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waking at 5.30am no matter what time put to bed!

(9 Posts)
sassy71 Wed 02-Feb-05 10:31:22

Until 2 months ago my 14 month old had a pretty regular sleep routine. He would usually go to bed any time between 7.30 and 8.30 and wake about 6 - 6.30 and then sleep for 1 - 2 hours in the day. He now wakes between 5 and 5.30am no matter what time he goes to bed and will let out a piercing scream and sob hysterically until someone goes into him, and then he won't go back to sleep. We have had a week or so where he went back to his normal routine but then he has slipped back into the early waking again. I've tried leaving him to cry for a bit but after an hour I had to get up abd go to him. I am so exhausted and don't know whether this is something to do with him teething or if its a stage he's going through or if I just have to accept that he wakes early. Has anyone had a similar experience or can anyone offer any advice?

vict17 Wed 02-Feb-05 10:34:00


sassy71 Wed 02-Feb-05 10:44:15

Yes have seen it but I think it's the waking up with a scream that is worrying me! He used to wake up at 6 ish and I would hear him talking and playing in his cot but not screaming the place down hysterically. He is also completely knackered when he wakes as well but won't go back to sleep. How can this be just his normal waking time?

Catbert Wed 02-Feb-05 10:49:02

Sometimes with babies, the more sleep they have the more they want. You could start by bringing bedtime forward and ensure he does to bed at between 7 and 7.30. At least THAT way if he wakes early, he should have had enough sleep to make him happier.

However, I have a rule (cruel mother than I am) that my day does NOT start before 7am (!!!) and so when my babies were small and if they started early waking, I would try going in, settling, and leaving again as if it were the middle of the night (feeding, quick cuddle, pickup/put down method, whatever worked best for me with each child at the time). No talking. No lights, VERY boring mummy. If crying was persistent, sometimes I would sit in the room, sometimes holding, sometimes not, being VERY quiet, again, no talking, no lights etc etc until that magic 7am moment came and then we could do "Good Morning, switch on lights etc. After a short time, it seemed to sink in that it was pointless excercise waking before 7am, as there was nothing to get up for. I am pretty certain it was a MN tip from someone that sent me down this route.

Sounds simple, but it worked, AND (BTW) esp. with DD2 who was waking at 5 - 5.30 every morning for a short while.

Otherwise, you may end up "training" them that 5am is a perfectly normal time to start the day, and THAT is what becomes habitual. (certainly was with a friend of mine whose 2.5 yr old STILL wakes at 5am every day now...

AND my sister used to think 5.30am was a normal start to the day with babies and it was only months after that she realised that an hour or so after getting up, her DS was consistently going back to sleep for a couple of hours, but by this time, she was already up!

Catbert Wed 02-Feb-05 10:50:47

To answer your last post - I think they wake unhappy like this when they have NOT had enough sleep to see them through. Even another 45 mins can make the diff between waking crying and waking babbling (which is how it should be!)

Good luck!

sassy71 Wed 02-Feb-05 11:46:53

Thanks for advice. I will try this for a few days and see if it works with him and just try to ignore the hysterical screaming. Hope so, as if this is normal it's putting me off having any more babies.

weightwatchingwaterwitch Wed 02-Feb-05 12:01:20

Catbert, thanks for that, mind if I post it into the other thread for others to see? (will do anyway, hope this is OK) I'm going to try that anyway.

Portree Wed 02-Feb-05 12:25:16

Catbert, you sound like a woman after my own heart.

I just wanted to echo your advice and suggestions. Try bringing his bedtime to no later than 7.30 - he's possibly exhausted by 8.30. Certainly with my ds (14m) the more sleep he has the more he wants - 12 to 13 hours at night and 2 - 3 hours at lunchtime.

The only time ds wakes at 5 is if he has not had his usual quota of sleep in the preceeding day. Like Catbert I am a horrible cruel mummy and bedtimes are set in stone as are getting up times. I do find that it can be a bit restrictive at times as he won't sleep in his pram. I can get away with distrubing routine for a day sometimes 2 but any longer than that and it takes another 3 days to get back on track. I figure it's for a short time of his life so I'll fit mine around his.

Portree Wed 02-Feb-05 12:29:09

Sassy, I have foam earplugs. Yes, really. I haven't had to use them for months and months but I found it helped me deal with any yelling. Could still hear ds through them etc but just took the edge off. Helped keep me sane. Might be useful to help get you through the retraining if he's going to yell. Understand not everyone's cup of tea though.

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