January 14, 2009,
C.W. asks from Royal Oak, MI on January 13, 2009
11 Month Old Seems like She Has Insomnia!
I know, I know...another mom wanting her baby to sleep better...very original! But I am really curious to know if babies can have insomnia? Over the last 2 weeks, my 11 month old wakes up around 12 or 1 and then stays awake for about 3 or 4 hours! I've tried bringing her into bed with me and I fall in and out of sleep but every time I look over at her she's just staring up at the ceiling. She tosses and turns trying to get comfortable, but mostly she just seems frustrated with not being able to fall asleep. It's really kind of weird (and familiar since I have problems with insomnia too...). If I leave her in the crib, she just kind of cries out about every 20 minutes and then gets quiet again. But I know she's not sleeping because if I check on her she pops right up. She takes great naps during the day - 2, about 1.5 hours each. And she falls right asleep when we first put her to bed. Any ideas??? Am I missing something obvious? Thanks!
D.H. answers from Detroit on January 14, 2009
DD did this around 11-12 months and several friends have told me their children also went through a similar phase. We would go in and rock her for the first week or so that it happened but we were up for 3-4 hours and decided that was good for noone. We left her in her crib and just checked on her and she worked it out in 2 days. People have said they are developing so many new skills at this age that they just want to be up and use them.
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R.H. answers from Detroit on January 14, 2009
Hmm.... I would try cutting out 1 nap. My daughter went down to just 1 nap around the 1 year mark. She may just be sleeping too much during the day. Set a new routine of napping after lunch or something. Keep her nice and active in the morning. The first few days will be a little rough. Baby will be tired. But, keep at it.
It could also be new emergent skills. Is she walking? Is she trying to run? They get excited about new skills and want to try them out ALL the time.
The other thing.. could be growth spurt. When my daughter was 11 months old we went through an entire month of HORRIBLE sleep. She literally was up every 2 hours and sometimes she would just want to be up at 3 in the morning! I was BEAT. Then, I took her for her 1 year check up ... she GREW 1.5 inches in 6 weeks!!!!!
My OB told me there was a study done to see how kids grow. Incrementally or all at once. They found that kids can literally grow overnight by up to 1/4 inch. So, that kind of growth can't be comfortable.
I would start with cutting out 1 nap and go from there.
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G.B. answers from Detroit on January 14, 2009
A lot of babies have sleep variations. The only thing I can suggest is to just give her one nap a day. I think 2 is more sleep than she needs at this point, so her body is treating nighttime like another nap.
Good for you for bringing her into your bed and being so comforting and supportive. This will get better. I don't think she's having insomnia in the adult way. Certainly she's not laying there worrying about the economy or something like that!
You are a good Mama!
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L.O. answers from Detroit on January 13, 2009
N.S. answers from Detroit on January 14, 2009
Could be teething. We just went through that, our daughter got all 4 molars in at once...which then caused inflamation that led to an ear infection.
We did motrin before bed and then when she woke up (if it was 6hrs later) or tylenol if only 3hrs. It helped but she was still up for 1-2 hrs a night(but that was because of the ear infection). She's now sleeping great..even though now her incisors are coming in.
E.G. answers from Detroit on January 14, 2009
she might have her days and nights mixed up. You might want to try to just get her to nap once after lunch and keep her awake otherwise. She might then be more tired at night. You didn't say what time you put her down at night...
L.N. answers from Benton Harbor on January 13, 2009
Nobody can say whether or not insomnia (per se) affects babies. It takes too much info from the patient to come to that diagnosis and a baby just cant give that sort of input. Why couldn't they be affected? Anyway, I think the most important thing you can do for her is to leave her in bed. I would check on her frequently, so she is secure in the fact that you are not far away, and that her bed is a safe place to rest, even if she isn't asleep. I can't fathom the reasoning for parents reinforcing to kids that their beds are dark, scary and lonely. Bringing her into your bed is just adding a bad habit to the mix. Even if you have to stay in her room, it's a better option than your bed. I really think this is a phase and she'll outgrow it. Either way, it is def. worth mentioning to the doc, so it can be charted in case you need documentation later for sleep studies.
C.B. answers from Detroit on January 14, 2009
Does she have one of those Fisher Price activity centers attached to her crib? A mobile or activity center will hold her attention, keep her occupied, and eventually the eye movement to follow what's going on will make the eyes grow heavy and she'll fall asleep.
But stop peeking in on her. You know what will happen and you're defeating the purpose as well as your own insomnia. In other words you're not helping YOUR insomnia by getting up to see if she's awake or asleep. Get your rest and get some distractive 'tools' to keep her occupied while you sleep.