10 Week Old Sleeping Habits

Updated on December 08, 2008
S.W. asks from Newfield, NY
11 answers

Hello, I am a proud mother of a mild mannered (but picky) 10 week old. he seems to do things early and is really a creature of habit. Im wondering how to encourage good sleeping habits early. Right now he is breastfed and recieves formula once a day before bed. He goes down about 10 we wake him to eat between 11 &12 before we go to bed - then he'll wake up anywhere between 3:45 am & 5 am, change, nurse & sleep until 7/8 at which point he will either get up or go back to sleep until 9/9:30. He usually takes a 30 minute nap before 11:30 then a 2 1/2 hour nap at about 1:30 and another 30 min nap about 7. I really want to encourage good sleep habits so I can try to avoid a greater struggle later. He usually falls asleep while being burped afte eating so I'm scared he will alway need that to go sleep and eventually know that he will have to be able to sleep through the night without always eating as a means to sleep. I appriciate aany advice.

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answers from New York on

he's only 10 weeks old and doesn't have any idea about schedules or needing anything to be put to sleep. It sounds like you are doing exactly what he needs at this point in time. And just as you get this down pat, he'll change his pattern again!! :) keep up the good work!

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answers from New York on

I have a 3 month old, so I know exactly what you're going through!

My daughter goes down for bed between 830 and 9 each night, (in her crib) then when she wakes up sometime between 3 and 4am I bring her to bed with me and nurse her on demand until 7am. After that she gets up and stays awake until about 9am, then sleeps two hours, then is back up for two hours. Around 5 or 6pm she goes into a 30 minute catnap, but after that she's pretty much up for the evening. SHe's like a stopwatch, she's so accurate!
Right now we're working on putting her down to sleep without nursing her completely asleep, and putting her down awakeish as much as possible. If your boy is falling asleep while you burp him, you might just be burping him too long. Try laying him down after a short burping and let him work himself to sleep. If he cries more then a few minutes, sooth him down a little bit then try again. Also, vary the routine a bit...in the case of my girl she likes music and a dark room to relax and go to sleep...so at least once a day I nurse her in the living room with my 2 year old running around and the tv on, so she learns to relax even in situations she doesnt like so much.

As far as eating as a means to sleep, at his age food = nap time (as a general rule). Try shortening his feedings slightly (and only slightly, like 5 minutes tops) so that he doesn't get to the "food comatose" state while eating. Then, play games with him or show him toys so that he stays awake and alert for a few minutes, then finish his feeding so you know he's not losing food. This will start to cancel the "eat to sleep" feeling they are born with, and teach him that eating means getting nourishment, not that it's time to sleep.
That being said, most babies (from my experience) nurse themselves to sleep for bedtime right up until they walk. Bottle babies tend to do it longer then nursers, I'm guessing because moms don't like nursing (or carrying) a 20 pound kid to sleep each night.
You might have to let him cry a little, I would wager by this point hes started shoving his hands in his eyes and face alot, mine loooves to put her fingers in her mouth. My girl doesn't do the binker either (in fact, she hates it and gives me dirty looks when I try to give it to her) so it's been tough teaching her self-soothing.

Don't give up, and good luck!

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answers from New York on

You're doing a wonderful job! Stay patient, and try not to worry. He will end up doing all kinds of crazy things, most of which are totally different than the things you're worried about now! :)

Continue to nurse him on demand. It's too early to know what he'll need down the road, in terms of soothing himself to sleep. And consider making the room you're in dark no later than 8:00 each night. That's one way you can encourage him to start going to bed earlier. I know it's not what you want right now, because you're afraid he'll wake up earlier! But pretty soon you'll want him in bed at 8, and then at 7, and then maybe even earlier than that. We always started "night" at 8:00, and once my son was 4 months old it got moved to an earlier time. Really helped him with his bedtime routine.

Enjoy your sweet little guy!

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answers from Elmira on

I probably have a different thought pattern on this and many people may disagree with me but I think, night time is for sleep and day time is for being awake with s little rest in between. I never woke my kids up at night time to feed them. I let them sleep. I did wake them from naps in the day time though.. unless they were really tired. And it worked well with my children.

When they did wake up at night, I would have everything ready the diaper was ready and items needed for the night time feeding were ready (burp rags, bottles pillows what ever I used when I was feeding, Each child was different) and I would do it as quietly.. not turning a light on.. using only the night light from the hall to get them changed.. Keeping things as quiet and calm as possible and feeding them with out playing or stimulating the child too much. Feeding them and then laying them back down. So that they are still tired and go back to sleep as quickly as possible.

If they fall asleep while burping.. I just put them to bed.. It wasnt a problem with my kids. Its when you sit and rock them and keep holding them til they are asleep that you will have a problem later on.

I hope this helps...

