Author Topic: 14 Week Old Son Doing 3 Hour Easy Around the Clock  (Read 1151 times)

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Offline sweetened.daisy

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14 Week Old Son Doing 3 Hour Easy Around the Clock
« on: January 28, 2015, 15:49:18 pm »
My LO is a chipper little guy but is stuck on a pretty consistent 3 hour cycle at 14.5 weeks old. He is exclusively breastfed, and when hubby does help by giving him a bottle of expressed breast milk to give me a breather after being up all night with him (every 3 hours to the minute almost), LO will only take 2-3 ounces. I'm wondering if his tummy is just too tiny to drink more or if there's a way to get him to drink more then he would sleep longer stretches at night.

A little about my little man: Born at 39 weeks, weighing 7lbs, 7oz. Took to breastfeeding right away. Now weighs about 11.5 lbs.

A typical day at our house looks something like this:

8am - E
8:15/20 - A
9:05 - S
11 - E
11:20 - A
12:05 - S
1:45 - E
2:00 - A
3:00 - S
4:45 - E
5:00 - A
5:45 - S
6:45 - E
7:00 - A
7:45 - S
10:45 - E
10:55 - S
1:45am - E
2:05am - S
5:00am - E
5:10/15 - S

This is a rough outline of "most" of our days. Sometimes he is an hour earlier or later on those times from what I've recorded but the schedule is basically the same in length of minutes between each feed. He is extremely touchy and so for his bedtime routine, both during the day and in the evening we do this routine: Give him a few min of quiet on the changing table, swaddle tightly, hold him upright in the chair and pat him very gently to work out any burps. Once he calms (he usually fusses for 3-5 min) and we feel his body relax, we lay him down and he likes it best on his tummy. He drifts off to sleep usually in 5-10 min but does not like being patted during this time, and shushing only makes him angry. He's kinda funny.  ;)

During the night, if he wakes before 3 hours have passed, I wait and let him fuss (he is still in our room in a cradle because the crib is in big sister's room and we haven't made that transition just yet - big sis is almost 3) and he usually goes back down after a few minutes. However, when the 3 hour mark comes around he is pretty upset if I try and see if he'll go back to sleep and doesn't calm down until I start to nurse him. He nurses well and usually at least 10 min on both sides, which makes me infer that he's actually hungry. The hard part is that by doing this cycle through the day and all night long I am completely drained and having a hard time kicking a sinus infection I've had now for 3 weeks.

I read in the book that I should try and increase his eating during the day to help him tank up more at night but LO gets almost frustrated if I try to feed him too much in the evening and doesn't seem to be able to drink more than 3 oz when we've given him a bottle instead of the breast to see about how much he's getting. He's actually gotten so upset when I've offered him the breast after a couple hours in the evening and then it's been super tough to get him to calm back down.

During naps he consistently wakes between 45 min - 1 hour in and fusses for anywhere from 3-20 minutes to go back to sleep for the remainder of the nap. In the night though he nurses, and falls right back to sleep without burping.

Any ideas or help would be awesome.

Side note: He rolled over last night for the first time from his tummy to his back - all while being swaddled! I know he is working on some developmental milestones like that, but that would mean sleep is all the more important, right?

« Last Edit: January 28, 2015, 16:03:23 pm by sweetened.daisy »

Offline sweetened.daisy

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Re: 14 Week Old Son Doing 3 Hour Easy Around the Clock
« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2015, 18:33:02 pm »
Of course today he is completely off. He went down at 9pm last night and was up at midnight, 3am, and wanted to fully be up at 6am. So we all got up - my toddler awoke at 6:15 and he had 2 oz of pumped breast milk. He was acting super fussy by 8am so I put him down for a nap and by 9am he was screaming like he was starving. When I went to nurse him, he was so upset he wouldn't latch at all. I think tried changing his diaper and realized he was super poopy - got that taken care of and he still screamed trying to nurse. When I finally got him to latch on, he only did one side for 5 minutes.

Now it is 11:30 am and he is just now starting to act tired. I feel like he is sooo off and I'm at my wits end with what to do. I don't know if he needs to eat, sleep or what.

