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Thread: Suggestions Please

  1. #1
    Melinda Guest

    Question Suggestions Please

    We need some help to try and counteract Jacob's latest sleeping problem - 5 am wake ups.

    He won't go to sleep on his own at night either - he will cry and cry and scream the house down if we leave the room, so we are spending an hour (or more) settling him for sleep each and every night which is taking it out of us (believe me, we have tried everything in the book). Then, if he wakes up at all during the night, he won't be resettled for maybe 1 - 2 hours (sometimes longer). It doesn't matter if you get into his bed, or move him into ours, the same thing happens. He will just stay awake. Again, you can't leave him in his room because he will cry and scream if you do (hence why we get into bed with him or bring him in with us so we can attempt to sleep - mind you, we never do!).

    Even with this kind of waking during the night, he will then wake at 5 am. If he sleeps through the night, he will wake at 5 am. He will NOT be resettled for sleep regardless of where he is - he is wide awake and seriously cranky if he is left alone.



    So, at best, he is getting 8 - 8.5 hours of sleep per night and this is happening regularly ATM (maybe one or two nights where he sleeps longer). I know that for some babies/children, this is enough, but it isn't for Jacob. He gets extremely irritable from the resulting tiredness. To be happy and contented, Jacob needs around 10 hours sleep overnight, plus a day time sleep of at least one hour. The dramatic change in his behaviour on the days where he has this amount of sleep is amazing - he is much happier (as are we!).

    DH and I are on average, having around 4 - 5 hours sleep as a result, if we are lucky.

    Any suggestions? We're both at the end of our rag.....

    I'm wondering if he is a bit stressed. I have a number of health concerns ATM (I won't go into details here) so am thinking he is picking up on that? He has otherwise adapted extremely well to Ruby's arrival (very loving and caring with her) so I'm not sure it's related to that.

  2. #2

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    Big hugs for you Mel - We are going through this too at the moment, and its enough to send anyone spare!! Shane just ends up sleeping in the spare Q bed with her - she settles faily quickly, but I'm still worried about the amount of sleep she is getting. Like Jacob she needs to really recharge her batteries, and if she does she is clumsy and cranky, and just unpleasant for everyone!!

    This morning she did it from 4:30-5:30 (when Shane got up to go fishing) and then proceeded to scream at me for another30mins. I changed her nappy (she wanted me to) gave her some milk, and then we cuddled in bed with a bikky. By about 6:10 she was sound asleep where she stayed til 7:15am. SO that was nice - normally once the birdies are chirping thats it, but not today

    So you could maybe try the whole feeding and refreshing thing at 5am?

    I would suggest that even though he is nice with Ruby, there is every chance he is regressing somewhat with the new upheavals. Its pretty well known that this will happen, so I think that the fact he is being so good with Ruby is a bonus, and the bad side of things is coming out in his sleep.

    Have you tried getting him some fresh air before bed? Like making a wqalk around the block a nightly ritual?

    I dont have anything else other than that. Liek I say - I am dreading the sleep deprivation that will come my way in a few weeks time. It will be AWFUL!!!
    Hope you are OK.

  3. #3

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    Mel *hugs* we were waking up at 4.30-5am for 3 weeks there a while ago, only the last week have we been getting up at 5.30-6am which is a bit more reasonable. And like Jacob, Matilda was taking over an hour to get to sleep at night which meant she slept less, and was cranky most of the day afterwards.

    I started introducing a morning "rest" to help me get through the cranky day. I would give her some Brauer's calm & put on a movie. Something like Cars and just let her watch TV for an hour so I could sit & she could rest. If she wouldn't sit still I would tell her she had to sit in her room & read some books for a while for quiet time as she hadn't slept enough. Sometimes it worked and sometimes it didn't. We definately had increased tantrums & cranky spells... and a new occurance here...whinging.

