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BF babies and night feeds after 6m

(25 Posts)
callmeovercautious Fri 06-Jul-07 18:56:03


I keep getting told to stop feeding DD when she wakes in the night. She usually only wakes once or twice in 12 hours and I BF her. She has 3 meals and milk during the day.

She is 10m now and although I don't mind it now I will be back at work in 2 months and will need my sleep. I am loathe to offer water or send her Dad in as she will go mad.

Will she grow out of this or do I really need to force the issue?

Any thoughts?

Volume Fri 06-Jul-07 18:58:42

She will grow out of it - do you co-sleep? DS wanted 1-5 feeds at night, sometimes just abit of comfort and I just allowed it. He slept through from about 11 months I guess, just grew out of it, but I never offered water etc. She doesn't know it's not the appropraite (sp) feeding time etc. Just relax and go with the flow x

Tapster Fri 06-Jul-07 19:04:24

Sending DH in has cracked it for me but if it doesn't bother you why change. We used GR/GW as well. There are a few tears but you feel much better with a good nights sleep. It didn't work for us overnight but our DD was only 6.5months old when we started and it took a month for her to sleep through but her teeth did come come through and she was sick.

mamarug Fri 06-Jul-07 19:46:10

Cautious, sorry to hijack your thread but have a quick question for Tapster - you have probably covered this in previous threads but grateful if you could tell me what you did as part of your GR/GW method. I have read a bit about this method but it seems more suited to older babies? Mine is just over six months and waking around 6 times a night but I'm not keen on CC so looking for alternatives.

USAUKMum Fri 06-Jul-07 20:00:49

Callme -- both my DC didn't (fully bf) didn't sleep through until between 10.5 & 11 mths. So hopfully you are almost there

She will grow out of it -- once or twice in 12 hrs doesn't sound that bad. I fed mine at 7pm, then DD was at 2am, then 6:30. DS was midnight, then 5am (migrating to 6am when 14 mths).

Does she fall to sleep herself after a feed? Or asleep when you put her down? If she falls asleep herself, you'll find one night waking in the morning feeling very full

moondog Fri 06-Jul-07 20:02:20

Once or twice in 12 hours is good.
Would you go 12 hours without so much as a drink of water with a stomach aBOUT 1/12 OF THE SIZE OF YOURS???

callmeovercautious Fri 06-Jul-07 20:21:04

Thanks guys - just trying to guage what is the norm really. We used CC to get her to self settle ages ago and she is much better at going to sleep at bedtime but do not want to do this at night as she always feeds and it is at various times so not out of habit. She does do the occasional all nighter but they are few and far between!

HV gave me the usual line - don't need milk at night after 6 months......

moondog Fri 06-Jul-07 20:21:55

HV talking complete shit.

(What a surprise)

Seona1973 Fri 06-Jul-07 20:37:27

my formula fed ds was still having one milk feed on and off till he was 8 months. It seemed less of a faff to give the milk than to put up with the crying in the middle of the night (I was much harder on dd at that age!! - second babies are treated so differently )

Olihan Fri 06-Jul-07 20:48:05

I've got the Elizabeth Pantley No Cry Sleep Solution which says lots of babies need one or two feeds during the night up until 12 months or so. If it's only once I wouldn't worry too much, especially if she genuinely wants to feed.

Mamarug, I'd really recommend the NCSS. It's very gentle but isn't a quick fix. She has lots of ideas for getting them to sleep, depending on whether you bf/ff/co sleep/baby's age, etc. My ds2 was waking about every 40 mins and couldn't settle himself at all. We've been using the ideas in the NCSS for 2 weeks and he's now sleeping for 3 hour stretches, only wakes to feed and actually settled himself to sleep in his cot, without any help from me tonight. It's fantastic!(Can you tell I'm a convert? )

tibsy Fri 06-Jul-07 21:02:56

callme, my dd is 10 mths and is feeding 1 sometimes 2 times a night, although this week, we've managed to sleep through a few times!! i figure she'll get there in her own time. can understand with you going back to work in 2 months tho.
i did try holding her out by cuddling her in bed with us to see if she really wanted milk or just comfort. she would settle sometimes, but inevitably would wake an hour later for a bf. agree with moondog that 12 hours is a long time to go without a drink. i always have a bottle of water by my bed at night for when i get thirsty.
good luck

callmeovercautious Fri 06-Jul-07 21:44:39

Hi Tibsey - I think we met on the Sleep is for the weak thread some time back - things change don't they!

Olihan - the NCSS is good, it didn't solve the biggest issue for us but definately made a difference with routine etc.

It's good to know we are not alone! All her postnatal group friends are either sleeping through or their Mummys are giving water and ccing etc.

callmeovercautious Fri 06-Jul-07 21:45:57

Tibsey - I have had a name change (shh! was ruth2007)

tibsy Fri 06-Jul-07 21:48:51

hi ruth, i remember!!!!!! hey we've got a siftw blog going now too!!!