Sorry to vent. Any thoughts would be so helpful.

Offline jessmum46

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Re: 14 Week Old Son Doing 3 Hour Easy Around the Clock
« Reply #2 on: January 28, 2015, 19:29:18 pm »
Hugs :)

What I notice from your first EASY you posted is that his A times are rather on the short side for a 3-4 month old.  An average at 3 months would be around 1h20-30, increasing to around 1h45-2h at 4 months.  He may not be able to transition well between the deep sleep cycles at night because he isn't tired enough to sleep soundly, but because breastfeeding is comforting he is able to drift off again eventually with your help.  I ran into something similar with my DS which caught me off-guard....

Extending his A times may also help with those 45 minute wakeups during nap time. 

You don't want to jump too quickly with A time increases, particularly if he is touchy.  Just try an extra 5-10 mins of low-key awake time (even just an extended wind down could do it) and hold any changes for a few days to assess the effect before increasing again if you need to. 

What do you think?
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Offline sweetened.daisy

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Re: 14 Week Old Son Doing 3 Hour Easy Around the Clock
« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2015, 19:35:39 pm »
That is kinda what I was thinking. Today is just so off which makes me wonder if something else is going on entirely. However, the 3 hour nursing through the night cycle has been occurring for weeks now.

So if he were having a more "normal" day... what if I tried something like this:

8am - E
8:20 - A
9:30 - S

By increasing to more 1.5 awake time (including the feed), do you think that might help?


Offline jessmum46

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Re: 14 Week Old Son Doing 3 Hour Easy Around the Clock
« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2015, 19:42:52 pm »
Yes I do, but if you jump straight to 1.5h from what you've been doing it might be too much for him all at once.  Just do it slowly and hopefully you'll see some improvement x
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Offline sweetened.daisy

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Re: 14 Week Old Son Doing 3 Hour Easy Around the Clock
« Reply #5 on: January 28, 2015, 20:22:10 pm »
Okay. I'll definitely try that. Little man woke up really angry at 12:35 and didn't sound like he was going to settle back down. I gave him 10 min while I put my toddler to bed for her nap and then by the time I got him at 12:45 he was sooooo angry. :( I almost feel like part of it is that is he on a nursing strike maybe or that I'm eating something he doesn't like but I have no idea what since I eat a variety of foods every day. He nursed after 10 min of me calming him down but he was reluctant. All I could get him to do was 6 min on one side and when I offered the second, he started screaming again. So we called it and came downstairs to hang out. He is happy at the moment but I'm thinking I should start trying to get him ready for his next nap at about 1:45. Does that sound about right? Then help him go down by 2...

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Re: 14 Week Old Son Doing 3 Hour Easy Around the Clock
« Reply #6 on: January 29, 2015, 19:21:02 pm »
So we did really well with extended his awake times and today he's been right on track for 1 hr 10/13 minutes. However, he is now not sleeping super well for his naps anymore and fussing at the 1 hour in mark. We didn't have to do any PU/PD or Wake to Sleep before but I'm wondering if I should start trying that now. Thoughts? He woke up an hour in from his current nap and was all smiley and happy. I gave him some time until he started to fuss (which was almost 10 min)  and then I tried to just pat him, which only made him angry. :(

Offline jessmum46

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Re: 14 Week Old Son Doing 3 Hour Easy Around the Clock
« Reply #7 on: February 02, 2015, 18:57:14 pm »
Sorry I've been away for the weekend, how are things?

