21 answers

My Son Seems ALWAYS Seems Tired...

I've posted here once before and was really grateful to get so many helpful replies... I’m hoping perhaps someone has had a similar experience to this, too…

My son is 15 months old (although he was two months preemie, so he’s still like a 13 month old in many respects) and ALWAYS appears to be tired. He sleeps well, 10 hours almost every night (usually about 8pm-6am) and I think it is restful sleep because I rarely hear a peep out of him. He still takes two naps; morning nap is generally about 1 hour, afternoon nap is 1-2 hours. When he wakes up cranky, I usually try to get him to sleep a while longer, but that rarely works. He's fussy and cranky within an hour of being up. Even when he wakes up in a fantastic mood (after a longer nap), he still starts to act like he's ready for more sleep after about an hour! He just seems tired ALL of the TIME! I really don't want to revert back to three naps a day (I know many children are down to one per day by this point), but he acts like he really needs it. He just gets so tired and cranky, cries over the smallest thing, falls down and gets clumsy, rubs his eyes, yawning, etc.

He doesn’t get anything in his diet that I would think could cause this. We stay away from sweets (he doesn’t even get juice), and his sugar primarily just comes from natural fruits. He doesn’t get any “table food” sweets, doesn’t even know what ice cream or candy is, etc. Could it be something else?

As a preemie, he did have apnea (mostly during the first month of his life, which is typical for preemies), but he outgrew by the time he was about two months old. He’s been tested and we know that he’s not anemic. Since this has been going on for several months now, I asked our pediatrician about this at our 9 and 12 month check-ups, but she didn't seem too concerned about it. I asked if maybe he could have some type of allergies (which may explain his fatigue and rubbing of the eyes), but she said that children don't typically get seasonal allergies until they're 3-4 years old. She said that it's possible it could be another type of allergy (dust, pet dander, etc), but she didn't think it was likely. His 15 month visit is in a few weeks, so I'll bring it up again and see if she can offer any other suggestions.

In the meantime, I'm just not sure what to do! I feel like I spend several hours of my day trying to keep a tired little boy happy and entertained (which can be tricky even for 30 minutes sometimes!). If he is just tired, I'm not sure why he's not sleeping more. Could it be something else? Has anyone else had an experience like this?

Thanks so much for reading and any suggestions you may have...
J.

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

You may want to find out if he has sleep apnea- when he stops breathing for a few seconds, his body wakes him up to remember to breathe and then since he is roused from deep sleep he doesn't get into that good REM sleep that lets us dream and regenerate. I know that sometimes tonsils/adenoids can cause sleep apnea, among other things. He may just not be getting enough quality sleep at night. Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

I would try putting him to bed earlier at night. This works wonders for my kids who, when really tired, tend to go to sleep earlier without a problem and sleep later. Kids go into sleep deficet (so most don't tend to make it up at the end of a sleep, they make it up at the start) when not given enough time to sleep so i would say try aiming for a 7.30pm bedtime to start and bring that forward to 7pm. This should allow him some more restful sleep and may help him wake up better rested from all his sleeps. Don't go back to 3 sleeps, just make his night time sleep longer. Good luck :)

1 mom found this helpful

More Answers

J.,
Have you ever read the book Healthy sleep habits, Happy Child by Dr. Mark Weisblueth. It is a great book, a bit boring at times but very helpful and very informative. One thing I liked about it was there were lots of different scenerios from different people with different problems and he gave reasonable solutions. It is worth a try and I bet you can get it from Half Price books, if not it is everywhere.
After reading your problem one suggestion I may say is put him to bed earlier. I have a 15 mos old and a 2 1/2 year old and my 15 mos. old goes to bed at 7 (sometimes 6:30 if she is super tired, and cranky) and gets up around 6:30 then takes a morning nap for about an hour and an afternoon nap as well. My 2 1/2 year old just now started going to bed at 7:30 - 8 and she gets up at 6:30 as well. She also still takes an afternoon nap. My older daughter always went to bed at 7 until recently when we realized she just layed in bed reaidng books. However, she is so tired some days. Some kids just need extra sleep. Dr. Weisblueth says that the earlier you put them to bed the later they will sleep. I have found this to be so true. It sounds ridiculous but it works for us. It is worth a try. Keep his regular day time schedule but put him down at least an hour early. My husband works until 6:30 - 7 every day and hates it but has seen what I deal with when they go to bed too late. So he understands that the weekend is his time. Good Luck

2 moms found this helpful

Having 1 son with seasonal allergies diagnosed at 1 year AT MY INSISTANCE, and the other one passed the typical skin test at one year but is being treated for allergy induced asthma, allergies are there prior to 3-4 years.

