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4 week old wakeful during Night ... How to change it ?

(23 Posts)
lovinit Sat 23-Jul-05 01:34:16

DD2 is BF and is at the moment waking at around 3am for a feed and then seems to become very awake and alert and will not settle back to sleep by herself (she cries to be picked up ) and therefore ends up hanging onto my boob for god knows how long until I wake and take her off which is usually an hour or more later.

I know that it is not ideal. I tried the dummy last night but it kept falling out . I do not want it to be "awake"time obviously but what can I do ? Should I let her cry ?

It is very hard to keep her awake during the day , But her eyes do stay open for abt 4 hours or so during the day, but she sleeps like a log rest of time.

Any ideas ??? I am beginning to dread the nights .

How many hours sleep did your ones have at this age ?

Tipex Sat 23-Jul-05 16:54:21

Hiya lovinit, I'm a bad person to answer in many ways as DS not a brilliant sleeper, altho alot better the last 2weeks (hes 5m) but until anyone better comes along I'll try and answer!
At 4w DS used to have a mega night feed (or 2!!), took maybe 40mins and if I tried to settle him before hed finish hed be wide awake. Personally I dont like leaving him to cry so used to let him have the full feed and I tried to stay awake so could gauge when hed finish and get him back in cot. I do remember he had a phase for maybe 2-3 weeks where he seemed to become wide awake in the night after a feed and liked you I dreaded it. however, it stopped on its own so dont give up hope. During that time I fed him lying down so that we could both fall asleep but understand this may not be ideal for you. I didnt carry on doing that tho as I dont sleep well if co sleeping. Would your LO drop off if you do a bit of rocking after the feed?
I do sympathise tho with bad night. Sending a good nights sleep your way! xx

spidermama Sat 23-Jul-05 16:56:41

I would feed as much as she wants because she's taking what she needs. It's really tough at first I know, but she has to build up your supply. If you let her, things should settle down a little in a couple of weeks.

That said, my 6 month old still wakes up for a feed 2-3 times in the night but he's in bed with us so it's no effort to give him a quick suck.

Mirage Sat 23-Jul-05 20:34:48

We've just been through this Lovinit,dd2 is 9 wks now & has only recently stayed awake longer in the day.The 3am feed was the tricky one for us too,she would be very hard to settle afterwards.We tried a dummy for a while,but can't say it helped much.I think it is just one of those things that they grow out of.One thing that improved our situation was fitting blackout blinds.I noticed that by the time she finished her feed it was starting to get light & that may have had something to do with it.We also did the 'no talking,playing' ect during night feeds,to help her learn the difference between day & night.I have read that taking a baby out for a walk in the afternoon can help with sleeping at night,possibly the fresh air helps?

Hang on in there,it will happen & perhaps sooner than you think.DD2 astounded us by sleeping nearly 9 hours solid last night,after waking 3 times the night before.Hopefully it will continue.

rickman Sat 23-Jul-05 20:50:23

Message withdrawn

lovinit Sun 24-Jul-05 05:01:54

Mirage, that is encouraging for you ! fingers crossed for you tonight.

DD2 has now been alseep for most of the morning and woke and I fed her every 2 hours from 8am onwards ... I usually try and wake her for at least an hour between feeds but for sake of an easy life this am with hubby around, I let her doze off again ... I wonder how this will impact her night sleep !

I find that during the day, she can pretty much sleep all day if encouraged !

Tipex Sun 24-Jul-05 09:33:41

lovinit, some babies do have their day/night cycle mixed up and it may be your little one does. I have read that this usually rights itself by 6 weeks. I think its Ferber who says in actual fact it suggests the child is inherently a good sleeper as they can sleep all day but they just need to swop and learn to do it at night! Again, the advice is to keep lights low/no chat/play etc at night and to get bright sunshine a few times during the day if possible (this is the UK!!). Goodluck with geting some more sleep soon xx

Pollyanna Sun 24-Jul-05 09:54:34

I agree with Spidermama - let her feed as much as she wants. She is so young that things should settle down soon.

