View Full Version : Cat Napper
Hi all. I have a 4mth old and we had been having problems with him putting on weight so I had to start feeding him 2 hourly for awhile. Now I top him up with formula so it is not as much of an issue to feed so often unless he wants to. Because of the frequent feeding he got into a bad daytime habit with only sleeping 20-60min at a time (60min is a very good sleep and may happen once a day) I would not worry but he wakes up after 30/40min and is happy and won't go back to sleep but within 30-60min he is cranky and tired again. How do I get him to sleep longer? Other problem is that our place is 2 story and downstairs is one big open area so he is not in a seperate room when he goes to sleep. I have got him to go back to sleep a couple of times but only by picking him up and rocking him. That does not always work. He is always a restless sleeper and at night has been going maybe 5 hrs between feeds but I have to put the dummy back in at least 4/5 times. My sister suggested just leaving him a little and letting him learn to put his own dummy in but at the moment we are still wrapping. I thought it was not till 8mths that he would be getting to the stage of being able to do that. I hate the thought of letting him cry at all. Is he too young?
At 4 months he's probably too young to find the dummy on his own. He might occassionally get lucky. Some mums abandon the dummy at this point as being more trouble than they're worth. It's up to you.
there are a lot of methods for settling, with seemingly infinite variations. The only one worthwhile is whatever happens to work for you - it's partly trial and error. But when you pick a method it can be best to stick with it for at least a few days to a week before trying another so that bub has a chance to learn it. General concensus seems to be that controlled crying really shouldn't be tried until around 6 months, tho maybe some mums have had success with it earlier.
I used patting & singing (droning really) to help Chloe settle and learn to self-settle. If you can get to bub just before that 30-40 min where they surface out of deep sleep, the point where they are prone to waking, and re-settle them straight away with minimum disturbance, it may help them get into the habit of doing it on their own. It might be that you just need to tighten the wrap, do a few pats, or have your hand on his shoulder to comfort him.
Maybe look into getting a folding screen that you can set up between bub's cot and the larger room. Easy for you to peek in on him but he won't see you if he wakes.
My son was the same, 30mins sleep cycles for so long...then we finally moved into our own place (were with in-laws as we moved states) and then I was able to de-stress and find our own routine. I was successful but it happened in stages, as in firstly I would come back just before I figured he would rouse and pop the dummy back in or pat, sometimes it worked others not, then I found if I stayed with him that when we roused he would feel me there and continue to sleep on, then finally I would get up just as he was nodding off and now he continues to sleep - but max 1.5hrs so two maybe three sleep cycles (depending on which book you re Ie 30 mins or 45 mins sleep cycles). We sometimes breastfeed to sleep which by far is the easiest, or the dummy. In time he naturally uses the dummy less which is comforting because I know he doesn’t NEED it. So between 4/5 mths to 7/8 mths hes been getting three sleeps a day. The middle sleep was only a cat nap which I didn’t mind because it would be phased out eventually. Now he has two solids naps. But this can fluctuate depending on how tired he is, if I’m out he may sleep in the car, or only happen to have two sleeps. It’s flexible. I think the lesson for me was that it was empowering that I managed to work WITH Jesse to achieve him sleeping longer so I am only NOW able to relax about it. It’s incredibly difficult trying to fit the baby to the mold…and unrealistic. Something I have come to realise is that they are as individual as we are. I continue to put myself in his shoes... As in what would it be like for me to wake and not find mummy there, or be hungry and not fed, or not tired and be made to continue to sleep. Oh I should add that if Jesse is mucking about and wont settle and quieten down to sleep I just get him up again until he starts to fuss and then we repeat. I think it’s more stressful to stay there and build a negative sleep association for you both – one you equally come to dread. Every baby is different but I think if you adopt "the world from their eyes" approach it helps you understand and perhaps accept them for their little idiosyncrasies. Not much comfort when you are totally exhausted and believe me I have daily moments if not hourly sometimes but you manage to find the strength to go on.
Jesse was also a restless sleeper (I called him the thrasher, and he would fight to stay awake too). I put it down to that Jesse is easily stimulated and excited. This may be whats happening with you and your son in that its one room and too much happening to interest him so he wakes… I would try putting him down elsewhere quiet and dark. Also I would consider a routine as in, its now time to sleep so we draw the curtains, close the door and so on what ever works for you to cue him that its now nap time. This works for us and the darker the better (so it doesn’t give him something to focus on to stay awake). You could try a net around him, attach it to the ceiling to create darkness or the screen. Also when he sleeps I keep things fairly quiet, so that I don’t give him a reason to wake if you know what I mean. Some kids are good sleeps are others aren’t so you need to know your child and cater your strategies to them. Please feel free to email me anytime to chat email@example.com. Take care and hope this helps Amanda
PS the night sleeps – thats GOOD the five hours… I wouldn’t tamper with it.
Powered by vBulletin® Version 4.1.9 Copyright © 2013 vBulletin Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved.