10 Month Old Does NOT Sleep All Night PLEASE HELP!!

Updated on April 26, 2013
M.H. asks from Lima, OH
15 answers

My daughter is 10 months old. She doesn't sleep all night let alone take hardly any naps during the day. I'm truly just at my wits ends because I don't know what to do. I have 2 other kids ages 5 & 6 and I just didn't have this issue with them at this age. My doctor says she doesn't need to be fed in the middle of the night anymore & she has said that since my daughter was about 6 months old. But, yet I keep feeding her because if I don't, she SCREAMS and when I say she screams, I don't mean just a little bit, I've tried to let her cry and she went on once for over 2 hours. She wasn't budging. By the way, she DOES sleep all night once in a while but when she wakes up, it's almost 4:45 am every single time. Is there ANYTHING at all that I am able to do to stop this habit?? The way I look at it is that she is approaching 1 year which means no more formula and she will be on table foods so if I don't get it under control now, what the heck will I do when she really isn't getting a bottle of formula anymore??? Any advice is appreciated, I thank you in advance!!

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answers from Jacksonville on

I've always heard that if you give them the bottle but not the formula it makes them quit. Fill it with water instead of milk or formula. Often, the kids decide that it isn't worth getting up for just water.... and they begin to skip it.

But, I haven't personally tried it. I didn't have that issue with either of my 2. Did Ferber with the 2nd one and she was sleeping through the night and going to bed awake (and happy) easily at 6 months. Son (we didn't know about Ferber then) was a bear to get to go to sleep, but once he did, he slept all night long. But he was doing that at 3 months... (thanks to Babywise).

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answers from Louisville on

I want to encourage you to please share the night duties with someone else if at all possible. My son was like this, and I ended up with medical issues and mental issues due to the sleep deprivation. My doctor told my husband that he had to take a turn at night so I could get a few hours of uninterrupted sleep. This likely affects the whole family. It is okay to co=sleep if that is the only way you can get any sleep. Have you made sure she has no allergies that might be keeping her awake. Whenever she sleeps, you need to sleep too. My son is now 20 years old and still is a night owl. At least he can entertain himself so we get some rest. Good luck!

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answers from Minneapolis on

I nursed my daughter every night between midnight and 1:00 and again at 5:00 a.m. until she was 12 months old, then she dropped one of the feedings, then at 13 months she dropped both and slept through. We had no crying, everyone slept fine and was happy. I went to bed earlier if I was tired. A 10 month old is not guaranteed to sleep all night long, many don't. Very likely by 5:00 a.m. she IS hungry.

There is also no rule that a baby needs to stop formula at exactly 12 months. After my daughter self-weaned at 11 months, I fed her formula past 12 months, and then gradually mixed it with milk over time until she was drinking regular milk. When she wasn't getting formula, she was still getting a bottle of whole milk, so I don't understand your concern there.

I didn't follow the "rules" in raising my baby, I just tried things until they worked. I fed her when she acted hungry, she had an bottle WELL past age 1, and we tried MANY different things to get her to nap (stroller, car, swing, bouncer, sleeping on her dad's tummy...) She napped almost until she started kindergarten but not without effort from us.

I never asked my doctor how to feed, or not feed, my baby. He wasn't in my home at night. I fed her when she was hungry. Doctors know what books say, I know my own baby.

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answers from Portland on

We had the same problem with my son at this age. I did some research, and kids who do not sleep enough during the day are too tired to sleep during the night. We also still give a bottle to our 2 year old on Sat, but that is because it is his main food source. (We are working with therapists on this) but I'm just saying...he is hungry in the middle of the night! So, I say give her a bottle if she needs it. But, I think she needs more sleep at night.

So, she needs to be put down for more naps during the day. Use a swing, soother, bouncer, crib, etc, whatever will work to get her to sleep. Is her room too warm? does she need to be moving to sleep? We had to put both of our kids in a Graco Soother because it moves all night for them. Does she need a fan or white noise machine? these can all impact how well she sleeps too.

