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  1. #1
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    Default Four months old, still no decent blocks of sleep

    My third bub is 4 months old. I decided not to do anything about a routine as I'd let her just settle into her own pattern. She's also my last baby so I want to cuddle her as much as possible!

    However, she's still waking so much at night, every 1-2 hrs. She might start the night in her own bed next to me but I quickly just bring her into bed with me when she wakes as I want to get back to sleep asap. Even when she's sleeping with me, she's waking up a lot. Or is semi awake with eyes shut but wriggling around loads, needing a pat or even picking up and walking around to settle.

    She's mixed fed now, having probably three bottles during the night around every 3 hrs. Maybe a breast feed too.

    She'll settle down for the night between 9-9:30pm usually, and gets up around 7:30am. Any earlier and she's obviously still tired.

    Nap wise, she's having anywhere from 3 to 5 a day depending on length.

    I am just really tired and also have my 2 yr old coming into bed with me every night now. She's going through a real clingy phase and won't have a bar of her Dad. So if it's not one of then waking me, it's the other.

    What can I do to help her sleep better? I feel I should know what I'm doing by now but this is now may third bad sleeper. I don't expect her to sleep through, just want a longer stretch of sleep. And I do class myself as a gentle parent so prefer a no crying method.

    Any advice greatly received! Thanks

  2. #2
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    I know you said you didn't want to do anything about a routine. That being said... more structure around day naps may help. Time the day naps so bub is tired enough to sleep properly (as opposed to not tired enough or too tired and getting short naps) and bub is more likely to have solid sleeps (and also sleep better at night). 5 naps per day is a lot for a 5 month old and if the last nap is late it could be affecting night sleep.

    Another key factor could be how bub is put to sleep. If bub is aided to sleep and that aid is missing when bub stirs between sleep cycles (no boob or bottle, dummy missing, music stopped, patting stopped etc) then bub may crack it and wake. Is bub is put to sleep drowsy but awake, with an aid that won't go missing (teddy comforter etc) then bub is less likely to wake between cycles and require adult intervention to fall asleep.

    Another consideration is the 4 month sleep regression. It's where night cycles come into play. If bub was previously going 4-5 hours between feeds and starts waking every 2 hours - don't automatically assume bub needs a feed. Try resettling first and if that doesn't work then feed. https://childsleepscience.wordpress....done-about-it/


    Good luck

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    Bond Girl  (08-04-2016)

  4. #3
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    I've noticed your in the ACT, is it possible that you contact Mach nurses and attend a sleep group? I found when I went to a sleep group it really helped. They could also give you some tips with your 2yo 😊

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    Bond Girl  (08-04-2016)

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    I'm sorry to hear of your struggles. I bet you're doing everything right. It's probably just the way your baby is. I've seen friends struggle the same as you and they've tried literally everything. Our son was an amazing sleeper but I can't say it was my approach. Just luck. I would block feed in the lead up to bedtime (2 x. BF 2 hours apart) Dream feed at 10pm before my bedtime. I would settle him and not jump up at every whimper. But certainly not let him cry. I would pat him through the cot rather than pick him up initially but if he escalated gave him a cuddle. But not excessive cuddling. He was in our room until 9 months. I played white noise. Didn't use dummies but put socks on his hands and he would chew and suck. By 6 weeks he had two wakes a night both feeds. Dropped one at 6 months. Second at 8 months. Slept through at 8 months. Been a solid sleeper every night since 15 months. He's now 2. We were consistent. A little firm on the picking up as a baby than some mamas. Now if he wakes it's about 10pm if he has an early nightmare he needs a hug but he understands he has to go back to bed. I'm not sure if my approach for #2. Probably the same if it works. Maybe a few more cuddles 😊 good luck xxx

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    Bond Girl  (08-04-2016)

  8. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mona424 View Post
    I've noticed your in the ACT, is it possible that you contact Mach nurses and attend a sleep group? I found when I went to a sleep group it really helped. They could also give you some tips with your 2yo 😊
    I forgot to update that. We're in QLD now. But when I had my now 2 yo in Canberra I did attend some of those groups and end up going to the sleep school! I just cant get it right, lol.

    I think the problem, if you want to call it that, is that I start off with a newborn I want to cuddle and hold all the time. Thats what they need. And I never know how to stop doing that because it doesn't feel right to stop. I can never put her down and leave her to fall asleep alone. Even just patting she gets upset. So I wait for her to get bigger and naturally sleep better on her own. But by 4 months I'd expect longer blocks than this.

