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Thread: 5 month old wakes up to 8 times a night - trapped wind?

  1. #1
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    Oct 2013
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    Default 5 month old wakes up to 8 times a night - trapped wind?

    Hi everyone, I hope someone here can help or suggest something to try before I go insane
    My DD is 5 months and is EBF. I co-sleep and so far she hasn't been sleeping through the night, but she'd do a 4 hour stretch from about 10:30-11pm and then would feed and go back to sleep in literally minutes, then wake up after 3 hours, feed, then wake up after two hours or so. Not ideal, but since she would feed quickly we'd both be back to sleep in minutes and wake up around 7.30 or 8 am.
    For the last few nights her sleep has become more and more erratic and she sleeps for max 2 hours at a time... From about 1-2am she's squirming, grunting and thrashing around, pulling her legs up and occasionally farts, then sleeps a bit, then the cycle repeats. She is also very quickly turning her head from side to side and now started to scratch the side of her head as well - weird. A lot of the time she doesn't even want to eat, but it's obvious to me that she is in pain or something is bothering her. I am EXHAUSTED and don't think I can deal with this much longer. I'm also worried that she's not getting enough sleep and won't develop properly! She has three naps a day, each one is about 40mins-1hr, she just won't sleep for longer.
    I already gave up eating dairy and soy (though I only gave up obvious sources of dairy I will now try to give it up completely), as I think she's sensitive to them.
    Someone on another forum suggested that she might have silent reflux - I read about it and she does display some symptoms, but my husband thinks I'm a hypochondriac and just looking for things to worry about.
    Last night was terrible, DD would only settle on the breast - it's a bit crazy as it looks like she eats more frequently at night than during the day!

    HELP!

  2. #2
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    Jun 2013
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    Default Re: 5 month old wakes up to 8 times a night - trapped wind?

    My LO is currently 8 months old, and a couple months ago he had a phase sort of like that where he would thrash and turn his head and not settle. I'm still not sure what it was, but it passed fairly quickly so I just chalked it up to one of those developmental things that happens. He alsodid the thrashing along with moaning right before his first teeth popped through recently. If its only been happening for a couple days, I would honestly just go to bed early so you can make up the crappy quality of sleep with a little extra quantity, and wait a few more days to see if it changes. I know these babies are confusing sometimes, and tiring often, but fortunately almost everything is a phase. (

  3. #3
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    Default Re: 5 month old wakes up to 8 times a night - trapped wind?

    P.s to me those 4 and 3 hour stretches of sleep do sound ideal -- I haven't gotten one of those for around four and a half months! Mine is up probably 3-5 times from 10pm-6am. I think most babies this young don't sleep the whole night, and probably shouldn't because that's a really long time to go without milk. They need sleep, but food and comfort are equally valid needs.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: 5 month old wakes up to 8 times a night - trapped wind?

    Sorry, one more thing -- any chance she has an ear infection? The head scratching made me wonder that.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: 5 month old wakes up to 8 times a night - trapped wind?

    Thanks for replying Reading.mom!
    I think DD had a bit of a cold just after Christmas but it seems to have gone now after a few nights with Calpol. She doesn't seem to have a fever and is pretty happy during the day, only crying/whinging when hungry/tired/needing a nappy change, but then I don't really know what the signs of an ear infection would be. Always thought there'd be a fever and more whiny, distressed baby!
    4 hour stretches are rare for me, on a good night she'll do 3 hrs and then will be up every 2 hours, every 1.5hrs. On a bad night it will be 2.5 hours at the most, then almost every hour (or so I think because I'm half asleep and can't always check what time it is on my phone
    A few nights ago she randomly did a 5.5 hr stretch which was a blessing and made me think that maybe the 4 month sleep regression was over and things will become better. But I guess not!
    She used to be so good around 3 months, she'd only wake up 2-3 times a night and during those wakings would eat quickly and go straight to sleep. Now she's moaning, squirming, eats, then I think she's asleep and 5 minutes later she's moving her head and pulling legs up. Argh.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: 5 month old wakes up to 8 times a night - trapped wind?

    Is she teething? Teething or an ear infection are both good explanations for what you're seeing. And ear infections can be cryptic. Sometimes it's worth taking baby in to the pediatrician and having someone check her ears.
    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!"

  7. #7
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    Default Re: 5 month old wakes up to 8 times a night - trapped wind?

    She has been displaying signs of teething for a while so maybe that's it? It comes and goes, we do have better and worse nights...
    She's drooling a lot, chewing on her fingers and anything she can find (my knuckles included!), scratching/pulling at her ears/side of her head.
    I'm going to take her to the doctor on Monday to exclude ear infection

  8. #8
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    Default Re: 5 month old wakes up to 8 times a night - trapped wind?

    I think everything mentioned here is great advice!

    For what it's worth, my 13 month old has still never made it longer than about a 2-3 hour stretch without nursing overnight. At 5 months, we were easily in the 8-10 nursings a night range, and that lasted until she was about 11-12 months old. No health issues, never had an ear infection, nothing of the sort. Sorry, I know you probably don't want to hear that, but I always feel inclined to share my experience with a high night needs baby, just so that anyone else who reads knows that it can (under most circumstances) be quite normal, and that they aren't alone!

    Try not to worry yourself about baby not developing properly. Frequent nightwaking is normal for an infant, no matter what popular opinion would otherwise suggest! And maybe try not to check the time when you are awake. In my experience, clockwatching makes nightwaking about a thousand times more painful.
    Apologies for the short responses! I'm usually responding one-handed on my smartphone!

  9. #9
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    Default Re: 5 month old wakes up to 8 times a night - trapped wind?

    Thanks Sonogirl! Yes, I was hoping to hear 'it's a phase' or 'it's teething/or something!' hehe, but I guess all babies are different and it's good to hear that it's totally normal.
    It's just so hard to get LO back to sleep once she starts squirming! She used to just eat (without fully waking up even!) and we'd both fall asleep but now she eats, rests for a minute or two and then starts grunting again...
    There's no way she's getting enough sleep (or rather, the recommended 11-12 hours the books are talking about!) as her day naps are quite short (although recently she started having a longer morning nap, she even managed 2 hours the other day!). But, like I said, she's not super grumpy during the day or anything, she'll pull away from the boob screaming every now and then but that doesn't happen too often.
    I'll give her some calpol tonight to see if that helps (I guess if she's teething it should help, right?)

  10. #10
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    Default Re: 5 month old wakes up to 8 times a night - trapped wind?

    Oh, absolutely, she very well could be teething! If this is new behavior and different from her normal, no reason to assume it won't pass quickly. My super-frequent night nursing babe generally does not wake all the way up if the breast is right there for her, unless something else is getting to her. But we also have weeks like you are experiencing right now peppered in here and there. In our case, emerging developmental skills seem to be the biggest sleep disruptor. Every time my girl's had a particularly rough stretch of nights, she comes out the other end of it doing something totally new. It's like her poor brain just can't turn off when she's trying to work some new skill out!

    I will freely admit I have a general disdain for "the books," as most of the sleeping "guides" out there aren't based on science or facts, but are rather designed to sell many copies and provide parents with a quick fix. Very few of them acknowledge that there is a range of what is considered normal infant sleeping behavior, because I don't think that bit of information would sell very many books at all! If your baby seems happy, alert, and healthy most of the time, then I would suggest she is probably getting the sleep that her own unique little self needs. For what it's worth, my daughter never took long daytime naps, either--but she's happy, healthy, and it seems to be just what she needs.
    Apologies for the short responses! I'm usually responding one-handed on my smartphone!

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