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Thread: Why is his settling to sleep at night and day different???

  1. #1

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    Default Why is his settling to sleep at night and day different???

    DS Blake is still causing me grief in the sleep department.

    He's been doing really well for the last couple of days going down for his daytime naps. I put him into bed awake and he talks for a while and then puts himself to sleep.

    The problem is at night time. I'm putting him into bed awake at his bedtime, and he's lying there crying and complaining - not talking like daytime - and can't get himself to sleep.

    I can't work out why. Routine is the same. Any suggestions?????

    He also has problems settling himself back to sleep overnight and I'm forever getting up to him... like about half a dozen times a night. Any suggestions on this one?

    I'd like to say I'm 'responding to his needs and gently conforting him back to sleep' but I'm so lacking in the sleep department from constantly getting up and spending up to an hour at least once a night 'comforting' him that I'm getting to the end of my ability to cope.

    I'm prefer not to have to take him to 'sleep school' to overcome this, but I'm getting short of options.



    Help!

  2. #2
    Melinda Guest

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    Oh Rachel, you poor sausage.

    When I read the first part, about him going down well during the day and talking himself to sleep, I was so pleased!!

    About the night time sleep....do you have an evening 'routine', e.g. bath, feed, bed etc? We found doing Jacob's final feed for the day in his room, by the light of the baby monitor was nice and soothing - the room was dark, and warm and he was having a nice warm drink. That's not something we have done for his day time sleeps, so I think that helped him understand that his big sleep was ahead. Do you think he knows that it's time for his big sleep? What time is he going to sleep during the day and for how long, and what time is he going down of an evening? Is it possible he's not quite tired enough yet? Perhaps he needs some wind down time....something to relax him prior to that big sleep? A nice warm relaxing bath, perhaps a massage, followed by a nice long feed in a dark warm room might be the trick? Feel free to tell me to shut my pie hole whenever you like BTW, just tossing ideas around, ok? LOL

    Is it possile that he's a bit scared of the dark? Have you tried leaving a light on for him perhaps? Have you tried a comfort toy for him maybe?

    I know how hard it is when you feel like you're spending forever getting up to them to settle them during the night. Trust me, I've been there and I hear you on the sleep deprivation! We were up to Jacob some 12 times a night (yep, you heard right!) most nights of the week. It was exhausting - for us, and him.

    But I must say that persisting with the settling techniques that he seemed to respond to, really helped over time. I won't lie - it took a long time and I cried many tears out of tiredness and frustration, but he is much more confident in going to sleep now (and as a whole I believe) as he knows we've been there for him. We tried really hard to put in a place a routine for the evening and we followed it every night for him and he responded well to that - getting him to sleep wasn't the problem. It was keeping him asleep LOL!

    So as I said, we were in to him frequently during the night, patting, rocking etc. It's hard work, but it does pass. I think a lot of it seems to tie in with developmental milestones too and their little minds are so active with learning new things.

    Anyway, yet again, I've waffled on! Sorry!! Obviously sleep is an issue close to my heart! LOL

  3. #3
    Melinda Guest

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    I've just noticed that Blake is 6 months old - a prime time for sleep disturbances I believe! Jacob's problems with sleeping started at 6.5 months!

    Also, WRT sleep schools, we went to one here when Jacob was 9.5 months. It was a gentle sleep school - they didn't practice CC or anything like that. They really helped us to identify Jacob's tired signs and to follow those cues and to find ways of settling him and suggesting things to alter our evening routine etc etc. I found that it really helped in terms of us knowing/understanding Jacob a lot better and helped us feel confident that what we were doing (by responding to his cries rather than ignoring them) was the right thing to do.

    It wasn't the raging success you'd hope for (and that most people hope for!) in that he didn't miraculously start sleeping through every night, but it helped us to understand what we needed to do to help him. So after we came home, we felt more confident in terms of watching for those signs, acting on them, and then settling him again if he woke.

