My 5 Month Old Will Not Sleep!

Updated on October 25, 2006
M.R. asks from Grand Junction, CO
49 answers

My 5 month old is wearing me out. He won't sleep more than an hour, 2 hours max at night time. Some nights I'm up every 45 minutes, some nights I don't sleep at all. Sometimes he needs a bottle, sometimes he doesn't. Sometimes he goes right back to sleep, sometimes I have to go back in a give him his pacifier several times. I have a 2 year old also, so sleeping when the baby sleeps is not an option, and with my husband overseas, I have no help. I'm very tired and have caught myself putting formula instead of coffee in the coffee pot in the mornings, and have found myself sleepwalking making bottles when the baby is not even awake. Any suggestions how to get him to sleep? I've tried music, the sound of a ceiling fan, complete darkness, night lights, mobiles.....etc. My first baby started sleeping for 6 hour periods early on. PLEASE HELP!!! And if anybody suggests cough medicine, I will hunt you down and slap you. LOL Honestly, I've had people tell me that, and that's when I decided to turn to this site for help. He sleeps in his own crib, in his own room. Co-sleeping is not an option because he wakes at every little noise and I snore.

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So What Happened?

Wow. What a difference a few weeks makes! My son always had a regular sleeping schedule, but I never really enforced the night-time cues with him, the way I did with my first son, possibly due to me being so tired. But! I stuck it out and no matter how tired, I gave him his dinner, bath, story, bottle, and a firm "Good-night" and we're doing much better now. Also, the advice that really kicked up the sleeping process was, "The more a baby sleeps, the more a baby will sleep." I started letting him choose when and how long he napped during the day instead of trying to exhaust him, and the other night, I got 6 hours of sleep out of him. HALLELUJAH!!! Thank you, everybody, for all your advice, and your help. I'm back to the mommy who can wrestle and play with her boys. That's all I ever wanted!

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C.R.

answers from Albuquerque on

Hello,
I was having the same problem with my 4month old starting at about 3 months. So I asked the doc if maybe she was sleeping too much as she sadi it is a possiblity. Babies need different amounts of sleep and my darling is very high octane.So i would recommend reducing daytime naps and keeping him very active right before bedtime.Hope it helps!
C.

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D.C.

answers from Santa Fe on

I only have one question. Does he sllep with you or does he sleep in the crib. Reason for asking is because some kids have seperation anxiety, both my kids had that and the second i let them sleep in bed with myself and my husband they slept through the night. It also could be gas thats making him uncomfortable so lying him on his stomach and rubbing his back might help also. Its worth a try.

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S.V.

answers from El Paso on

My advice is simple. I have a 2 year old and had the exact same issue, except slightly worse. My son had night terrors to boot. Anyhow, best thing to do is 1. A larger meal like mentioned before. Rice cereal + fruit, warmed was a great thing to do and 2. A nice warm bath with lavendar and camomile always helped just before bed.

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L.E.

answers from Denver on

Hi M.,
I'm the mom of a 4, 2 and 7 month old. My first one slept through the night at 2 months and its gotten gradually worse with the 2nd and 3rd. However, my 3rd one has finally caught on to the household routine and is doing so much better.

Do rule out an ear infection, teething (which is very probable at 5 months) or any other health problem. If he is generally happy during the day, with a good disposition, then he's probably fine.

Here's my tips:

#1 You have to be diligent in your routine with both children, whatever you decide to do. You have to be strong and not give in. For sanity's sake. You will feel much more in control.

#2 Establish a routine with your baby. Here's my sample schedule. She wakes with the household generally around 7:30am.
I give her a bottle or maybe you nurse. About a 1/2 hour later, she gets breakfast - scramble eggs are a hit. She wants a nap around 9am. She sleeps til about 11.
She gets another bottle, then lunch - deli meat and cheese has been a hit. Her next nap is 1pm. You should aim to get both down from 1 - 3. Upon waking, she gets a bottle. Then a snack, then dinner. She eats what we eat - she loves hamburger and steak meat.
As long as she can mash it with her gums, she eats it and its what she seems to prefer. A bath if needed. She goes to bed at 7, rocking in her bedroom chair with the music (a que), then I put her in her crib with her paci and her blankie and I hit the button her crib aquarium. A soft square of fabric. She wakes between 12 - 3 for another feeding and then not til 7:30am. She did not do this til over 6 months. Remember, Sleep Begets Sleep.

