Post # 1
Baby T has been pretty decent at sleep. He usually sleeps in 2-3 hour stretches at night and will usually go back to sleep after each feeding and diaper change during the night. The issue I’m having is sleeping during the day. He gets so tired, but wont sleep. He won’t nap long at all at home. I usually swaddle at night, but have never swaddled during the day. He sleeps in my arms or in my bed during the day. Usually the car puts him to sleep within a minute or two and he’ll stay asleep in the carseat or Bjorn while we are out and about, if I have things to do. I usually try to get out once a day. Any suggestions? He’s fed and burped. Sometimes he has gas, but I can usually tell and can burp him more, bicycle his legs or use the gas drops.
My mom keeps suggesting letting him cry himself to sleep, which I’m not opposed to in general, but I thought you weren’t supposed to do that until they are older, at least 3-4 months. He’s only 4 weeks right now. It seems really young to let him cry himself to sleep.
I’ve tried rocking, jiggling, nursing, walking, trying to block light and other stimuli, etc… He fights the swaddle unless he’s almost asleep, and it was a huge backfire when I tried it during the day today.
Post # 3
I’m interested to hear the responses to this! I always thought it was ok to let them cry themselves to sleep- if you’ve exhausted all other options but I’m probably wrong as I’ve never done this before!
Post # 4
There is a book called Save Our Sleep and it provides alot of information in regards to sleep and routines. It gives alot of insight into sleep patterns and how not to start bad habits. I recomend you read it, it might answer some of your problems.
Basically it sounds like bub is sleeping for only 1 sleep cycle (ie 40mins) and cant resettle himself. He will not join his sleep cycles and resettle until he knows how to self settle. This is where you need to learn the difference between his cries- if he is simply protesting or if he is crying emotionally and something is wrong- if he is protesting his cries will have breaks between them. If he is protesting let him go, he needs to learn how to settle himself. Once he goes to sleep he will wake up after about 45 mins, get him up and put him in his pram and take him for a walk to encourage more sleep. Once he is settling himself he will then sleep for longer.
Have you tried not swaddling him? My son hated it too, and as soon as he could roll over he slept unswaddled on his tummy no matter how we put him down.
At this age though, he is probably waking up because he is hungry or you didnt put him down at the right time. You need to watch for sleep signs (my sons eyes go red when he is tired) and put him down right away. I have seen a chart as well that says roughly how much bub should be awake at one time so maybe look that up?? If he is overtired he will not sleep for very long (so keeping him up so he sleeps longer wont work) and putting him down too early means he wont sleep very long as he is not sleepy.
PM me if you have any questions!
Post # 5
Also, the letting him protest cry thing- only let him go for about 10 mins. If there is a gap for 5 secs start the 10 mins again. If he sounds like he is starting to cry emotionally (ie non stop constant crying get him up and check for a problem, try putting him down a few mins later). If after the 10 mins or so he is still crying go in there and put him to sleep (do not pick him up, keep him in his cot). If after 20mins he isnt asleep get him out of his cot for baout 5 mins (this will give you a break) and then start again.
Post # 6
the book I read says the babies that protest swaddle the most need it hte most…I wouldn’t worry too much if LO is sleeping well at night, but I think they like to sleep on you a lot during the day. So, try using a moby or other carrier and going on a walk…it will make you feel better and likely put LO to sleep…even if there is no sleeping, crying outside is more tolerable. 😀
We personally don’t do cry it out. (DS is 8 months.) He does cry, but we don’t leave him. It does seem to help at that age when they have a paci or suck their fingers to self soothe.
Post # 7
Thanks for the tips.
During the day, he’s not hungry, at lesat that’s not what is stopping him from sleeping. I feed him on demand, and usually offer him my brest to help soothe him to sleep when I know he’s getting overtired and needs to sleep. At night he wakes out of hunger usually, after a 1-4 hour stretch, and I feed him at each waking. He’s just not sleeping at all during the day. I got about 30 minutes from him when he was exhausted yesterday driving home, but that was it. Other than that I’ll get him to sleep and he’d wake up in a few minutes. The car, stroller and carier don’t seem to be working lately.
