Author Topic: 7.5MO - short naps, night wakings, early waking, OT, desperate please HELP!!!  (Read 1434 times)

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Offline sltpoppy

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My 7.5 month old is a textbook baby with touchy/spirited aspects to him. We followed EASY until he was 3 months old, then switched to a different sleep program which we followed till he was 6 months old. At 6 months the program recommended dropping to 2 naps which was way too much for my baby to handle, resulting in massive over tiredness. The schedule was as follows:
7:00am wake
9:30-10:00am nap
12:30-2:30pm nap
6:30 bedtime

Looking back I should have stuck with EASY as he was sleeping 10.5 hour stretches at 3 months and generally sleeping really well.
Since getting into this 3-2 nap transition mess,  he then got ill and had 2 nights of waking every 20minutes and sleeping on us as he couldn't breathe. I think we've now also hit the 8 month sleep regression as he has learned to crawl, sit up, stand up and cruise along the sofa in the last couple of weeks. I'm really lost to know how to get back on track. He's also definitely suffering from separation anxiety - cries when I leave the room or move away from him, cries when he comes off the boob at night/is put down into his cot, becomes really clingy and wants to be held as soon as he starts feeling a bit tired, I think because he knows he'll be going to bed soon and separated from me.

He has always been on the lower end of sleep needs - when we were following EASY at 3 months he was doing 2 hour wake times, any less and we were getting short naps. He naturally does around 11.5 hours at night, and doesn't really tag on lost day sleep at night.
Our current issues are short naps, early waking, lots of night wakings and sleep cries and only going back to sleep when fed to drowsy at night.

Currently our day is something like this:
5:30/6:00am wake
8:45/9:00am nap - anything from 25 to 45 minutes
12:30/1:00 nap - anything from 1 hour (generally with an overtired wake at 30minutes, settling himself back to sleep then waking after 1 hour total) to 2hours in length.
6:00/6:30 bedtime depending on whether he has a 30 minutes catnap in the afternoon if he only did 1 hour at lunch.

At night we are having lots of sleep cries from bedtime to around 10pm, then full wakes at around 11, 2, 4 then up at 6am. He will only go back to sleep if fed (but self-settles for all naps and bedtime and has done since 3 months). He isn't fed until asleep, he is awake but drowsy when he goes back into his cot. I have tried not to feed him at the night wakes but he has screamed for 1.5 hours and not calmed down at all, and unfortunately we live in an apartment and had a neighbour complain that they couldn't sleep at night from the screaming. I've been trying to reduce the number of minutes I feed him for so it's definitely only to soothe and not a proper feed. He's doing well with solids, on 3 meals with protein at lunch time.

I really need help getting him onto an age-appropriate nap routine for his sleep needs, which I'm hoping will reduce the overtired night wakes and sleep cries and advice on how to get him self-settling at night wakes, given that he can't be crying for hours on end due to us living in an apartment.

Thank you so much to anyone who replies and tries to help us!
« Last Edit: October 18, 2018, 06:33:09 am by sltpoppy »

Offline creations

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Hi there
Welcome back to BW :)

When LOs learn a new skill such as pulling to standing and cruising they often go through a phase of SA (separation anxiety) in a sense this helps to keep them safe through their new found mobility.  If they didn't have that fear of being away from you their cruising could lead them into danger, so it helps self preservation.  The best way through any phase of SA is to spend as much time as you possible can with LO, put off any housework that can be put off, take LO everywhere in the house with you even if previously you could pop out to the toilet just take him or tell him where you are going and invite him to come along.

AT this age I would expect to see at least 3hrs A time before a nap.  A LO would be high sleep needs to go down for a nap on less than that really.  Looking at your routine I'd also suggest that the last A time is too long and leading to some of the NWs due to OT.
I would increase the first A time to 3hrs and encourage a better nap, he might also be happier to go down with less anxiety if the A is longer.  Stay with him and keep your hands on him to help him relax if needed. See if you can extend the nap either by resettling once he wakes or by using the W2S method, here's a link:
https://babywhispererforums.com/index.php?topic=223809.0
look at naps option 1. You sooth right through the wake up time, beginning before he wakes and continuing until he is back asleep and moved into a deep sleep stage. The reassurance of you being there should help him get a better nap if you try this for several days, it may not work on the first few days with the phase of SA he has and to help him overcome the habit of short napping.
You may also need an A time of longer than 3hrs to get him to nap longer in the morning.  Perhaps increase to 3hr 15 if there is no change after 3 or 4 days.  And again increase to 3hr 30 if needed (more so for low sleep needs which you said he is).  By 8 months some do one of their A times at 4hrs just to give you an idea of where you could be headed over the next couple of weeks.

