. At 4 months my DS was downing 7-8oz bottles (200ml) and still woke up!
Could there be any other reason for the reflux? Allergy? Tongue tie?
Mine woke that often or more at that age. I think it's fairly normal. I know that doesn't make it easier, especially when all your friends seem to have babies that sleep through.
Yes they suspect he has a dairy allergy too so he's on infatrini which is a high calorie hypoallergenic milk. He has a few health issues and he's been in hospital a couple of times with infections so has struggled with his weight. He's less than 10th centile but is weighed weekly to keep an eye on him!
You say he starts to stir and you pick him up, have you tried leaving him for a couple of minutes to see if he will settle himself? Sometimes babies will seem to be waking up when they're just going from one sleep cycle to the next.
My DS is just 5 months and wakes every 2-3 hours. He always has a feed each time but only feeds for 5/10 mins and falls asleep. I've tried calorie loading during the day but he won't take it as he gets distracted. Have tried a bottle of formula too but he will take 200ml and stills wake up 2 hours later!
I wouldn't stop night feeds that young. 16 weeks is a classic growth spurt period too so waking up hungry is definitely normal!
My two were breastfed but woke for milk for night well through toddlerhood. Not part of my initial parenting expectations but not at all unusual.
Yes sounds just like my first- only little and combination fed- 30-60mls at each feed until she was weaned. I think she just couldn't take on board anymore until she grew! Hard work! My second is a tank!
If there's issues with weight and reflux then I would have thought paeds would want you to feed at every wake up?
If there's a suspected dairy allergy, how's your elimination going?
Try raising the crib for the reflux. Are you using ranitidine or omeprazile at all?
I mean this in the nicest possible way
He has other issues especially with feeding you have to be led by his needs, not by what other babies his age are doing. Conventional advice doesn't apply so listen to your dietician.
I'm sorry it's so hard. I used to find MTV helped if I had one up most of the night
Yes I'd agree that if he's tiny you should keep feeding him at nightly wake ups. He can't afford to lose the calories.
Grin and bear it, it will improve!
Can you BF lying down? If not start practicing! I never could with my tongue tied first but it was an utter life saver with the others - I would also consider safe cosleeping, if all you need to do is roll over & get them latched you get more sleep
Hope he pick up some weight soon & you don't find being dairy free too much of an adjustment.
He's on highest dose of ranitidine and I am dairy free! I really worry about his weight and feeding as he won't take much milk at all. Sometimes he will go the whole morning or afternoon refusing any milk! It's such a nightmare.
My baby girl is 9th centile, refluxy (not severe though), just turning 3 months and sleeps through the night (started reliably so at 8 weeks but could do a 4 hour stretch from 1 week old). Am also dairy free. She is exclusively breastfed. Below is our "routine" should any of this be helpful. She is my 4th baby. She is definitely better at self settling than my boys were. I have made much more of an effort to get her into her own routine this time because I have to, to survive with 4 kids, no help, school runs etc. But maybe I just got lucky this time, to have a good night time sleeper.
Baby girl feeds loads in the day - I need to get her to have 7 good feeds to sleep through until 6.30am . Typical day: feed at 6.30am, feed at 9.15am, feed at 11.45am, feed at 2.30pm, feed at 5.15pm, bedtime feed at 6.45pm. Then I wake her to feed her before I go to bed any time between 9.45-10.45pm. She doesn't actually take a massive feed then. If I drop the dreamfeed she will wake at 4.30am rather than 6.30am. She feeds from both sides and drains at least one side. A feed with winding takes about 25-30 minutes.
In the day she sleeps every 2 hours from waking for about 30-40 minutes at a time - at night she sleeps 6.45pm to 6.30am - she is woken max 20 minutes at the dreamfeed . I feed her after she has woken up in the day and she is able to go to sleep on her own. Sometimes she will cry a bit for a minute to fight sleep.
What has helped at night is that the room is very dark due to blackout blinds and shutters and we have white noise (quite loud bathroom fan going all night). She also has the same bedtime routine every night. She is very happy when I take her upstairs for her wind down which involves bath, short massage, story, feed.
But obviously we haven't yet hit the 4 month sleep regression period nor the period when they get too distracted to feed in the day. If she becomes like that I plan to take her upstairs to a quite dark room to feed her there away from her older siblings whenever possible. I also plan to try and let her self settle at night when the regression happens. But to be honest wouldn't be surprised at all if she suddenly stops her good sleeping due to teething, regression, some new skill etc.
If your baby won't feed for hours in the day have you tried breastfeeding him during a nap? I had to do that with my second child who had severe reflux. He didn't sleep through the night until 1 1/2 years old but it did reduce the amount of night time wakings a lot.
Thanks, it does help to hear of others routines! My day goes something like this
6.30-7am wake up
7am, 10am, 12.45pm, 3.30pm, 6.30pm
Bedtime - 7pm
He sleeps about 4 times in the day, 3 of 30-40 mins and then one longer over lunchtime of anywhere between 1-2 hours.
Overnight he wakes up:
At each feed he will take anywhere from 50-100ml and takes about 400-500ml per day in total. It's higher cal milk though as he can't handle volume!
Any idea how I could improve on the routine I have? I'm exhausted from waking so much at night every night!
sorry to say but this is completely normal in my experience. some babies an't handle big volume s- my DD never ever managed more than 90 mls even when 1 year old.
she woke exactly at yours until 14 months.
we did do a dream feed at 10 or 11 which could push her through a bit longer - could you consider this?
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