Nap refusing 3 month old - we're both miserable!

(43 Posts)
MrsK2021 Mon 19-Apr-21 17:29:34

FTM to DS - 3 months old. Night sleep generally ok; usually 2 wakes between 7-7. He wakes up in a good mood, smiley for about 20-30 mins and then ...
he is miserable, from then until bath time. Once the sun is up he refuses sleep completely and is then chronically over tired. I now barely leave the house because of the meltdowns and feel like I have PND or very close to at this point.
I have tried - putting him down at the first sleepy cue, or after 45 mins, after an hour, after two. Being baby led / working to a routine. White noise, blackout blinds, cooler / warmer temp. Same cot as night time sleep / different cot. Ewan the sheep, red light, no light, daylight, rocking, shhing, patting, cuddling, feeding to sleep (always awake at the end but no longer hungry), the pram (sometimes works for 20 mins but then wakes up grumpy) always clean nappy, clean clothes, swaddled as per night time sleep, no tv or other distractions, taking him out for fresh air, not taking him out incase it's over stimulating, playing with him or not playing with him, swing chair (tolerated but doesn't lead to sleep) sling inward facing and outward facing (hates it) car - hit and miss but always wakes as soon as I stop and is more miserable. It means that if I do go out I usually have to leave early as he will meltdown, so I'm now scared to do anything with others as I don't want to ruin their day nor is it enjoyable for me, and instead have resigned myself to spending all day, every day alone, either walking or stuck in a dark room trying to get DS to sleep. I feel so useless, am concerned mine and DH* relationship isn't going to survive and would be so grateful for any advice sad
(*DH works long hours at stressful job, helps when he can but the issue is daytime and he's not here)

OP’s posts: |
PinkCookie11 Mon 19-Apr-21 17:42:19

Sounds like your not having a very good time at all, I’m very sorry!

Does he seem in any pain/discomfort?

MrsK2021 Mon 19-Apr-21 18:40:00

I did think about that - he has hydrocortisone for mild excema and Infacol for wind which were the only things I'd noticed. But I guess my thinking was if he was in pain he wouldn't be able to sleep at night either .. confused

OP’s posts: |
PinkCookie11 Mon 19-Apr-21 18:44:30

True, my LO had silent reflux so whilst he was great at night, day times were rough.

It may be worth a phone call to your HV to see what they can advise and to the GP for yourself regarding PND.

FATEdestiny Mon 19-Apr-21 18:56:00

The things that you mention do work (pram and car) both involve movement. So use that as a start point.

Babies need a lot more help to sleep than you may realise. Some long established things that help babies sleep more

- Movement. Continual, even tempo, even speed, ideally at your resting heart rate.
- Sucking. Dummy! Dummies are amazing.
- Full tummy
- Well winded
- Subdued environment (but not necessarily silent/dark in the daytime, background noise/activity is a good thing)

You're likely to need all of the above, all of the time. It's not an either/or.

Here's my advise for a fail-safe:
- Baby wakes
- Full Feed and wind
- Nappy off for floor time until first cry (might only be 15-20 mins).
- Nappy then on, cuddle until settled, back down for floor time until next cry (That means sleep time, will probably be less than an hour from initially waking)
- Give what's left in the bottle or reorder breast. Not a full feed, it's a top up feed.
- Dumny in, wind on your shoulder.
- Into bouncer (No toys/lights attached, just a reclined chair). Bouncer by your feet as you sit on sofa.
- Have a pot of coffee, mug and tv remote to hand. Foot on bouncer. Bounce, continually, non-stop, even speed and tempo. Not too fast/hard. But non-stop.
- Just. Keep. Going.
- Do not stop for any reason. Dummy reinsert if needed (until asleep, when dummy will drop). Keep going once drowsy, keep going when asleep, keep your foot going all the time
- Meanwhile, watch a box set and drink coffee/tea

Baby will wake after a while (might only be a half hour nap, that's ok). Then start again and keep repeating the cycle all day long. Generally it might be 1h awake, 30m sleep, 1h awake, 30m asleep repeated from 7am to 11pm.

