PLEASE HELP!! 8 month sleep regression - I don't know how much longer I can cope with this!!

(9 Posts)
MrsRose2018 Sun 21-Mar-21 07:36:23

Hi ladies,

Sorry for the long post!

I am a FTM and I have a phenomenal 8m old boy (9 at the end of the month)!

BACKSTORY:

Baby boy in his own nursery and has been for a while now. We did sleep training at about 6m (Taking Cara Babies - Ferber but "gentler") as he was waking every hour, feeding twice a night and I was falling apart as my husband was working nights at the time! It did “work” but it hasn’t in the long run and now I look back I don’t know how we did it 💔 and I will not/cannot do it again!

Current situation:

- 8m sleep regression is KICKING MY ASS!
- Bub is teething. He has both front top and bottom just poking through and His top left fangs are trying to come through now
- He is JUST about to crawl - up on his haunches/rocks forward/bum shuffles
- Bub is pretty reliant on the dummy. He needs it to fall asleep and certainly for naps he wakes up when he reaches the end of a sleep cycle and it’s been spat out. That being said he does between 45-90m naps 2 x a day.
- we've practiced lots of dummy’s in the cot but not very regularly because we have/have had his hands covered since birth for sleep. He had really bad facial eczema when he was little and now it’s cleared up it’s just a habit but times we’ve had his hands uncovered he gets really distracted! Picks at his mattress or cot, fiddles with the dummy, flings his lovey/comforter around and doesn’t settle
- bed is between 6-7pm depending on last nap and we were doing a dream feed at 11pm but are stopping that because it made no difference to how long/well he slept and his day milk intake is good
- he wakes up on average 2 x a night from about 12am - sometimes more - and on a really bad night every hour from about 12am. Normally it’s just a case of a quick dummy plug and he’s back down
- occasionally he’s needed a bounce to get back to sleep and being put back down in his cot with the tentativeness of an active Grenade
- he usually sleeps 11.5-12 (broken) hours and is never up properly before 6am
- he has a white noise machine and a lovely for sleep as well as the dummy
- We do a full bedtime routine for naps and night sleep
- WW are 3-3.30 hours depending on how exhausted he is

Basically this is a very long winded way of asking for any advice or tips on gentle methods to help my situation! My husband is the best and now he’s working normally we alternate the plugs but bub goes from waking to screaming bloody murder in 0.5 seconds so im awake anyway also it takes me about 30m to fall back asleep after!

Right now (this week) things are particularly bad and he's waking every hour from 12am - sometimes the dummy is still in and he's screaming...

I'm exhausted, I'm overwhelmed and I honestly don't know how long I can carry on like this!

TIA x

OP’s posts: |
MrsRose2018 Sun 21-Mar-21 07:51:40

Sorry, I just wanted to add that baby boy is such a little snuggle monster which is lovely but at the moment the separation anxiety of the eight months sleep regression is so bad that he can't even play next to me on the sofa! If I'm near him but not holding him he cries!

He's okay-ish for a while playing on the floor or on the sofa but that time is limited! And he really kicks off if I try and leave the room!

OP’s posts: |
AnonyHB Mon 22-Mar-21 20:57:57

Hi! Similar situation here. DD almost 9 months. Until about 2 months ago she co slept and as I BF it was on demand, all night. She would take every 2 hours, sometimes more often, and need feeding back to sleep. It got where this wasn’t enough and after feeding she would have to lay on me/my chest to get back to sleep which meant months of me sleeping on my back, half sat up, with her sleeping on me all night. She also didn’t go to bed until we did around 9pm, although would be asleep on us from 7.30-8pm ish on the sofa when we all then transitioned upstairs. She always refused the next to me crib and even all of her naps had to be on a human - if you put her down on her back on any surface she would wake immediately and scream.

Two months ago we put her in her own room and cot. This did not go down well, and despite sitting next to her holding her hand or touching her chest she got so upset she was making herself sick. I moved her back into our room and into the next to me and after w few nights managed to get her doing a few hours in there each night. Progressed to putting her in it for naps too. After this I started putting her in cot in her own room for naps and then for bed time. Naps were short (30-45 mins) and she would wake at night after a couple of hours and then come into bed with me. This slowly built up for her doing around 4 or 5 hours at the start of the night until about 11pm when she would when come in my bed.

Last week I pulled the plaster off and rearranged her routine a bit. It now looks like this:

6-7am - wakes up, currently trying to get her back to sleep until 7am which involves cuddling or sometimes BF
7am - nappy change, breast feed (both breasts)
8am - breakfast
9/9-15 - nap in cot, she is rocked to sleep for this, Max 45 min nap, wake her at 10am if not already awake. Nappy change at this point.
11.45 - lunch - plenty of protein and getting as much food in as she will take
12.30 - nap for 2 hours. She was previously managing only 45 mins but this is getting longer now, I think because she is tired and full. Again we rock to sleep, no boob!
2.30 - if not already awake then wake her up, nappy change, feed from both breasts
5pm - dinner, again plenty of protein, carbs and veg plus fruit and yoghurt for pudding. Small amount of water with meal. BF from one side after dinner.
6pm - bath
6.30 - into her room and sleeping bag, feed of the other breast, put her to sleep at 7 when she is usually already zonked out

She is waking around midnight atm and I’ve been feeding her then, again both boobs, but nothing else after that until her 7am feed.

