Author Topic: 6 mo old night wakings, too short naps, E & S makes EASY HARD!  (Read 272 times)

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Offline ymariyay

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Im having a very hard time transitioning my spirited six month old from 3 naps to 2. Also his night wakings have become terrible ever since he approached 6 months. He went from zero to 1 or 2 night wakings at 5 mo to 3-4 wakings before 12 (those are easier to settle him) and  ALWAYS another around 3AM and every hour thereafter until 6:45 am wakeup. Unfortunately after 3am I just dont have the stamina to settle him in the crib as i need my sleep and take him into bed with me. He sleeps just as terribly and wakes me up as he's a fidgety sleeper. Also he eats only when terribly hungry (ballpark every 4 hrs) and only takes in 2-4 oz most days instead of 6. I spend the rest of his awake time trying to get him to finish the rest of his 6 oz bottle.

My six-month old's typical day looks like this:

6:45 wakeup
7:30 E- 6oz (if i try to feed earlier he's usually not interested)
9:30-10:15 nap
11:30 E 6oz + solids
1:00-2:15 nap
3:30 E 6oz
4:30-5:15 catnap
6:30 E 6oz + solids
7-7:30 bedtime (can take him an hour to go down, naps are much easier)

He used to go down reasonably well with shush-pat at 4-5 mo (pu/pd was too stimulating) now shush pat never works, ended up resorting to rocking, holding. Started falling asleep in my arms and wakes up at 15 min intervals that first hour I put him down. Tried PU/PD at afternoon nap yesterday, it worked after 15 min or so, but bedtime was a DISASTER. First of all my baby needs A LOT of help to calm himself down. To illustrate my point, If i leave him in the crib or in any one place longer than 15 min he starts going bonkers; before he was able to crawl I had to redirect him to a different task/environment every 15 min but now that he can crawl he does it himself. Bedtime is the same. I hear that mantra cry and every time after 1-3 min it just escalates to a full-blown wail. Pick him up, its a mantra cry put him down wail. after 20 min of this it was just wailing the whole time and I ended up holding him longer by the 45 minute mark and he was just screaming in my arms like someone was god forbid cutting him open. It was devastating. (Tried CIO once and after ten min couldnt take it any longer. this sounded just the same except he was in my arms doing this for 15 min!) Per tracey hogs I gave him a bottle at this point and he went to sleep in his crib after that, exhausted. Woke up a few times before 1 am each time was pretty easy to settle as soon as i put in paci he settled himself. (Yes he's using paci as a prop) At 3 am I took a bit longer to get to him (1-2 min) and he was inconsolable. Took him into bed with me bc of my own exhaustion it took him a while to settle but finally he did. woke up once more then up for the day at 6:45 am.

So as you can see I'm struggling with several issues here:
1. Too-short naps (cant re-settle him back to sleep, if I do only sleeps another 15 min)
2. Too many naps (cant go from 3-2 bc he is genuinely tired after 2.5 hrs awake time, sometimes earlier)
3. Difficulty with EASY because wont take a full feeding. naps often end up overlapping with next feed. He loves solids but Im afraid to space them out from the bottle bc 1) concerned he wont take bottle if it's only been 2 hours from solids and 2) it would overlap with naps.
4. Frequent wakeups either bc of Paci as a prop or bc poor naps but probably both
5. Difficulty putting down to bed (can take an hr)  Now especially since trying pu/pd and having to feed him after 45 min of horrendous hysterical crying im afraid he'll just start wanting the bottle to fall asleep
5. Night wakings ( we cut out dream feed recently after growth spurt had passed, I only dreamfeed if he didnt take in at least 24 oz that day.
6. Feedings
7. Paci as a prop (i use dream with me swaddle where hands are by face so he can roll, etc. I would like him to use his hands instead of paci to self sooth but it only aggravates him further since its not a paci, further if i take one arm out hes just playing with his feet :( - tried to wean cold turkey cries hysterically no settling 45 min in he's hungry and i give a bottle so this is no help. the slow removal method worked once out of five times it only aggravates him and then its inconsolable crying indefinitely till i resort to paci

Please Please help!

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Re: 6 mo old night wakings, too short naps, E & S makes EASY HARD!
« Reply #1 on: March 14, 2018, 09:35:12 am »
Hello and welcome to BW forums.

Have you considered reflux or silent reflux at all?  Or seen a doc about the small feeds and difficulty settling and sleeping?
I ask because it sounds so much like my own DS who had silent reflux but it was not diagnosed until almost 6 months and even then it was mainly because the ladies here on the forum recognised the symptoms I was describing and encouraged me to push to see a paediatrician as our GP had said there was no need for medication.  The inconsolable screaming in arms is awful, I went through exactly that with my DS and this was even when he was a fully independent sleeper - LOs in pain can't calm or sleep properly.
have you tried elevating the head end of the cot with a safe sleep wedge or cot blocks?  My DS needed medication to control his reflux but he also needed the elevation.

Solids might help him take more milk because the food in his tummy may help to keep the milk down.  You can also cook with formula milk (I am assuming he is formula fed as you know exactly how much he is taking - but if you are using breast milk you can also cook with that) if you wanted to let him increase his solids intake but still have the benefit of it being fully balanced for baby (ie not cows milk).  A very simple white pudding can be made literally just using cornflour in the milk and stirring constantly over heat whilst it thickens up. you can then let it set in little individual pots and serve cold with a spoon.  You can also use formula to make egg custard (no sugar version) or white/cheesy sauce for pasta etc.
My DS also loved solids, I think he must have found it much more comfortable because he ate as though I had been starving him for 6 months.  Formula or breast milk is still LO's primary food until 12 months but if you have a LO who just won't take it you can offer dairy in other forms (including cheese and yoghurt).

Please try to feel reassured that no matter how much your baby cries in your arms it is not the same as leaving him to cry alone. His cortisol levels will be low because he knows he is safe with you - even if he is very upset. I would suggest a trip to the doc and explain the things you have mentioned here, perhaps also read through symptoms of silent reflux as not all babies bring up tons of milk with reflux.

I would suggest not using PUPD for now because this can really aggravate reflux - just in case it is.  Instead I would use the rocking and holding.  Rocking can be weaned in a similar way to patting (patting aggravated my DS's reflux so I also rocked in arms and in the cot using a firm hand and very small rocking motions).

LOs with reflux often find sucking helps to keep acid down which could be why he is finding comfort in the paci - I would continue using it for now if it is helping.

In terms of routine you might find he goes down more easily after 3hrs A time and may sleep better both day and night.
You could offer the solids meals 1 hr after milk feeds which could help to see him through his nap and until the next milk feed.  Perhaps consider introducing breakfast solids rather than the evening solids.

hope this helps some.
« Last Edit: March 14, 2018, 09:38:20 am by creations »