Just keep going with the repeated cycles.

MrsK2021 Mon 19-Apr-21 18:58:44

That's helpful thank you, I'll give them a ring!

OP’s posts: |
ItWasntMyFault Mon 19-Apr-21 19:01:26

A bouncy chair in front of the washing machine used to settle mine when they were over tired.
Worth a try if you haven't already tried that.

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MrsK2021 Mon 19-Apr-21 19:02:34

Thank you @FATEdestiny for the helpful tips - will make sure I get a bouncer and give that a go. We had tried a dummy but he didn't take to it - will try again! smile

OP’s posts: |
PinkCookie11 Mon 19-Apr-21 19:02:40

FATEdestiny

The things that you mention do work (pram and car) both involve movement. So use that as a start point.

Babies need a lot more help to sleep than you may realise. Some long established things that help babies sleep more

- Movement. Continual, even tempo, even speed, ideally at your resting heart rate.
- Sucking. Dummy! Dummies are amazing.
- Full tummy
- Well winded
- Subdued environment (but not necessarily silent/dark in the daytime, background noise/activity is a good thing)

You're likely to need all of the above, all of the time. It's not an either/or.

Here's my advise for a fail-safe:
- Baby wakes
- Full Feed and wind
- Nappy off for floor time until first cry (might only be 15-20 mins).
- Nappy then on, cuddle until settled, back down for floor time until next cry (That means sleep time, will probably be less than an hour from initially waking)
- Give what's left in the bottle or reorder breast. Not a full feed, it's a top up feed.
- Dumny in, wind on your shoulder.
- Into bouncer (No toys/lights attached, just a reclined chair). Bouncer by your feet as you sit on sofa.
- Have a pot of coffee, mug and tv remote to hand. Foot on bouncer. Bounce, continually, non-stop, even speed and tempo. Not too fast/hard. But non-stop.
- Just. Keep. Going.
- Do not stop for any reason. Dummy reinsert if needed (until asleep, when dummy will drop). Keep going once drowsy, keep going when asleep, keep your foot going all the time
- Meanwhile, watch a box set and drink coffee/tea

Baby will wake after a while (might only be a half hour nap, that's ok). Then start again and keep repeating the cycle all day long. Generally it might be 1h awake, 30m sleep, 1h awake, 30m asleep repeated from 7am to 11pm.

Just keep going with the repeated cycles.

Can you write a book?! 😂
I could of done with you two year ago

MrsK2021 Mon 19-Apr-21 19:37:01

Thanks @ItWasntMyFault - I don't know why I hadn't thought of trying a bouncy chair rather than a swing now. Off to the shops tomorrow!

OP’s posts: |
FATEdestiny Mon 19-Apr-21 19:46:52

Don't spend a lot on a bouncy chair. You don't need any of the "bells and whistles". No toys or lights needed (Or make sure they are removable if included). You don't need vibrate or anything like that.

Just a standard z-frame bouncy chair. So you can bounce it using your foot.

MrsK2021 Mon 19-Apr-21 20:01:01

@FATEdestiny Thank you. At what point do you think I should be aiming for the cycles to start consolidating into less frequent but longer naps at more predictable times? Is that a long way off .. For ref DS is FF every 3 hours in the day and every 4-5 hours at night and takes about 7oz a feed.

OP’s posts: |
FATEdestiny Mon 19-Apr-21 20:13:37

The more you practice linking sleep cycles (by resetting upon first stirring from a nap, so going back to a deep sleep and not waking at all) the quicker tgey get it.

Shouldn't be long, 3 or 4 months maybe. Might be 2 months, might be 5 - they are all different.

I don't move daytime naps into the static cot until naps are around 90 minutes plus, so that no resettle is needed at the usual 30-45m point.

