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Has my breast milk turned into Red Bull??! - bed time routine help please

(11 Posts)
Hadeda Sun 10-Aug-08 09:44:05

My DD is 7 months old. Her bedtime routine is supper, bath, breastfeed, story, bed. Has been since she was tiny (well, except for the supper part obviously!). I sing her a song after the story which has 3 verses, she is usually pretty much asleep by the last verse and I put her in her cot. Job done.

However, for the past 3 weeks or so, after she's had the bf she seems to be absolutely wired and ready for a party - like I'm feeding her Red Bull not milk! I've been carrying on with the story, song thing but she's wide awake, kicking her legs and grinning up at me. To get her into the sleepy state she used to be in takes about an hour of sitting and rocking.

So, for the past few nights I've tried going with the usual routine and no matter how awake she is, putting her in the cot and saying goodnight and leaving. She starts crying and I go back every 5/6 minutes to reassure her. It's still taken on average about an hour for her to go to fall asleep. She seems to finally get tired but just can't fall asleep on her own. When I go in, I just pat her and say "ssshhh, sleepy time". In the end, she usually falls asleep with my hand on her.

I hate hearing her cry and I'm not sure it's helping as it still takes about an hour for her to sleep - same as if I sat and rocked her. And, oddly, for her day time naps she is still very sleepy by the third verse of the song and goes straight down without any crying.

Any ideas for helping her to nod off in the evenings, but hopefully without lots of crying? Do you generally give a feed before or after the bath? Is it worth continuing to leave her and go back every few minutes when the "problem" is with only one sleep per day - or will that just confuse her?

Sorry, rather long, but I'm starting to feel like an awful mother and I'm completely out of ideas of how I can help her sleep.

Hadeda Sun 10-Aug-08 20:34:46

Bump - anyone? Even if someone could just tell me what your bedtime routine is please?

MonMoo Sun 10-Aug-08 20:48:49

Oh dear poor you. Not really got any useful advice but wanted to bump for you as know how frustrating it can be trying to get dc's to sleep. The only thing I can think of is that she is just not tired at that time anymore - perhaps cut back on the daytime naps? You have prob already tried that. I am no expert when it comes to getting their kids to sleep I'm afraid! Hope someone comes along with more help soon. Happy to share my dd's bedtime rountines if you like?

pudding25 Sun 10-Aug-08 22:08:39

I have also heard that if this is happening, cut back on daytime naps (if you havent already done so).

Caz10 Sun 10-Aug-08 22:13:47

no advice, just to say my dd does this pretty much every night, she bounces around for ages

i do bath, feed, bed, and the only thing that has improved it SLIGHTLY has been a little bit of quiet time, so now I do bath, into jammies etc, she sits on my bed with one soft toy while I potter about, then when she starts looking sleepy i feed her and put her down

sometimes it doesn't work though and we're back to her rolling, kicking, thrashing etc

someone suggested it might be developmental as they are about to start crawling, pulling themselves up etc so they have lots of excess energy and bizarre urges to move around!

Hadeda Sun 10-Aug-08 22:15:28

Thank you both!
I'll try cutting back on the day time naps to see if that helps. She usually has about 30/40 mins in the morning and an hour/hour and a half in the afternoon. Maybe I'll see if we can shorten the morning nap.

Hadeda Sun 10-Aug-08 22:39:50

X-post Caz! She started crawling on Wed and got a tooth last week so might be linked to development. So hard to know what will help, I wish they came with instructions!

ChairmumMiaow Mon 11-Aug-08 20:21:58

Hadeda - what time is bedtime? DS is 6 months and until about 5 months we had bedtime at 9.30 (I just used to go to bed with DS, and he seemed to be knackered), then started moving it earlier. It just made things a nightmare. DS would be lying across me diagonally(feet on the bed between my legs) while feeding, bouncing up and down crazily, then he'd wriggle onto the bed for a bit, then cry to get fed again. This went on for 2 hours sometimes.

Now we watch for when he's sleepy (during his dinner which starts at 5) and he has his bath between 5.30 and 6.30 depending on naps. He's normally in the right sleepy state then, and goes down with only a little bit of crying (less than 10 minutes and not constant) or getting fed to sleep and being put down. If he has his afternoon nap too early or too short, we get the crazy baby routine again.

Could you try an earlier bedtime?

ChairmumMiaow Mon 11-Aug-08 20:23:03

Oh and naps sound about right to me (been reading lots of sleep books lately :-) ) - what time is the last one compared to bedtime? (sounds like she's overtired and gets a second wind after her feed - DS has done this lots of times!)

Hadeda Tue 12-Aug-08 05:39:00

Hi Chairmum
Been up since 3:30 - tonight she decided sleep is out! Think we might have a tooth on the way.

Her bed time is around 7 / 7:30. She usually wakes from her afternoon nap by 2:30pm. So about 4.5 or 5 hrs until bedtime. Maybe that's too long so she is over tired?

Yawn, wish she'd go to sleep, I'm finished!

ChairmumMiaow Tue 12-Aug-08 07:38:59

DS would be climbing the walls if I left him that long - he normally goes no more than 3 hours between naps and is only a couple of weeks younger than your DD. (Of course they're all different)

I would see if a mini-nap of around half an hour at 4 or 4.30 would help, or bring her bedtime forward by an hour. (we are struggling with the time between afternoon nap and bedtime ourselves at the moment - early bedtime has worked better than a mini-nap so far)

Disclaimer - we're still working on this with my DS, so we still aren't positive what works!

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