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Tips for better sleep habits from newborn(16 Posts)
My first DS was a pretty terrible sleeper; he would breastfeed every hour and the only way I ever got any rest was to co-sleep which we did from about 8 weeks. We were then stuck with him in our bed until he was 2 years and 4 months.
Our second DS was born 2 weeks ago and I have always said I would get into better habits from the start and wouldn't end up with him in our bed again. But now that he's here I'm struggling! He feeds every 2-3 hours but after every feed at night he has well over an hour of grunting because of his wind. Every time I put him down in the bedside crib he grunts and moans and spits up milk, but when he's on me he's fine. I keep falling asleep with him on me. The only decent stretch of sleep I've managed is when I intentionally did a feed lying down and he was in our bed for 4 hours of straight sleep.
Now that he's here I don't know how to avoid the "bad habits" so please can anyone share any hints and tips on how to do things differently this time around?
There is a world of option s between "train from birth" and "still in your bed past 2yo"
Write off the next 3 months for a start. Do what needs doing to get enough sleep.
Dd was like this and what stopped it was a) using coleif religiously before every feed and every 2 hours overnights during the long cluster feeds b) holding her upright for 45 minutes and burping her for that whole time after each and every feed. This was after 6 weeks of her being held all night every night and within 3 nights she would sleep laying down in her moses basket for stretches of 3-4 hours which felt immense at that point.
I have a 6 week old that does the same, also second baby. We started him on infant gaviscon a few days ago (after a visit to the GP) and it’s been a great help. Much more settled feeding and not getting sick after being put down, although still grunts but not for long.
I said the same, that I wanted to avoid giving him bad habits but I’ve realized that I can’t control too much at such a young age because he mostly wants comfort. Our issue is wanting to be held during the day so I can’t get much done but sleeps well at night thankfully.
Maybe ask your GP or HV what they recommend trying and go from there?
Thank you for your replies, the HV suggested I try infacol at my last visit so I have got some of that to try tonight. Fingers crossed it helps him.
Have you tried propping the head end of the bedside crib up? This massively helped my grunty/refluxy first born.
Yeah it’s the wind and potential reflux that you are battling- those first weeks are a bloody nightmare whilst they learn to digest their feed. Try infacol and if that doesn’t work try coleif.
Put a t shirt of yours in the crib and try one of those heartbeat toys.
Kids aren't animals they can't be trained as they are growing and changing everyday!
Establish a good bedtime routine and you'll be fine. My two kids had to the same routine which is bath, bottle or bf of course, story and put in their cot sleepy enough with a pacifier if needed and they soon learn to fall asleep independently.
This I do sometimes at 6pm of she's not napped well during the day or it's too late for the last nap or 7pm in general. Xx
Also! White noise is a godsend, I got a white noise teddy and it saved my sanity! Hope this helps xo
@kirst89 I'm feeding my 10 month old to sleep now in the midst of white noise. If the Internet cuts out in the night she wakes within seconds. It's amazing for helping her sleep and stay asleep too
I think you need to give yourself a break and do what works! If co-sleeping gives you 4 hour stints at night, then do it!! My 3yo was like your first- breastfed all the time, ended up co-sleeping from 8 weeks, didn't sleep through until 2yo. My second, I took the opposite approach to you and totally relaxed about sleep. I set up the spare room and bed for me and baby and co-slept from birth. I also contact napped, didn't worry about feeding to sleep and so on. He is by far a better sleeper. He's 1yo now and has been sleeping through in his cot for months. I honestly think sleep is a developmental/individual thing. You can't force a non-sleeper to sleep and these things that actually help is survive, like co sleeping, are "rods for our own backs". I think that's backwards- we are only doing them because the baby doesn't sleep, they don't create a bad sleeper! Certainly in the newborn stage, I think you just roll with the punches and do what works.
I'm in a similar boat in that DC1 was a terrible sleeper (until we sleep trained at 10-11months, which did work, but until then it was a very difficult time) and I really want to do what I can to ensure DC2 sleeps better. However, I think you can fall into the trap of putting too much pressure on yourself to change something that you can't control. I was trying to get my newborn into a routine but finding it impossible to wake a baby who wants to sleep or to get a baby to sleep if they don't want to! I think it's far too early days. So I've given myself permission to go with the flow for now and try and encourage good sleep habits in an age-appropriate way.
I really like this website/blog for sensible, helpful, evidence-based sleep advice:
The Huckleberry app is also good.
PS Mine has reflux too and has to be held upright after feeds; she also grunts and wriggles a lot if she's uncomfortable. I've been getting DH to hold her after I've fed her so I can go back to sleep straight away and get a decent stretch of sleep before the next feed. Also cosleep if it helps, much safer to sleep side-by-side in bed than to fall asleep with baby on you.
Does your bedside crib have a tilt function? If so use it. If not you could get a wedge (we have a wedgehog under the mattress). It's not a magic solution but it helps a bit.
I had the same experience as @FreeAcorns - reluctant co sleeper with my first and now at 4 he still likes to get into bed with us. With my second I just relaxed and set myself up for safe co sleeping from birth. By the time he was 1 he was sleeping through the night in his own cot no problem. I think it’s mostly personality that determines the long term habits
DD was a grunted and it was literally the worst thing she has done! It was so bloody loud. I was losing my mind as she’d do it even when sleeping but then I couldn’t bloody sleep. However, it does go away and relatively quickly. She also spat up at least 10 times a day. Initially we held her, changed her clothes 2-3 times a night etc. but quickly realized the grunting wasn’t actually upsetting her (she was asleep!!) and when she spat up she went straight back to sleep and wasn’t bothered (or actually very damp) so we left her to it in favor of good sleep habits and her sleeping on her own. She was sleeping 8-10 hour stretches by about 10 weeks. Reflux is super stressful but it doesn’t always bother the baby and there is not actually much (any?!) actual, non anecdotal, evidence that Infacol etc actually does anything except make the parents feel less helpless. It doesn’t hurt though so crack on if it makes you feel better! The grunting will improve really soon though!