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Advice on 4mo sleeping needed - dream feed/dummy/waking

(2 Posts)
mumofoliver Fri 13-Jul-07 08:48:24

Until last week we had a standard routine with my 4 mo DS - bath, feed and bed at 7-7.30, feed (bottle) around 3am and awake between 6-7. Was always being told to try dream feed so we could benefit from his long sleep but in the past it didn't work and I would only be up for 15 mins giving him about 5-7 oz so didn't really mind.

By accident, we ended up doing a dream feed last Friday and for 2 nights it worked a treat - he slept though to 6/7. So we decided to keep on trying it.

But since then, he has woken up at 1, 3, 4 and 5 am (after having dream feed between 10.30-11)! Once resettled, he goes through to 7.30am. Have established that the waking is not for food and only once did his nappy need changing. Now, when he wakes during the night, he is demanding his dummy and cries non-stop till he has it and then falls asleep immediately. He has his dummy to go to sleep at 7.30pm and sometimes during the day he has it for a nap (but not always). However, he has never needed it to resettle (he rarely wakes up other than for feeds but when he does, he has always resettled himself without us or dummy).

I know that there is a growth spurt around now but he doesn't need food (there are clear signals when he does need food so I know it's not that) - is the waking because his routine has changed and should I be fighting the larger reliance on the dummy (I've chickened out so far!)? It's only happened for 3 nights so far but he is normally soooo good that I am in shock!

Any advice/comments would be welcome

3missys Fri 13-Jul-07 12:40:06


I recently posted an item about my DD2, she was waking up in night after having slept through, she is 19 weeks old. My advice I got was that it is a growth spurt (which I didn't realise or think of!) but I also think that babies very easily fall into habit. If they wake up unexpectedly in the night one night - they get comforted etc etc then the following night when they wake up (before they may have got themselves back to sleep) their little brains are thinking, hold on I got some comfort last night (shhh-ing or dummy etc), I wouldn't mind that again - hence a "habit" is formed and DD starts to cry if he is not getting what he wants.

I think it is down to persistance to break the habit and also down to DD. Had a similar experience with my DD1 when she was about 1 year old (she had a dummy - my DD2 doesn't) and it took 4 long, painfully tiring nights to make her realise that we weren't going to go into her room 5 times a night to comfort her or give her her dummy and that she needs to re-learn to settle herself back to sleep like she had done so before. It was horrible doing it at the time but worthwhile as she sleeps like a treat now.

Hope I haven't waffled on to much and that your DD and yourself get more sleep soon!

Sarah x

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