    So yes, she had sleep associations. She has a dummy and is rocked to sleep. Then I put her down. There has never been a right time to change that. I just can't see how without her getting very upset. I realise all this isn't helping. But I just don't know how to stop. Sorry if that's rambling.

    So I'm currently trying to get her asleep for the night, again. After a busy day where she's not had as much sleep as usual as she won't sleep in the car or pram. I've got both my other two to bed, because both of them wanted mummy not daddy. All I want is to sit and watch TV on my own for an hour. But she won't go to bed! Maybe I need a referral for the Ellen barren centre for her too.

  9. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by WinterJade View Post
    I'm sorry to hear of your struggles. I bet you're doing everything right. It's probably just the way your baby is. I've seen friends struggle the same as you and they've tried literally everything. Our son was an amazing sleeper but I can't say it was my approach. Just luck. I would block feed in the lead up to bedtime (2 x. BF 2 hours apart) Dream feed at 10pm before my bedtime. I would settle him and not jump up at every whimper. But certainly not let him cry. I would pat him through the cot rather than pick him up initially but if he escalated gave him a cuddle. But not excessive cuddling. He was in our room until 9 months. I played white noise. Didn't use dummies but put socks on his hands and he would chew and suck. By 6 weeks he had two wakes a night both feeds. Dropped one at 6 months. Second at 8 months. Slept through at 8 months. Been a solid sleeper every night since 15 months. He's now 2. We were consistent. A little firm on the picking up as a baby than some mamas. Now if he wakes it's about 10pm if he has an early nightmare he needs a hug but he understands he has to go back to bed. I'm not sure if my approach for #2. Probably the same if it works. Maybe a few more cuddles 😊 good luck xxx
    See I do agree with babies having a sleep personality from the get go, I've seen that with both my other kids. No matter what I did with my first, he slept through when he was ready . I guess that's why I'm taking a more relaxed approach now, less worried about routine, because I thought "she'll sleep when she wants to sleep". But every 1-2 hrs is too much, lol. So I'm torn between going with my experiences before, or coaxing her in the right direction.

  10. #7
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    I am in much the same position!
    Third (and definitely last!) baby is waking all through the night. Just like his two siblings he is proving to be yet another crap sleeper. Two yr old dd sleeps through often but always always always wakes at 5am demanding breakfast right now. Over it! But would never do cc as I don't have it in me, and do really want to relish all these last baby night time cuddles.

    No advice, just hugs

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    I am in much the same position!
    Third (and definitely last!) baby is waking all through the night. Just like his two siblings he is proving to be yet another crap sleeper. Two yr old dd sleeps through often but always always always wakes at 5am demanding breakfast right now. Over it! But would never do cc as I don't have it in me, and do really want to relish all these last baby night time cuddles.

    No advice, just hugs

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    Bond Girl  (08-04-2016)

  13. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barnaby View Post
    I am in much the same position!
    Third (and definitely last!) baby is waking all through the night. Just like his two siblings he is proving to be yet another crap sleeper. Two yr old dd sleeps through often but always always always wakes at 5am demanding breakfast right now. Over it! But would never do cc as I don't have it in me, and do really want to relish all these last baby night time cuddles.

    No advice, just hugs
    Thanks! Yes my 2 yo is up between 5-5:30 too. And my 5 yo is not much later! They seem incapable of sleeping more than 10 hrs a night. Neither have done 12 hrs in their life, ever. 7-7 is a fantasy for me. Ha ha

  14. #10
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    OP does bub have a comforter? Like a cloth or teddy one? If so use it at every sleep (regardless of whether it's in the pram or car, cot etc) and only sleep time. It can take 2 weeks plus before bub gets used to a comforter so stick with it. My babies both really bonded with their comforters once they were no longer swaddled.

    Once you already have another comforter in place it's much easier to try and ditch another comforter. Still might be a few tears (to some extent if you want bubs sleep to change I think you're going to need to accept at least a little bit of unsettledness) but hopefully not that much.

    With regards to a dummy you could use it to calm bub but then wriggle it out just before bub goes into a deep sleep. Tricky I know

    I understand not wanting bub to cry. I think Timing naps right and having a comforter that doesn't require adult intervention to maintain are gentle ways to encourage longer periods of sleep.


 

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