    We find that we still have weeks where his sleep is a bit feral, but the next week it will be great. But we have found that the same settling techniques that worked for him initially at the sleep school, still work for him now - but sometimes it just might take that bit longer for him to nod off. There are times when one of us would be with him for say 45 minutes patting/rocking/stroking - but those things did work for him.

    Whoops......waffling again! 8-[

  4. #4

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    Oh Mel, I'd never tell you to butt out. You're keeping me sane through this, I can assure you.

    Answering your questions... we have a routine to a degree, but with Blake being a 2nd child with a much older (8yo) sister she has plenty of activities that impact on a routine that takes effect every night. However that being said the late afternoon routine goes along the lines of a 4pm b/f, 5pm nap - if he misses this he's very messy and doesn't last the distance - wakes after 40mins, 6pm-ish solids, then play, pj's and bed with a last feed about 7.30/8pm. Bed time is always saying goodnight to the trees which he loves and an alligator toy on his window, blinds down, a cuddle on the chair in his room then a feed and a song. Sometimes he falls asleep during the feed and sometimes not.

    Most of his feeds during the day are in the chair in his room as he's so distracted feeding anywhere else in the house it's not worth the effort. I know they say they'll feed if they're really hungry anywhere, but I like to keep it simple.

    If he has an evening bath which he does every second night or so, he plays and gets very excited. I'm not sure if it relaxes him for bed or not to be honest!

    I generally have the night light on so he has some light in his room to feed by, and this stays on all night.

    His sleeps during the day are... 9.00 - 9.45am, 12.15ish - 2pm, 5.00-5.45pm. I don't really think he's getting too much sleep during the day. As I said above, he struggles to last through dinner if he doesn't have a 5pm catnap.

    He's doing well with his solids. He's on two meals a day, lunch and dinner and seems to be going well with them. He's probably ready to have breakfast too but I haven't got that far yet as I'm still trying to get my head around timing of that one - another long story as he wont have a b/f when he wakes and only has it about 9am when he goes down for his nap. Do I give him breakfast which will fill his tummy and perhaps reduce the amount he has for his b/f at 9am??? Anyway I'm digressing but please feel free to add your 2c here also!

    I've been online so long answering your post (with a phone call from my DD inbetween as she's having a sleepover with my mum tonight!) he woke after 40 minutes, cried out and settled himself without a fuss - one win to us!

    As I said before I don't really want to go to sleep school and do the control crying thing. I did do it with DD who had different problems that affected her sleeping and it worked a treat and she's been a great sleeper ever since. I think it's fairly harsh way of dealing with his sleep issues, but if I get too desperate I may just do this from home... who knows!

    Thanks for you support. It means a lot.
    xx

  5. #5

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    BTW WRT Sleep schools... what are they? What does WRT stand for? Will have to google I guess!

  6. #6
    Melinda Guest

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    Sleep cycles are around 40 - 45 minutes, so it sounds like Blake just woke up after one sleep cycle. But that's great that he put himself back to sleep!

    Quite often Jacob will cry out - and then stop again. It's not an established cry IYKWIM? It's just a bit of a call out and then he goes back to sleep. It took time for him to do this though - before that, he would break into an established cry pretty quickly. It seemed that it took a while for him to have confidence in himself to put himself back to sleep IYKWIM?

    Sounds fine to me what you're doing with feeding him in his room - if everywhere else distracts him and you find doing it in his room is the way to go, then go with that! Sounds like you're very switched on to what he needs!

    A lot of babies have a late arvo cat nap - so I wouldn't be too worried about that impacting upon things I don't think. If Blake needs it, then he needs it!

    I'm just wondering though......if he wakes at say 5.45pm, perhaps he's not all that tired by 7.30? That's only a couple of hours after he wakes from the cat nap?

    Is he displaying tired signs at all at bedtime in the evening?

    About the bath - Jacob will get excited in the bath too. He loves it and plays with his bath toys and has a blast. He loves that time. But it doesn't seem to impact on him going to sleep - he seems to associate it with the big sleep I think, together with the other things that we do.

