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settling themselves to sleep

(14 Posts)
Tipex Thu 12-May-05 21:16:39

Just realised from my postnatal group thread that alot of babies will happily be put down awake and drop off themselves...not in our house! DS is 12 weeks and likes to be fed or rocked to sleep without fail. Should I start to tackle this now and if so how? If I put him down even semi awake he screams blue murder.

NotQuiteCockney Thu 12-May-05 21:25:22

If it's working ok for you, I wouldn't worry about it. Neither of my sons got used to settling themselves to sleep before I made them get used to it. I think it's easier to do that when they're bigger (6 months +).

vicdubya Thu 12-May-05 21:56:53

Ds just getting used to it now at 14 months.

Some do it fine & some have to be made to...

Don't feel bad for at least another year, please, it's not worth it. Just enjoy him!

Hazellnut Thu 12-May-05 22:13:50

Tipex - me again !! DD does not happily go down and drop off. She is either exhausted from not sleeping during the day or else cries and moans for about 1/2 an hour before going off. Sometimes I use a white noise CD which works like magic but until she was 14 weeks we used to keep her up with us till about 10.30 cos she would just cry if put down. We decided to get a bit tough with her as she was then sleeping 12 hours from 10.30 and started to get grumpy in the evenings so was obviously tired and could sleep 12 hours so we thought we had to bring it forward. We don't just leave her - we go in and calm her down if she gets upset but try not to pick her up.... So we're not all perfect on the feb board !

Tipex Fri 13-May-05 17:41:09

But my Ds literally HAS to have a cry before he will sleep, even if we pick up on the early warning he is tired and soothe him asap. He usually cries and scream for between 10-50 mins per nap. he even howls in his buggy if he decides he is tired. It totally puts me off going out with him as hes such a nightmare if due a sleep. he must be the only baby I know who wont sleep in the car. Cant imagine ever getting to stage of him self settling if he screams blue murder even if we are there. Any advice?

aloha Fri 13-May-05 18:21:56

I think that's fine though Tipex. It doesn't harm him. I sometimes think some babies need a bit of a cry to discharge energy or as a way of saying "Oh, I'm so tired!" before they go off. I used to put ds down, and then go straight downstairs and put the kettle and the radio on. If he wasn't quiet by the time I'd made tea, I'd go back up, but he almost invariably was.

Tipex Fri 13-May-05 19:42:59

aloha, I mean he screams when we are with him for up to 50 mins. if I leave him to scream he gets in a total state, vomits, gets so hot and then he never sleeps. The screams to calm down seem so violent, not just whimpers. Its exhausting and i dread every nap.

fruitful Fri 13-May-05 22:05:09

Tipex, my dd was like that. Although she would sleep in a car - in fact the only way she had a nap was in the car, the pram, or my arms - or her lovely, lovely Graco swing. I used to bf her to sleep, put her ever so carefully into the swing, switch it onto high speed, and that was it for 90 minutes... Until she was 5 months when we did controlled crying. And boy, was there a lot of crying. I think she was just outraged at the idea of sleeping without some arms around her. She still hates going to sleep.

Ds on the other hand, loves his cot. And I'm not doing anything different - which makes me feel so much better, now I know it wasn't anything to do with my parenting that made dd such a screamy sleeper!

If rocking him to sleep works, do it!

fruitful Fri 13-May-05 22:07:59

Ooh, Tipex - are you saying he screams for 50 minutes even if you feed / rock him? Or is that if you're trying to get him to sleep in his cot and you're standing there patting his back or whatever?

Also - have you tried putting him in his cot and then kind of half getting in with him so you've got your body close to him, your arms around him (one finger in his mouth to suck, one hand patting his back to a heartbeat rhythm!). Might fool him into thinking he is being held.

Tipex Sat 14-May-05 07:37:17

fruitful, yes I mean he screams even if being held or in pram or swing or whatever! Horrible. he just always cries when falling asleep. If it were just a bit of moaning I'd go with it but its full on screaming/sobs half the time. Every nap time is such an event its leaving me exhausted.

fruitful Sat 14-May-05 09:57:43

A collection of thoughts...

Can you feed him to sleep and then put him down? Or does he just wake up straight away? (I know you're not supposed to feed them to sleep, but this sounds like a case for allowing a bad habit and getting him out of it when he is older!).

(((I assume you're satisfied that he isn't in pain / hungry?)))

And does it make any difference to the amount of screaming if you're there or not? Cos if not, don't feel guilty about leaving him to it - you can go back in every 10 minutes and stroke him a bit.

Have you tried swaddling him in a very dark, quiet room, in case he's totally overstimulated?

Seona1973 Sat 14-May-05 12:45:36

how long is your lo awake for before a nap? With some babies, by the time they show tiredness symptoms, they're already overtired. The screaming you're describing sounds like overtiredness/overstimulation and your lo is screaming to block out any other stimulation. Your lo should be awake for a maximum of 2 hours before having a nap. I would start a naptime routine after 1 1/2 hours (regardless of whether your lo has given tiredness cues) and keep everything really calm. You could also try swaddling as at this age they dont know that their limbs belong to them and seeing them waggling about overstimulates them further. hope some of that helps anyway!!

Tipex Sat 14-May-05 20:52:55

thanks all so much for taking the time to reply. I do try and limit the time hes up and in fact he can def only manage 1 hour after he first gets up. we have always swaddled him until the last week as he's started wriggling out every time and ends up with either no covers on him or all over his face which scared me a bit so hes now in a sleeping bag. I was assuming its overstimulation but it happens everytime no matter how early I start the routine. His cot is in our room with curtains closed, i play a soft lullaby, rock him gently and never put him down before hes asleep or it makes it so much worse and I just have to start again. he still seems to need to have a cry before he will drop off. its the same even if hes in the car or his pram. If we're out its a nightmare esp if I miss the sleepy cue (if there is one) or leave him a bit too long. Whole thing is just really extreme then, but cant understand why it still happens when we follow the routine at home. I cant bring myself to ket him cry it out as think then we'd both be in a state. Will he grow out of this?

nicky111 Sat 14-May-05 21:11:06

My DD was like this at 4 months and I ended up feeding her to sleep for naps and night time. It worked for me and I didn't feel like the whole day had been wasted with trying to get her to put herself to sleep - I know how exhausting and demoralising that is. It sounds strange but have you tried rocking him in a cupboard? Our DD calmed down quite quickly in the cupboard as it was pitch black inside and all she could hear was my heart beating. By the way DD was a nightmare at naptime, sleeping etc but at 10 months needs 5 mins of rocking to get to sleep and that's it. So try not to worry, there is a good chance he will grow out of it - he is still very little.

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