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Thread: Sleep issues/help/advice

  1. #1

    Default Sleep issues/help/advice

    Hi I am new here. My son is 6 1/2 months old now and is breastfeed since birth with no issues. My problem is his sleep habits. First of all, I have tried putting him is his crib and he is up so much during the night that I have now resorted to cosleeping. He nurses throughout the night every time he awakens (between 4-6 times) I have to get up for work at 6:30 am so it is really hard on me. Also as soon as I get up in the morning he won't sleep even though he is tired and my DH is not very happy with the situation. My son also will not nap at my mom's (who watches him while I am at work) and he is exhausted when I pick him up.

    So my question is do you think that my son cannot sleep without nursing every time he awakens and that's why he won't nap/sleep either because I am not around? What can I do to change this behavior? I really feel his lack of sleep is not healthy for his developing brain.

    Please help, thank you so much!!!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    20,607

    Default Re: Sleep issues/help/advice

    Welcome to the forum! I'm sorry you're experiencing the sleepless nights. They stink. But they are also absolutely normal. Babies' sleep cycles are shorter than adults'. They enter periods of light sleep more often, and wake more frequently. And when they wake, they usually need help getting back to sleep, which means having someone nurse them, rock them, give them a back-rub, etc. A breastfed baby will almost always seek the breast for assistance in getting back to sleep, because it is so soothing and also because babies don't know that they aren't supposed to be hungry at night. A night-waking baby may be genuinely hungry!

    So don't worry about the lack of sleep not being healthy for your baby's brain. Again, the sleep pattern you describe is normal- inconvenient and frustrating, but normal.

    Not napping with grandma is definitely an issue. Maybe she needs to change up her game? If she's thinking that getting a baby to nap means giving a bottle and then popping baby in the crib, she probably needs to improve her skills! Many babies require more than that to get them down for a nap. Rocking in a rocking chair, a ride in the stroller or car, or swinging in the swing often help babies nap. Often a baby needs to be held while napping. Again, this is not a problem- just an inconvenience.

    I suggest taking a look at Elizabeth Pantley's book "The No-Cry Sleep Solution" for some tips on gentle ways to get a baby to sleep longer, more independently, and more consistently.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  3. #3

    Default Re: Sleep issues/help/advice

    Thanks for the reply and the recommendation of the No Cry Solution. My mother does rock him and soon as she puts him down he is up again whether it's in the swing etc. It's like he can't fall/stay asleep without me there. He takes naps fine at home though. Is this usually the norm with breastfed babies?

    My Ped also told me to let him CIO. I have been very reluctant to try this method. It seems to upset me when he starts crying but I have been told this method will work to help them sleep. I really don't know what to do. I think I will try other methods first from the book.

  4. #4
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    May 2006
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    Default Re: Sleep issues/help/advice

    Not being able to sleep with grandma or at daycare but sleeping fine at home is definitely the norm- for some babies. Doesn't matter if they're breastfed or bottle-fed. Some babies are just very picky about getting their sleep needs met. My first baby would nap contentedly in her crib. My second is much more challenging. If I try to put her in her crib for a nap, the same crib she sleeps in all night long, she is up 10 minutes later, crying and cranky! I have to take her for a long walk in the stroller or a drive in the car, and then leave her to nap in stroller or carseat. Maybe that sort of "crib on wheels" option would be an avenue for grandma to experiment with?

    Your pediatrician's advice... CIO is very contovesial parenting advice. And what your pediatrician gave you is parenting advice, not medical advice. This essay talks about many of the reasons why CIO isn't good for babies: http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/...-crying-it-out. And if you find that your baby's cries make you distressed, there's a good reason for that. You know your baby best!
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
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    56

    Default Re: Sleep issues/help/advice

    I was in the same position as you and refused to use the cry it out method at first. But our sleep behavior got to a point where she could not sleep unless my nipple was in her mouth. We tried the advice from the "No-Cry" book but it didn't work in our situation. At 5.5 months, we did resort to the Ferber method. I know it's not for everyone but in 4 nights she went from up every 30 minutes to find my nipple to sleeping in her crib with waking up only once in a 9 hour span. We weaned that night feeding over the next couple of weeks because she wasn't using it for food but for comfort. Now she sleeps for 9 hours in her crib. If she wakes up, she only whines for a couple of minutes and goes back to bed all by herself.