MrsK2021 Tue 20-Apr-21 11:43:19

Ive tried the bouncer this morning. Unfortunately he hates it and has screamed until holding his breath each time, so I've then had to get him out and comfort him sad I thought worst case he might at least sit in it and give me a break for 5 mins but that's not happening, let alone sleep. I have tried holding the dummy in his mouth for over an hour but he doesn't attempt to suck it at all. Am waiting for calls from HV and GP re potential silent reflux/PND. The only sleep he gets now is when he cries himself out and sleeps for 20 mins out of sheer exhaustion sad

OP’s posts: |
Aliceandthemarchhare Tue 20-Apr-21 16:29:46

I am reading this wondering if we have the same baby.

Did the bouncy chair work for you, OP? It never has here sad

Aliceandthemarchhare Tue 20-Apr-21 16:30:44

God sorry OP I didn’t see your update.

Mine spits the dummy out constantly as well. I feel like I’m losing my mind a bit with his daytime naps. He’s had maybe an hour today and has been wide awake since 2. Clearly tired but won’t sleep.

MrsK2021 Tue 20-Apr-21 17:18:25

@Aliceandthemarchhare I perservered this afternoon and he's sat in it a little longer before crying, but still wide awake. GP has prescribed Infant Gaviscon so that's tomorrow's trial - will let you know if any improvement on the nap front from it! Running out of ideas confused

OP’s posts: |
PinkCookie11 Tue 20-Apr-21 17:23:44

I hope it works for you.
Is he bottle or breast fed?

MrsK2021 Tue 20-Apr-21 17:31:53

@PinkCookie11 thankyou, is infant gaviscon what you used for your LO? DS is FF on C&G. GP didn't seem to think it was worth changing his milk at this point

OP’s posts: |
PinkCookie11 Tue 20-Apr-21 17:32:14

Pressed post too quick.
If bottle, I recommend kendamil milk it’s great for reflux and may help settle better

PinkCookie11 Tue 20-Apr-21 17:33:12

I had ranitidine but they’ve stopped doing it now but should be something similar.

Thirtyrock39 Tue 20-Apr-21 17:34:56

I'd recommend the baby whisperer Easy routine . And actually you shouldn't be doing loads to help your baby to sleep they'll be over stimulated and over whelmed and you don't want to be relying on constantly rocking a bouncy chair.
I'd also look at the dreaded Gina Ford BUT only to look at the timings for sleep particularly naps / don't read beyond that as it does make you feel you're doing everything wrong but I have three kids and two were very demanding Velcro babies one was much easier but had real issues with getting the Velcro ones to nap . By 6 months they all could be put on the cot awake and self settle for naps for about an hour in the morning and two hours in the afternoon but it's all about the timings on my experience and they all ended up almost to the minute the same as Gina Ford - for naps only !! It does take a lot of work and might mean a few tears for you and your baby (obviously not suggesting you do any sleep training at this age but a couple of minutes of really tired crying can happen at first) but it's so worth it to get that nap time to yourself .

Aliceandthemarchhare Tue 20-Apr-21 18:36:59

EASY is no good for babies with reflux. To be honest I don’t see how it works anyway. Fine if you have a baby who sleeps when you want them to but if you don’t then you don’t. Same with Gina Ford - put your baby down for a nap between 10 and 1045. Well okay Gina but if he’s wide awake then what the hell do you do!?

MrsK2021 Tue 20-Apr-21 18:49:04

Thanks @PinkCookie11 - I'd actually been looking at Kendamil as it has so many good reviews, so will definitely consider changing if no improvement from the Gaviscon.

@Thirtyrock39 Thank you for suggestions! I did try EASY but came unstuck as DS' naps (on the odd occasion they happened!) were so short he then wasn't anywhere near due another feed confused Similar story with GF, attempted timings but didn't know what to do with him in the gaps when he should have still been asleep... Perhaps in a month he might be ready for something more structured and we can try again smile

OP’s posts: |
MrsK2021 Tue 20-Apr-21 18:50:52

@Aliceandthemarchhare didn't see your post before I wrote mine - we really must have the same baby grin

OP’s posts: |

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