6 1/2 Month Old Not Sleeping Through the Night Anymore!

Updated on July 10, 2008
E.C. asks from Key Largo, FL
10 answers

My son is 6 1/2 months old. He started teething really bad about 1 1/2 weeks ago and had a fever. I stayed home with him for 5 days and he did well but was uncomfortable. After the 5 days and putting him back in day care and going back to work he is not sleeping at night. Everything is fine at daycare and he is sleeping normally and playful but still uncomfortable with the teething. He is so tired but just can't seem to stay asleep. He wakes up every two hours and cries, and last night he was up for 2 hours crying, partially because I was trying to let him cry it out.
Does anyone have any suggestions on how to get him back on track? Is crying it out a good idea when I know he is so so tired?
thank you!

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So What Happened?

Well, after many many sleepless nights..........he has an ear infection!!!! I feel so horrible that I thought it was a behavioral issue. He was been in pain. He started the antibotics today and is already back to normal! Lesson Learned.

thank you so much for all the fantastic feedback. It has really helped. Thanks.

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answers from Miami on

Hi E.;

I'm not one for letting babies cry it out as they have no other means of communication. When my son had teething pain, I held him and loved him up. This is what soothed him. Can you imagine how much pain that he must be in and he doesn't know what's happening to him. He needs to feel safe.

I know that you have to work; but some times I used some of the different soothing ointments for Ethan. I spent a small fortune to find the right one but Ethan is all that mattered to me. Sometimes he would be up all night. I haven't slept in almost three years. I count the time that I was pregnant too as I just didn't get enough sleep. Ethan is always on ;in fact, he's up now. It's his birthday. He would be about 45 minutes old right now two years ago. He seems to be teething now. I thought that he had all his teeth but he must be getting some teeth way in the back. He deals with it so much better now. He doesn't cry but you can tell he's irritated.

Most babies are in bed but my Ethan has to run out of steam. Sometimes, I take him and I lay with him on the couch to settle him down so that I can sleep. It's hard but his brain is always working.

I do hope this helps; believe me, I remember the days of teething and upset tummy's and they can't tell you anything.

G-D Bless you.

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answers from Miami on

Hi, E.. Unfortunately, teething is a very tough time, and there is not too much that can be done about the pain and the disruption in baby's life. I do not advise you to just let him cry it out, because he is in very real pain and discomfort, and I don't think it's healthy emotionally to let a child feel abandoned at a time like that.

Have you tried rubbing Orajel on his gums? I know that no one likes to keep medicating a baby, but his health is going to go downhill if he keeps losing a whole lot of sleep. Yours isn't going to do well, either. Orajel before bedtime, and then when he wakes up from the pain returning, should give you much more peaceful nights. Also, baby Tylenol for the pain should not hurt him, as long as you do not overdo it. Remember that teething makes his temperature rise, even if he's not feverish anymore, so part of his discomfort is that he feels hot all the time. Baby Tylenol will help relieve this symptom, too.

Sometimes teething babies get gas because they are drooling more, swallowing more, and crying more. See if a little extra water during the day will help him get rid of the gas and cramping. Maybe a natural herbal product such as mild catnip tea will help get rid of the gas pains.

Hang in there. Once his molars finally emerge, the teeting nightmare will be over.

However, if he seems to be having an unusual amount of pain and discomfort, take him to the doctor because sometimes things can be wrong with the gums or teeth.

I hope this is helpful.




answers from Miami on


Cut out his afternoon naps. Let him sleep anytime he wants before 3 P.M. After 3 P.M. do your best to keep him awake and give him a bath at 8 P.M. and put him to sleep. Postponing bedtime is the best thing you can do but cutting out that late afternoon nap is crucial. Good luck.



answers from Miami on

I have been there! We tried to not have our daughter fall asleep eating and to have her learn how to put herself to sleep - cold Turkey, without pacifier and putting her to sleep awake (after bath and bedtime story routine). When she started crying, we would first come back briefly just to reassure her, after 3 minutes, then after 4 and so on (maximum of 7 minutes). She finally fell asleep and then it got better everyday. ONce she learned how to put herself to sleep (without help), when she would wake up at night, she could do the same (sometimes in the beginning, we would still have to do the "every x minutes" thing, but then she got better and better and would cry for shorter and shorter periods of time).
I wasn't a big fan of letting her cry forever, so the time thing worked best for me.
Good luck - I am sure your baby will learn how to sleep!