#3 Establish "ques". A bath with soothing lotion afterwards, the music, the rocking, the blankie, the paci, the crib aquarium (Fisher Price). This has been a winner with all 3 kids. If your 2 yr. old, can watch a movie/tv or look at a book, while you do this, that would be great. However, I know this is not always the case. But keep going with the routine, let the 2 yr. old get mad, if it has to be.
Then, you should follow suit with his bedtime routine. Aim to have everyone in bed by 8pm.

#3 HAve him eat throughout the day. Keep him active - go to the park, play in your yard, take a stroller walk, throw him in the air, etc.

#4 At 6 months, you can let him cry it out, if you choose. Turn the monitor down, take a tylenol PM and get your rest.
YOU are the most important person in their lives and they need you at your best.

#5 Reiterating, you need to stick to a plan of action. You will feel so proud of yourself. Don't expect it to be better until after 6 months, but start now.

M., I feel for you, because I do not get a lot of sleep. There's always somebody up or my other two awake at 6am, when I had finally fallen into bed at 11pm doing housework, bills, email, etc.

Try to remember the blessing of having happy, healthy, children.

Write back in you want :) Good luck,
L.

P.S. Remember to give a sippy cup with water all day. I noticed that my baby is parched most of the time, especially formula makes them thirsty. I've left a sippy cup, the one with handles in her crib, thinking eventually she'll pick it up and take a sip.

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H.Q.

answers from Great Falls on

Hi - I don't know if anyone has suggested this, but with both my kids, I got one of those heartbeat bears. They have a recording of what the heartbeat sounds like in the womb. The ones I got, I bought at Target they are from Dex and cost about $20. The best part about them is that they cycle off after like 45 minutes. You have to turn the dial off later, but at least the batteries aren't being used up cuz the thing is on for hours at a time.

Also (I know I'll get grief for this) I put my kids to sleep on their tummies. Now, I know that you are "supposed" to put babies on their backs or sides, but I have justification for this. First, up until fairly recently (15 - 20ish years) it was recommended to put babies on their tummies so that if they urped they wouldn't choke on it. A lot of babies slept on their tummies. But, also - think about the position of a baby in utero. They are curled forward - it's a comfort for them to sleep that way.

Now, my husband FREAKED over this with my first. But, what I did was put her on her tummy for nap time. Then I could check on her and not worry so much. I did this for about 2 weeks before I went for night time on the tummy. Please understand that I'm not saying "All babies should sleep on their tummies". There are just some babies that don't seem to sleep well on their backs and/or sides. And, I would never say SIDS is a hoax or not for real. All I'm saying is inutero, babies curl in - that's why it's CALLED the fetal position! Babies know that is a "safe" way for them to sleep.

Those are the things I did with both my girls. If you're uncomfortable with the tummy sleeping, that's fine - but try the bear. It might help!

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J.M.

answers from Pueblo on

Hi M.,

I have three kiddos with my youngest one being 6 months old right now so I understand what you're going through. My hubbies military also & is leaving next month. Do you have any friends near by at all? Everyone else's sugguestions are great but you need to catch up on a little sleep. Maybe someone can watch them for a day or even a few uninterupted hours of sleep? It'll help you get your bearings back & rejuvinate you to start trying new ways to put him to sleep again. You're probably so darn tired and being tired comes with some crankiness and the children feel both of those things. It'll put them on edge. That would be one of the first things I'd sugguest!! Even if you got a sitter for the day. Some even will watch them in your home. I know what it's like to feel like you're alone dealing with everything since he's gone. This will be our third tour and my husband is a lifer or at least till retirement. E-mail me if ya ever need to chat. [email protected]____.com

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T.C.

answers from Denver on

All the other suggestions are great.
Both my kids started sleeping through the night at 7 weeks. And they still sleep when not sick, my youngest 830pm-9am and my oldest 9pm - 9am. So i didnt really have a problem. My son is now 18 months and had his first cold ever. So i feel your pain and i only had to deal with it for a week.
I agree, get a routine, even if its the same music at night.
Also, try the gas drops, i found them to work great while my boy was sick, and up ever 15 minutes. I had 5 hours of sleep in 4 days.
Also when my kids where younger i fed them right before bed apple sause with some barley or Oatmeal and applesauce. A nice desert but healthy. It also helped keep them regular. Barley is in the infant cereals. My son had reflux when he was born so those were endless nights, he would sleep in a bouncer most nights.

