Author Topic: Wired 14MO waking at 4 and won't go back to sleep  (Read 451 times)

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Offline SusieQue

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Wired 14MO waking at 4 and won't go back to sleep
« on: January 27, 2017, 04:49:09 am »
So just when I think things can't possibly get worse with DS2, his latest trick is waking every day at 4am completely wired and awake and won't go back to sleep. Sometimes he sleeps through from bedtime until 4, or like last night he wakes at 12 or 1 at night, we rub his back and he goes back to sleep, then he wakes at 4 and that's it. Or this morning, he woke at 3.30, we thought he had gone back to sleep then he starts babbling, talking, shouting. DH has got him up and taken him downstairs but he's already woken DS1 up again and now he won't go back to sleep. Honestly I am at my wits end and ready to throw him out the window (she half joked). I be been keeping him awake all week until at least 11.30, then he sleeps for 1.5-2 hours, bedtime at 6.30. Bedtime seems to make no difference to wake up. Is he low sleep needs, should I just stop him sleeping completely in the day? He's never slept through the night and I'm completely done and exhausted now, mornings are just horrible in our house. Sorry for the rant but I just don't know what to do with him anymore, please help!

Offline Scottishmummy

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Re: Wired 14MO waking at 4 and won't go back to sleep
« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2017, 08:17:59 am »
Sorry you've not had a response yet.  I know I tried to offer some suggestions before:
13MO NWs, night feeds, you name it!

Did you manage to drop the night feeds?

I still wonder if the NWs and EW might be from OT, & wonder whether he actually needs more daysleep rather than less. I wonder whether a morning (9.30ish) or afternoon (4.30ish) CN, even just a 10-15min one, with a long nap middle of the day might help but remember a 2 nap routine was tricky with school run.

I'm going to ask for some more eyes on this as not sure what to suggest & my suggestions don't seem to have helped!
"Touchy/Spirited" DS


"Textbook" DD



Offline creations

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Re: Wired 14MO waking at 4 and won't go back to sleep
« Reply #2 on: January 28, 2017, 10:02:53 am »
Hi there - I've just had a look through your previous thread to see if I can spot anything to help.

- Can you post a recent EASY please including all E times with an indication of what he eats and roughly how much for each meal/snack/milk.

- have you stopped all the night feeds or are you still giving a bottle of milk when he is making a lot of noise?

- You say mornings are horrible in your house, is this because you are exhausted and it's hard to get through the morning?
Or is it LOs mood which is horrible and he is hard to handle because he is so grouchy?  What is his mood like:
- through the morning
- prior to nap
- after nap
- through the afternoon
- prior to BT?

Sorry for all the questions but the information on the bigger picture may help to work out where his routine could change to help with these NWs and EWs.

In the meantime - a bit of an "out of the box" idea - I noticed on your other thread you said he is really into books.  My DS was (still is) also like this.  Something I did with early wake up times was to install a couple of lamps in his bedroom. One on a timer (early introduction of the gro-clock idea using lights on a timer to indicate morning).  The other I had on a remote control so I could turn it on from outside the room (actually I could turn it on from my bed which is even more appealing at 4 or 5am) so if I needed morning to come earlier for him I could cheat by turning the light on but without going into the room.  At my bed time I jammed a book between the mattress and the bars of the cot so that when he woke up and lights were on he could pull the book out and have a "read" for 20 mins before I had to go to him.  Whilst it doesn't fix routine it does help to give you a few minutes to rouse yourself from sleep before having to move which in my case I found very beneficial.
We have continued this habit for years and these days his timer lights go on at 6.40am he gets up to go for a wee then goes back to bed and reads a chapter of his book, roughly 20 mins before getting out of bed for the day.
Like I said, it doesn't fix the entire routine, it just stalls him for a short time, but over time you can also begin to use the lights to increase "night" and move the WU time a little later in addition to working on fixing the routine.


Offline SusieQue

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Re: Wired 14MO waking at 4 and won't go back to sleep
« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2017, 18:48:08 pm »
Thanks for the replies. Both kids stayed at grandparents last night in order to give us a much-needed break, but DS2 didn't have a great night and was up from 2.30 to 4am.

