Author Topic: Napping Nightmare - 6.5 month old  (Read 158 times)

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Offline MunchkinsMama

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Napping Nightmare - 6.5 month old
« on: March 26, 2017, 23:22:50 pm »
Hello there,

I'd really appreciate some advice as I'm quite frazzled at the minute. My lb is not really a fan of sleep... screams and thrashes until he tires himself out usually. He fights every nap and bedtime and has a really, really hard time settling to sleep.

He won't nap in the pram or car seat anymore which means it is very difficult to take him anywhere because he'll cry and scream endlessly. He sometimes stays awake 4-6 hours at a time despite my efforts to get him to sleep. He is a very active and alert little guy and seems to tire easily-pulling at his ears, rubbing eyes and grinding face into his playmat. These sleepy cues seem unreliable though because they appear 1.5-2 hours even after a good 2 hour nap. And despite his obvious tiredness (sometimes exhaustion), he will not sleep lol.

Here's our not so EASY routine. He suffers from chronic constipation and trapped wind which affects his eating (doesn't take full feeds so we offer him little and often where possible).

THURSDAY EVENING
BT 7:45pm
NW 10:30pm - resettled
NW 3:05-4:25am - feed

FRIDAY
WU at 7:30AM
E 8:15am
E 8:50am - breakfast
S 9:35 - 10:05am
E 11:30am
S 12:35-14:10pm
E  2:30pm - lunch
E 3:45pm
E -5:30pm - dinner
S 5-5:30pm
E 7pm
BT 7:40pm
NW 00:30am - feed

SATURDAY
WU 6am crying, agitated
E 6:30am
S 7:30-8:50am
E 9am - rest of milk and breakfast
S 2:50-3:30pm - hysterical, 30 mins of resettling
S 4-5:30pm
BT 7:30
NW 3:15am - feed

SUNDAY
WU 7:30am
E 8:15am
E 10:45am
S 11:15am-1:05pm
E 1:20pm - lunch
E 3:30pm
S 17:05
E 6:10pm - dinner
BT 8:25pm

Nights are hit and miss with 1-2 wakenings; always a nightfeed and then sometimes can't resettle and is awake crying and frustrated for 1.5 hours. Typically, he gets around 8.5-9.5 hours broken sleep at night.

We're working on helping him to settle to sleep... mostly shush/pat with some pu/pd if necessary. His inability to settle to sleep is the biggest problem but I think I'm getting the timing of his naps wrong on top of that!

So my question is, should I be pushing his activity times further despite his seeming tiredness? I've read about the 3-2 transition but I just don't know. It seems to me like he needs 3 naps but he won't take them and so is tired and irritable.

Any advice is most welcome. Thank you :)

Offline jessmum46

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Re: Napping Nightmare - 6.5 month old
« Reply #1 on: March 27, 2017, 16:19:38 pm »
Hi, sorry to hear you are having troubles.  You're not alone! 

Looking at the days you've posted I guess that the thing to notice first of all is that the awake times are very variable, I'm not sure if that is due to you following cues, failed nap attempts, or just how things worked out on the day?  One of the best things to do is probably to pick an average awake time for his age, I would suggest 3h, and try to stick to that consistently (possibly just a touch shorter after a bad nap, but not by much) so that you can get a sense of what he can manage to handle.  I would probably aim for 2 naps most days if he can handle it, but throw in a 3rd catnap on days where both naps go horribly wrong! 

So to give some examples....

Ideal day:
WU 7
Nap 10-11.30
Nap 2.30-4
BT 7

'OK' day, one good nap, one bad:
WU 7
Nap 10-10.30
Nap 1.15-2.45 (slightly shorter A time of 2h45)
Either: catnap around 5/5.30 for 20-30 mins and 7.30pm bedtime (slightly longer day due to 3rd nap)
Or: no catnap and bring BT early to 6pm

'Bad' day:
WU 7
Nap 10-10.30
Nap 1.15-1.45
CN 4.30ish for 45 mins
BT 7

I had a rule at this age that if second nap ended at or after 3pm we did BT 3h after nap WU.  If it ended at 2pm or earlier we did a catnap (I would rock to sleep if needed).  If it finished between 2-3pm it was tricky but I would have a quick try for a catnap around 5ish, and if it wasn't happening easily gave up in favour of an early 6pm bedtime.  I found EBT for my DD (similar in her preference to stay awake and not nap ::) ) was a lifesaver in the 3-2 and she did some really long nights when I was brave enough to try.

What do you think?
***Katherine***







Offline MunchkinsMama

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Re: Napping Nightmare - 6.5 month old
« Reply #2 on: March 27, 2017, 23:03:00 pm »
Hi Jessmum,

Thank you for replying. You're always the first to respond to my cries for help lol and I really do appreciate it.

Your advice is clear and most helpful. I'm definitely going to try for two naps tomorrow. Today actually went fairly well and we had two naps-yay!

