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Help, 9 week old baby takes up to 2 hours to settle to sleep at night

(6 Posts)
ejbab Tue 14-Jul-09 11:54:53

I'm really struggling in the evenings with my LO. DD2s never had an official bedtime, mostly because she always cluster fed in the evenings on the sofa with me, then I'd take her to bed at around 9.30 - we co-sleep.
In the past few weeks the cluster feeding has pretty much stopped and DH and I have been trying to follow a loose bedtime routine of giving her a bath at 6pm, then feed her, then put her down for a sleep in her cot or our bed around 7. She falls asleep for 5 minutes before waking up and screaming, I/ we comfort her with a mix of breastfeeding, dummy, patting, rocking, she falls asleep and then wakes up another 5 minutes later. Basically this pattern continues until about 8.30 when she finally conks out.
Should we just abandon the evening routine - is she too little? Or do we just need to stick at it longer?
What's normal at this stage? You'd think I'd remember what we did with DD1 but I can't!
Any tips very gratefully received. I need more than half an hour of childfree time in the evening otherwise I'm going to go mad.

cyteen Tue 14-Jul-09 12:00:53

I think we started doing bath and bedtime with DS when he was about 10-12 weeks, when he got more aware of his surroundings and it was obvious that evening tv+company was overstimulating him. It definitely took a while for him to get the idea - lots of running up and down stairs and taking it in turns to eat dinner. But it did click eventually.

9 weeks is classic growth spurt time, isn't it? Although tbh the first 6 months seemed to be one big growth spurt, but still.

Sorry this isn't more help. DS is only 10 months, you'd think I'd remember more but it's all a big blur grin

pulapula Tue 14-Jul-09 19:56:57

I started doing a bedtime routine with my DS2 at 5 weeks which is similar to yours (bath at 6, feed, bed by 7). DS2 is now 9 weeks, and goes to bed quite nicely now, but it has taken a few weeks and there have been some blips. Therefore it may take a while for her to adjust to this. Do you know what is waking her after 5 mins? Could she be startling herself awake? I swaddle my DS and this helps him settle. Also DS2 sometimes still stirs if his dummy falls out or if he has wind, but generally he settles well. Good luck- it is worth it to have your evenings back.

ejbab Tue 14-Jul-09 22:58:15

We tried swaddling at first and DD2 really seemed to resist it. However yesterday afternoon I tried it again and she fell asleep straight away. Thinking I'd cracked it, I tried again at bedtime but she hated it this time and got really cross til I removed it. I'm sure she does wake her self up with the startle reflex. Does anyone know when that goes away?
I should have persisted at the beginning - swaddling was a miracle worker for DD1 and I'm sure that's one of the reasons she slept so well.
Do you think it's worth trying again with swaddling - will she get used to it if I keep at it do you think?

pulapula Wed 15-Jul-09 15:45:48

I have never not swaddled my 3, although sometimes they have fought it, but that made me just do it tighter grin. I think the startle reflex fades around 10-14 weeks - my DS2 has a really strong reflex so am hoping it goes away soon.

alison56 Wed 15-Jul-09 19:52:04

We have a 4 week old and we're trying to do what we did with DD1 (who is now four). We bath about 6pm then she finishes a bedtime bottle. We then put her in a chair and try not to stimulate her by turning lights to low and TV volume down.

She seems to suffer tummy wind in the evening, so athough she likes a dummy, she becomes temporarily unsettled and spits it out - could your LO aso be suffering from wind?

We find this has settled by 8-9pm so we just watch her get sleepier and less unsettled and we put her up to bed when she's still a little awake.

This is pretty much what we did with DD1, though she wouldn't have a dummy and we had weeks of evenign crying because she couldn't soothe herself to sleep.

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