I guess I’m also not sure how to put him to sleep during the day when he will fall asleep. He usually startles awake during the day since I don’t swaddle him, and when he will sleep it’s usually only 20-40 mins when we are at home. It’s harder to get him swaddled during the day because he’s usually more awake and more likely to wake while I’m putting him in it.I don’t know if I should be holding him, put him in his cradle, or what. He hates the carseat unless we’re moving, but he seems to sleep well in it once he is asleep.
I’ll check out the book Save Our Sleep. I was also going to try the No Cry Sleep Solution as well, and maybe a few others. Hopefully I can figure something out to help him sleep during the day.
Post # 8
Don’t worry, your not doing anything wrong- it just takes time to figure what works for you and bub 🙂 just read a few different books and piece together a routine or skills which work for you. I think most babies go through phases of being unsettled sleepwise, and especially with growth spurts its kinda hard to know what to do. Your doing a great job though 🙂
Post # 9
I was struggling with naps that weren’t in my arms or the swing too (still do). Since he is fighting the swaddle during the day but it works at night (mine is this way too) maybe try waiting for him to fall asleep in your arms or nursing or whatever works, have the swaddle blanket already prepped in his crib and carry him to it once he is alseep. Yes, he may wake up and protest some when you are swaddling him but then you can finish the swaddle and pick him back up. Let him fall asleep again in your arms or nursing but while swaddled. Do the usual nap routine things like white noise and low lights with whatever your cue word is and after a few days it may start to kick in for him that it is nap time. Food for thought: Do you keep your house warmer during the day as compared to night? Possibly he fights the swaddle because he is too warm in it but likes it at night because the air is a little cooler.
It is week 2 of daycare for my LO and they’ve been swaddling him and laying him slightly titled to his side with a pacifier this week and he’s finally starting to nap for them with that combination. It may be a bit early for you to introduce a pacifier to your LO if you are BFing but some people swear by it. We don’t use one unless he really wants to suck but it isn’t for food (4am this morning was one of those times) and it is just enough to settle him down and then it falls out of his mouth and he continues to sleep since it isn’t something he usually has and therefore does not miss when it falls out. I truly wish you the best of luck. I think naps are so much harder than nights.
Post # 10
Ummmm…. most people don’t complain if their child isn’t sleeping during the day.
Personally, I’d be GLAD he’s awake during the day and sleeping at night! That’s what my two typically did. my son stopped napping when he was around a year, my daughter took longer, though.
I would try wearing him out. Let him play, give him “tummy time” take him outside (fresh air does WONDERS for making babies sleepy. Especially in the sun… just don’t let him burn!), and then after a couple hours, calm him down. Keep him quiet, warm, and in dim light. Give him a pacifier (I bottle fed mine and they used theirs from day 1…well, my son did. my daughter did, too, after she was out of the NICU).
That should help. It sounds like he’s a pretty active/alert baby. If he’s not napping during the day, it’s possible he doesn’t NEED the extra sleep. (My brother RARELY napped as an infant and barely slept at night… he’s 33 now.)
Post # 11
(Disclaimer: We DON’T have kids yet.)
HOWEVER, our pediatrician also said they need to be around 3-4 mos before you can let them cry themselves to sleep, so you are correct in thinking he may be too young for that.
Also this got a lot of good reviews for babies who were having trouble sleeping (again, no personal experience but it seems to be really well liked): http://www.amazon.com/Fisher-Price-Newborn-Rock-Sleeper-Yellow/dp/B002M77N22
It seems the negative reviews were from people who used it all the time so you may not want to use it exclusively.
Post # 12
@Zinzerena: I’m not complaining that he’s awake during the day and sleeping at night. My son is only 4 weeks and needs to be sleeping more. He is exhausted (yawning, fussing, dozing for a few minutes, rubbing his eyes, etc…) If he was awake and happy, it’d be a different story. I’ll just have to keep trying different things. It’s finally nice out today, so I’m hoping the fresh air works!
Post # 13
@mrstilly: From a mother of two who also helped watch two nephews (aka babysit), fresh air and sunlight WORKS WONDERS!!!!
Even now, I’ll kick my two outside (ages 8 & 4) in the summer and on nice, warm-ish winter/spring/fall days and make them play for a couple hours (or longer). When bedtime comes, they go to sleep EARLY!!!! I’ve also talked to former classmates and friends who have kids/nieces/nephews and they all say the same thing!