    Do you think that it would be possible for you to give Blake a bath every evening to try and see if this works?? Would you be able to work that around your DD's activities? I know that must be tricky!

    About brekkie - if you think Blake is ready for some brekky, then go ahead and try that. I'd probably suggest letting him take what he wants from a feed at nap time - he'll have as much as he needs. If he's full from brekkie, he probably won't have as much, but then again he might surprise you and still have just as much as he normally would!

    Gosh I'm not sure if I've helped here at all.......

    Another thing to try.....perhaps some soothing music in his room? Perhaps you could try something like that for his night time sleep, or a comfort toy.....it might be something that helps lull him back to sleep.

  7. #7
    Melinda Guest

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    "WRT" = with regard to

    Sorry! 8-[ So when I said "Also, WRT sleep schools" I was responding to that part of your post LOL!!!

  8. #8
    Melinda Guest

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    I should also add that when I say "routine" I use the term fairly loosely. We don't clock-watch as such! Jacob seems to mostly get tired/hungry around the same times each day, but it all depends on when he wakes and how he's feeling on the day, so we're always guided by that.

    But his "sleep routine" always stays the same, i.e. each time we put him to bed (whatever time during the day that is) we always go through the same thing - he understands those sleep cues. Generally he goes to bed the same time every evening also - but again, it depends on the day. But every night, it's always dinner, play time, bath with DH or myself, dressed in his bedroom, bottle in his bedroom with a dim light and sitting by his cot, and then into bed. We always say to him "time for sleep, love you" each time he's put to bed too. And I LOVE saying that to him! I always think that way he knows it's time for sleep and always goes to sleep knowing we love him. But again, it's another sleep cue that he recognises. Our Jacob is a bit of a creature of habit like myself and he does seem to appreciate the predictability of these things IYKWIM? So this kind of 'relaxed routine' works well for us.

  9. #9

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    I love you Melinda.. Wanna come and live with us???

    Sorry I missed the WRT... sleeped deprived brain didn't pick up on that one!!! LOL

    Yeah, I'm pretty in touch with the sleep cycle thing so was expecting his call anyway. I snuck into his room to see how he went and was happy to see him dealing with it all on his own. Usually overnight he's not that good though

    OK, will try to add the bath and see how we go with that. It might be something he associates with the 'big sleep' routine. Only problem is DD has skating lessons on Wednesdays that finish at 6pm so we're not home until 6.15pm at the earliest. He doesn't get a nap that day either or gets one as soon as we're home and then his routine is all later. It's very hard to give him the time he needs exclusively and still spend time with DH, DD and still get to eat dinner myself! Swimming on Tuesdays doesn't finish until 5.30pm, home about 5.45pm at the earliest so two days out of seven will be @rse about, but I'm sure we can deal with it!

    Music... I've been thinking about that one too. Thought I might put a radio or a clock radio CD player in his room. Will look into that one!

    Comfort toy... Hadn't thought about it. He's not really into it from what I observe, but who's to say he wouldn't appreciate it. Will have to find something appropriate in his toy box as I think the bear I bought him from PPatch yesterday with it's cute little matching clothes might be a bit big for bed!

    Brekkie? I have no idea whether he needs it or not. I offer him boob when he wakes between 7/7.30, and he's not interested. I try some days around 8/815ish and he's still not interested but when he goes down about 9am he's got a strong almighty suck on him!!!

    Oh and the late cat nap, ready for bed about 7.30/8pm question... he's showing tired signs - yawning and eye rubbing - so I see him as ready. :-k

  10. #10

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    OMG Mel!!!

    I've obviously been on BB too long cause he just stirred again, but he did the same thing... cried out with his dummy still in his mouth and managed to settle himself.

    Perhaps I've been rushing in too quickly and he gets a whiff of Mummy smell and want to be awake! :-k

    Sending out positive vibe for a great night tonight!!!!

  11. #11
    Melinda Guest

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    LOL Rachel! Seriously, I'm no expert! Just tossing around some ideas and things that have worked with Jacob and things they suggested to us at the sleep school and things that we've also tried here (and things that perhaps didn't work!)........I know how hard it is when you're SO tired and desperately want a few hours of unbroken sleep, that's why I'm trying madly to come up with some ideas for you! Any help I can give you, I will!

