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Thread: Up all night feeding 5 mo, not sure I can keep this up

  1. #1

    Default Up all night feeding 5 mo, not sure I can keep this up

    My daughter is about 5 1/2 months old and has been a relatively good sleeper-nothing earth shattering but we usually have managed a dream feed and then 1 wake up at some point in the night, and on some occasions she has slept right through after her dream feed. But For the last 3 nights she has basically woken every 2hrs screaming for food, which she takes and then goes back to sleep until the next screaming. She has been feeding a bit less in the day, but in total is feeding for a good hour and a half longer per 24hr period than she was a few weeks back.

    I am EBF her (no pumping, all from breast) and I really don't want to give her a bottle of pumped milk or formula but this pattern is starting to kill me, I am just so tired. She also is a really bad napper so I can't catch up with sleep in the day.

    Not started solids yet (sticking to advice to wait til 6 months) and we don't cosleep (not for me)- she is in a cot next to the bed.

    I guess it's probably a growth spurt? I have read every forum/bf advice page out there (plenty of time on my hands while she feeds) but wondered if I am missing something....? And kind of seeking moral support that it is worth keeping this up. Can anyone help?

  2. #2

    Default Re: Up all night feeding 5 mo, not sure I can keep this up

    Sorry should have said weight gain has been bang on her percentile line since she was about 3 weeks old and we have about 2 poops per day and 4-6 wet nappies as well.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    21,262

    Default Re: Up all night feeding 5 mo, not sure I can keep this up

    Up every 2 hours- what fun!

    I know it's awful, but when baby is gaining weight normally, this sort of return to frequent nighttime feeding is normal, and to a certain extent to be expected. Some of the things that result in frequent night waking include:
    - growth spurts
    - new developmental milestones
    - separation anxiety
    - teething
    - illness (e.g. ear infection)

    The first thing to do is to rule out illness- take her to the doc and have someone look in her ears. Then take a look at her gums- if you see a tooth coming through, then that might be causing the waking, and some cool tethers and Infant Tylenol before bed may help. If neither of those things are the issue, then your goal should be to find a way to roll with the night-waking, and make it less disruptive for you. Instead of having her in a cot nearby, try taking her into bed with you. If that doesn't help, try napping with her during the day. If none of that works... Let us know!
    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!"

  4. #4

    Default Re: Up all night feeding 5 mo, not sure I can keep this up

    This happened to me too, around the 4.5 - 5 mo mark, going from dream feed + sleeping through the night to multiple wakings per night, about every 2-3 hours.

    I'd say the worst lasted about a week or two. We are now at 6 mos and things have calmed down a bit - we are down to dream feed + 1 waking per night. Can't really give any specific advice just that it ends, eventually!

  5. #5

    Default Re: Up all night feeding 5 mo, not sure I can keep this up

    Thank you for your comments and support. Settling in for another night now, dream feeding now in the hope it gets her through a bit longer (not very optimistic!). Will call the doc tomorrow if no improvement. Getting a bit sick of EVERYONE telling me to wean now and to give formula at night so was nice you didn't say that!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    21,262

    Default Re: Up all night feeding 5 mo, not sure I can keep this up

    One trick that a lot of moms use to cope with stupid advice about sleep is to never discuss their babies' sleep patterns with people who aren't going to be helpful. Save the conversations about sleep for other nursing mamas, ones who know what it's like to have a baby wake up a lot, and who didn't switch to formula just because their baby was sleeping like a baby! If the unhelpful people ask how your child is sleeping, you can just smile and say "Great!" They don't have to know the details.
    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

    Default Re: Up all night feeding 5 mo, not sure I can keep this up

    Yeah, I know but I like to complain (seek sympathy) . I will try to grow a pair! Don't know anyone who has ebf through this-everyone has given up at this stage.

    Last night a marginal improvement-went down 8pm, then up 10, 12 and 2, then for the day at 6. Will keep plugging away.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    france
    Posts
    129

    Default Re: Up all night feeding 5 mo, not sure I can keep this up

    I have found that co sleeping really helped me with night feeds. That whole sitting up getting baby from the crib, feeding sitting upright equated to more disturbance than I realized. We happened to fall into co sleeping but when I put the baby in her crib the other night--which is just next to the bed-- I realized I was much more tired the next day. Back to co sleeping and sidelying nursing! (side lying nursing didn't become possible til about 5-6 mos for us)

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    Louisville, Kentucky
    Posts
    242

    Default Re: Up all night feeding 5 mo, not sure I can keep this up

    This reminds me of my daughter, who is six months old. We also have the same set up- with her crib next to the bed (I sometimes wish we could co sleep, but I can't get over my own anxieties about it, and sleep pretty poorly when we try- waking up panicked, 'Where's the baby!?'). We go through this periodically too. Her norm is a dream feed and one night feed, but every few weeks we'll have a few days with a lot more, and also more sporadically, no waking at all. She's not a 'good' napper either; so I hear ya! Those days following the wakeful nights can be hard! But at least in my experience, we return to the norm again. Hang in there! You're doing awesome!
    Last edited by @llli*erin.in.middletown; August 28th, 2014 at 09:16 AM.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    Cheshire, UK
    Posts
    7

    Default Re: Up all night feeding 5 mo, not sure I can keep this up

    This sounds really familiar! I stuck with EBF though exhausted and am
    so glad I did (still going at 16 months). A few things that helped:
    - before introduction of solids, a long feed at 4pm for an hour or so
    - bf as much as poss during the day
    - when my daughter learnt to roll over she slept much better though still wakes up now
    - rule out any medical problems

    The Dr Sears website has some useful advice too.
    Hope things improve. Just knowing your not the only one prepared to get up & feed all night sometimes helps!

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