Good luck.

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A.J.

answers from Phoenix on

When my sons did that, I was told to put a little rice cereal in their formula, it's a lil thicker and helps keep them full at night. (sometimes you have to make the opening a bit bigger on the nipple of the bottle) My boys soon started to sleep through the night.

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C.M.

answers from Albuquerque on

Lets see... Is he teething? My son is 6 months and has 2 teeth already, something I wasn't expecting right away. When he was up like that I tried everything too. I gave him "gripe water" it is all natural and helps with teething and upset stomach. It has camamille(?) tea, ginger and fennel. You can get it at whole foods or wild oats. I also give my son a warm bath before bed, give him gripe water or camamille tea in a bottle and let him play until he gets tired and then put him to bed. I hope some of this helps. Good luck. if you need anything else email me [email protected]____.com

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A.D.

answers from Fort Collins on

M.,

Try infant massage. It helps babies sleep deeper; it relaxes baby; helps with their digestive system; circulatory system; and and musculoskeletal system. Infant massage instructors can be found across the country. Try www.iaim-us.com That's the International Association of Infant Massage. It's much better than cough medicine.

A.

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N.C.

answers from Phoenix on

I have read all of the suggestions made so far and they are all great! I wanted to add to the list for you to find a "mother's helper" - maybe a middle schooler or high school age child in your neighborhood that could come in a couple of hours in the afternoon and play with your two year old. Maybe you could sneak in 30 minutes of rest or even a nap if the baby sleeps. Mother's helpers are usually a little less than a sitter, so it wouldn't strap you financially.

Do you have family or a friend that could come in one night and let you get a full night's sleep? I know I am a much better mom when I get my rest. Sounds like you need a break!

Take care!

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V.N.

answers from Phoenix on

Ok I have used cough medicine but only when he was teething and miserable and couldn't eat or sleep because of it, but this is rare. I have been having the same problem with my one year old and just realized he is constipated. It is also from teething sometimes, he is taking harder than my daughter did. Sometimes he needs to burp other times I turn him on his side and that helps.

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K.J.

answers from El Paso on

M.-
A few things I did when my son was a baby was after say 6pm, keep him awake for at least 3 or more hours. I didn't let him catnap, we just played or read a book, etc. I then gave him a bath around 9:30, feed him, and put him to bed. Once he did wake up I made the mistake of talking to him, making faces, etc. My friend, a pediatric nurse came to visit and told me that when he woke up in the night, give him a bottle but no talking, cooing, making faces, essentially no stimulation except meeting his needs. He realized then it wasn't time to play (and I was really too tired to anyway) and it worked. He started doing his business, then going back to sleep.

Good luck and hope you get some sleep. I was a single mom after my son was 6 weeks and I didn't have family in the area but one of the best things I did was have a friend babysit and get some sleep, at least once a week. It was well worth it to feel refreshed!

K.

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T.

answers from Colorado Springs on

Hi M. - I can relate! My husband deployed 2 weeks after my 2nd child was born. I didn't have a lot of support either, so I know how tired you are. As far as sleeping through the night, all I can tell you is what worked for me. After I knew that my daughter was old enough to physically sleep through the night, I let her learn to soothe herself, (which usually involved crying at first). But each night she cried a little less, and that encouraged me to keep up with it. I know this isn't for everyone, and if you don't want to try this, or even agree with me, that is fine. But this, along with a regular bedtime routine really helped me out. I was always sure that she had a bottle sometime in the routine, to be sure that she had enough food to hold her through the night. And even if you want to just try giving him one bottle in the middle of the night at first, that might help, too. (His tummy is use to night time feedings, and maybe tapering off of them will help). I also would suggest a set bedtime and putting him to bed awake (but calm). Believe me, it was really hard at first, and if you plan on going this route I hope you look into it a little more (websites such as parentcenter.com were helpful to me) to find out a method that works best for you and your baby. It seems there are many different was to go about it, and if you have the time to look, it might help you out.