Also I found it helpful to follow the babywhisperer's advice, and not let my baby sleep for more than 3 hour stretches during the day - then they start to get the idea of sleeping at night as opposed to the day. (my baby, now 6 months, was similar to yours, but she didn't go to sleep until 1am and then slept all morning).

Roobie Sun 24-Jul-05 10:02:31

Hi Lovinit - your baby's behaviour is very normal. My ds is now 12 weeks (he is bf'd too) but his pattern was exactly the same up until he reached the 6 week mark. He would have a very alert 3am feed and then take ages to settle afterwards (windy and fretful). When he was 6 weeks the night feeds were getting much shorter and he was falling asleep straight after and now he is sleeping through the night. So I am sure things will get better!

lovinit Mon 25-Jul-05 02:31:35

I am now having the problem of her waking at 5am and between then till morning she constantly wakes up. I know that this is when they come into light sleep, but she wakes looking to suck even though it has only been 30mins - 1hr after her last feed.

This am I resorted to lying next her with a dummy which I had to constantly put back in. How long does this last for in your experience and what can you do to help her settle back to sleep ? I am trying patting and shhing and also now the Crying down method for her daytime naps

larlylou Mon 25-Jul-05 22:56:27

I'm hoping you can help me too! I have a dd2 who is 3 weeks. At times she will happily sleep in her crib but generally it is an absolute chore getting her into her crib without her first falling asleep on us and then transferring her when she is fully settled and sound asleep. At the moment she is constantly feeding off me (every hour tonight since 6pm and she has only just drifted off to sleep on dh's shoulder...definitely overtiredness there too!). I am worried I am not producing good enough milk for her at night time as she is happy to latch on but when my boob becomes 'soft' she can't/won't latch on to it again so I worry that she isn't getting a satisfactory feed to keep her going through the night hence the need to wake shortly after for more feed (plus she suffers from bad wind and wakes herself up trying to push out wind/pooh). She also has her days mixed up and sleeps for Britain during the day and at night has long, very long periods of awake time. I don't want to leave her to cry to settle especially as I am worried about disturbing ds1 but unless she is permanently attached to either my boob or chest (to sleep), I don't know what else to do. Any suggestions would be hugely helpful.

Ellieo Tue 26-Jul-05 12:12:05

I'm in the same boat too. My DS is nearly 5 weeks and wakes three or four times a night to feed. Last night after his 3am feed he was wide awake and it took two hours of winding, feeding and rocking to settle him back down again. People keep saying it gets better after 6 weeks, but he's only a week away from that now and doesn't seem to show any signs of improvement. He also catnaps a lot during the day, but never really long enough for me to catch up on my sleep. Please tell me it gets better - and soon as I'm starting to despair of ever getting a good night's sleep again!

starlover Tue 26-Jul-05 12:15:02

i don't think you can change it. at that age they WILL wake at night... they're suposed to!

your baby has only been in the world for a few weeks...and before that they were inside you, safe and warm...
is it such a surprise that they want to be cuddled and held and close to you? it's just their way of saying that they need you and that they want to feel safe and secure!

it isn't great news if you want a good nights sleep... but it's perfectly normal for a 3/4/5 week old baby!

lovinit Tue 26-Jul-05 12:44:29

Ellieo and LL, I so understand what you are going through ... Even thought this is number 2 for me, I seem to be no wiser except that I am consumed by a determination not to do what I considered were the wrong things with No.1. and that was to rock her to sleep for every nap . I was going to say feed her to sleep too, but that I remember she did grow out of. They are very young, but I am such a firm believer that habits are easy to pick up and that it is important to not continue to do what you do not intend to do for the next few months.

I am almost hoping away this time until things do settle as everyone says it will, although I cannot see this happening ... I simply feel too stressed and tired to enjoy DD2 and I feel terrrible for it. I am finding that I am also not enjoing DD1 either becasue she is so clingy and misbehaves and complains so much now that she is not the centre of attention !

