C.S. asks from Staten Island, NY on July 10, 2008
Cat Naps - Staten Island, NY
aaagghhh...im losing my mind!!!
i cant get my 5 week old to nap for more than 10-15 mins at a time. he is a fussy baby and im sure he's fussy becase he's tired and cant get into a good sleep. although night time isnt so bad with him sleeping about 3 hours a stretch...he is up with the sun and from then on i cant get a good nap out of him. occasionally he'll fall asleep if i rock him but as soon as i put him down its all over. i cant stand to let him cry for more than 2 mins. its interfering with the realionship i have with my 2 1/2 year old because i am CONSTANTLY having to stop what ever im doing with him and tend to the baby. my oldest has been begging me to read him his new books but i cant even sit down and read him one book and i feel soooo bad.
C.S. answers from New York on July 12, 2008
Hi C. - I went through this with my baby last year, and the best thing I found to work was swaddling him. He soon started squirming out of the regular receiving blanket, so I bought a couple Miracle Blankets. They were life-savers for me - he couldn't get out of them and they really seemed to calm him. I had two so that if one was in the wash I still had one to use. I swaddled him for every nap and bedtime until he was 4 months. Also, I found that wearing him in a baby sling worked to get him to sleep. It's kind of a drag to always be holding/wearing him, but it was better than the alternative (a fussy tired baby). Hope this helps you. Good luck!
A.G. answers from New York on July 11, 2008
My second daughter was like that but I found I could put her in the car seat or in the swing for her naps and she would sleep better. In fact for most of her first 4 months of life she did ALL her sleeping in the car seat mostly. Just a thought! A.
E.E. answers from New York on July 11, 2008
Don't listen to Christina R. Your baby is way too young for the Ferber method! At this age you have to go to your child and comfort him as soon as he cries. I would suggest buying a baby sling and carrying him around in that for a portion of the day. You can also buy the swing but don't leave him in it for long periods of time. Maybe he just needs to be next to you for now. It is instinctual and since he is so young, it's fine. This way he will be next to you but you will have your hands free so you can do things with your 2-year-old. Also try putting him in a swaddling blanket when you put him down(Swaddle Me was our favorite because they can't kick out of them). It helps them to settle and stay still so they don't wake themselves up with their own movements.
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J.S. answers from New York on July 11, 2008
Invest in a good swing! I have the fisher price papazan swing ;-D I would stick Sylvia in it while I did stuff around the house. She would fuss for a while...let him do it...no more than 15 minutes since he is still so little, but just do it. The 5 week old won't remember fussing and being left in the swing for an hour or two, but your 2 1/2 year old will remember being left out and possibly resenting the baby because you care so much for him. I don't know. I'd just stick the baby in the swing or bouncy and be with the 2 1/2 year old.
Hope this helps!
K.B. answers from New York on July 10, 2008
Its ok! Take a breath! :-)
He's young, so your son should want to sleep. Is he gassy? Is he too hot/cold? Too much stimulation? Have acid reflux?
He can feel your stress, so try to stay calm---I know, I know, how can you stay calm when you're sleep deprived and you have a 2 1/2 year old running around. I feel your pain-- my girls are 23 mos and 4 mos.
1. Have him sleep in a semi-elevated position. If he has gas or acid reflux, having his head a little elevated will help. Try a wedge under his crib mattress or a sleep positioner that puts the baby on an incline.
2. Try a mini-bedtime routine: diaper change, a little quick massage with smelly lotion (Johnson's bedtime scent is nice), feeding, and put down to bed.
3. Turn on a white noise machine or a crib toy. Fisherprice and VTech make models that are around $30. I swear by my 4 mos daughter's Fisherprice Rainforest crib toy. That sucker puts her to sleep everytime and in minutes flat. My 23 mos old still turns her's on at night.
4. Put one of your shirts in the crib with him. Your smell will help soothe him.
5. Wait before picking him back up again. Are his cries freaking out wails or little whimpers? Obviously, pick him up if he is freaking out and soothe him. But if its little eh-eh-eh or whining cries, let it go for a few minutes. I couldn't always get to the baby quick and she'd stop crying (not freaking out) on her own by the time I got to her. I'm not suggesting the Cry It Out method (he's way too young for that), just attentive listening and waiting.
Good luck & sweet dreams!
R.W. answers from New York on July 11, 2008
Here's a response I gave to another mom with a similar issue:
I had this with a couple of my babies and I don't know if this is the best solution, but I just put them in my backpack carrier, strapped it on and did what I needed to do! I was able to carrier the baby and do the dishes, fold laundry, etc. This would put them to sleep fairly quickly. When I knew they were asleep, I would sit down on the couch or bed, take off the carrier with them still in it and just leave them there!!! I let them lay right there still in the carrier....I'd surround them with pillows and stuff so they were secure, but no way was I moving them!! It worked about 95% of the time!! The other times I would let them cry it out for 10 or 15 minutes, go calm them down, but not pick them up from their crib....then let them cry again, put a pacifier in, etc. I do this several times and eventually they wear themselves out. If they were still out of sorts after several times, I would pick them up and snuggle them very close and gently rock them...they would go to sleep almost instantly because they were worn out from the crying.
S.S. answers from Binghamton on July 11, 2008
Oh this brings back memories...
I had the same issue with the napping bit. I even warmed her bed with a heating pad before putting her down (not too warm, of course). I eliminated foods, reflux, temperature, swaddling, light...
Turns out my little one is a tummy child. As soon as I started putting her on her belly to sleep, she SLEPT. I could get away with a side-position for a little while, but only a little while. So I gave in to her clearly preferred state of sleeping and became obsessive about checking in on her to make sure she was still breathing. After a few days of her sleeping like this, I researched her risk factor for SIDS and calmed down a lot (comparing my ethnicity, her age, crib material, family smoking habits... the risk was actually incredibly low).
And she slept.
She still prefers to sleep on her tummy after nearly 3 years.
S.D. answers from New York on July 11, 2008
A few suggestions.
1. Swaddle, my son would struggle when first putting him in it, but once cozy inside - he slept like a dream.
2. Try wrapping him in a shirt you recently wore, or just putting it with him.
3. Try putting him in a swing or bouncy chair that rocks.
Good Luck!!!! I have a teenager, 2 yr old & 5 mth old. I can understand the go go go you are going through!
S.H. answers from Albany on July 11, 2008
C. - hang in there. I am a first time mom to a 14 week old and had a similar problem. Once I realized that my interventions were hurting more than helping, it got a lot better. Crying might be just part of his falling asleep pattern (that was the case with my son). I think you are going to have to let him cry a bit more than the two minutes you have been though. Tough it out for 10 - 15 to see what happens. I know it seems like he is being "tortured" when he cries so hard, but he really needs the sleep. Plus your other child needs his mom!
Hang in there!
D.D. answers from New York on July 11, 2008
My oldest daughter was a little fuss pot as an infant and the only way I got anything done was by putting her in a front carrier and keeping her with me all day. Your son probably won't mind having his brother around as long as he has his mom's attention.