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No Sleep ever, ever. What to do?

(26 Posts)
Allyco Tue 10-May-05 14:02:50

My DD is now nearly nine months old, was eight weeks premature but okay developmentally.

She DOES NOT SLEEP. she has maybe twenty minutes in the morning and afternoon and a couple of hours when put to bed at night and that's it. She trhen wakes and screams and screams and screams. BF used to work but now she bites me (even without any teeth) and grabs handfuls of my boobs, face, whatever's to hand.

I have other children that need to sleep for school. DH is a shift worker and gets up 4.00am for day shift. I'm back to work full-time now too.

The very experienced childminder I have says she's never had a baby that slept so little.

Am I doomed to wait until she's old enough to be told "go to bed and stay there you little sod"? help me ladies because it seriously isn't funny....

FLUM Tue 10-May-05 14:06:33


you can just put her to bed and leave her there now!!! see if she cries herself out no?

or maternity nurse?

I know she's 9 months but you still might get one - or night nanny or something might help

morningpaper Tue 10-May-05 14:09:03

Are you saying that she sleeps for less than 3 hours in 24? If so I would get to see a consultant ASAP because that really isn't 'normal development' IMO. xx

beep Tue 10-May-05 14:16:39

this could of been written by me when dd1 was small,also 8 weeks prem caught up size wise quite quickly but was slow to reach some milestones,(later found out she had cp)she wuold sleep for a couple of hours and then cry and fidget the rest of the night in our bed.what worked for us in the end was cranial osteopathy,it does not work over night(no pun intended) but in the long run it has helped alot.apparently she was in painaround the back of her head,the peadiatrician confirmed that this was likely also she never got beyond light sleep.She was probably around 19 months when we started taking her (too tired to think of it before)we were so lucky a friend came to me and said agroup of people had got together to pay for her treatment as we wre broke at the time she started off going every week then 2 weeks, amonth etc til every 6 monthstil she was about 8 (she was sleeping before that! it was for her other problems)

claire74 Tue 10-May-05 14:21:42

hi I used a baby consultant for my dd, she advertises on here, she was really understanding, and helped me get my dd to sleep 12 hrs a night cat me if you need further information or look on classifieds

motherinferior Tue 10-May-05 14:23:45

Yes, I agree with Morningpaper.

hermykne Tue 10-May-05 14:30:24

is it her diet ? milk or constipation?
what are her stools like, has she been medically ok or does she get sick?
if she is screaming then i would say shes uncomfortable, what soothes her and if its touch - rubbing her tummy for example - then is that area a problem

coppertop Tue 10-May-05 14:45:47

If she really does only sleep for a few hours out of every 24 then I would agree with seeking medical advice. My ds1 slept for approx 6 hours out of every 24 as a newborn. It was a nightmare (no pun intended).

Allyco Tue 10-May-05 16:52:49

thanks for that ladies.

beep - YES I forgot to mention she never seems to get into a good deep sleep. She's always flailing her arms about, twitching, jerking etc. etc.

I got the baby book out and it said a common cause of not sleeping at night is too much sleep during the day HAHAHAHAHA.

It's nearly five o'clock and all I can think is soon she will go to bed and the whole thing will start again. How depressing.

Claire74 - does the baby consultant say leave baby to scream? I can't do that (a) am far too soft, if leaving a baby to cry is soft, and (b)all the other people in house who need to get up.

I just can't understand why some babies sleep and some don't. What about feeding? All my friends bottle feed and their babies sleep.... I breastfeed and mine doesn't. Anyone got any thoughts?

hermykne Tue 10-May-05 18:03:00

allyco, if she sleeps now - can you not wake her and settle again round nine? bath? u prob do that

ssd Tue 10-May-05 19:49:13

Allco, have you disussed this with your health visitor or doctor? Don't want to be alarmist but I don't think the baby is getting nearly enough sleep and I'd want things checked out medically before trying to tackle the problem myself.

Allyco Tue 10-May-05 20:29:14

can you believe my health visitor has just left the practice and not been allocated another yet.

NEVER wake her up when she's asleep - the thought of it frightens me!!!!

So it's not just me thinking she's not having enough sleep then.

hermykne Tue 10-May-05 20:32:16

allyco, if u want her to sleep when u sleep then you ll have to wake her imo, if its not at a "normal" sleeptime, getting her to sleep in a whole new pattern may take over a week and it'll be hard work but it will work. u can change your babys sleep pattern.
if shes breast feed how often are her feeds?

aloha Tue 10-May-05 20:38:33

You might want to read Ferber's Solve Your Child's Sleep Problems. It's not all about controlled crying, honestly. It does contain insights as to how sleep works and why it goes wrong. You don't honestly mean your baby only sleeps three hours in 24, do you?
I think a routine might help.
My ds was mixed fed and slept very badly, my dd is breastfed and sleeps well, so don't blame that.

morningpaper Tue 10-May-05 20:44:21

Allyco: 3 hours sleep in 24 is going to affect your daughter's health. I would speak to your Doctor.