Good luck, but try to get more naps in during the day, that seemed to be the key for us. I also remember that 10 months is a growth spurt, so they need to eat more and sleep more but they are cranky.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Anchorage on

You need to help her learn new ways to comfort. Your doctor is right, she does not need to eat at night, but you have taught her that that is the way to get back to sleep. You now have to take the time to unteach it and help her develop new skills. That does not mean just leaving her to cry, but going to her and helping her comfort without food.

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answers from Austin on

Sorry, I do not care what your doctor says.. she sounds like she is hungry..

Each child is different.

Are you feeding her cereal and pureed vegetables and fruit.. ? This will fill her up and keep her from getting so hungry. Our daughter needed cereal at 6 months. Then I started making her baby food out of fresh vegetables and fruit.

Is she teething? give her a frozen wash cloth to chew on.

At night, if you go into her room, be sure you do not turn on any lights or speak to her, while you change her diaper and feed her. Keep a night light in there. The more boring you make it, the less awake she will be.

Does she have a white noise machine,a fan, or some quiet music to block out other sounds

Make sure before bed, she is given a good warm bath with a lot of good rubs to relax her. Try to keep her area, room quiet so she can just relax.

Hang in there. I know you are stored, frustrated and stressed. I always treated these changes as a mystery.. trying to solve it since she could not talk..

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Oklahoma City on

Normally babies don't sleep all night for a long long time. I know some parents get lucky but in reality kids just don't sleep all night all the time til they're older. Hardly any of them do.

I suggest that no matter what your doc says your child is hungry. She's NOT going to go back to sleep if she's hungry or thirsty so feed her.

She should still be getting 90% of her nutrition from formula. I know she's eating table foods now and that's okay but try giving her formula first. At least some. Then offer her table foods. Not baby food, it's flavored goo and not nutritious.

She needs breakfast, snack, lunch, snack, dinner, and a good snack before bed that has complex carbohydrates and some protein. It will last longer that way. It may take months for her to sleep all night and it might be after she's a couple of years old.

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answers from Dallas on

Feed her like the dickens during the day. By 10 months, some are eating table food, mine did. Small pieces of well cooked sweet potatoe, fruits, Cheerios, egg. Then you will know for sure she isn't hungry.

Then, the problem could be a boost in discovering new things to do and she wakes up trying them. It's a phase and will play out soon.

Or it could be a growth spurt. Who knows! I had one that wouldn't sleep either. We actually taped the vacuum cleaner! The white noise helps.
I couldn't do the cio either.

Try water in the bottle instead of formula. Maybe it would not be worth waking up for her. But like I said feed her up during the day!

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answers from Hartford on

It's not a "habit." Your daughter's body clock just isn't the same as your other two children, and she's perfectly normal for 10 months old. Many babies don't sleep through the night until they're three years old or older. It's not something you "get under control" when it's something she's not doing intentionally.

What you do when she wakes up is teach her how to soothe herself. If she's crying for food and is actually eating, then she really is hungry. Feed her as you're doing. But you may want to try to bulk up each meal slightly during the day and add an extra snack during the day too and see if that makes a difference at night. If she can get all of her calories during the day then she won't need to get them at night, and she'll get to use other soothing methods to go back to sleep.

At 10 months old, she's old enough for solid food now. As someone mentioned, 85-90% of her nutrition should be from the formula but she can have solid food as snacks in between her bottles/sippy cups. Let her try Cheerios and tiny bits of soft fruit the size of your pinky finger nail. Let her try Gerber cereal puffs. See if she likes steamed diced squash or carrots, also the size of your pinky finger nail when it's trimmed. Give her a few snacks a day.

