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Stopping the night feeds?

(3 Posts)
JJ1471 Thu 20-Aug-09 13:43:47

Hi,

Sorry this is so long, I just feel like I have no idea what I'm doing and would appreciate any advice, really suffering with lack of sleep.

I was just wondering how you know whether your baby is waking in the night because they are hungry or whether there is another reason?

My ds is 7 months old and having a full bottle during the night. He goes to bed at 8pm with a bottle, has another bottle at some point during the night, usually around midnight, and then wakes anytime from 5am. I don't give him a bottle until about 6am and he is fine waiting for it and only usually drinks 3-4 oz (normally has 5-6 oz from a bottle).

During the day he has a bottle mid morning and mid afternoon - so is on 5 bottles per day. In addition he has been on three meals a day for a couple of months, although he doesn't eat a huge amount.

He wakes up several times per night, sometimes just about every hour. Sometimes he has flipped on to his tummy and needs turning back, sometimes a quick drink of water will settle him, sometimes even just a pat on the head. But other times he will scream and scream and it's very hard to settle him. The first time he wakes after midnight I feed him and usually get a few hours out of him after that.

He sleeps in his own room, but even bringing him into bed with me won't calm him, so it doesn't feel like he just needs a cuddle. A couple of times I've ended up giving him another (usually smaller) bottle to settle him around 3am and this works about half the time.

I was really hoping that he'd be sleeping through by now, or at least managing longer than a couple of hours! I know that sometimes I need to go to him, like when he's on his tummy, but I was just wondering how you decide that he's waking for a feed because he wants it, rather than needs it?

He is excellent at self settling and goes down at bed and for naps awake and smiling with no fuss usually. He does nap quite a lot during the day (2 or 3 naps totalling 3-4 hours, but his day does often start at 5am).

Thanks for any advice,
Jen

Seona1973 Thu 20-Aug-09 19:55:07

why do you need to turn him if he is on his tummy? from 6 months you can let them find their own sleep position so if he will settle when he has turned over, just leave him to get on with it.

With ds, I started progressively offering less milk in his middle of the night feed (from the age of 6 months) i.e. I dropped it by an ounce every week or so. He stopped waking for it around 8 months.

Have you tried leaving him to settle himself for a few minutes as they can moan and groan a bit before going back to sleep?

JJ1471 Thu 20-Aug-09 20:03:53

Thanks for your reply!

I turn him over because he wakes up screaming and gets really angry. I'd be happy for him to sleep like that if he would, he's been sleeping on his side for a while now and I think that's the problem, it's easy for him to roll over and he can't get back yet.

Perhaps offering a bit less milk gradually is the way to go. I just don't want to deny him food if he's hungry, but then he also needs to learn to take his calories during the day.

Sometimes he will go back to sleep himself, to be honest most times he wakes up it is because he is on his tummy at the moment, maybe that wakes him up and then once he's awake he fancies his bottle. Not sure how to get round that, apart from just waiting for him to learn to roll back!

Thanks a lot for your advice,
Jen

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