Then at the end of the day try to reduce the A time before bed so that it is not this one that is 4hr long. Shifting naps later and having a slightly longer A time in the earlier part of the day will automatically reduce that last A time but if you get short naps one day bring BT earlier to avoid the OT.

we live in an apartment and had a neighbour complain that they couldn't sleep at night from the screaming
Bare in mind your neighbour also chose apartment living, that's a choice *they* made.  You and your baby have as much right to live there as anyone and are not required to stay silent the whole time.  Your neighbour was once a baby keeping other people awake, that's life.
Apartment living is what it is, people have parties, people come home late at night (drunk or with friends, putting the TV on, chatting and laughing), some people work night shifts and need to sleep in the day...that's our world.  Try to shake off the guilt your neighbour has unkindly handed to you and remember you have as much right to live there as anyone, babies are part of our society.  No one wants their LO crying for several hours through the night regardless of how close the neighbours are but you are not doing this on purpose and you are doing your best to comfort your baby.  This is not the same as leaving your baby crying without attention.
Perhaps gently remind the neighbour that babies can and do cry even when in their Mummy's arms...and suggest a pair of ear plugs.


Offline sltpoppy

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Thanks for your reply and for giving me some perspective about our neighbour situation! He is now settling better for his naps which is really good but we are still having issues with his night wakes. He was napping about 3 hours a day but then we ended up with split nights were he was up for 90 minutes in the night so I think this is too much day sleep for him. On a good day he's having 2.5 hours of naps and goes to bed at 7pm, but then he will usually cry out 45 minutes after bedtime, cry out again between 9:30 and 10:30, then wake fully at 11:30, 1:30, 3:30, and will then be up for the day between 5:30 and 6. For all the wakes up to 1:30 he will self-settle back to sleep, after that he just won't resettle without being fed. On a bad night even after feeding he will wake up after 45 mins - hour again and need resettling with a feed. I'm just at a loss with what is going on and how to fix it. The separation anxiety has definitely improved which is good. His molars are pushing through which I've given him some pain relief for at night so I'm not sure if these wakes are over tiredness, teething, hunger or just a settling/feeding habit issue.
Thanks so much for the advice

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Molars can REALLY hurt.  If they are moving or cutting the pain for some LOs can be really bad, even after cutting they continue to move more for quite some time which can still be really painful.  I would think the NWs are due to molars. If possible you can keep the pain meds going at intervals through the day, one before BT and then same a dose for a dream meds (I woke mine just enough so he knew what was happening and generally when I spoke loudly and touched him saying "I am going to give you some medicine") he would open his mouth with the feel of the syringe and would take it and swallow.  He'd be half awake.  If you can do that it might save you one or two of the NWs.
Hunger is still totally normal at this age so a night feed or two is fine.

You could try a 2hr 45 nap time for a week or two and see if it helps the nights?  It could be that reducing naps by 30 mins was too much for him and made him OT.  Long happy NWs would indicate needing to reduce sleep somewhere.  It's possible with some LOs that they need a longer naps and shorter nights until they can properly cope with the reduced day sleep in favour for night sleep.  As example at 2yo mine needed a 2 hr nap but his nights reduced to under 10hrs and then under 9 hrs!  However a shorter nap didn't help him, he needed his sleep spread out and enough of it in the day time.  When he did drop his nap though he moved to 12hr nights (which is more sleep than he was previously getting).


Offline sltpoppy

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Yes canít wait for these molars to be through! Heís actually always preferred his night sleep - if he has longer daynaps we end up with really unsettled nights rather than a shorter consolidated night of sleep and overall he is then more tired and grumpy the next day.  I think Iíve worked out that he was undertired with the 2.5 hours of naps and not OT. Heís now having a max of 1 hour 45 of naps a day and this has given us really settled sleep till midnight, usually one quick wake that my husband resettles around 12:30 and one feed anytime from 2-3am which is great. Heís also a lot happier in the day with the more consolidated night sleep.
Iím just trying to work out his nap times now as we are getting happy early wakes anywhere from 5:30 to 6am so I think his routine still needs tweaking.
This is what he has been doing:
Wakeup 5:30-6am
Nap 9:30/9:40 - was overtired waking at 25 minutes but I could resettle him and he would sleep 1 hour
Nap 2:00 - 35-45 minutes
Bedtime 6:30

Today has been as follows:
5:30 wake
8:50 nap for 1 hour 15 minutes- couldnít keep him awake any lonber
1:40 nap, woke OT after 25 minutes and I resettled him for 1 hour total sleep
Bedtime 6:30

So total 2hours 15 of naps and this gave us another unsettled night where he was awake on and iff between 11:30 and 1am which makes me think too much day sleep again?

He always used to go to bed at 7 but I has been doing lots of early bedtimws up to about 6pm during the beginning of the 3-2 transition and now weíre stuck with this early bedtime, early wake up thing.

Iím not sure whether this is a nap time tweaking issue or whether I need to somehow shift his whole schedule by an hour so heís in bed at 7:30 and up at 6:30-7? It is still a push to get him through to 9:30 for his first nap but I think thatís because the previously schedule I followed had them going down after 2.5 hours in the morning and I think heís just so used to that. I donít want to do it any earlier and reinforce the early wakes. Is it showing early signs of the 2-1 transition? Heís always only eneded a max of about 14 hours sleep total - 2.5 in the day and 11.5 at night but if heís doing 2.5 in the day now weíre getting unsettled nights. Not sure what to do?
Thanks again for listening and the advice!
« Last Edit: October 31, 2018, 23:56:39 pm by sltpoppy »