Allyco Tue 10-May-05 20:53:34

no she doesn't only sleep 3 hours in 24. it's more 20 mins nap morning then 20 mins nap afternoon then goes to bed okay (she is in a bedtime routine ie bath cuddle fed bed in her own cot) but then after two hours or so she's up. Then it's scream, fight the attempts to placate her, scream if left in cot alone; suck desperately on thumbs/my boobs for a few sucks then scream again and then whinge and whine BUT she does doze, she just never seems to go into that lovely deep baby sleep IYKWIM. So when I say 3 hours its 3 hours what I'd call proper sleep.

I have tried the GP already. One said well I can give you some phernergan if you want it, the other said "but this is your fourth child" abnd seemed genuinely amazed that I didn't know what to do!

Someone once said she is obviously very intelligent and doesn't like to miss anything which is a nice thought but believe me I would settle for a dimwit if she would go to sleep. Still at least I'm still laughing ( a bit)

Feedwise she mostly has what we have and breastfeeds mornings and evenings (and at nights in desprate attempt to get her off to sleep).

God, I am reading this and I even sound like a complete loser to myself!

Prufrock Tue 10-May-05 21:58:05

Allyco - to me it sounds as if she is not getting enough daytime sleep - so come nightime she is so overtired that she cannot ever settle.
Why does she only sleep for 20 minutes in the am? Where does she sleep during the day? Ideally she should be in her cot in a darkened room. If she is at a childminders she could be being disturbed by teh other children. Gina Ford recommednds a sleep of 45 minutes 2 hours after she has got up in the am, then 2.5 hours at lunchtime, before bedtime again at 7.

expatinscotland Tue 10-May-05 22:03:28

I think I'd push for a paed referral. It just doesn't sound like she's getting enough sleep in a 24 period for any human, much less a young baby. She should be checked over medically in the most thorough way possible.

aloha Tue 10-May-05 23:10:26

Does she have...and I hate to even type this (!)...a Routine? It helped my non sleeping ds. It started by putting him to bed in the am exactly two hours after he woke, whether he looked tired or not, then again directly after lunch. In his own bed. Made a lot of difference at about the age your dd is now.
I know how horrible it is. My ds was a lot like this. Very vile.
He's lovely now and sleeps beautifully. And my new dd SLEEPS. I'm still in shock, frankly.

milward Tue 10-May-05 23:15:25

My dds never slept much when they were little. Have you tried co-sleeping. It was the only thing that worked for me. My dds could bf through the night & sleep. I got more sleep from this. Everyone was happier.

Allyco Wed 11-May-05 12:14:26


Co-sleeping. yes I resort to it almost nightly. Sometimes works for a bit other times she twists and turns all night on and off and scrunches up fistfuls of my skin and grabs me which is not very conducive to a good night!!

Routine. yes she has one in the sense that at nights she has a play, a bath, last feed and cuddle and night night, into the cot. She's usually awake although drifting off so she's aware she's being put down. I'm certainly not getting her off and then creeping away BUT she doesn't have routine in that she has a sleep at this time through the day, then at another, then bed dead on seven (although it's usually 7.15ish ish).

yep at childminder's she goes separate room curtains closed etc. other minded children are generally at school, she's the only little one. She wakes after about twenty minutes, full of smiles, happy as larry. It's as if she says that's enough sleep for now, now what can I do. I cannot imagine she would ever, ever sleep for 2.5 hours at lunchtime. Do babies really do that??!!

Allyco Wed 11-May-05 12:15:54

aloha, just read your post again. When you say you put DS to bed even if he didn't seem tired did he not go absolutely ballistic and scream the house down or did he realise in his own way that it was rest time?

Elf Wed 11-May-05 13:26:59

Allyco you haven't responded regarding the idea about cranial osteopathy. I must say, this seems such an extreme case that although I agree that routines can help a milder case, this shouts to me of some sort of physiological problem, not necessarily serious but please do consider taking her to see one. I'm so sure it would help.

highlandmum Wed 11-May-05 13:56:08

Hi Allyco - you've had other children, so presumably you're not doing anything drastically different with this one. Children will sleep - eventually - if they are tired and there is no other problem. Funny the Doc doesn't seem too concerned. Drugs won't solve the cause, just make her sleep despite it. Does she need to be more tired out in the daytime? - more stimulation, fresh air and exercise? Is she resting in other ways during the day? If you're not happy with your doctor's response, see another doc.

Allyco Wed 11-May-05 15:59:46

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

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