In answer to your questions, we have dropped the night feeds, we offer him some water which he takes and then we have to rub his back until he falls back asleep. He was going to bed and naps okay on his own but this past week he has needed us there either rubbing his back or cuddling to sleep at naps and bedtime. Here is his rough EASY (I try and stick to set naps where I can)

WU 4am
Get up at 5 or just before
5.30 E big bowl of porridge
S 11
A 1 (I wake at 1 if he doesn't wake naturally)
E 1.15 avocado or toast - he really doesn't eat a lot and is pretty fussy
A
E 4.30 - again, he doesn't eat a lot but I try and persevere by offering what we are eating. He will eat a few pieces of carrot with some bread. He was eating rice but has gone off that, he doesn't eat any kind of protein as he refuses egg, meat, cheese, fish. He will eat one of the Ella's pouches but that's not something I want to encourage regularly. He eats a lot of blueberries and corn on the cob!
S 6.30 if he has slept for 2 hours, closer to 6 if less than 1 hour. He has 9oz milk in a bottle after his bath, then lay him down awake. Sometimes he babbles away for 10 minutes then falls asleep, but the past few nights he has cried as soon as he goes down and has needed us to stay and rub his back

Then the night wakings could be anywhere from 11pm onwards. We go in, give him some water then he lays back down and we walk out. If he starts crying we go back in and rub his back until he's asleep.

On Tuesday he was at nursery and slept 2.5 hours for his nap, and we put him down at 7pm. He slept straight through until 4.30am but then he was totally awake. We have tried with an afternoon catnap but he simply won't do it, and if DH isn't here it's impossible to try and APOP one so unfortunately we're stuck with one nap.

The other thing is that he is very spirited and seems to find it very hard to relax. Even at bedtime he never seems very relaxed going down and even the babbling to sleep seems quite stimulating to me. Obviously there is a lot going on with a 5 year old running around as well but I wonder if there are any ideas for winding down a spirited toddler? We usually take him upstairs 10 minutes before his bath and do some books, then he's in the bath for 5 minutes before getting dressed and having his bottle.

I'm going to book a docs appointment next week to test for possible food intolerances to rule anything out there, but he really doesn't eat a lot apart from breakfast (he can't get enough of porridge and natural peanut butter). Maybe it's lack of food which is causing the NW? If so, I don't know what to suggest since he's so fussy. I feel like we've tried everything so far and no luck 😥

Offline SusieQue

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Re: Wired 14MO waking at 4 and won't go back to sleep
« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2017, 18:51:41 pm »
I meant to add that mornings are pretty horrible as he is very whingey and spends a lot of time following me around and wanting to be picked up. Sometimes he will fall asleep in the pram on the way back from school run for 10 minutes but that doesn't seem to affect the night wakings.

Offline creations

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Re: Wired 14MO waking at 4 and won't go back to sleep
« Reply #5 on: January 29, 2017, 08:48:11 am »
It may or may not be hunger waking him at night - it is hard to know for sure. Looking at your EASY though and what he is eating I would be tempted to shake up the E a bit.
At this age most LOs will take 1 or 2 milk (you have a good size milk at BT) plus 3 meals (breakfast, lunch, dinner) and 2 snacks (you don't seem to have any in the routine).
I suggest:
- you introduce snacks at 10/10.30 (so you can be finished in time for nap at 11am) and again at 3/3.30 (1 hour before dinner)
- you try to increase protein intake (and vegetables but atm he is eating some fruit, carrots and corn so this is likely not the main priority)

You might find that his appetite is better at those snack times rather than at meal times or that with snacks included in the day he will take more at the main meals.  Either way there are increased opportunities for him to take in some calories.  Even at this age they have very small tummies and most toddlers need to eat every few hours.