Good luck!
T.

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A.R.

answers from Albuquerque on

I am a new mother of a 3 month old. So I really don't feel I have the experience to give advice yet. However I was interested in knowing more about your situation. Does your son take naps during the day? If so try keeping him up longer. Let him take naps but short ones. That way he will be tired during the day. I had a bit of a challenge getting my son on a decent sleeping pattern. He had his days and nights confused. So we would shorten his naps during the day. We also are a big fan of baths and showers. Something about it really relaxes them. You could try those things if you haven't already. My husband is a Marine and my father was in the military so I can relate to your stress. Do you have any girlfriends or family members nearby that can help. Or even babysit so you could get a few hours of rest? You shouldn't feel like you can not ask for help. No one will look down on you for not being able to handle it all. I hope this helps and you will have some relief. Good Luck!

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J.C.

answers from Phoenix on

You've gotten lots of responses, so I'll make mine short. Do you have him on a schedule? You know, doing the same things at the same time every day? It really made a difference with my son. He ate and napped at (close to) the same times every day, and when it was bedtime, we would feed him (if he's eating food yet), then give him a bath, then jammies, then books, then bottle, then bed. We had some difficulty with a pacifier around that age, and got sick of going back in and putting it in his mouth or standing there holding it forever until he fell asleep so we read Dr. Richard Ferber's book (recommended to us by our pediatrician as the only book to get regarding sleep patterns) called "Solve your child's sleep disorders" and that broke the pacifier thing. Good luck! Try to get some rest!

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A.B.

answers from Phoenix on

a blowdryer on full blast on cool setting worked for my boys.

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M.P.

answers from Albuquerque on

Have you tried feeding him cereal yet? I found that by this age a regular routine and a more solid diet helped with letting my kids sleep for longer periods of time. For me I found that around 4 to 5 months I too had the same problem and by feeding a small bowl of rice or other baby cereal about an hour before I put my kids down helped them sleep for a longer strech.This along with the smae bedtime every night works great from my experience. All my kids bedtimes from the time they were babies was between 8 and 9pm and made waking up around 5 to 7am depending on the kid. Best wishes and hope this helps

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C.R.

answers from Phoenix on

I think we have the same child! Its gotten worse since she's been crawling, its like she never stops. I started a sleeping log this week and plan on checking with the pediatrician at her 6 month visit. We let her cry, which only works when she first goes down, not at 2am. I've tried orajel incase she's teething, I check her diaper, I sing and rock her for sometimes up to an hour. I eventually give in and breastfeed at night just to get her to sleep for an hour! Hopefully the doctor can give me other things to try (she's also been having different bowel movements since we've switched her to food), maybe its her tummy keeping her up?
Let me know if you get any good, new advise as I have been searching high and low for ANYTHING to work!

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K.

answers from Denver on

Hello,

My son was a very difficult sleeper when he was young and someone suggested the book "Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child". It worked like a charm for us, and most of the techniques you can begin after about four months. The whole theory is based on the idea that "the more kids sleep, the more they sleep" and that really difficult sleepers get so overtired that they can't get into a deep sleep. One of the first ideas from the book that we tried was to set him down for a nap WITHIN 1 HOUR of him waking up in the morning. I know that this sounds bizarre, but it really started to change things around. It let him try to go to sleep when he was still pretty rested and not too fussy. There are lots of other ideas if this one doesn't work. Hope this helps!

K.

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T.

answers from Phoenix on

Hi M.!

