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Am I crazy to start giving a 22-MO a bottle when she wakes up in the night?

(7 Posts)
somethinganything Wed 04-Nov-09 18:49:00

DD has been a really good sleeper more or less from birth. From about 3 months to 18 months she slept around 11 hours a night.

In the past few months she's been much more erratic and now frequently wakes up in the night calling for me and wanting milk. DH is all for controlled crying but I'm really not sure I'd be any good at leaving her to cry and he hates the broken nights so I just end up giving her a bottle to keep her quiet and appease him. But I'm worried that a) I'm just reinforcing/prolonging the 3am milk habit! b) It's bad for her teeth and c) I've got another baby due in 3 months and the thought of waking up throughout the night for both of them horrifies me.

Please tell me what I should be doing?!

Thank you

crokky Wed 04-Nov-09 18:51:37

I have a 19 month old and she wakes up in the night calling for me. She just wants to be in bed with me - I would not give her milk, personally.

Is your DD wanting you more or milk more? Both my kids wanted me at this age, they have only asked for a drink in the night if they have a sore throat etc.

However, I don't know what you should be doing!! My DCs are still poor sleepers grin

andgodcreatedwoman Wed 04-Nov-09 18:55:10

I'm watching this thread as I have exactly the same problem.

Unfortunately, I've been giving in for so long now in the vain hope of getting a bit more sleep, I don't see how to sort it.

My dd2 is 21 months and, like you op, I don't want to even try cc now as she is too vocal and loud and dd1 sleeps lightly at this ungoldy hour.

I really hope someone comes on with some good advice for you so I can try it too.

Sorry I can't help you!

biscuit

StarlightMcKenzie Wed 04-Nov-09 18:58:25

Message withdrawn

RubysReturn Wed 04-Nov-09 19:03:46

I'd try milk and biscuits/toast at bedtime to avoid any hunger pangs and a sport bottle (to avoid spills) of water by the bed to try to tough it out.

I'd really try to avoid milk if I were you.

NellyTheElephant Wed 04-Nov-09 22:47:44

I really wouldn't start giving milk at this age. My DD2 slept 11 or 12 hrs a night from about 10 weeks, then much to my horror around 13 months she started to wake regularly (3 or 4 nights a week) at around 4am and cry for me. For about 4 months it drove me mad and I was exhausted, I didn't know what to do so I'd go in, cuddle etc and resettle her (without milk though), but what really sorted it for us was the 'wake to sleep' process.

It sounds utterly mad but it really worked for us. Basically you set your alarm and wake them up about an hour before their usual wake up time - I found it VERY hard to wake her at that time so really it would just be a case of stirring her enough to get her eyes flicking open and some grunting. However it was enough to disturb her sleep patterns and stop the 4am wake. From the first night I woke her she didn't wake again at 4am (although obviously I'd had to drag myself out of bed at 3am so felt no better). After 3 nights I woke her at around midnight instead before I went to bed (still fine) and did that for a couple of nights, then moved it forward to my usual bedtime of 10.30pm / 11pm and she was still fine...... Amazing, I couldn't believe I'd been dragging myself out of bed for months when something this simple sorted the problem out in a matter of days. After a few weeks I stopped waking her altogether, although for months afterwards I would always wake her around 10.30pm if we were away from home as she had always been prone to waking when we stayed with other people - and that seemed to sort that out too. Read up on the process a bit and give it a try maybe??

somethinganything Fri 06-Nov-09 18:25:46

Sorry ladies - had a mad few days for one reason or another and only just got back to the thread I started.

Many thanks for all your advice. She slept through last night smile and the night before she woke at 10pm (only 2 hrs after bed time) had a cup of milk, teeth clean and then slept through until 5.55 before asking for milk, which I gave her in a bottle in her cot (logic being that she'd be up soon and have her teeth cleaned then), then she went back to sleep for an hour and a half, which was brilliant cos I had a really long day ahead. So maybe the problem is resolving itself but I'm wary of complacency and we've had a few months of disturbed nights so I'm not convinced two good nights mean anything.

And having read all your posts I may rethink the strategy and try water/cuddles/resettling. Trouble is she's quite specific about exactly what it is she wants and in the past milk has been the only thing to get her back to sleep. Is there any point watering down the milk gradually until it's just milky water and then water? Or should I go cold turkey?!

Nelly that's fascinating about the wake-to-sleep technique - if it carries on being a problem I'll definitely try that although the time that she wakes up has been really erratic up until now.

andgodcreatedwoman hope you've found something useful on the thread and that your prob resolves itself soon

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