I'm curious about the apnea. My 9 year old was diagnosed at 4yrs., and reviewed this past Spring. It's gone but Periodic Limb Movement was diagnosed from the second study. I have narcolepsy. If I eat too many carbs (sugar), it will force me to nap. Everyone is different, my limit is 5 grams at a meal and no more than 10 grams in a day of sugars from breads products, 1 raw fruit, and no more than 7oz. of real juice a day. I also can not handle turkey, apples or peanut butter. My dad (has apnea) however can handle cooked apples.

You're MOM, you feel this isn't just a typical baby habits. Ask more questions. The doctors often try quick fixes or what works for most everyone else. Thankfully, my insurance changed a few times and I chose to switch doctors a few more times. We have a wonderful team now that listens and knows when I'm making a mountain out of a molehill, and when we need to look into something further.

We also learned to avoid all dairy products. It's a stimulant to my boys and me. We sleep, but not well, and it makes my youngest and myself very moody.
Just my experiences...
I don't have a clue how the fact that he's a preemie figures into all of this. I just know that it does.
Good Luck

1 mom found this helpful

I think you should really look into the allergies some more. My son did the same exact thing. He would sleep like 16+ hours a day, everyday. We found out he has ALOT of allergies. Children of all ages including your childs age get allergies. We had our first set of allergy tests before he was even a year old. Once we got his allergies under control his sleep did a complete 180. Another issue could be mold, you may want to have your house checked for mold. You could have them do an air test. Checks the air in your house. I had a family member that as an adult started doing the same things as our children and found out had a bad mold problem in one of the walls in their house. Just a thought. Kids are more sensitive to things than we are. As far as the allergies it could be environmental or foods. Does he show any other signs besides of the extreme fatigue and itchy eyes?

1 mom found this helpful

I would try putting him to bed earlier at night. This works wonders for my kids who, when really tired, tend to go to sleep earlier without a problem and sleep later. Kids go into sleep deficet (so most don't tend to make it up at the end of a sleep, they make it up at the start) when not given enough time to sleep so i would say try aiming for a 7.30pm bedtime to start and bring that forward to 7pm. This should allow him some more restful sleep and may help him wake up better rested from all his sleeps. Don't go back to 3 sleeps, just make his night time sleep longer. Good luck :)

1 mom found this helpful

Hmm, at this age, most sources say babies still need about 14 hours of sleep a day. My daughter usually sleeps 12 to 13 hours at night and then takes a nap in the afternoon for about 1 to 2 hours. Sometimes we have to do two naps if she wakes up too early or goes to bed too late. I would say that going back to three naps might not be a bad idea until he "catches" up on his sleep. They say it doesn't make any sense, but sleep begets sleep in small children, so the more rested he becomes, the better his nighttime sleeping should get. Ideally, I think this is where he is missing out on some sleep. Are you waking him in the morning, or is he waking on his own? Could you move his bed time up a little bit so he gets a little more sleep that way? If my daughter doesn't get her solid 14 hours or more, she is a bear! I hope these suggestions help :)

A.

1 mom found this helpful

You may want to find out if he has sleep apnea- when he stops breathing for a few seconds, his body wakes him up to remember to breathe and then since he is roused from deep sleep he doesn't get into that good REM sleep that lets us dream and regenerate. I know that sometimes tonsils/adenoids can cause sleep apnea, among other things. He may just not be getting enough quality sleep at night. Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

A couple of ideas. Since you mentioned sleep apnea....my oldest daughter seemed to get up really early and take a nap longer than I expected. But, once we got her tonsils removed, I was amazed. She began to sleep better and longer. She had huge tonsils and they were blocking her throat so she only had half as much breathing room!

The other thing to remember is that he may be one who requires a lot of sleep. I am like that myself and as I get older, I've noticed I take a long nap during the day even though I've slept a good 8 hours. Also, when they grow, often times they need more sleep, too. So, you may just have to let him get those good naps in.

I hope this helps! Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

If you've had him checked out by his pediatrician then I think it's just a case of some babies sleep more. I had one that didn't sleep at all and, heaven help me, I didn't think either of us would survive it. Then I had another that loved, and still loves, sleep. It is the darndest thing and makes sending him to his room impossible.

One thing that has helped my with my babies when they seem over-tired is to give them a bath and let them play and be soothed in the water, or to take them outside. Both have seemed to give them a little extra bit of energy. Maybe if you gave him a snack after he wakes up. Something with some protein in it or some of the fruit with the natural sugars to help give him a little energy boost.

I know how hard it is when you have unhappy little ones so I hope you get some good stuff on here that helps!

L.

1 mom found this helpful

1 / 3
Required Fields

Our records show that we already have a Mamapedia or Mamasource account created for you under the email address you entered.

Please enter your Mamapedia or Mamasource password to continue signing in.

Required Fields

, you’re almost done...

Since this is the first time you are logging in to Mamapedia with Facebook Connect, please provide the following information so you can participate in the Mamapedia community.

As a member, you’ll receive optional email newsletters and community updates sent to you from Mamapedia, and your email address will never be shared with third parties.

By clicking "Continue to Mamapedia", I agree to the Mamapedia Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.