I am a 32 year old single mother of 3, recently divorced. I was a stay home mom for 9 years. My kids are 12, 9, and 5. They are all in school now, but I did have a nonsleeper! Not quite as bad as what you are going through, but still a problem. Have you talked to his pediatritian? Im sure you have been told this before, but it's OK to let him cry it out. I understand that you have a 2 year old who needs his sleep too, but I truely recommend doing this. It's not easy, and the guilt can be unbearable, but honestly, it only took my daughter about 4 or 5 days to get it! Once they realize mommy will not answer to every cry, they will wear themselves out, and give up. But it may take longer for you than it took us, or maybe not. Give it a try. As long as you know he is safe,and has a dry diaper, and is not hungry, go for it! And by the way, they do not need to eat all night long. If he gets 2 bottles in the night, and still cries, I dont think its due to hunger! The pacifier is a double standard too. It can be your best friend, and your worst enemy! I used one for 2 of my kids, and on my 3rd I said NO WAY!! Its great to calm and quiet them during the day, but at night, when they are too young to pick it up and put it in their mouth themself, its a nightmare! I would try cutting that out too, for all of your bennifit. I may sound cruel, but it worked for me, and you cannot be drinking formula anymore honey, yuck!! LOL!! :-) Best of luck to you, and please let me know how it goes!
T.

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H.

answers from Lubbock on

Hi! I completely feel for you - my son slept well fairly early on but then, at around 9 months, would not nap, would not go to sleep on his own, and when he did finally fall asleep, would wake up several times. We finally cured the problem but had to do it the "hard way" by simply letting him cry it out. I tried sitting by his crib, I tried going in every 5 minutes but, at the end of the day, all that seemed to work was a firm "it's night night time" and leaving him to cry. I hated to do it but after a couple of weeks it seemed to work. He would still wake up every now and then but the same firm "night night" and a little hug seemed to calm him.

Saying all this, he was a little older than your baby. Maybe he is teething? Does he have something to chew on in the crib?

Well, not sure if this helps at all, but good luck!

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L.R.

answers from Washington DC on

My son had acid reflux and it kept him from sleeping. He would fall asleep but then wake up. I knew it was acid reflux because he would be sleeping so peacefully and then about an hour or two after being asleep he would wake up crying and crunching up his legs. Does it seem like your son is in any type of pain? If so you might want to talk to your doctor about acid reflux.

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E.G.

answers from El Paso on

Does he take naps during the day? If he does try to reduce them. Maybe let him take shorter naps or reduce for example, from 4 naps to 2 naps a day. Make sure he is eatting well during the day, and try to play with him to burn down his energys, like teach him new things to roll over, crawl, sit, etc. I never had that problem with neither of my two boys I try to keep them active during the day and they sleep all night my 3yr old and my 7 mo old. Good luck! !!!and no type of medication please.!!!!

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M.M.

answers from Phoenix on

My daughter went through the same thing. Unfortunately, we had out of town guests for about a month, and I felt pressure to quiet her immediately, as soon as they left, I tried letting her "cry it out". At first, it got worse, but I held my ground and by the 3rd night she started waking up less and fussed for only a few minutes. After a week, she was able to sleep through the night again. -Until she learned to stand and couldn't get back down (: It is difficult, but it worked, and we were all happier after a good nights sleep.

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A.H.

answers from Phoenix on

Oh my this makes me tired hearing about your son. My two are 16mos apart so I know that exhaust feeling but I would suggest talking to the doctor. Your poor son has to be exhausted! My first woke every 2 hours till about 8 weeks then slept about 5-6hours. Cough medicine is a temporary fix and why would people suggest that!!!! Lets just drug him up!!!J/K ANyhow I really think you neeed professionals to help with this one unsless some other mom has had this severe of a problem. Good Luck
A.

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A.J.

