Exactly that really. I'm a teacher, so went back to work for the last week of term in July and by the end of the week I was knackered, as I get up 3 times to DS most nights. He's breastfed and I have never tried any kind of sleep training with him. Whenever he wakes up in the night I feed him, as it is the quickest way of getting us both back to sleep - he usually drops off within 10 minutes. Unfortunately though I think I have caused him to be unable to self-settle when he wakes in the night, as I'm fairly sure he doesn't need the night feeds, or not all of them anyway. But by feeding him every time, I have got him used to being fed back to sleep. Rod for my own back and all that!. I am starting him on formula for his daytime feeds as I won't be able to express when I go back to work but I want him to be able to have a drink during the day while he's at the CMs. My plan was to continue morning and evening bf until he was 1, but I am considering giving up bf altogether before I go back to work. I am looking for ideas really on how I can get him to sleep through - I'm guessing this kind of thing may have been posted many times before in this topic, apologies if you've answered something similar before. Ideas I've had are to offer water instead of a milk feed, or the big CC....if I dare.
Anything you have to share would be very very welcome!!
Hiya, I'm sort of in your situation in the whole feeding to sleep, lots of wakings and back to work. I've been back to work for 6 months, DD is 1 and still waking lots but I survive by going to bed earlier, roping in DH for weekend lie ins and that Berroca stuff.
Good luck! With any luck someone with some real help will be along soon too.
I gave up night feeds for my dd when she was about 8 months old. The plan was that dh would offer her a bottle of formula and that we would gradually reduce the 'strength' (ie cut down the scoops of formula) until it was just water and then when we were confident that she didn't need food we would then just comfort her back to sleep. Well, best laid plans and all that... DD was never very keen on bottles and just refused it point blank. However she wasn't unhappy but it did take about 1.5hrs to cuddle her back to sleep the first waking each night and usually 1/2 hour for the 2nd week. I would say she dropped one of the wakings within a week and the 2nd waking about a week later.
We had this with DS1. We ended up basically having to shush pat DS1 back to sleep at nights - DH had to do it for the first few nights and then we'd take it in turns. It took a good few weeks (nearly 2 months) and was really hard to start with but at the end of it when he was 9 months old DS1 was sleeping through - and we havent looked back since (he's now 3 and a half). The key is consistency - clear sleep signals (wind down time, story, milk, lying them down in their cot awake but sleepy), reassurance (so they're not crying out as they are all alone) but ultimately getting them to self settle.
We're now on DS2 - and he's nearly 6 months old - and not sleeping through. But I know that he will eventually and know that when we have to deal with it, we can.
Thanks for speedy responses! I'm just in the middle of reading another thread on a similar topic and it's getting a little heated! I was starting to worry what people might say to me on here, so the helpful practical advice is much appreciated! I'm not too sure what the shush pat technique consists of (I realise its name is fairly self-explanatory but just want to make sure!), so could you explain how you did this dinkystinky?
Basically when DS1 started grumbling but before he got to all out wailing (as he would be impossible to calm down in that state) we would intervene - we would try not to turn on lights or lift him from his cot but just put our hand on him and gently do long slow shushes to calm him down. If he was lying on his side or on his front we would gently and rhythmically pat him while shushing - if lying on his back we would just shush him - till he calmed down and started dropping off. Then we'd remove our hand and stop shushing and stay by his cot for a few more minutes until he dropped off again. The duration of the shushing needed quickly tailed off as did the number of night wakings.
shush pat is in "the baby whisperer solves all your problems" (HAH!!!), which I got from my local library and it used to be on the baby whisperer website but it's down at the minute. I'm a major fan of this technique and regularly bore people to death about it . It doesn't solve your night feeding probs, but the other women here seem to be helping with that!
PUPD is basically a case of picking up your baby when they're crying but as soon as they're calm putting them down and telling them its time to go to sleep - you're still there for reassurance for them so similar to shush pat. In our case we thought picking DS1 up would give too many mixed signals - he'd think its time to get up or for a feed etc. so keeping him in his cot was a better way to deal for us.