    I would recommend you read Dr. Ferber's Book "Solve Your Child's Sleep Problems" to learn more. I know it's not for everyone but it worked great for us and I can tell that my daughter and me are both sleeping better.
    ~DD born 6/7/11
    Successfully and while at work for 1 year. Now we are still till who knows...

  6. #6
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    Jun 2011
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    Default Re: Sleep issues/help/advice

    We also did a bit of a modified CIO at 7 months for our little guy and he sleeps much better now, stretches of 6-9 hours usually, I still feed him once in the night. He also naps better at my parents' during the day. They wrap him in a loose swaddle using a sheet, that seems to help and he takes a pacifier. I also get up at 6:30 and have an hour commute in fairly heavy traffic, so I know the need for some sleep!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
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    Default Re: Sleep issues/help/advice

    In my opinion, there is a difference between crying because of distress and fussing. Some babies need to fuss to relax. My little guy (who will be 7 months this Sunday) sometimes just needs to wiggle and fuss a bit. We go in if he's freaking out, but mostly, we give him a chance to settle himself.

    I will say that my husband (the genius) figured out that our little guy doesn't want to be rocked. He seriously just wants to be put in the bed. Made me a sad mama since my daughter wanted to rock to go to sleep and - of course - at 7 years old, no longer needs that (well, ok, hasn't needed it for 6 years, but you get my point).

    Every baby is different. Every situation is different. Have you read Weissbluth's "Healthy Sleep Habits Happy Baby?" I really like a lot of what he has to say, and it makes sense/truly applies to my situation (both kids). He isn't necessarily a proponent of CIO, but he offers it as one way to handle the situation.

    Good luck. I know you are exhausted!
    Miss Sassy Pants 1/9/05 BF 13 months
    The Animal 5/25/11 . . . BF 15 months
    Just welcomed Flash 4/24/13 . . . getting to know each other
    Married to the man of my dreams.

    I'm a blogging mama too: www.clutteredgenius.com

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
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    Landof2toddlers, Oregon
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    Default Re: Sleep issues/help/advice

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*brady11 View Post
    Thanks for the reply and the recommendation of the No Cry Solution. My mother does rock him and soon as she puts him down he is up again whether it's in the swing etc. It's like he can't fall/stay asleep without me there. He takes naps fine at home though. Is this usually the norm with breastfed babies?
    either of my babies has been happy to nap without being held. When they are very small baby wearing makes this much easier and means you can get stuff done without putting them down. Both my kids could.not.be.put.down. It is a pain, but not a "problem" as such.
    proud but exhausted working mammy to two high needs babies

    • my surprise baby: the one and only D-Man born 3 weeks late (5/5/08) at 9 lbs 14 oz and 21.5 inches, and
    • the shock H-Girl born about a week late (10/7/09) at 8lbs 15oz and 20.75 inches.


    If I am here I am covered in baby (probably two) and fighting for control of the keyboard.

    Family beds are awesome

    Wondering if you have PPD? Take the screening and see your doctor. You deserve to feel better.

  9. #9
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    Jun 2008
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    Default Re: Sleep issues/help/advice

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*richmama View Post
    In my opinion, there is a difference between crying because of distress and fussing. Some babies need to fuss to relax.
    Crying is crying. moaning, groaning and "singing" can all be things kids need to do to calm/relax. But crying is communication and they are trying to tell you they *need* something. It is you (exceptionally difficult and tiring and exasperating) job to try and figure out what. Parenting is the hardest job anyone will ever do. And it starts being difficult the minute they are born (if not before).
    proud but exhausted working mammy to two high needs babies

    • my surprise baby: the one and only D-Man born 3 weeks late (5/5/08) at 9 lbs 14 oz and 21.5 inches, and
    • the shock H-Girl born about a week late (10/7/09) at 8lbs 15oz and 20.75 inches.


    If I am here I am covered in baby (probably two) and fighting for control of the keyboard.

    Family beds are awesome

    Wondering if you have PPD? Take the screening and see your doctor. You deserve to feel better.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    178

    Default Re: Sleep issues/help/advice

    to PP. It takes some time to figure out what each cry means. Our little man has his "freak out" cry, his "I'm bored" cry, his "singing to himself" (which really has turned into singing lately), etc.
    Miss Sassy Pants 1/9/05 BF 13 months
    The Animal 5/25/11 . . . BF 15 months
    Just welcomed Flash 4/24/13 . . . getting to know each other
    Married to the man of my dreams.

    I'm a blogging mama too: www.clutteredgenius.com

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