    We just kept putting her to bed earlier & earlier to get her used to going to sleep at the right time, some nights she would be in bed at 6.15pm!! and then she would fall asleep at 7.30pm which is the usual bed time anyway. She's only started sleeping a bit longer in the mornings because its been overcast here the past week, but I'm hoping it becomes a better pattern.

    I have been taking walks with her & DH in the afternoons to make her sit still for a while & have a quiet down time & so that I can try to trigger this baby into coming!!! LOL...

  4. #4

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    You may have already tried this Mel, but have you changed his room around? Maybe a change of 'scenery' might do the trick and make it a place that he wants to be in kwim? I know you have tried every possible solution, so I really don't know what else I can suggest that would be different.

  5. #5
    Melinda Guest

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    LOL Christy - Jacob likes the Cars DVD too and I've given him some Brauer's Calm today!

    I might try giving him a drink or something Fi - he doesn't appear to want anything (doesn't even ask for brekkie until he's been up a while and we deliberately don't serve it until he asks otherwise it can result in it being tossed onto the floor! We figure if he asks for food, he is definitely hungry and less inclined to play silly buggers with it!). The sleep deprivation is a shocker here ATM, and you are right in that it could be due to Ruby's arrival that he is regressing in this area - after all, it's always been a very big issue for him and developmental milestones have always disrupted his sleep, so it kind of stands to reason that he's all stuffed with it ATM. Add to that the stress he is probably picking up from me....perhaps some extra blast-around playtime after dinner or late arvo in the backyard might be the way to go too.

    Caro - we put Jacob to bed whenever tired signs become evident (likewise during the day which seems to be around 5 hours after waking for the day). We have our evening ritual which consists of bath with one of us, into jarmies, quiet play and then to bed for two bedtime stories, then lights out with sleepy words and we've been trialling a night light/music again recently as he likes having his little light and music on for his daytime sleep.

  6. #6
    Melinda Guest

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    Sherie - he is really enthusiastic about getting into bed. He gets excited about going to bed and getting to cuddle up with Pooh Bear, have his stories and music! It's never a problem actually getting him into bed - it's just settling him once he's in there IYKWIM?

  7. #7
    spreckemily Guest

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    Mel,

    Have you tried one of those soother music machines that have the different sounds?? If you would like to try that I have one you can borrow. Sorry I can't be of more help, we were lucky with Emmy.

    Love

    Beck

  8. #8

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    Unfortunately some of our babies haven't read the manual LOL.... Matilda & Jacob have been sleep fighters from birth and I think thats the biggest stress isn't it Mel? Just that you know that your child is tired & needs sleep but you spend hours daily trying to get them to settle & sleep. Matilda atm is sleeping around 8-9 hours at night & 2 hours during the day. I was stressing about it but my Triple P councellor said to me "why?" If her behaviour is affected, okay... if not... don't. She is going to be an adult who survives on 6 hours sleep a night rather than 8. I think the worst is when they jump into bed & 2 hours later they are still up. I know that gets me very very cranky...

  9. #9

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    My baby read the manual - she just sped read it though and I think skimmed the important bits that make mummies happy. She is usually brilliant at going down, but terrible for her early morning wakeups!

    I just thought of this Mel - how is his temperature of the room? "They" say that the 5am wakeups are often because thats the part of the morning where the temp drops. So perhaps he's kicking his covers off with the heat of the night, and then not getting them back on again in the cold part of the morning?
    Probably a crock, but everything is worth a try at this point.

    The other thing I saw not long ago was a clock that you set next to the bed. It has an alarm built into it so you can say to your child - when the clock does "this" or rings or something, you can get up. I'm not sure developmentally what age its suited for, but I reckon it sounds like a good toy for a kid who has trouble with early morning up-time. It might be a bit old for Jacob and Matilda yet.

    I bought a couple of crystals at the market this morning.... They are supposed to help with anxiety. I'm hoping it will stave off my fears of how bad everything is going to be in a few weeks!!!! ARGHHHHHHH

  10. #10

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    LOL Fi!! We live near a train station, & often we tell Matilda, next train & you can get up... so the next train she runs into our room yelling "WAKE UP MUMMY!!! TRAIN!" Sometimes she does it before we can tell her to go back to bed & wait for the next train, so she sometimes comes running in at 5am yelling it... Train!!!! Hopefully we can get a clock & some stickers to show when she can get up.