Increasing protein
A few ideas:
- switch breakfast.  Many toddlers eat more in the morning and early hours of the day rather than in the afternoon or later in the day. You might find that he is more willing to eat protein at breakfast time when he has a very good appetite.  I did this with my own DS after advice on BW to try it. I must admit I was a bit scared to change his breakfast as I thought he would kick up a huge stink about not getting his muesli but my DS did not bat an eye and ate an entire egg.  For a good time I serve a full egg every morning and this meant I knew he had at least one good protein serving per day.
If your LO has never eaten egg, meat, fish, cheese, serving these at breakfast may help to expand his foods.  If like mine he used to eat these but now refuses it could be down to the time of day and appetite level at that time.  I made a little one-egg omelet but you could try eggy bread instead if he likes toast.
- saving a portion of whatever you have for dinner can be an easy way to have food ready for breakfast, in those protein and vegetable groups which you likely don't want to start cooking first thing in the morning.  I would just make a little more in the evening, serve him some as usual and keep some aside for the next morning.
- mine would happily accept lentil or bean burgers/patties/falafel so I would make batches of these and freeze them interwoven with baking parchment so that I could lift out 2 or 3 to defrost at a time. I serve them cold/room temp. These are handy for offering at snack time as it takes the pressure off of trying to get LO to eat protein at the main meal.
- beans and lentils are a good source of protein and your LO might even take them plain as finger food.  Not sure where you are but in the UK I can buy pre-cooked beans in water (no sugar no salt) and just drain/rinse them and serve or add a touch of ketchup or salad dressing.  My DS liked some and not others, wasn't keen on red kidney beans for quite a while but would eat all sorts of others, burloti, pinto, black eyed beans etc.  Peas are also good.
- mine accepted mini pancakes and mini muffins so I sometimes made batches with ground almonds instead of flour to increase the protein level.  I also used the pancake method to make the little bean burgers at times, just whizzing/mashing some beans adding spice and frying in patties. Very easy.
- sounds like he really likes peanut butter have you tried this on toast at lunch time perhaps? It's another good way to increase the protein. Or even slacken down with some oil to make into a dip or lighter sauce to have with vegetables or to dip fish fingers or chicken strips into.

I think it's worth trying some of these things, particularly adding in snack times and see how it effects sleep and mood.
hth


Offline SusieQue

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Re: Wired 14MO waking at 4 and won't go back to sleep
« Reply #6 on: January 29, 2017, 11:26:43 am »
Thanks so much for the advice, Creations. I meant to say in my earlier post that he does have a snack before nap time, usually one of those Goodies oat bars or an oat cake with peanut butter on. We do give him peanut butter on toast, I never thought of using as a dip so I will try that! I had advice before about giving him a dinner at breakfast time and it didn't go well (he threw the bowl on the floor several times before I gave up) but I like the idea of ground almonds for pancakes as I used to make these myself so will make up a batch today for freezing. His eating is so odd, he was eating chilli (not too hot obviously) a couple of weeks ago but now just refuses. I do persevere as I don't want to encourage fussy eating, even though everyone tells me just to give him one f those pouches.

I'm going to keep an accurate sleep diary this week and report back in a few days to see if you have any suggestions. Last night he was up from 11pm to 12.30. We did eventually cave and give him a full bottle of milk and he went back to sleep until 5.30 - so maybe it is hunger?

What we do find difficult with him is getting him to relax when he wakes up - he starts fussing and fidgeting and it's like he wants to sleep but his brain starts ticking away and then he starts babbling and it becomes almost impossible to relax him. He is worse if we pick him up, but I find it difficult spending half an hour bent over the crib rubbing his back! I'm going to try and find some camomile oil or lavender to put in his room as this might help, or I was wondering whether a white noise app might help?

I will definitely try the food suggestions this week, thanks so much your help as always x

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Re: Wired 14MO waking at 4 and won't go back to sleep
« Reply #7 on: January 30, 2017, 18:41:27 pm »
It must be difficult for you if you are under pressure from others to give pouches of food - I wouldn't continue with those tbh, at this age LOs really need to be taking proper meals rather than having pouches of puree.  There are other developmental areas linked with solids too such as fine motor and language skills.
Do you think he might be filling too much on his breakfast?  What if you reduced the porridge and served an additional something alongside it (protein, vegetables etc)?
TBH if you continue to offer milk in the night he is unlikely to have a proper appetite for a variety of foods in the day, it allows him to be pickier because he knows he will get milk in the night if he kicks up a fuss.

Hope your week goes well.