Mom of 3
Korey-Mikel 16
Whitney 13
Andrea 6

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answers from New York on

Congrats on your baby. It sounds to me like you are doing an awesome job! As he grows his stomach will get bigger and be able to hold more, so he'll begin to sleep longer periods. He will not always need to eat to fall asleep. You have got him on a great schedule and since you are aware of how important good sleep habits are, I'm sure it will continue!



answers from New York on

My advice to you is RELAX!!! Your son is 2 1/2 months old and already you are anticipating problems and said he was "picky". How can a 2 month old be "picky?" Why would you put him to sleep at 10 and wake him up to eat again? Let him sleep when he is tired and eat when he is hungry. His tummy will adjust to more and more food and soon he will sleep through the night.
Enjoy your baby as he is and dont worry about when he is 2 or 4 or <gasp> a teenager. Now thats when you REALLY have problems. No matter what you do today, he will become his own person and either sleep well or not. Some do and others have to be trained.



answers from New York on

I my children are now much older than yours. I'm in fact a 40yr old grannie. I too breast fed my children. Seem to me your off to a good start but instead of letting him take those catnaps try and keep him awake by doing playing with him. He will than fall into a nice schedule you can work with.



answers from New York on


First of all congratulations on your baby boy. I think you may be jumping the gun a little he is only 10 weeks old. Sleep habits his first year are going to change often. There will be periods of separation, teething, etc. that will disturb sleep. I truly do not believe you can spoil a baby that young, they need to be held and loved. I think he is sleeping great for his age now. Mine woke every two to three hours, and my daughter didn't sleep through the night for her first year. I am not sure what you mean by bad habits. If you mean not falling to sleep on his own there are plenty of ways to teach him to self sooth, however he is still very young. If you do not to choose to co-sleep then don't put him in your bed, if you do not want him to get used to being rocked to sleep then don't rock him. How you handle his sleeping habits will be up to you, but for right now he is still so young. What you can do and what I did was after feedings and every two hours put him down for a nap awake. It is hard but try not to let him fall asleep in your arms, at his age I am sure he will. When he is in his crib you can rub his forehead or belly, but try to let him fall asleep in his crib. You can let him fuss for a few minutes and I don't mean cry he is to young, but fussing until he finds his own way of falling asleep independently is okay and you can stay with him so he is not alone. There are many books on sleep training that you can read and I am sure they will be helpful. But I would just relax and enjoy your baby they grow so fast. I do however wonder why you are waking him before you go to bed, I think you should just let him wake on his own. You may be surprised one day he may stay asleep until at least 3 or 4 and by waking him you wont know how his sleep patterns are developing on his own. I would try not waking him and see how he does. So far you have a great sleeper. Good luck and Happy Holidays!!



answers from Rochester on

It's great that your being proactive about his sleeping, because it is so important, but he is still so little and like someone else wrote the first year is full of changes when it comes to sleep.
Count yourself blessed that he is sleeping as well as he is and don't stress your self with schedules.
My daughter nursed atleast once a night until she was about 11 months and I thought she would never learn to sleep through the night (especially when people would say "oh, my 6 week old sleeps through the night), but since then she goes to bed at 7pm and wakes up at 7am without a fuss (unless teething or something else is wrong). House guests and baby sitters always say what a great sleeper she is.
It will all happen in time and later if you feel like you are starting bad habits with his sleep, adjust them, it is all trial and sometimes error:-)



answers from New York on

at 10 weeks old, your only job is to follow HIS schedule. all children are different so what works for one might not work for him. he may be a sleeper, he may not. and in the next 2 years, you are going to have MANY MANY MANY changes. everytime you think you have it down pat, something will change. then teething, growth spurts, learning new skills, illnesses, and basically any little change that happens can change sleep patterns, along with the regular old "change for no reason" changes.

all that said, you schedule now sounds great and you are much more fortunate than other moms only waking once. when he is a little more aware like 3 months, you should be following the way of eat, play, sleep, eat, play, sleep. but right now, they skip most of the play, lol.

the only thing i wonder is waking him to eat, i would highly recommend against it. i understand you are doing it to fill him, but i believe its better to follow his curve. breastfeeding esp is feeding on demand, but you are waking him at your time instead of his. he may end up waking at a less convienent time, but pretty soon he will be waking earlier for the day and everything is going to switch, following his cue is the best approach, his body knows what it needs.

and dont stress about falling asleep after a bedtime bottle, most babies do this no matter what anyone tells you.



answers from Albany on

At 10 weeks old, you can't really train or schedule them to do anything. The only thing I would suggest is don't wake him up to eat, this will disrupt his sleep more than anything. I know you are doing this to try to get more sleep yourself, but it will backfire in the end. Just let him eat and sleep when he wants. From your description, he does not sound picky to me, he sounds like a normal baby. Honestly, you sound like you have it really easy. He sleeps for a long period at night for his age. But to encourage sleep more at night, make sure the lights are off or dim at night when he wakes up for feedings, and make sure you open the curtains and keep the house bright in the morning. This will help to set his internal clock naturally without any scheduling or your part. And by the way, contrary to what the previous poster said, there is nothing wrong with falling asleep eating. Breast milk contains something that helps them to sleep. It's a natural way to soothe your baby to sleep and there is a biological reason for it. My son is 10 months old, still breastfed right before naps and bedtime and he falls asleep on his own after I lay him down. At about 4 or 5 months, your son will be capable of falling asleep on his own, but at this point, they are not capable of it, so there is no need to worry about it. Don't let him cry as she suggests- he's too young to understand. It sounds like he is falling asleep well and sleeping for a long time now anyway so don't do anything to change the way you put him to sleep.

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