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answers from New York on

Sorry, this is SO hard. I have a 2.5 yr old the literally still gets up 5-8 times per night. Torture. I still give her milk. I totally get that that is the biggest no-no, but I am so desperate and i have to get up and work and my husband sleeps the night away. I do not think it is the milk she wants at all, but the bottle. Yes, I still give her a bottle, I know that's pathetic. But this is why. I never taught her to soothe herself or put her self to sleep. I sometimes wonder if there is something worn health wise actually. She does get a lot of ear infections. Every few months, when I get the strength, I will let her cry all night for a few night and then she will at least was up less. This seems to come undone though after a few weeks. She is a STUBBORN child, even when she is awake. Ive asked the doctor for advice and they say let her cry even when she throws up. That she does! So I used to try to avoid that too and give her anything she wanted. And of course I felt terrible for my son who had to hear this for nights on end. I made the mistake of letting this go on once she was out the crib, bc forget it now that she's in the bed. I even sleep with her bc I can't get out of bed that many times. So my only advice, is DO NOT do what I did :). You have to let it go on for more than 2 hours. When my daughter cries, I can tell it's a I'm mad cry. I literally sit there and let her cry all night as I read a book on my phone bc I know that that torture will at least bring some sleep for a bit of time. If you let her cry for hours a night, i bet it will only last for 2 - 2.5 nights and she will not get up anymore. Bc i did not do this early on, it has caused sooooo many issues.

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answers from Houston on

We stuffed our eldest son with food during the day but he just couldn't make it the entire night. He ate once over night until he was about 13 months. He was very clearly hungry and eating put him back to sleep because he was no longer hungry. I don't care what the books and our pediatrician said about the matter. We lived with our son on a daily basis and knew what we were seeing. Sometimes you have to step back and use your own powers of observation/understanding to solve the issues with your child.
Our eldest was a terrible napper until he turned 18 months by the way. He now understands naps make him feel better so he cooperates. I would try very hard to enforce naps but you can’t force them to sleep. If nothing else, enforce some amount of quiet, rest time.
Our eldest son was nearly 15 months before he slept through the night. Our six month old sleeps through the night and has from day one. Believe you me we did nothing different from one kid to the next. I can't take any credit for our second being a great sleeper. I believe sleeping is a skill some children have to grow into and develop over time. There are tools we as parents can give them but sometimes our patience while our children learn the skill is most important. We tried versions of CIO with our oldest and they all failed miserably. In my opinion CIO is not the end all be all of sleeps solutions. It works for most kids but not all. Like any parenting tip/trick it is not guaranteed to work. Whatever you decide to do, commit to the decision fully and be as consistent as possible. Remember no one walks in your shoes every day so what works for your family need not be justified to anyone else nor be approved by anyone else. Good luck.

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answers from Cincinnati on

My son is 16 months and he started sleeping through the night at 13 months.

I still fed him at night until he was just a little bit past a year. And even then it was more to get him to fall asleep then the fact that he was hungry. It took me a bit to realize that. Because when he fed from me it was like for 2 minutes on each side if that.

At 10 months he was just starting to take longer than 30 min naps and would only sleep a few hours before waking up, I'd feed him and he'd go back to sleep.

My nephew was the same way. He was a little over a year before he stopped the night feedings and started to sleep through the night.

Now my niece-Sadly is also 16 months and I don't think she sleeps through the night much to my sister's dismay. She's getting better but she took wakes up constantly.

Even through your daughter is approaching 1 year you can still give her something even if it isn't formula. Give her water instead and try that-when that time comes.

But for now I wouldn't stress it too much. She's not even a year yet.

For a long time and sometimes even now my son wakes up around 5 am. Not that I like it but he does so I wake up at 5 am.

It happens.



answers from Raleigh on

Sounds like she is overtired, which causes poor nighttime sleep. I would start by enforcing a daytime nap. Once you get that down, the nights should go better. Longer and better sleep for you both.
Also, maybe instead of formula in the middle of the night, try a bottle of water. It's true that she doesn't need the middle of the night bottle, but is probably using it as a prop to fall back asleep. Also, the formula in the night is not so great for her teeth and can lead to decay.
Hope this helps!



answers from New York on

We used Ferber. It worked for us.

