Author Topic: 11-week-old late afternoon/evening screaming  (Read 558 times)

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Offline n.ip

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11-week-old late afternoon/evening screaming
« on: December 12, 2017, 19:40:22 pm »
My boy normally naps well in the morning and lunchtime but then he wakes screaming after 30 min into his afternoon nap (or naps if I'm lucky) and often I'm not able to settle him back to sleep with shush pat or even dummy. Then come bedtime if we do manage to settle him, again he would wake and scream after 30 min, then continue to scream until eventually falls asleep perhaps around 9 pm, though lately we couldn't even get him to sleep the initial 30 min. The only way to calm him would be to pick him up but then the screaming continues when put down and probably just delays his screaming. This has been a pattern for weeks and I would really appreciate some advice.

Our routine :
8 wake, feed, activity (8.40 wind down)
9 nap (often minimal shush pat, then he would fall asleep on his own)
10.45/11 wake (often need to wake him), feed, activity
12 nap (again minimal help needed to fall asleep)
14.30 wake (often need to wake him), feed, activity
15.30 nap (sometimes need to shush pat a bit longer like 5 min to calm, sometimes need to pat until he's asleep for 10 min)
16 wake screaming
16.30 try to put down for nap again (often unsuccessful lately, just now screaming), if unsuccessful then sling or buggy but he would only close his eyes for maybe 10 min
17 ideally bedtime routine (bath, massage, feed)...
18 bedtime ideally within 1 hour of last waking - often screaming until finally asleep around 21
22.30/23 dream feed (he would then normally sleep through till at least 4.30, has slept through a few times till 7/8!)

The messed up afternoon seems to lead to a vicious cycle of him being overtired and then unable to nap more/sleep. The problem is also that he was a baby that really resisted the bassinet and relied a lot on the sling to sleep initially, we worked really hard to get him to sleep in the bassinet and weaned him off sleeping in the sling (or on me) but now we have no other options to tie him through the afternoon when we are really stuck! It's really hard to bear his screaming and my poor husband only get to see him in this state and can't have a proper dinner when he comes home from work...

Offline becj86

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Re: 11-week-old late afternoon/evening screaming
« Reply #1 on: December 12, 2017, 23:14:31 pm »
Hi, welcome:)

You've a sleepy one on your hands, to be sleeping such long naps off 1hr A times is unusual at 11 weeks.

14.30 wake (often need to wake him), feed, activity 15.30 nap (sometimes need to shush pat a bit longer like 5 min to calm, sometimes need to pat until he's asleep for 10 min)
What's happening in this A time?

30min wakings from naps are often due to being overtired - are you able to creep in at 25min and see if you can hold your hand on him or shush/pat him through so he doesn't wake? These are usually reasonably easy to resettle because baby is still tired but the secret is to be there before he gets worked up. It is possible, though, that his sleep cycles are 30mins instead of the typical 40mins as they tend to extend around this age so... he may be undertired and may be protesting because he's not ready for a nap. I think given how he is through the rest of the day, try shush/pat from 25min to 35min or thereabouts into the pm nap and see if that helps.

Ideally, babies of this age have a 12hr day and a 12hr night. If he's up for the day at 8am, that's an 8pm bedtime and a dreamfeed at 11.

Unfortunately, what you've written sounds like witching hour antics. You can try those suggestions I've made for the afternoon nap and see if it helps but at least some of the screaming will likely continue for a little while longer.

Also, he's at an age that a growth spurt may be upon you - worth feeding if he's screaming and seeing if that helps - supply is often lower in the late afternoon/evening as you've been active rather than resting all day.

Offline n.ip

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Re: 11-week-old late afternoon/evening screaming
« Reply #2 on: December 13, 2017, 09:47:15 am »
O thanks for replying so promptly.
Have to say I do doubt myself if I'm keeping his A time too short, but he seems to fuss more if I change activity and try to extend his A time and it takes much more shush pat to put him down for his naps.
Knowing what's coming up in the late afternoon, i tend to keep his 2.30 A time rather low key - like listening to some calming classical music and some "chatting" with me and last 10-15 min wind down.
I had tried extending his naps a while back with little success. I'll try again and if failed I'll try feed him again. Though yes I did think about the witching hour thing..., especially as he's now so good at going down for his naps at other times of the day (he used to fight naps all day!).
It make sense to have bedtime at 8. I brought it forward (or attempt to anyway) as we have such a messed up late afternoon. It does seem his screaming stop around 8ish/9, maybe he knows that's bedtime?!