Tapster Fri 06-Jul-07 21:50:45

Mamarug - we've got the NCSS and the Millpond how to teach your baby to sleep book. Basically a bit in NCSS is very similar to GR. You move from feeding your LO to sleep with nipple in mouth, then removing nipple (this is the NCSS bit), then before she falls to sleep rocking her, next step is holding her, then holding her in her cot etc... Its suitable post 6 months. I found that BFing her it was better for my DH to hold/rock her at first than me to break the association. Millpond says to do the next step every 3 days, we only moved on when we felt comfortable (like he NCSS says), but we never got beyond shhing her to sleep next to her cot, now she goes into her cot sleepy and goes to sleep . The useful thing the Millpond book says is that a baby if its going to settle will take 10mins. So if DD wakes up in the middle of the night, I literally look at the clock and wait it out and 90% of the time she goes back to sleep. If at any point, even before 10mins she sounds hysterical I go to her. Everybody told me I had to do CC - I resisted and it seems to have worked but takes longer (and its harder to have you LO next to you crying than downstairs with a glass and wine and the TV listening to her crying on the monitor) but much less distress to the LO.

tibsy Fri 06-Jul-07 21:58:07

oooh and sorry to butt in mamarug and tapster, but just wanted to big up the GR/GW method too

USAUKMum Sat 07-Jul-07 07:25:22

If she settles herself I wouldn't worry about it's when they don't need a feed, but it's something else it becomes really rough. As you have to figure out what's wrong as well .

DS didn't sleep through until 11mths, then had a series of infections until 17 mths. Then got his excema got infected (all over), the undiagnosed asthma, then 3 mths for asthma meds to work, then the cold season which affected his asthma, then nightmares. Finally, about 3 mths ago we got it all sorted and he sleeps through consistently. Hurrah!! (He's 3 in 3 wks ! )

mamarug Mon 09-Jul-07 15:51:30

Thanks Tapster. How much crying did you experience when you were doing GW? My problem is that when I put my DS into his cot sleepy but awake and try to hold him or pat him in the cot he gets really worked up straight away and screams until I pick him up, so I always end up caving in and rocking him or bf him to sleep. I've got the NCSS but will take a look at the Millpond book. The bit about waiting 10 mins to see if they self settle seems sensible and I always go in pretty much straight away so perhaps I should hang back a bit.

Tapster Mon 09-Jul-07 20:59:48

Mamarug - she cried up to 30mins for DH but more of an angry cry, I couldn't do it had to be DH at first. DD has now slept through the night 5 nights in a row . I am a big softie. However, I still BF to nearly asleep so I am cheating but obviously it has workked. If she won't settle at all despite the milk I will put her in the cot and let her shout for a few minutes then put her back on the breast and then she seems to have got the message its time to sleep . I would recommend a "lovey" as described in the NCSS - we use a taggie blanket as she slows rubbing the ribbons as she goes to sleep.

If I had a pound for every time I was told to either give formula or do CC to get her to sleep though I'd be a multimillionaire. I would recommend the Millpond book as it covers sleep problems through the toodler years as well.

Good luck.

mamarug Mon 09-Jul-07 22:07:48

Thanks Tapster and big congratulations on your lo sleeping through five nights in a row! I am starting to lose hope that this will ever happen for us but I'm sure it will eventually

wolfmama Wed 11-Jul-07 21:41:02

Don't know if anyone's reading this thread any more but wanted to get your thoughts on how to tackle DS's new habit of wanting prolonged early morning feeds.

I've been back at work since March when DS was 5 months old. At that point he was great, only waking once in 12hrs. A few bouts of illness soon put an end to that and still now he's up once or twice and I've always bf him back to sleep (though he self settles at bedtime and during day). As I've been getting more and more tired, we decided to try some strategie and started by getting DH to get up to him and offer a bottle of formula, with the idea that we would gradually dilute and of reduce the amount of this. This was ok for a couple of nights, in fact, one night I managed 6 hrs without getting out of bed! Now though, he just cries furiously when he gets dad instead of me. With some persuasion, he takes the bottle and settles, but as soon as he's put down in his cot, within a minute or 2, he's awake again. This is usually at around 3 or 4 am and then nothing will settle him until I go to him and he gets the breast. Then, the bit I'm struggling with, is he slow-feeds for 1-2 hrs, by which time, I've given up and taken him to bed. Another consequence is that he's not hungry for breakfast. You can see I'm not happy with all this. Any suggestions?

tibsy Thu 12-Jul-07 07:58:01

hi wolfmama, no advice i'm afraid, but am going throught his with dd atm and just wanted to bump and see if i can get some advice too!
see you on siftw

Surr3ymummy Thu 12-Jul-07 17:34:03


generally babies wake during the night for one of 2 reasons, either because they're hungry or out of habit/for comfort. As your DS is slow-feeding for such a long time I would say that it's for comfort rather than because he's ravenous. In case he is hungry, make sure you give him plenty of food during the day and a good feed in the evening.

I'd be inclined to stop feeding him during the night - you could either do this straight away, or instead time your feeds so that you give him say 30 mins the first night, 20 minutes the second etc until you're down to nothing.

I very occasionally bf my 10mth old during the night, but he just gets fed the one night in a row - the second night I won't feed him (unless he's ill), and that tends to work ok.

wolfmama Thu 12-Jul-07 21:45:12

Thanks surr3y, that sounds like good advice, not sure how it'll go down in practice as I find it difficult to listen to him cry (which he invariably does, at volume, when removed from the breast against his will)! Also, in the early hours, I usually end up taking him to our bed as I'm too tired to stay awake, in which case I wouldn't be awake myself to stop him from feeding. I'll bear in mind what you've said though, perhaps on the weekend I can be stronger. As they say, sleep is for the weak

ChristmasPud Fri 13-Jul-07 16:08:57

Hi there,

Agian hijacking the thread but have 6 month old who has gone from sleeping through a month ago to now waking 4 every hour to two once I have gone to bed to feed. HV has recommended feeding at the 1st wake up (about 10 - 11pm ish) and then sleeping elsewhere and letting DH settle the DS for the rest of the night. She thinks it will take about 3 days and the 1st ngoth will be the worst.

TBH the DS is not generally that hungry in the small hours as will settle when cuddled and then start up again when put in the cot.

Has anyone else tried this and did it work?

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