T.W. asks from Independence, MO on March 10, 2008
9 Month Old Sleeping Probs
I set an alarm for 8 a.m. yesterday, Sunday, to get up with him for church after 4 hrs. of sleep. I accidently without knowing, turned it off and went back to sleep until 1:30 p.m. Then he had 2 naps. First one was only for an hour from 4 to 5 about. Then at 8:30 to 11:15 about. My 13 yr. old daughter lives here too, but only stays about 2 nights here a week. She was here last night and I had to try and keep him quiet so she could sleep for school the next day. I fell asleep about 3a.m. hoping he'd get bored and go to sleep. He woked me up at 4 with just giggling at me. He was watching me sleep from his playpen. He sleeps in there usually with no problem. I woke him up at 12:30 today, Monday, and I plan to keep him awake all day, or try to anyways. I fed him infant cereal (1/2 cp.) and a jar of food after he woke up. He was awake from 11:15 a.m. till 4 a.m. I replayed some relaxing music that was playing earlier in the night too. No luck at all. He has his days and nights mixed up. Any ideas? Thanks for reading this.
J.L. answers from St. Louis on March 10, 2008
My daughter was the same way when she was younger. I worked a 2nd/3rd shift the whole time I was pregnant and my daughter seemed to follow the same sleep schedule I had...wonderful for me, not so wonderful for my husband when I went back to work and he was up until 1 or 2 am with her. Over time she has developed a more "normal" schedule. It will be a slow process of getting him up a little bit earlier everyday and backing up those naps as well. If he doesn't want to take an earlier nap and wants to take a later nap, let him, just get him up by a certain time so you can still get him to go down earlier. I also agree with the other responder. If he is awake in the middle of the night and is content to play in his bed by himself, let him so you can get some rest. Eventually with small gradual changes to his schedule you will get him to sleep at normal times. Hang in there! :)
M.B. answers from St. Louis on March 11, 2008
For his daytime naps, keep him in a room that's somewhat noisy so he doesn't sleep for too long. Limit naps to no more than 2 at 2 hours each (at the maximum). Try keeping him awake more in the day. There is nothing wrong with waking a sleeping baby to help establish a routine. When you put him down at night, make sure the room is dark, quiet and cool (about 67 degrees). Even though that seems chilly, your body temperature drops when you are sleeping, and he will sleep better if he's not getting too hot at night. It would probably be best if he slept away from you at night so that if he wakes up, he is not entertained by seeing you, gets bored and goes back to sleep. If he cries when you put him down at night, I highly recommend the Ferber method of letting him cry for just a few minutes, going in to check on him, reassure him, but DO NOT pick him up. Each time he cries, extend your away time by one minute, and before you know it, he won't cry at all. During the day, keep him awake, except for designated nap times that work best with your schedule. It will take a couple days for him to get the hang of it, and those days may be pretty rough, but once he has a routine, it will be better for your whole family. Just keep with it! Don't give up!
B.S. answers from Kansas City on March 11, 2008
Wow. That sounds like pure torture.
Personally, I would wake him up at 7am and do whatever (feeding, changing, playing, etc.). Then I would put him in his pack and play at about 9 for a morning nap (about an hour). Then I'd get him up and make him stay awake until lunch, feed him, rock a little, and then put him back in his pack and play from 1-3 for an afternoon nap. Then I would get him ready for bed at 7pm and once again, put him in his pack and play after I did my normal nightly routine. All this time I would ignore the crying, he'll be just fine. But this would NOT (and could not) fly in my house. I'm a much better Mommy with a good night of rest. He'll be fine. He'll get used to it after a day or two. Good luck!
C.A. answers from Topeka on March 10, 2008
If you know he is safe and fine, go back to bed yourself. Don't stay up with him. Make sure it is dark where he sleeps.
Hopefully, you will be able to get the rest you need so that you can work at keeping him awake during the day.
This will probably take awhile to become the new pattern, but if you stick with it and are firm it should work.
If the alarm clock problem is something that happens as a pattern, place the alarm clock somewhere that you have to get out of bed to turn it off and then don't allow yourself to go back to bed. I find that the first couple moments of my day are the hardest, and once I'm up at moving I'm much better.