3yo autistic DS sleep routine has gone a bit crazy

(1 Post)
mamma3568 Sat 12-Dec-20 21:11:01

DS has never been a great sleeper. We co-sleep as he still wants a couple of comfort feeds at night, but I can cope with that.

Suddenly it's gotten so much worse! He's started needing to nap late in the afternoon/early evening. We want to discourage it or wake him after 20 mins, but he becomes hysterical, I don't want to put him through that. But it pushes his bedtime right back - 10pm, 11pm, then midnight, then 1am. Last night after a day out with no nap, he dozed off at 7:30pm, only to wake at 10pm and then he was up until 3am. Basically if we skip the nap, he'll treat the next sleep as a nap regardless of what time it is.

I'm really struggling to breastfeed him to sleep when I'm so tired myself. He is also autistic, so there are other challenges - we can't wean him off easily or wind him down conventionally before bed.

On top of this, he's taken to demanding a bottle of milk (cows milk) soon after brushing his teeth, and will have a meltdown if we don't. He'll also wake in the middle of the night wanting it. It's partly because he's getting pickier at dinner and eating less, but I can't get enough food/snack into him before bed so he ends up hungry at night. So I'm worried about his teeth on top of everything else.

Please tell me this is a phase/growth spurt. I suspect there aren't any gentle solutions. But I'm so tired, I don't know what to do. I know we should consider night weaning but saying no results in a meltdown. I am seriously considering talking to a GP about melatonin.

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