Help A Reader Out: 5-8 Month Sleep Disruptions

davidsarah311 said…

I’ve been reading your blog since my little one was born. (I think she is about the same age as McKenna-my little girl was born April 2nd.) Anyway, I’ve read everything I could find about 6 month sleep problems. I was just hoping to get your help…

My little girl seems to go through 2 or 3 week cycles. She has a bad night when she wakes up many times-she was awake off & on from 1-5:30 this morning-and then we will deal with a couple of weeks of frequent night wakings. She takes an 8oz. bottle at around 6:30 and gets a 2oz. dreamfeed at 9. I was trying to cut out the dreamfeed, but should I be upping it instead? or is the dreamfeed interfering with night sleep? I don’t know how to tell the difference…I’m not feeding her at night when she wakes. I tried to comfort her with the paci last night to make sure that it wasn’t hunger. She was soothed, but wanted to play, so I put her back in bed. I do not usually use the paci at night & don’t replace it during naps.

Her naps are inconsistent at best-a lot of 45 minute ones with an occasional hour and 15 minutes.

Do you have any ideas what I’m doing wrong?

We have started rice cereal about a week ago, but she doesn’t really care for it… 🙂
October 5, 2009 12:40 PM
Plowmanators said…

davidsarah311, I would wonder if she wakes because of a growth spurt? That is about how often growth spurts are supposed to happen (3-4 weeks). When she does it, I would try feeding her more in the daytime.

I would make sure she isn’t cold or something with the weather changing. Brayden and McKenna are both very sensitive to temperature in the room while sleeping.
November 2, 2009 11:24 AM

davidsarah311 said…

Thank you for your ideas. It might have been a growth spurt. I’m dealing with the same thing again right now. I tried to give her extra in her bottle yesterday (she takes 6 oz-3 times & an 8oz. before bed), but she wasn’t willing. She was up for 1 1/2 hours last night-I checked her once and she was fine. I eventually went in there to hold her because I wasn’t sure what was wrong. I sat in her rocker with her, but she just wanted to play. During the couple of hours that I was holding her, she did drift off a few times but then jerked back awake. Eventually, at 1am, I put her back in bed, she was awake, and I didn’t hear a peep out of her until 7am. I don’t know what I’m doing wrong. I do know that it’s a problem to go in and get her after letting her cry for a while, I just trained her to cry that long, but I don’t want to leave her if something is wrong. I guess it could be separation anxiety-she stops crying as soon as I come in the room. She is very clingy throughout the day too. I really wish I could get this right! She puts herself to sleep for naps-she has them at 8:30 & 12:30, about 1:15 a piece. (Lately the morning nap is sometimes 2 hours.) I dropped the late afternoon nap several weeks ago since she started getting up at night again & we thought she might be getting too much sleep. (This is a baby that used to cry in her swing when she was sleepy.)

I need some advice-what am I doing wrong?

It would be helpful if I had my husband’s support too, he told me that he was going in her room last night if I didn’t. 🙁 I felt like such a bad mom!
December 2, 2009 11:48 AM

Plowmanators said…

davidsarah311, Does she have gas? Is there something that is bothering her that she eats? Does she need a bigger diaper on at night? Have you looked at the nighttime sleep problems post and the Naps: Troubleshooting post? Those both have lots of ideas.
December 15, 2009 11:19 AM

davidsarah311 said…
Yes, I’ve looked through the nap troubleshoots & I wish I could figure out what it was. She hasn’t gotten up again in about a week & a half. I switched her to fleece pajamas, so maybe she was cold! I feel a little silly if that’s what it was….we’ll see. Thanks for your help!
December 15, 2009 12:46 PM

Plowmanators said…
You might be surprised. Brayden and McKenna are both (still) that sensitive to temperature.

If it doensn’t work out, let me know and I will post your question as a “help a reader out” post.
December 17, 2009 3:50 PM

davidsarah311 said…
Unfortunately, it didn’t work. She was in a pair of fleece pajamas and a cotton wrap-she didn’t feel cold to me, but she was up again last night. I went in to check on her & held her for an hour, but she just wanted to play. I eventually put her back in bed and she went to sleep after another 20 minutes of crying.

She has never really had a gas problem. I’m still introducing foods one a week. She wears the extra protection diapers at night & they don’t leak through-I smother her behind in butt paste & vaseline before bed.

I feel so discouraged. We’re going out of town for Christmas and I know that it will make things even worse when we get back….
December 17, 2009 6:47 PM