Offline becj86

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Re: 11-week-old late afternoon/evening screaming
« Reply #3 on: December 14, 2017, 05:58:34 am »
It might be worth trying a longer A time just for that afternoon one that you're keeping quite lowkey. as he may just be really UT.

Is he definitely sleeping for those whole long naps in the morning?

Offline n.ip

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Re: 11-week-old late afternoon/evening screaming
« Reply #4 on: January 03, 2018, 21:14:32 pm »
Thanks for all your suggestions.

He's now 14 weeks. I've stretched his A time and cut short his lunchtime nap in particular and he's been going down for his afternoon naps with much less protesting and can nap longer with a little patting to extend beyond 45 min.

We are still however really struggling at bedtime. I'm in the dark 2-3 hours each night to get him to sleep. No matter what time i put him down, earlier like 6 or later like 8 pm, longer last nap like 2 hours or short 30 min cat nap, longer 2 hour or shorter 1 hour gap between last nap and bedtime, we're still not winning. Shush pat swaddle white noise plus for bedtime only I've been throwing in the dummy, it invariable takes until around 9 pm before he would be asleep with his dummy. I did think it was witching hour, but i see no sign of it improving even though he's now 3 months...

I feel the 4 month sleep regression is also starting to creep in. He was sleeping from dream feed generally till 5 am until about a week ago he started waking at 1/2am then 4/5am them 6am again, not all wakings were genuinely hungry. I feed him if it's more than 3 hours from the last waking otherwise i pat him back to sleep.

I'm getting really exhausted and desperate, and am contemplating sleep training for bedtime with PUPD. Have i missed anything? Any other ideas??

This is our latest routine :
7.30 wake, feed, 1h15 activities
8.45 nap #1
10.15/30 feed, 1h30 activities
12 nap #2
1.30 feed, 1h15-30 activities
3 nap #3 (often need brief patting to extend beyond 45 min)
4 feed, 1h15-30 activities
5.15/30 nap #4 (sometimes in buggy)
6 sit with us to have dinner, story
6.30 bedtime routine (bath, massage, bottle feed, etc)
7.15-30 into bed and bedtime battle until around 9
10/10.30 dream feed
On demand overnight

Offline n.ip

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Re: 11-week-old late afternoon/evening screaming
« Reply #5 on: January 04, 2018, 09:02:44 am »
It hits hard when he was such a good night sleeper and then it's suddenly gone!
He woke up at 1am, 3, 4.45, twice more between 5 and 7! I fed him at 1 and 4.45. At 3 I decided to pat shush as he ate my very long ago but unlike his usual he was having none of it and it took 45 min with dummy to settle him back to sleep!
I hope his daytime nap won't deteriorate too...
So if I do start sleep train with PUPD, what do i do with the shush pat? In the day I tend to just pat for a couple of min till he's calm then let him do the falling asleep himself, but come evening and night time i tend to pat until he's asleep cos he's more fidgety. This is all new and I want to get it right for him. Thanks in advance for your help!

Offline becj86

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Re: 11-week-old late afternoon/evening screaming
« Reply #6 on: January 04, 2018, 11:10:00 am »
Ok, so if he's having a 30-45min nap last thing in the afternoon as per the EAS you've written there, he'll need about 1hr-1:15 A time before he's asleep for the night. He's probably OT if BT happens as per that routine.

Unfortunately babies don't read books and sometimes witching hour still happens after 3 months. It can also be overstimulation if other children/dad come home just betfore bedtime.

Its quite reasonable to think he may be in a growth spurt, if he's still feeding more frequently at night in 2 weeks you can think about shifting calories to the daytime slowly but really the advice is to be feeding on demand. Its worth thinking about other reasons babies might wake at night and checking those aren't part of the picture but feeding every 3hr througb the night is still normal at this age.

Hugs xx you sound tired!