That nap may have been UT if he woke happy, perhaps a tiny touch more A time may help if it's happening regularly x
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Re: 14 Week Old Son Doing 3 Hour Easy Around the Clock
« Reply #8 on: February 11, 2015, 16:20:44 pm »
Thank you so much for your advice. So for the last week + a few days now I've been gradually extending his awake time. Now he's pretty good at 1.5 hours and it seems to be helping his sleeping at night too. Now I've got a new question and confusion with little man... He is up every night at 3am and 5am. He doesn't sound particularly hungry (like a hungry cry that is) but I hear him smacking his lips. Last night I didn't feed him but he chatted/and such for an hour - he's still in our room in the cradle because when he moves to the crib he'll be sleeping with his almost 3 year old sis. He did fall back asleep eventually until 5 and then was kinda grumpy. I nursed him at 5 but he didn't eat well at all and that made me wonder if he was actually hungry at all. The kid has hated pacifiers since day one - though I've tried in tough situations still. Think I try holding him and popping that in? Any idea what else to think since he's waking at the exact same times every morning?

Here's our schedule the last 5 days:

7am - Wake Up & E
8:30 - Nap
10:30 - E
10:50 - A
12 - N
1:30 - E/A
3 - N
4:30 - E/A
6:00 - Catnap
6:30 - Bath
7:00 - stories with sis
7:20/30 - E
7:45 - Bed (hard to get him to go down though he's tired. Last night it took from 7:45-8:25
-------
so he was out at 8:20 then woke up at midnight
12am - Nursed for 30 min right back down
3am - up talking and not sure if hungry or not
5am - up and kinda grumpy
7am - officially up for the day

I've been feeding him either at the 3am or 5am if it seems like he's legitimately hungry but it's really hard to tell. Most of those times, even if he gets at it right away, he'll nurse for 10 min and then fall completely asleep again. :/ Not sure what to make of that...

He is 16.5 weeks old now and will be 4 months old on the 19th.

Offline jessmum46

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Re: 14 Week Old Son Doing 3 Hour Easy Around the Clock
« Reply #9 on: February 11, 2015, 19:57:41 pm »
I think you probably need to push forwards still further with increasing A time moving towards a 4h EASY :). The last catnap will be dropped and BT may need to come slightly earlier for a while, and then as your A times near 2h the third nap will become more of a catnap.  The 'textbook' 4h EASY is WU 7, naps 9-11, 1-3 and catnap between 5&6, BT 7/7.30pm x
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Re: 14 Week Old Son Doing 3 Hour Easy Around the Clock
« Reply #10 on: February 11, 2015, 19:59:50 pm »
Okay. So just keep inching toward being awake for 2 hours? We made it to 1 hr 40 this last go round and he went down great. Is sleeping and only rolled his head at the 35 min mark. :)

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Re: 14 Week Old Son Doing 3 Hour Easy Around the Clock
« Reply #11 on: February 11, 2015, 20:00:21 pm »
That's the idea :)
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Re: 14 Week Old Son Doing 3 Hour Easy Around the Clock
« Reply #12 on: February 18, 2015, 21:27:13 pm »
So - it seems like baby boy is going backwards. While he seems to be doing much better at being awake 1 hr 30 - 2 hours, he is napping only 45 min - 1 hour and through the night he has been up every 1-3 hours for the past couple of weeks. He has gone about a week of terrible napping/night sleep to one day of a blessed 5 hour stretch at night followed by a 4.

I keep wondering if he is just constantly hitting growth spurt after growth spurt or if we're into a development transition or something. Thoughts?

Here is how our schedule has been today...

7am - Wake & E (Nursing both sides)
7:30 - A
8:30 - S
9:25 - Fussing - Tried S/P for 25 min to no avail
9:45 - E (nursing both sides) & at 10:15 had 1 tbsp rice cereal with expressed bm
11:40 - S
12:20 - Woke up and tried getting him back down for 10 min before thinking he sounded hungry
12:30 - E (daddy gave him a bottle 4.5oz)
2:15 - S (where we are currently at right now...

The rest of the week was very similar. I think it seems like he's just going through a growth spurt because he nurses pretty well and/or takes a bottle after waking - wouldn't he NOT take it if he wasn't hungry? However, since this has been going on for so long, and almost feels like our "norm" - I'm thinking to myself this can't be a growth spurt, at least not a 4 week long one, right?