answers from Killeen on

wow, we have a lot in common! i am a SAHM of a 2 yr old girl and a 4 mo old girl. i had the same problem with my 4 mo old, she would wake up like every hour or two at night, sometimes just for her pacifier, sometimes to eat, sometimes just to be held. the only thing that has worked for me is to let her "cry it out". i do it a little differently than some people, though. i feed her and make sure she is changed, then put her in her crib and turn a small fan on so noise outside her room is drowned out. i give her the pacifier and her blankie that she loves to hold and leave the room. she normally fusses for maybe 10-15 min. but i just go in every minute or 2 and give her the pacifier and she calms down. i make sure not to talk to her or look her in the eyes, b/c that makes a baby connect with you and they think you will pick them up. usually each time i have to go in to give her the pacifier she keeps it longer and longer until she finally falls asleep. i do this for naptime as well as bedtime. right away, she started only waking up 2 times during the night, sleeping until at least 2am. last night she only woke up once! on a side note to letting your baby cry, there are some times (especially if she gets over-tired) that i can just tell she is getting more and more hysterical and will not calm down, and in those instances, i do pick her up and rock her to sleep. i see nothing wrong with doing that, and i think a mother can tell the difference between a baby just fussing b/c they don't want to go to sleep and a baby crying b/c they need to be comforted. and obviously it has not hindered my baby at all b/c she still sleeps very well even though there are times that i rock her.
oh and 2 more things you can try...with both my girls i gave them a little bit of cereal in their nighttime bottle (you can just pump if you are breastfeeding), both my girls had/have gastric reflux, so the thicker consistency helps settle the stomach. after they were old enough, i just started feeding them a bowl of cereal at night before bed. the other thing is that if your baby wakes in the middle of the night and you know they are not hungry or wet or anything, try just stroking their head, patting their back, giving them a pacifier or blanket (or both). teaching a baby to soothe themselves back to sleep is much better in the long run then picking them up every time they cry at night! we didn't learn that until our first child was about 9 mo. old and i can tell you it's a lot harder than with our 4 mo. old now.
i hope i've helped some! good luck!
p.s. have you thought about putting your kids in daycare or using a babysitter during the day so you can take a nap? just for a couple hours? taking care of yourself is the most beneficial thing you can do for your kids!

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F.F.

answers from Lubbock on

My son did the same thing....about thirty minutes before he goes to sleep for the night, you need to feed him a bowl of rice cereal and mix it with a fruit or vegetable...he needs actual food to fill him up and sleep through the night.

My baby now sleeps 9p-630a each night.

Good luck!

F.
Lubbock, TX

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L.E.

answers from Albuquerque on

My daughter wouldn't sleep more than an hour at a time either until she was about 4 months old. Whenever she woke up, she wanted to eat. The pediatrician told me I could start giving her rice cereal, so I did, and she immediatly started sleeping longer. She'll go through little periods where she doesn't sleep as well (probably growth spurts) but it really seems to help having a little more in her tummy at night. I hope you can find something that works for you!

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C.S.

answers from Phoenix on

LOL! Sorry M., my first thought was NightQuill! lol....just kidding! I just took my 6 month old in and addressed a similar situation. Although it's not as intense as yours his suggestion to me since I feed my son while he is in bed is that I let him cry for 5 minutes and then check on him (plug binky back in) and then up it to 10 minutes...ect...I also try to make sure that he has had food and not just a bottle at least 30 min before bed time then I give him a good 4-6 oz of formula or sometimes he wants water instead. I'm sure you've already got a set bed time for the little guy so maybe you may try to start this routine of checking every 5 then 10 then 15 minutes about a half hour before he is to be in bed....please let us know how you are doing....C.

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M.S.

answers from Denver on

Try taking an infant massage class. Infant massage is known to help babies sleep better, eat and digest better. It also helps moms to relax (endorphins released). It teaches them to self soothe. You can also take what you learn and use it on your toddler and your baby when he gets older. If you are a Denver metro resident Rose Medical Center offers a class every month. Or you can try www.infantmassageUSA.com for certified instructor all over the world.

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T.R.

answers from Denver on

Wow, you have gotten alot of responses!! My son did not sleep until...... oh wait he still doesn't!! :-) He is now 19 months old. I know a lot of people say you have to let them cry it out, but it just breaks my heart. i will let him cry for about 15 minutes, but If I try any longer than that he ends up throwing up all over the place anyways!! He does do much better now, waking up only once at night. He did have some medical problems though, he couldn't poop, his "stomach is sideways" (whatever tham means), etc. So, yes, I agree to first rule all that out. Another possibility is gas- it is very painful for little ones, and is worse when they lay down as opposed to sitting up. My son slept in a swing for quite a while because he would just scream at night every time it woke him up. If you think that may be the problem, there is stuff called gas drops (i think mylocon or something like that) it has to be given every two hours, but if it helps, its two solid hours of sleep and often times more because the pain wont wake him up for some time after the medicine wears off. Also, at Wild oats of whole foods you can get these homeopathic "colic tablets", I'm not real sure what they are exactly for, but they helped us until mine was about a year. (I showed them to my doc and he said it was just fine to give them as needed, all the stuff in them could be found in foods!!) Another thing that we found to be really helpful is the sound of the shower. No other water, just the shower. So we turned it on cold and just sat there with him outside it until he was in a deep sleep, and then would then lay him down. Last, I don;t know if you are against it or not, but for quite a while co sleeping helped. Our son also has night terrors, and when they wake up with those if you are right there they will often fuss a bit and go back to sleep or lay quietly for a while to orient themselves and fall back asleep!! (but only if u r right there!!) Also wondering where you live, if you would like to meet so you guys could meet me and my son, I could come over a couple times a week so yuou could get some sleep during the day until you get it under control?? Let me know and I hoep you find something that works!!
T.