answers from Miami on

With my son, he was sleeping through the night at 6 weeks and started waking at about 6 months when he started teething. He did not cry though he would just wake up. Unfortunately he did not start sleeping through the night until a little over a year. It does eventually come, good luck!!!



answers from Miami on

Hi E.,

I too went through that and actually still going through it occassionally. My daughter is 9 months old and she originally started sleeping through the night at 12 weeks. Little by little she started to regress. She has been teething since about 4 months old and it wasn't until last week that her first tooth finally broke through. (Poor thing). After that she slept through the night no problems!! But now the last two days she is at it again. I'm not a fan of cry it out, so I do give her a little bit of time and then I'm there. If she is crying, something is troubling her... her being able to sleep through the other nights is proof. Another thing is your baby just reached the point where they better regulate their body temperature. Are you sure he isn't too hot or too cold? Something to maybe try... It's up to you on how you want to handle. The first year just seems to be so hard for them... Console your baby if your instincts tell you too... Some nights are still really hard, but then I think about how soon enough she won't even want to be in my arms to console her anymore. They grow sooner than we know it, so it's a blessing to me. Good luck.



answers from Port St. Lucie on


So sorry to hear this. my son has his moments with teething and I know every child is different, but what we did is give him some tylenol (infant) before bed and that seem to help and if he did wake up, I would just go in and try to soothe him by rocking him and putting on soft bedtime music and he would usually be back to sleep within about 15 minutes. We never let him "cry it out" why? well because there is difference between a child crying because they either don't want to be in bed, or are just trying to to get you to come in, then there is the crying where they are needing you and are not feeling well. If your son doesn't typically cry and this is out of the norm and you know its because he is having trouble, then I would just go to him and try to help. I agree with all of the other moms with NOT letting a child cry it out when they are in real "need". You will know the difference. Unfortunately children that young can not communicate so they cry. its gets easier as they get older because they begin to at least understand and can motion things. Just figured I would let you know what works for us. My son is 13 months old and going through second teething episode. Its heart wrenching really, but we wait about a minute to see if he soothes himself back to sleep and 9 out of 10 times he does, but every once in awhile i still go in and rock him and hes back to bed to fast and sleeps the rest of the way through- sometimes too its a bad dream (night terror) not sure how/why it happens but its happened twice over the last 13 months, that takes about 1/2 hour + to get him calmed down and back to bed. so just go with your mommy instincts :) hope this helps Good Luck!



answers from Miami on


I know that this is not a permanent fix, have you tried giving him tylenol at night to help him sleep through the pain? I know with my tow youngest boys when they were teething I had to give them tylenol at night. They were so miserable they were waking up at all hours of the night in pain. I would also leave teething rings in their cribs for them at that age so that they would have them if they woke up and found one, it sometimes helped.

I hope this helps.

35 y/o SAHM of 3 boys 13, 5 and 3



answers from Mayaguez on

Even though he does not have a fever, he may still be in pain, so maybe a dose of acetaminophen before bed will relieve the pain and disconfort. There are teethers in the market which come with a kind of gel inside that you can put in the refrigerator for a while and some babies get relief with them. Also small sips of cold water. There are also oral anesthetics -they hate the taste and make all kinds of funny faces but they also work. Check out at your pharmacy. Good luck.



answers from Boca Raton on

It is hard to tell when it is because they are in pain or because they have now become trained on another schedule. I would be careful about thinking this is still going on due to teething pain. It could be and often we have to trust our mom instincts. So if he is truly in pain then i would get the teething meds and a teething ring and see if they help. give it to him in the crib and help him self soothe. Then i would get him back on a schedule by letting him cry it out. Kids quickly train us and sometimes how a behavior began is not why it persists.
I would try to let him cry it our for three nights (after giving him the teething ring). I say three night because you are on a routine now where he knows you are coming. He could cry up to 20-30 min now to see if you are coming so the length of time may be long. He will go to sleep and after the second or third night you should have him back on a routine of sleeping through the night. It is common that they go through phases of sleeping straight through and then waking during the night. Just get him back into a routine. If you need any further support Dr Michelle LaRocque works at our Families By Design Center and she specializes in working with parents on behavioral training and child development. ###-###-#### ext 404. www.Familesbydesign.net.
Let me know how this works.
Dr L. M Emery

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