Here's today's routine:

WU 6:15am -  resettled until 6:50am (he was very tired and cranky when he woke up this morning. He had a NF at 2am)
E 7:20am bottle
E breakfast 7:45am
S 9am (started settling at 8:40am) -10:25am
E 10am bottle
E 12:50pm bottle
S 3:10pm-4:40pm
E dinner
E 7pm bottle
S 7:15pm
NW 10:15pm feed

The variable awake times are solely due to failed nap attempts. Prior to today, I was trying to get him to nap in the travel cot in the AM and then the pram for his second nap however the AM nap was totally hit or miss and the second nap in the pram just isn't happening. He cannot settle to sleep when in the pram anymore, he just cries and screams until I lift him out which is what happened today (hence the too long activity time between nap 1 and 2). I had him out in the pram this afternoon for a long walk in the sunshine (made sure he was totally shaded by the extended hood and not too warm etc) but he wasn't even close to settling despite exhaustion. He didn't sleep in the car seat either on the drive home (probably overtired). He finally crashed when I got him home and put him into his cot in his nursery. He doesn't sleep in the car seat anymore either but I don't mind that because it's not ideal having him nap in there. But I would like to get him to nap in the pram so that I can leave the house in the afternoons or get him to sleep when I'm visiting grandparents etc. I've tried playing white noise in his pram but to no avail. Any advice on this? 😬 Or do I just accept that he's too much of a spirited/'livewire' child to be able to relax and settle when there's so much to see and do around him?

At the minute he shows clear signs of tiredness around the 1.75-2.15h mark but I'm definitely going to push it towards 3 hours now because the constant catnapping is no fun!

I hope you don't mind but I have another question unrelated to naps:
Apart from today, when he was too tired and cranky to eat, he usually has 3 decent sized puréed spoonfeeds and 4 bottles (5-6 ozs)  throughout the day but is still waking for a nightfeed(usually 5-6 hours after his last bottle). Should I expect him to be going longer than this once solids are well established? At the moment, I just feed him when he wakes during the night but don't know if it's the right thing to do or not.

Thank you kindly for your advice.

Offline MunchkinsMama

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Re: Napping Nightmare - 6.5 month old
« Reply #3 on: March 29, 2017, 07:38:10 am »
Things not going so well  :-\

MONDAY
WU 6:15am - resettled until 6:50am
E 7:20am
E breakfast 7:45am
S 9am (started settling at 8:40am) -10:25am
E 10am
E 12:50pm
S 3:10pm-4:40pm
E dinner
E 7pm
S 7:15pm
NW 10:15pm feed
NW 2:30am - 4:30am
Stirred on and off all night

TUESDAY
WU 7am
E 7:40am
S 9:41am (started settling at 9:35am) -10:25am
E 11:05am
E 12:45pm rest of bottle 3 ozs
S 1:23pm (started at 1:10pm) woke at 2:15pm and resettled-2:40pm
E lunch 2:15pm
E 4pm
Tried to get catnap from 4:35-4:55 (unsuccessful)
E 5:45pm dinner
S 6:20 (no bottle)
Dreamfeed at 10pm
Woke at 12:30 am - feed
Woke at 2:30am - resettled
Woke at 5:15am - resettled

WEDNESDAY
WU at 6:15am
E at 6:55am
S (started trying at 7:27am) - exhausted, rubbing eyes and face, pulling at ears, irritable.

He is quite badly constipated at the moment and has been passing small, hard stools so I've been giving him Movicol these last few days but to no avail yet. He is also teething... two bottom front teeth. One is partially ruptured and the other is just about to break through. Although I don't think that's what's annoying him during his night wakenings. He just seems frustrated that he can't get back to sleep.

His night sleep is deteriorating rapidly. We've gone from one simple nightfeed to numerous night wakenings and difficulty resettling on and off these last few weeks.

So tired  :'(

Offline jessmum46

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Re: Napping Nightmare - 6.5 month old
« Reply #4 on: March 29, 2017, 20:07:28 pm »
That first one was a good day, shows he can do it! 

But I would like to get him to nap in the pram so that I can leave the house in the afternoons or get him to sleep when I'm visiting grandparents etc. I've tried playing white noise in his pram but to no avail. Any advice on this? 😬 Or do I just accept that he's too much of a spirited/'livewire' child to be able to relax and settle when there's so much to see and do around him?
Sadly I think some babies just aren't sleeping out and about kind of kids.  From 4 months my DD would sleep nowhere but her bed unless she was completely and utterly exhausted (mainly when dropping naps...) which was kind of restrictive, but the time when they need such frequent naps is short in the grand scheme of things and we just tended to work round it.  Would a travel cot at grandparents be an option?

At the minute he shows clear signs of tiredness around the 1.75-2.15h mark
This might well be habit, or that overall he is pretty tired from an accumulation of bad naps - but is quite a short A time for a 6 month old.  I think aiming for around 3h overall is probably a good plan :)

With the night feeds I think a bottle is still very reasonable at his age.  His daytime milk intake looks not too bad - though would he take any more at any of those feeds?  Do you offer solids after milk?  What sort of solids is he on so far?  Pureed fruit and veg don't contain huge numbers of calories, and his main nutrition still comes from milk.  That said, I did find mine dropped night feeds once they were regularly having protein in their diets in addition to milk, so I would probably give it a bit more time for now, and see if there's anywhere you can sneak some extra milk in during the day. 

If he's both constipated and teething that could well be upsetting the nights, solids can also upset tummies a bit to begin with so perhaps pull back on the evening meal a bit?  You could go back to just breakfast and lunch instead and see if that helps?  (((Hugs))), it will settle eventually, you're doing all the right things :-*  keep hanging in there x
***Katherine***