Starlover, I knwo that they are supposed to wake up for feeding , but my DD2 cannot seem to stay asleep from about 5am onwards and I need to keep a constant vigil to reassure her back to sleep (trying not to feed again) till DD1 wakes up or DH goes to work at 6:30am ... I just do not understand why this 5am witching hour seems to exisit with my babies !

shuteye Tue 26-Jul-05 12:59:26

I don't know if this will help but my husband made me write down all feed times and sleep times and then he put them on a spreadsheet so we could see over the 1st eight weeks how ds had begun to settle into a routine. I am afraid we were very strict with ourselves too and did not give in to demand feeding. We started with 3 hrly feeds and just kept trying to get him to go 3 1/2 and then 4 hourly, even though this often meant carrying him around to stop him crying for 10 mins or so. We also used the Gina Ford method when it comes to sleep. If they cry leave them for no longer than 20 minutes, it is the longest and hardest 20 minutes ever but belive me it works, they either cry themselves to sleep or they wear themselves out enough so that when you go in after the 20 mins they settle quickly. If they don't then you can guess there is probably a serious bit of wind trapped - infacol soon sorts that out too. My ds dropped his night feed at 8 weeks and has slept 12 hrs a night since 3mths old, he is now 9 mths and doing well. hope this helps.

lovinit Wed 27-Jul-05 00:42:36

Shuteye, what age did u start to let her cry ?

larlylou Wed 27-Jul-05 20:41:19

Shuteye....at what age was your ds when you started to leave him to cry and did you do it for 20 minutes. My heart strings are tugging after about 3 minutes...maybe this is where I am going wrong?

Flossam Wed 27-Jul-05 20:43:52

sorry, you let a 8 week old cry for 20 minutes?

Twiglett Wed 27-Jul-05 20:56:14

just ride it out .. it will settle down on its own

when you feed her at 3am lie down in the dark with her

HTH

shuteye Thu 28-Jul-05 09:01:09

Some of you obviously think that leaving a baby for 20 mins is awful but I can say that we had tried everything, it was the last resort. ds cried for 17 mins the 1st time and then fell asleep, my dh and I were holding hands the whole time but didn't know what else to do and that is what was in the contented baby book by Gina Ford. This was at 1 week old. Please don't forget that it is good for babies to cry on occasion and this was NOT something that happened every night!! However it has stood us in good stead and we now have a baby who has slept through the night for 12 hours since he was 3mths.

Flossam Thu 28-Jul-05 09:39:11

Sorry but IMO sleepless nights are part of the deal when having a baby. CC may be of help with older children but new born babies have no understanding of the world and it shocks me that sleep is of so much importance that you would rather leave your newly born baby to cry to sleep. Glad it worked for you but I couldn't do that.

wendywoos Thu 28-Jul-05 10:16:49

Hi, I too am probebly not a great adviser, my daughter is almost 19 months and has never slept through!
What I would say is, babies when in the womb have their own sleep routine, most are active at night, then sleep during the day due to you moving around a lot and lulling them to sleep.
Your baby is probebly just trying to find which way round the day goes.
Try and stimulate your baby lots during the day, keep the house bright, lots of noise and action, and feed as much as possible.
Then in the evening a really good routine. Start with bath about an hour before bed, quiet house, soft voices, no loud television, sit and gentle cuddles on the sofa, followed by big breast feed before bed. I good routine from the start is where I went wrong, im sure. I should have stayed firm from the beginning.
Do bare in mind they only stay small for a little while, and when your son wakes during the night and wants to stay up, just except the situation for what it it, and enjoy it. Maybe get up with him, make your self a nice hot drink, sit in front of the tv. But keep light off, tv volume down to a minimum, so baby soon realsies the difference between night and day. xxxx

alux Thu 28-Jul-05 10:44:28

to add to wendy woos: as little eye contact as possible at night as that is a true waker-upper.

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