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K.L.

answers from Phoenix on

The only things I can suggest are the hearbeat bear (it is at babies r us) or maybe turning the radio on to a white noise station and see if that works....I have no idea when babies are supposed to sleep through the night, is he getting enough to eat? Maybe your pediatrician could suggest rice cearel? Usually starts at 6 mo....maybe he needs something more too fill him up.

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S.

answers from Denver on

HI M. I have 2 kids that are 16 months apart so I can feel for you a bit on the no sleep. They are now 1 and 3 and they still have their nights. My first was horrible with sleep, but i did have my husband to help which you don't. So I recommend asking a family friend or family to help you get some sleep. Ask you mom or mother in law to come help for a couple of days. So you can catch up with your sleep and be more ready to face your problem. I don't know about you but I am pretty grumpy when I am tired. Then for the baby I saw someone mention early teething which my first went through for that I suggest, please no one call me a bad mother!, infant tylenol. AT least try it once and if it was the teething I guarantee the baby will sleep. It is really hard to sleep with pain in your mouth. Only give it before bed not during the day. Also humphres 3, teethers, and oragel work but they are only monetary and my 2nd never liked any of them. If you baby isn;t teething the tylenol will probably have no effect on your abby sleep patterns. I am not saying drug up your baby just relieve his pain.

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K.C.

answers from Denver on

Sorry that your going through what you're going through. I would try to keep my baby up all day to try to make her sleep better at nights, giving her a warm bath before bed, then feeding a big bottle or cereal before bed, and using a sound device. If you can't buy a sound device that makes differnt noises (i.e. water, rain, white noise, etc.) then you can use a radio. Turn it to static, or a non station, and turn the volume way up. My baby is such a light sleeper I found that getting out of her room and white noise worked the best! She is 7 mos. and occasionally wakes up but only once in the night to eat but sleeps for a ten hour stretch. Good luck, and get some sleep.

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K.M.

answers from Amarillo on

i'm just gonna ask but does he take naps during the day? if so have you tried to keep him up during the day so that maybe at night he'll sleep a bit longer? i had to do that a couple of times and he grew out of it! i wish the very best!

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J.J.

answers from Phoenix on

Hi M., I'm J.. I know what you mean about people suggesting to drug your child to get them to sleep. As if that is the answer to raising sane children. Anyway, the only thing that I can suggest is trying soy formula. I have a 4 1/2 month old and she had been on soy formula since she was 3 months old. My sister had to do the same with her boys becuase they were colicy. Does lactose intolerance run in your family? It does in mine and as soon as my sister switched formula her baby started sleeping better because his tummy wasn't upset. I know that this may only be a suggestion, but I do hope the best for you finding a solution.
Take care, J.

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A.W.

answers from Phoenix on

I used to put a little rice cereal in the formula at night. This worked with my 1st but not my second. We called it slipping them a mickey. I would also consider looking into getting a professional mother's helper. This way your confident that your kids are in good hands and you can get some much needed rest. They can also help you with housework which will also be a big load off your shoulders. I would recommend a nanny service so the person has been thoroughly checked out and trained. There are many different programs available now to make this a more affordable option.

Good luck and remember that this too shall pass.

A.

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C.

answers from Phoenix on

Get the book Babywise and follow its instructions. By keeping your baby on a regular schedule during the day you teach him to sleep through the night. Also - don't go in an give him his pacifier during the night. You are just teaching him that he needs you to get back to sleep. Put him down to sleep with no pacifier at night time. Let him cry himself to sleep. Then he won't expect it to be in when he wakes up. Every baby has wakeful periods every night. If they are relaxed they just turn over and go back to sleep. If they feel like something is wrong like " Wait - where did my pacifier go?" They may come all the way awake.