Last night she woke again at 2am, 4am and 5.30am. Husband and I took in turns to go settle her, sometimes takes 5 mins, sometimes 20. Occasionally she settles but wakes again a few mins later and we have to do it again.

Big changes have been feeding her when she wakes at 7/2.30 rather than feeding her to sleep. Cuddling and rocking to sleep rather than BF. Keeping to consistent times for naps and bedtime.

Room is very dark with blackouts. She has a sleeping bag rather than blankets. No dummy as I never used one.

Mine isn’t perfect yet, I’m getting woken up every 2-3 hours still but I’m seeing progress most days. I think persistence is key even though it’s so hard when you’re exhausted. I’ve started getting migraines again this year having not had them for 4 years and it’s because I’m so tired.

Hope this helps a bit. You’re not alone!

Babyboomtastic Tue 23-Mar-21 09:04:57

Honestly, and I know it's tough, but this is just how babies are and it's a matter of hanging on and eventually it'll get better.

I blame society for pedalling the myth that sleep is linear, starts off bad and then improved with time. In reality, it's often all over the place for three first 3ish years, with better and worse periods.

Most of us have been there, and we've survived it but I can't deny that it's not knackering.

The 8-15ish month phase (well, until first molars are in) are well known for being rough, mostly because of how disruptive the molars can be, along with regressions, and then starting to assert their own mind.

Squiblet Tue 23-Mar-21 10:30:05

It's a long time ago but mine started cutting back on daytime naps at about the 8-9 month point. That helped with the night sleeps. At 9 months, DS went down to just one nap a day at about 1.45pm. (I gave him extra food during the slot when he would have had the morning nap, so that helped him power through. and I'd try to find something extra absorbing for us to do.) In the afternoon, I'd wake him up if he slept beyond about an hour. Still, he didn't sleep right through the night consistently until about 14months, but at least he got better.

DD hardly napped at all after about 5 months, and her night sleeping has always been amazing. (apart from newborn of course) So it seemed to me like keeping them awake in the daytime had a bigger effect than any amount of tweaking the feeding routines. But every baby is different of course

MrsRose2018 Sun 04-Apr-21 23:19:30

@AnonyHB @Babyboomtastic @Squiblet thank you for your responses!

I've really tried to shift my perspective! I've accepted night wakings are common? That feeds are necessary and most importantly in the grand scheme of my life with him this year a such a small part...

But I'm currently sat here in bed crying as It’s not even 11.30 and I’ve lost count of the amount of times me and my husband have had to resettle him or he’s woken and done a self dummy plug! We tried a feed as he's being really funny with his milk atm but then it took 30m to get him back down!

I go back to work on Tuesday and I'm so exhausted it's terrifying.... I know it's darkest before the dawn and I'll wake tomorrow, see his face/have a cuddle and the night will melt away but RN is feels hopeless!!

Thanks for listening x

OP’s posts: |
OlivejuiceU2 Mon 05-Apr-21 02:40:11

We are too massively struggling with our 8 month old. She just does not sleep well. She can wake every 20-45 mins through the night and sometimes be 2 hours getting her back to sleep.

We’ve tried everything and honestly I am going slowly mad.

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FATEdestiny Mon 05-Apr-21 11:23:40

@MrsRose2018 if the cot was in your room, then dummy reinsert would merely be a case of flinging an arm over the cot.

You can master this without moving your body, without moving from your bed, without even opening your eyes!

Linking sleep cycles is a learned skill that requires practice. The more sleep cycles are linked, the more likely they will link.

When you do a dummy reinsert with baby in the nursery, this involves:
- Baby stirs and makes a grimace sound
- Baby growns/does a cry
- Baby opens eyes, realises no dummy, cries loud
- You wake
- You have a minute or two to become conscious of the crying
- You get up, walk to other room
- By now baby has been crying for a few minutes, eyes open, may be trying to physically sit up.
- Baby is fully awake.
- Dummy given. Baby has to resettle from fully awake back to sleep. This is difficult.

Compare to when you do a dummy reinsert with baby in cot next to your bed, this involves:
- Baby stirs and makes a grimace sound
- You are awake of this but don't wake
- You fling an arm into cot, crap dummy, put in
- Baby has not even cried at this point. Just moved from deep to light sleep, not woken up. Can resettle back into deep sleep with dummy
- You have not left your duvet or opened your eyes.

Which is best?

TLDR: Bring the cot next to your bed until baby practices link sleep cycles without waking.

converseandjeans Mon 05-Apr-21 11:30:26

Daytime naps are probably too long and bedtime too early.

Try 45 mins in the morning and 2 hrs lunchtime. Try putting to bed 7.30ish then do dream feed about 10ish.

Might be hungry so make sure they've had enough to eat.

If teeth are playing up then calpol at bedtime?

If you're bottle feeding try hungry baby milk - this helped mine sleep longer at this age.

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