7 month old nap help please(10 Posts)
My DD is 7 months and is now fighting against sleep during the day. She sleeps OK at night (from last bottle at 11:30 to around 6-6:30am) but during the day she is a nightmare to get to sleep. Even walking her round the room with white noise on doesn't help any more.
She used to fall asleep on us after her 7pm bottle - now we have another hour of crying and fighting sleep until she goes off and we take her up to her crib.
If she is put in her crib during the day, she is instantly awake and wriggling - thinking it's all a hilarious game.
I know we have made it difficult for ourselves letting her fall asleep on us during the day but she's our only child, it took us a long time to finally get her, and frankly, I enjoy the cuddles, but I don't enjoy the hour long battles to get her to sleep. So we are ready to change our ways.
I have health problems which mean walking her round for long periods is difficult, and I feel as though we should be able to put her down for naps, even if they are only 45 minutes at a time (she will often sleep for 1.5 - 2 hours if you hold her - she's been asleep since 10am with DH holding her).
Any advice on how to get her into good nap habits would be appreciated. The health visitor is coming tomorrow and while she does help with some things, I don't always find her advice, um, realistic.
Thanks in advance.
It depends how much you really want to change things. Your OP reads like you want a magic wand that will allow you to simultaneously hold and cuddle your baby while having her nap independently. (Might not be true, that's just how it reads)
Obviously a magic wand, please - failing that, the moon on a stick will do.
I meant to say that I had maybe allowed myself to continue cuddling my daughter to sleep because I enjoyed it so much, and this has now lead to her not being able to be put down for a nap.
Obviously I will still find time to give her cuddles, but we need to get her into more of a routine when it comes to sleep.
Ok so at 7 months old I would have a fairly strict routine and would not wait for sleepy signs or anything like that. Also being totally consistent with how & where naps happen.
Routine would be
6.30 wake and milk
8am breakfast of porridge and mashed banana or blueberries
8.30-9.30 NAP in dark room with white noise, temp 20 degrees and in long sleeve vest plus body suit plus grobag
11am filling veggie purée and some yoghurt
12-3 NAP with same conditions as before
3pm milk and rice cakes
If nap has not gone well earlier, nap in pram 4-4.45pm
5pm baby pasta with cheesy veg sauce
6.45pm milk and story
She isn't having anything like that many meals a day - we're only just starting on two meals in addition to bottles (she has 5 bottles at the moment). Maybe that's why she doesn't settle so well during the day?
I don't use a grobag with her at the moment, but I will try her with one.
Thank you for the advice.
Bottles are at 7, 11, 3, 7 and 11 - give or take half an hour if she is napping. The 11pm one occasionally gets skipped if she sleeps through. All bottles are 7oz - she doesn't polish off each one now that we have started weaning.
She definately wants 3 good meals by now. That's on top of your 4 bottles in the daytime. The timings you give are not that different to those in the routine LapinR0se suggested above. It just means structuring you day some more with meal times and nap times.
I second the need to have routined meal times and nap times at this age, that are always the same. If you make the time of the meal immovable, flexibility can come from how much is eaten. So if baby's having an off-day, meal times still happen as normal but maybe baby will eat less (and subsequently drink more of the bottle). We went straight into 3 meals a day from 1 week after weaning at 6 months. The portion sizes increased steadily with age, but the mealtimes always happened.
I will look at adding a third meal to the day but it will take a bit of planning. I will ask health visitor about dropping the 11pm bottle too.
Are there any tips on getting her to go down for a nap in her crib when she’s not used to it, or is it just a case of putting her in her crib and just sitting with her until she falls asleep?
Most important factors for getting a successful independent nap are:
Baby is well fed
Baby is warm
Baby is comfortable
You will never get a slightly cold or hungry or windy baby to sleep.
So make sure she's fed and warm and winded.
Then important factors are
Not overtired - this is is critical so go by the clock and NOT "sleepy signs" which show up way too late
And environmental factors so a dark room with white noise and a comforter if she has one.
I personally don't sit next to the crib as I think it's confusing for babies like why on earth aren't you picking me up mummy.
Instead I put the baby down awake and only go in if she is crying. Then I pat her and say shhhhhh sleepy time. If the crying escalates or doesn't stop then I do pick up put down.
But whatever you do be very very consistent or you'll get the two of you all mixed up.
I wouldn't drop the dreamfeed until proteins are established to make sure overall calorie intake is good but I would try the meals and naps plan I posted above and gradually introduce protein over the next two weeks with a view to a decent lunch and no dreamfeed by 8 months.
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