    I understand it must be really hard when you've got to try and juggle things with your DD. I don't have that to contend with (yet!). I wish I had a magical solution that would tie in with the skating and swimming, I really do!

    About comfort toys - Jacob isn't really into soft toys or that kind of thing either (with the exception of a couple of things lately) but we put in a cot toy with a pull string thing on it and a mirror - didn't take him long to work out how to pull the string and get the music going himself. Sometimes during the day (and night) I will hear the music going, so I know he's woken up and fumbled around for it, and turned it on. So perhaps it's worth a go?

    And yep, yawning and eye rubbing sounds like a pretty good tired sign to me!

    Like I said before......it can also be a developmental thing and will pass. I know that's easy for me to say as I'm not the one going through it right now (well actually Jacob is having a bit of a feral sleep week-wise!) but it is pretty common for sleeping problems to surface at this age. It's damn hard work! So having said that, perhaps all of these ideas we've thrown around won't work at all and one day Blake's sleep will return to normal again LOL!?!

    Kelly has mentioned a book called "The Wonder Weeks" (I'm yet to get myself a copy) but from everything she has said about it, it's fantastic. It might be worth a look in?

  12. #12
    Melinda Guest

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    Aaaah....that can be something too, that he is smelling the milk if you go in to settle and he's thinking it's time to feed!

    I found it took me quite a while to know the difference between a bit of a call out and a proper cry. One of us would always go darting into Jacob the minute we heard a skerrick from him - I think partially because we wanted to make sure he had his dummy, was under the blankies etc and wanted to prevent it from getting to an established cry! So I think that to a degree, perhaps we made the problem worse ourselves? I'm not sure... :-k

    So we will leave him now if he has a bit of a call out/yell and just wait to see what happens. If he breaks into a proper cry then we'll go in, otherwise we leave him to his own devices. Quite frequently over the past couple of months he will wake in the middle of the night and chat to himself - and I mean have a full conversation with himself LOL. The other night he was up for 3 hours which was a bit demanding as it meant we were all awake (not that we had to do anything, it just kept us awake!). But at least he has that confidence to put himself back to sleep or if he cries he knows we'll come.

    YAY for Blake nodding off again after waking. I hope this is a good sign for you!!!

  13. #13

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    I've been on the lookout for The Wonder Weeks myself as everyone is saying good things about it.

    Sending sleepy vibes to Jacob too.

    I so appreciate all your suggestions.

    Oh I must have spoken too early.. Blake's making noises again. Will go have a peek as they are sounding a little unsettled and don't want it to blow out into an all out cry!

  14. #14
    Melinda Guest

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    Oh bum Rachel! I was hoping you were in for a little break tonight!

    Can I ask, when you go in to try and settle him, what do you do?

    Jacob likes to be rocked/patted. We will roll him onto his side (and make sure he's all snuggly and warm with his blankets etc - he prefers to be on the warmer side most of the time), and then put one hand on his shoulder, the other on his bottom/thigh and rock him gently and pat him on the bottom/thigh at the same time (or alternate between the two). This seems to really calm him. The rocking/patting is kind of rhythmical I guess and having our hands on him is reassuring. He also has his dummy. Stroking his forehead/face is also good I've found.

    If he's not starting to settle and seems to be really distressed, then I'll get him out of the cot and do similar sorts of things, but whilst cuddling him too, nice and snug, just so he has that extra reassurance (and I must say I don't mind doing this as I love sneaking in an extra cuddle with my baby!)

  15. #15

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    I managed to settle him quite quickly and he's back asleep again. Fingers crossed he settles himself for the rest of the night.

    Usually I go and and hold his hand. He really loves this and hold it close to his face to get a good calming dose of mummy smell. I sometime stroke his forehead if he needs it, sometimes I settle his other arm back down to the bed to stop it from waving about.