Good luck to you and yours,
F. B.



answers from Evansville on

You didn't really tell us what her schedule is during the day. So I'm going to assume your child is ready for more food and activity, and less napping. Also, have a sippy cup of water available all the time and offer it. I put it on the floor where my lil one plays and she sips on it alot. Your goal is to disassociate BF (bottle feeding) with sleep, get her more exercise, fill her up, and enjoy this stage instead of pulling your hair out! Changing her schedule will take time to adjust. Assume it's like jet lag. Baby steps. Try 30 minute adjustment everyday. If she wakes up don't rush in and when you do, just rub her back or her belly. Give her sippy cup of water to sate her milklust which the first time I gave that to my breastfeeding baby she threw it in my face and wailed like she was completely insulted. Lol. Here's the schedule I kept:
6:00 Instead of BF (bottle feeding) in the morning, try some cereal (like alot of cereal) and some finger food. Feed the baby until she is full and won't eat anymore. If she feeds herself, let her play and get messy. Then, let her play until nap time.
9:00 Sometime around there BF but do not let her fall asleep. Make sure she plays after.
10:00 Put down for nap. A good nap is 1-2 hours. Don't let her sleep longer than 2 hours. You don't have to wake her up necessarily, but open the door and start making noise so she wakes up on her own.
12:00 Feed lunch like some finger food. Feed the baby until she is full and won't eat anymore. If she feeds herself, let her play and get messy. Put some Cheerios on the tray and let her play eat. After, let her play.
2:00 Sometime around there BF but do not let her fall asleep. Make sure she plays after.
3:00 Put down for nap. A good nap is 1-2 hours. Don't let her sleep longer than 2 hours. Again, you don't have to wake her up necessarily, but open the door and start making noise so she wakes up on her own.
5:00 pm Or when she wakes up, lots of playing and interaction.
5:30 p.m.: I put her in her highchair and give her some finger foods while I prep for dinner.
5:45 p.m.: Dinnertime for her. At dinner, feed some protein, too. Try baby meats if she's not ready for small bits of your meal. I know they smell funky but babies seem to like them. Daddy comes home and finishes making the meal I started for us.
6 p.m.: My husband and I eat dinner. Baby either plays while we eat, or she'll want to eat what we're having so I'll give her little bits of our food.
6:30 p.m.: Clean up the kitchen.
6:45 p.m.: Family playtime. It's the only time we all get to be together to play during the week. Sometimes we go on a walk.
8 p.m.: Bath time. My daughter get's food everywhere so she take a bath every night. She plays with her bath toys and splashes around in the tub for a good 15 to 20 minutes.
8:20 p.m.: Dry her, and put her in a fresh diaper, pj's. I comb her hair and then Daddy holds her while I get ready for her last BF. Take a few minutes just to hold her before you feed her. I feed her for 10 to 15 minutes with the light on and lay her down for the night. Sometimes she's awake, but most of the time she falls asleep while feeding.
8:40 p.m.: My husband and I relax, watch TV, and talk about our day.
9:30 p.m.: I go to bed.
You might have to do 1 feedings at night depending on if she's teething or whatever but it's better than every 2 hours! If she wakes up and it's not time for her bottle, daddy needs to go in there and rub her back or belly. Try offering water in sippy. She will strongly reject it at first. But, eventually she will take what she gets.
My only other suggestion, have her adjusted by a chiropractor. I had my youngest adjusted at 2 weeks old and she slept through the night since then (7 hours at a time). I get her adjusted probably once a month (I work for a chiropractor) and she sleeps really well. It's usually cheap to get an infant adjusted if you don't have insurance, and most insurances cover chiro, so it's worth a try in my opinion!

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