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Dreamfeed not working

(9 Posts)
Mrsp2011 Tue 30-May-17 03:02:33

Hi all, apologies for rambling post in advance! my LG is 22 weeks and we've been doing a dream feed for a while now. It used to work getting us through steadily pushing back next fed from 3, then 4, then 5 then we got to 6 a few times. For the last few weeks it seems to have stopped working and she can be up from 1:30 looking for feed. It seems the nights she takes more at DF the earlier she wakes! Also could doing the dream feed too late be a problem? Tonight we had bedtime bottle at 6:45 (7oz) dream feed at 10:50 (another 7oz) and she woke at 2 looking for more! BF overnight and only took a small amount and went back over.
I guess my questions are -
Can DF'ing too late cause earlier wake up?
Why would the bigger DF lead to early wake up?
Is it time to stop if it's not working?
Thanks for reading!!

3luckystars Tue 30-May-17 03:07:45

It all sounds normal to me.
All of my babies woke for food in the night for a long time. I think some are just better than others at sleeping. (Please disregard me though if someone with some actually helpful advice come along!)

FATEdestiny Tue 30-May-17 09:05:51

I would calorie load in the daytime. Make daytime feeds closer together so that there are one or two extra bottles per day. Day feed every 2 hours throughout the day.

Then stop waking for a dream feed, at least for a while and see when baby wakes naturally.

Do you have an alternate way to get baby to sleep without feeding? Dummy for example. I would calorie load in the daytime, not dream feed and try to resettle baby without feeding when she does wake. You may not be able to, she may need the feed, but you can't know that without giving it a good go.

Also, more daytime sleep will lead to better quality night time sleep. So as well as ensuring frequent daytime feeds, also ensure frequent daytime naps.

Mrsp2011 Tue 30-May-17 09:22:32

Thanks fate, will try to add in extra feeds, she feeds from me in a cluster between 5-7 then she has a 7oz at 11,3,7,11(not always 7oz) then can be up as I say as little as 3 hours later. How would u suggest changing the daytime feeds, how much every 2 hours, she doesn't seem hungry for more through the day at present? She does take a dummy and can settle her when she's not hungry, but she does seem genuinely hungry when I give in to feed. The 2-3 feed is from me again and I know probably if I gave a formula bottle she'd go longer but not sure I'm ready to stop!

Mrsp2011 Tue 30-May-17 09:23:55

She does struggle with daytime naps too! On a good day I can get her to do 3 45mins, but often can be 2, occasionally if I catch her I can rock her back over to do another 45 min in the morning.

FATEdestiny Tue 30-May-17 09:40:26

If she's only having four feeds in on the daytime (7am, 11am, 3pm, 7pm) then it wouldn't surprise me if she wants a couple of over night feeds. 4 hourly feeds lends itself to equal feeds over 24 hours (7 11 3 7 11 3).

Compare to my routine feeding routine at that age: 7am 11am 1pm 3pm 5pm 7pm (6 full bottles, say 6 or 7oz, in the daytime) then I would have another bottle available for over night, but would hope not to feed between 7pm and 7am.

In addition to one feed every 2 hours, I would also do one nap in every 2 hour block. Done in cycles of:

Wake
Feed
Awake time (75-90m)
Sleep (30-45m)
Wake and repeat.

Newtothis11 Tue 30-May-17 09:58:05

Why don't you try a couple of nights without DF and see what happens. If you add in additional daytime feeds and stop DF you'll not know what's working.

DS is 20 weeks and ebf, his sleep patterns have changed at night in the last couple of weeks I think related to the changes in their sleep cycles at this age. We've never done a DF as I couldn't bear waking him and he wakes twice. He was doing a long 6/7 hour stretch but now we're back to every 3 or 4 but like I say I think it's the sleep cycle change. Sounds like your DS has gone through the same.

Could the bf in the night be causing him to wake for that closeness with you? I wouldn't say stop as its such a lovely thing. Yes, formula may take you longer but it's not really about that.

Mrsp2011 Tue 30-May-17 10:37:07

Thanks Fate, will give it a shot!!

Mrsp2011 Tue 30-May-17 10:42:06

Newtothis, I think she had gone through a bit of a regression! It might be a closeness thing, but I do get the impression that she's properly hungry when she wakes. Just a guessing game for the last 5.5 months! Hoping when we start weaning in a few weeks it might get a bit more predictable!

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