    If he doesn't settle with the above and is very unsettled I will pick him up to give him a reassuring cuddle and a pat on the back to make sure it's not wind - sometimes if he's fallen asleep during his last feed it's impossible to get a burp out of him. When he's happy and calm in my arms and heading back towards sleep, I put him back in bed so he's falling asleep where he should.

  16. #16

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    We did CC @ sleep school with DD 8 years ago, and as I told Mel, it DID work. However I guess I'm hoping for a gentler option this time around.

    Please please please if you see a copy of the Wonder Weeks. I'd love one and will cover all expenses, thank you Kate.

    Blake was sleeping well until about 12/13 weeks when he started teething IMO, and it's stuffed his sleep patterns ever since. - He cut two teeth btwn 17-21 Dec so hopefully that's it for a little while!

    I'm off to bed now cause I have no idea when I'll be up next! Hopefully about 6/7am! IN MY DREAMS!!!

  17. #17

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    Morning all,

    Well we had an OK sorta night. Blake was very unsettled between 10.30pm and midnight, so at midnight I suggested to DH that we try co-sleeping. Well it worked ok until 4am when he started to stir - kicking his legs up and down like he does in his own bed if he's not well tucked in.

    Tried settling him with us, holding his hand etc but to no avail. Decided to get him up, feed him and put him to bed in his room. He didn't want a feed, was too busy looking at his mobiles etc - reacquianting himself with his room I guess - and he was yawning, so I put him into his bed and left him there. Went back to bed and listened to him talking for about 5 minutes and went in to plug him. Held his hand, gave his forehead a stroke and he was on his way to sleep. Left him to his own devices.

    He woke at 8.30 this morning, so I've had 4 + 4 hours unbroken sleep. Woo Hoo.

    I don't think this is how I want to do it every night, but my head doesn't feel so foggy as it does most mornings. And he is learning to settle himself to a degree.

    Let's see how tonight goes!!!

    Kate, I am going to ask my cousin in the UK is she can get a copy for me. She can either mail it or bring it with her in March when she comes to visit

    Blake turned 27 weeks on Thursday so the past week of his crappy sleeping could be due to that wonder week. What was supposed to happen? Can you tell me? He's also got a bit of a snuffle so I put the vapouriser in his room last night. Not sure if it helped (mind you he was in with us for 4 hours)

  18. #18

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    Mel, just thought I'd bring you up to date. Saturday night was terrible but we went out for dinner at our friends place and although Blake had a nap there, he was disrupted the rest of the night at home

    Anyway, yesterday I pulled out of the filing cabinet the routine they wrote up for Viv at the sleep school we went to 8 years ago. As my kids are born a day (and 8 years) apart, they are identical ages and stages of development, so that helps.

    What they suggested is similar to what we were doing although we have LESS b/feed, and I'm wondering if this is the problem. So, last night Blake went to bed at 7.30 as usual - with a bath with his sister and lots of playing, and of course a bed time b/f. He took at while to settle and stirred about 9pm and wouldn't go back to sleep. So I decided to give him a rollover feed. The s/school routine suggestd 9.30/9.45pm but seeing he was unsettled at 9pm I thought it couldn't hurt. I gave him a bottle of formula as I didn't have much milk, and I was interested to see how much he'd take. (200mls)

    Well I went to bed at 10.30pm and he started to make a little noise as he hadn't got his dummy. I gave it to him and didn't hear a peep until 5.30am!!!!!

    I got up and gave him a feed as he never feeds when he wakes for the day so I though I better give him some milk as I wasn't going to give him a feed to go down with at 9am, he'd have to wait until 11am or when he woke.

    Well I woke him at 7.20am cause that's when I woke, he's had breakfast at 8.15am and was back in bed by 9am, played and got himself to sleep by 9.30am.

    I'll stick to this routine for a few days and see how we go. Perhaps my boy is just hungry??? Even though the LC I saw said to demand feed him, I'd rather have more of a routine to ensure he gets enough in during the day so he's not wanting to be fed overnight.

    Here's to hoping!!!

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