A little more info on him: He is almost exclusively breastfed and does take a bottle a few times a week with daddy so I can go run to the store or whatever on my own. He had his 4 month checkup with the pediatrician on Monday (a couple days ago) and the doc says he looks really healthy and they aren't worried at all about his weight. He also gave us the go-ahead to add in 1 tbsp of rice cereal twice a day since it seemed like he was so hungry all the time. Doc said by his steady weight gain he didn't think there was any reason to be concerned about my milk supply and that I'm not making enough for him.

He is now 4 months old (tomorrow actually), weights 12lbs 8.5oz, and is 25in tall.

Ideas? How can I get him to nap longer? Am I fostering snacking?

Offline jessmum46

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Re: 14 Week Old Son Doing 3 Hour Easy Around the Clock
« Reply #13 on: February 19, 2015, 12:46:51 pm »
Keep going with those A times, first one looked UT yesterday. Up to 2h or even slightly more is normal at 4 months.   There's also the dreaded 4 month sleep regression....how are you dealing with those NWs right now?
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Re: 14 Week Old Son Doing 3 Hour Easy Around the Clock
« Reply #14 on: February 19, 2015, 16:15:36 pm »
Are you worried about him feeding so much? He may just be a hungry baby, but also it's totally normal for him to have two night feeds at this age.

We did a bit of a cluster feed in the afternoons, which might be something to consider. On a 3h routine it would have been feeds at 7,11,1,3,5,7. Plus two night feeds, maybe three.

As his A times increased and we made it to 4 hours between feeds, we gradually dropped one of those extra afternoon feeds. That was when he started going longer at night.

Personally I'd avoid the rice cereal and work on spacing his feeds. Solids have less calories than milk so will make his overall intake lower.
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Offline sweetened.daisy

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Re: 14 Week Old Son Doing 3 Hour Easy Around the Clock
« Reply #15 on: February 22, 2015, 19:08:41 pm »
Thanks for the support jessmum46. We've been keeping with the 2 hour awake times as much as we're able. Sometimes he's really tired at an hour and 45 min and sometimes we can push it more to 2 hours and 15... just seems to depend on the day.

So- how I've been handling all of his night wakings has been to feed him. If it's been less than 3 hours, I try patting him back down, but if it's over 3 that just seems to really tick him off. It's hard to know if he's actually hungry or not though. :( He will start off eating well, but then almost taper off because he's just exhausted. I try keeping him awake from letting my hair fall on his face, to rubbing his cheek, and switching sides often. We're usually up for 20-30 min before I just lay him back down and go back to bed too.

MJ&N - So he's doing about a 3.5-4 hour routine throughout the day now pretty consistently and the naps are lasting anywhere from 1.5-2 hours. When you dropped that afternoon feed, did you just have him wake up but not feed him so he went from Sleep to Activity back to Sleep?

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Re: 14 Week Old Son Doing 3 Hour Easy Around the Clock
« Reply #16 on: February 22, 2015, 19:11:22 pm »
Side note: He is now sleeping in sister's room and she's doing amazing with the transition...

Here's his schedule the last few nights... thoughts?

Bedtime at 7/7:20

Wake at 10p - E
Wake at 1a - E
Wake at 4a - E
Wake at 7a - E and start our day

Last night he was an hour off of this but was awake and giggling from 2:30a-4:30a and then up again at 5a. I fed him at 2:30 but he woke up and wouldn't let me pat him back down. He was just wanting to chat up a storm. It was exhausting but adorable. I tried not to engage.

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Re: 14 Week Old Son Doing 3 Hour Easy Around the Clock
« Reply #17 on: February 23, 2015, 08:48:40 am »
When you dropped that afternoon feed, did you just have him wake up but not feed him so he went from Sleep to Activity back to Sleep?
He was on 2 naps by the time we dropped a feed, I think. He's very low sleep needs and his A times were way higher than average. I can't remember his exact routine as it was over 6 years ago now!
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Offline jessmum46

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Re: 14 Week Old Son Doing 3 Hour Easy Around the Clock
« Reply #18 on: February 23, 2015, 13:11:04 pm »
Can you post the daytime routine for us?  I'm still wondering if that waking every 3h could be UT, we had similar issues with DS starting around 4 months x
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