  11. #11

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    Fi, that sounds similar to the clock I saw the other day on bump to 3... or whatever it's called now? It's a little bunny clock and the parents set the wake up time so that when it's time to get up the bunny opens it's eyes. You tell the kids they have to stay in bed until the bunny wakes up LOL!

  12. #12

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    Thats the one Angel. I reckon its a beauty! Definitly one for early wakers, but maybe the trains work just as well. Or maybe not huh christy??

  13. #13
    Melinda Guest

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    Quote Originally Posted by christy View Post
    you know that your child is tired & needs sleep but you spend hours daily trying to get them to settle & sleep.
    Exactly Christy! It's so hard when they are miserable and grotty, all because they haven't had enough sleep. Every little one is so different in what they need and Jacob definitely needs more than he is getting right now.

    Quote Originally Posted by christy View Post
    I think the worst is when they jump into bed & 2 hours later they are still up. I know that gets me very very cranky...
    Exactly again, Christy!!

    Caro - Jacob is nearly 2 years and 3 months and definitely skipped the manual on sleep

    Fi & Angel - I've seen the Bunny Clock in a catalogue recently, and whilst it's a good idea, I think the fact that when he wakes, he is getting upset at being on his own in there, would mean that it may not work. If he was happy in there, then I'd invest in it because I'm sure he would understand it once we explained it and demonstrated it....(maybe?!)

  14. #14
    Melinda Guest

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    Oh and the temperature of his room is fine - we've always made sure of that (he has a panel heater in his room which we use on cold nights to make sure he is warm enough). Definitely something in that one Fi and is worth checking out because in the past he has been on the cooler side and not liked it one bit - he much prefers to be on the warmer side for sleep....

  15. #15
    CaughtGypsy Guest

    Unhappy

    I am in a similar place. We are using a lte night bottle of milk to stave off the 2am wake up. It is getting him through to 6ish most mornings. We can get it into him without him waking too much. If we forget it is a 4 or 5am wake up. BTW - Nemo is our vid of choice LOL...

  16. #16

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    Yep Mel - thats why I thought it might not be right for Jacob yet. Its more for the same child when he gets over the hurdle of being awake, and is just plain too excited to get on with the day that mum and dad HAVE to be woken up Maybe Jacob will gradaute to that in a couple of months/years, but here's hoping that he just gets over the whole thing!
    Jenna gets really upset too at the moment. I will leave her when I hear her awake, but as soon as she starts saying "daddy, daddy, daddy" we know that there is no way she will go back to sleep.

  17. #17
    Melinda Guest

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    Thanks Caro, but we've worked out what room temperature suits Jacob best (there is a temperature gauge in his room) and it's much warmer than what both DH and I would prefer to sleep in ourselves, but that's what Jacob likes, so I think we can rule that one out for now, but it has definitely been something that cropped up in the past as disturbing him (as it would if you were cold!). Sleeping bags are something we have tried previously too.

    I can honestly say we have tried every strategy we can think of and that includes putting him to bed at 7 - 7.30 but if he fights the sleep that whole time then there's not much I can do about it IYKWIM?

  18. #18
    Melinda Guest

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    Absolutely Fi - and I'll keep it in mind that's for sure (it definitely caught my eye as a nifty gadget when I saw it in the catalogue!)

    I've thought about using a star chart so he gets a treat or something special for having a good sleep but I mean how on earth do I really explain that to him in a way that will make sense......I mean, if he's frightened or needing comfort then star charts won't really cut the mustard will they......

    I just wish I could pinpoint what was going on.....

    Oh and Beck, yep I've tried a soothing toy that plays lights/music etc but he ends up getting crapped off with it LOL!!

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