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baby fighting sleep - what can I do?

(5 Posts)
hoochymama Sun 28-Jun-09 20:29:15

my 16 wk dd fights sleep, she'll start nodding off in her cot and her eyes will close, then suddenly her eyes will ping open and she'll struggle to keep them open, like she's mentally propping them open with matchsticks! Then she'll fight sleep til she gets a second wind. Does anyone have any tips?

rubyslippers Sun 28-Jun-09 20:31:06

put her down earlier

swaddle

stroke her head

lay your hand on her tummy

MummyDragon Sun 28-Jun-09 20:53:39

This might kick off a load of controversy (or it might not) - but you could try using a dummy ..

I didn't with DC1 and had a horrendous time - 6 months of screaming blue murder from 6pm until 10pm every blasted evening. With DC2 I used a dummy from a couple of weeks old and it was absolutely miraculous. She gave it up when she was about 16 months old and it was no problem at all.

Also agree with trying the swaddle/stroking ideas, and perhaps try gently rocking her ...

Another thing which will also cause divisions on here is the routine. Feed her and put her down for naps at the same time each day; over the course of a few days/weeks this should sort out the evening wakefulness. Not everyone will agree that babies should have routines though, and I will now stand back and wait to see what happens ...

hoochymama Sun 28-Jun-09 21:13:40

thanks for your suggestions. Lord knows we have tried to get her to take a dummy, but she steadfastly refuses! So that one is not an option. (6months of evening screaming, mummydragon, you must have nerves of steel!)

We also swaddle (but not in this heat) and she is impervious to stroking, patting etc when she is in that mood.

I think putting her down earlier is probably the way forward, but she doesn't often give obvious tired signs (rubbing eyes, yawning, stilling etc) so I start thinking about winding her down around 90 mins after she last got up, with a view that she may be asleep about 2hrs after she last got up. Obviously this time scale is flexible, depending on how long her last nap was and how tired she looks. Clearly it doesn't always work!

We're settling into a loose routine, which helps, but I think she just doesn't want to miss anything, apparently I was the same as a baby, but my Mum doesn't remember how she got me to sleep.

MummyDragon Mon 29-Jun-09 17:11:44

Isn't it great when mums remember bits and pieces from our own childhoods, but not the bits that would really, really help us?! wink

I do think that the routine is the way to go. I speak from experience! However, it's not for everyone. That's all I will say on the matter!

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