A.M. asks from Appleton, WI on September 24, 2007
Nap Time - Appleton, WI
I have a 12 week old daughter, and recently, the last 2 or 3 weeks, she hardly is sleeping during the day. Most of the time she falls asleep in my arms or our caregiver's arms, but when we put her down she either wakes instantly or she wakes within 10 minutes or so. She has been sleeping really well during the night so I wasn't too worried about it. But now it is getting to the point that come 3:00pm she can be a real bear to be around because she is SOOO over tired. I have tried laying her in different spots to see where she sleeps best during the day, we have a white noise machine, etc...she really only sleeps in my arms. No one place seems better than the other...she just seems to fight sleep no matter where she is or how tired she is. Has anyone else been through this? Any suggestions?
A.S. answers from Milwaukee on September 25, 2007
When you are home with her, why don't you just let her sleep in your arms or use a sling with her. I use a sling with my 12 week old and she loves it. She gets to nap and be close to me and I get to get my housework and all that other stuff done and I get the jpoy of having her with me. I highly recommend it. I have a three year old that is home with me too and then I can still play with her and have baby close to me. It might be that she's just going through a growth spurt and need s little extra cuddle time. If you can't stand to sling her, maybe try putting her in a swing...sometimes that motion helps to kind of rock them to sleep and keep them asleep. I would NEVER let her just cry it out. She's a tiny baby that is crying to tell you that there is something troubling her and she is too little at 12 weeks to be expected to comfort herself. She is just looking for her trusting adults to take care of her and meet her needs and wants. She can't talk to you yet, so don't ignore her communication by just 'letting her cry it out'. I think that's just terrible. Good Luck!
D.P. answers from Milwaukee on September 25, 2007
I am mom to an almost 10 month old son. We had the same problem with our son....some are better sleepers than others. Have you tried letting her sleep in the swing or a vibrating chair? For several months we struggled with the "sleep fighting" ourselves. The only consolation that I can now offer is that our son is a great sleeper at 10 months old.
I remember stressing about whether letting our son sleep in our arms would lead to spoiling him or cause him to never be able to sleep on his own. I would say that by about 5 months they begin to rely on routine, especially at bedtime. Before then, we as parents will do anything to sleep..Good luck.
S.S. answers from Madison on September 24, 2007
You say you've tried different places, but have you tried a swing? Some swings also have a vibrate function which can be a "double whammy" for putting babies to sleep. Otherwise, you might try swaddling her. For a lesson in swaddling and some other great tips, look for the video "The Happiest Baby on the Block" - I know they have it at the Madison Public Library. There is also a book by the same name. Good luck.
J.D. answers from Detroit on September 26, 2007
The best place to sleep is in Mom's nice, warm arms :) Like another poster suggested try swaddling her, but when you are almost ready to put her down, put an electric blanket in her bassinet/crib for a few minutes to warm her spot.
C.D. answers from La Crosse on September 25, 2007
Do you have a swing? Have you tried that? The problem is that you are rocking/holding her until she is asleep...you need to put her down when she is tired and let her settle herself. I know that it can be hard becuase she might cry but be strong and stick with it. Put her down and let her comfort herself...when she is crying just buy her but do not pick her up. (rub her hand, pat her leg etc) Do not sit by her the whole time just after 10-15 minutes, stay for a minute or two and them repeat. If her crying gets quiter or spaced out do not go in because she is puttting herself to sleep. Music or white noise works so keep using it. Also if you swaddle her that might help. She will feel close to you and comfy and safe.
If you need any other advice just let me know. I hope things get easier soon. Do not give us otherwise you might be rocking her to sleep for a couple of years. Give it about a week and you will be suprised
B.B. answers from Madison on September 25, 2007
It's already been said but the swing worked wonders when mine was little. Seemed like the only sleep I was able to get was when she was in the swing. Also, in case you have problems at night, I've read that rocking cribs or swing cribs are also helpful.
I feel for ya. My little one is almost 2 and settled into a normal sleeping pattern about 6 months ago. It's been an uphill battle but I think I've won....I hope.
D.W. answers from Milwaukee on September 25, 2007
Sounds like she is looking for the "swaddle" feeling. Are you still wrapping her nice and tight in a receiving blanket like you did when she was first born in the hospital? Try wrapping her tightly with her arms included with a light receiving blanket.
My only other suggestion is to let her cry... it is healthy for her lungs and she will eventually give up and just fall asleep.
C.K. answers from Milwaukee on September 25, 2007
My now 9 1/2 month old also would not sleep unless I held her during the day, and often times at night too. This happened until she was about 4 months old. During the day I put her in a sling and also a front pack carrier and they both worked great. She would zonk out immediately and I had my hands free and could move about and get things done. As she got a little older I started letting her sleep for maybe half her nap in the sling or pack on me, and then for the other half trying to take the sling off and put her down somewhere to sleep to try to get her used to the idea of sleeping other places besides on me.
Like others have said, the swing worked well for my daughter too. In the middle of the night when I couldn't get her back to sleep and was just exhausted and didn't know what else to do, the swing worked wonders and then I would just sleep next to her.
I think 12 weeks old is a little young to start the cry it out method like a few others suggested, that is just my opinion. I let my daughter sleep and nap on me for her first four months, and gradually weened her to sleeping in her own crib. I have never let her cry ever. She is not dependent on sleeping with me - now when it is bed time or nap time I can just put her in her crib and she rolls over and goes right to sleep, no problems.