It’s good for adults too! The more you’re outside, the better you sleep.
Be warned though: the kids will grow faster, 😉 Especially if they play in dirt and water, lol. (ok, maybe not, but you’d sure think they do, lol).
good luck!!! fussy babies are no fun.
ohhhh!!! Maybe you could try a little chamomile tea! Fix it like you would normally (aka according to directions) and dilute it to 1 oz tea to 1 oz water. I used that with my son for his cholic and he’d go off to sleep without a problem. So, maybe it’ll work for generally fussy/sleepy babies who don’t want to sleep!
It’s kinda an herbal cure and the pediatrician didn’t object as long as it was caffeine-free and sugar-free/low-sugar, which the Celestial Seasons Chamomile tea is. It’s an herb that promotes sleeping.
Post # 14
Aww Im sorry they arent napping.. That makes it hard for you! Some babies my son included fought sleep bad!! My mom also suggested letting him cry himself to sleep I would say that is ok.. Not for a long period of time.. If they are still crying hard and upset 4 min later get them.. but sometimes they just need to work themselves out. Outside does work.. maybe a walk with them in the stroller.. just make sure not so much sun bc thy are only 4 weeks (how cute I love little ones) Tummy time!!!! That gives them time to learn things how to hold their head etc. builds muscles and makes them tired. maybe try rocking to sleep and then putting them in a bassanet/playpen/something in the same room as you or even put them in their crib they need to get used to it anyways. another thing is car rides. then put them in the crib after they fall asleep in the car thats all i got. Good luck 🙂
Post # 15
I agree with @camrie: that it’s early to do it cry it out; most cry it out method books don’t recommend it until 4 months, but out old pediatrician told us to start at 3 months. Also, I think it’s a little early to worry about wearing him out. At 4 weeks, he shouldn’t be really active anyway, and keeping him up beyond what he can tolerate is likely to make him overtired and fight sleep even more. Also, check with your doctor, but ours recommend no herbs (incluyding herbal tea) until 6 months.
To me (a complete stranger on the internet who doesn’t really know you, lol), it sounds like he’s getting overtired and still needs a swaddle to stay asleep for longer stretches. How long does he stay up between naps? Most newborns can only tolerate an hour of awake time, but if you’re doing that, he might need to go back down for a nap sooner than 60 minutes. It’s hard to catch, but there’s often a window of opportunity to put them down for a nap before they start yawning and rubbing their eyes. You could try putting him to sleep 10 minutes earlier than usual, and just keep bumping that up by 10 minutes for every nap, until you find his perfect amount of awake time. Also, I think @Pelikila: had a brilliant idea about the swaddle. That might help him stay asleep longer.
Lastly, I really recommend the No Cry Sleep Solution. It’s helped us out a lot in the last 11 months, through all our various sleep issues. Addie is finally sleeping through the night again (after like a 5 month sleep regression), and we’ve never used cry it out. If you do decide to do cry it out (at the appropriate age) Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child is very popular, and I think it’s a gentler version of cry it out than the traditional method.
Post # 16
Hi! I was in a new moms support group and we all discussed this a lot – and our facilitator was a sleep specialist so she gave us a lot of good info.
Agree with the PP who said that babies who protests swaddling the most usually need it! Your baby does need sleep during the day for sure, especially at 4 weeks. I was also not swaddling during the day in the beginning, my son would sleep either in my arms, the stroller or the carrier – but he slept far less than I think he should have. And then the sleep specialist encouraged two things – to try swaddling for naps and to keep his periods of wakefulness to no more than two hours (at 4 weeks it is probably more like an hour). This worked wonders! I still would do some unswaddled naps in the stroller, but whenever I was home he would be swaddled and in his bassinet (then later his crib).
As Mrs. Spring said, you can tell when they are in need of a nap as they get quieter and their activity slows down. ideally you get the baby down for a nap before they get very fussy and over tired. you might also want to try all of the tecniques in the Happiest Baby on the Block (Shushing, swinging and swaddling worked wonders for us – I highly highly recommend getting the DVD, it was a life changer for us for night sleep!! and then I just started doing it all during the day too).
And we have never done CIO (our son is 8 months), but even if I had used it, 4 weeks is waayyyy too early. I think 3 months is as young as you would do that, and some would argue even later.