I have twins and the babywise book really worked to help them sleep. I didn't use it with my older child because I was afraid to hear him cry and he didn't sleep through the night until 1 year! And the twins did much less crying.lol

I am so sorry you are in this situation by yourself. If you have any money to do it with get a babysitter for a few days so you can get 4 or five hours sleep in a row. I never slept more than two hours at a time for the first five weeks with my twins and I got really bad post partum depression. So if you suddenly feel like you are freaking out - really sad or panicky - or feeling like you are living in a horror movie- then go to the doctor right away. I didn't want to tell the doctor because I thought it meant I didn't love my twins - but once I was on Zoloft I felt normal again. Remember - sleep deprivation is what they use to torture prisoners - its bound to make you a bit crazy.

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C.K.

answers from Tucson on

Despite your lack of sleep - it's good to see you still have a sense of humor - lol. I have 4 small kids 7,7, 3, and the youngest is 2. I am also a birth and postpartum doula. Here is what has helped us over the years:

1.) Darkened room - use shades
2.) White-noise machine (louder than a fan) - running water sound is great.
3.) Lavender - dab a cotton ball with lavender essential oil and rub it on pillowcases and bedding - and a favorite stuffed animal. Even on their pajamas....but just a little will do.
4.) A warm bath before bed - again you can put lavender in the water.
5.) Top them off with milk before bed so they're nice and full.
6.) Try swaddling! An amazing blanket is The Miracle Blanket which you can see at www.miracleblanket.com
7.) Pacifier - attach a pacifier holder to their outfit so they can learn to retrieve it if it falls out.
8.) Read Dr. Karp's Happiest Baby on the Block book
9.) Space naps out so that bedtime is for deeper, longer sleep. Let them "nap" with less calming than bedtime (i.e. not as dark, without the sound machine, not for as long, and with as many hours as possible before actual night time sleeping).


10.) Get some earplugs - for YOU. Try letting the baby calm itself to sleep. This can help forge independence and self-soothing techniques. As they get older - place some toys in the crib that they can play with if they wake up.

Hope some of this helps - best of luck to you!!!!!!
-C.

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R.

answers from Phoenix on

My son Joshua never slept either. He was too worried what everyone else was doing and would only take 15-20 minute catnaps. At his 6 month checkup, when I was ready to collapse, the doctor looked at me and told me I needed to make changes and I was contributing to my baby not sleeping because every time he cried I eithered breast fed or had to retrieve his pacifer. I was instructed to change his schedule and he ate dinner at 5-5:30 and then I fed him his milk at 6-6:30 then off to bed he went. No more feedings until morning. The first week was the hardest, he would cry and cry and I would sit outside of his room staring at the baby monitor and I would cry and cry also. But then a miracle happened, he learned I was not going back into the room and if he threw his pacifer it was gone for the night. (although most times I cheated, and I put 5-6 pacifers in his crib) He now sleeps from 6:30 pm until 5:00 am. Mostly he doesnt wake up at all during the night and on occasion, he does cry but then he puts himself back to sleep. He is now a year old, and we have never looked back. I read a book by Dr. Ferber called "Solve your childs sleep problems" and it helped me a lot. I followed his schedule.

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C.J.

answers from Albuquerque on

My daughter co-slept for about 4 months and then I decided I needed to sleep comfortably again and it was hard figuring out what would work for her. I finally started warming her bed with a heating pad before laying her down so that it was really cozy. Just check to make sure it's not to hot before you lay him down, and always removed the heating pad so he won't overheat. It's worth a try!

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S.

answers from Phoenix on

Totally get it. My little girl was not sleeping at 6 months either. I was expired and done in. I was about to fall apart. I did not realize that babies actually need to be taught how to sleep. Especially when breast fed. I have an 11 yr old as well and had no delimas with her at all so I had no idea what to do. A woman at my daughters bus stop actually gave me a book it was a life saver seriously. It is called Baby Whisperer. Completely check it out. It is amazing so much I did not know.It saved me seriously. I was becoming severely ill due to lack of sleep and being run down. So I really get how it can take a toll on your body. I am still trying to recover from the toll it took for that length of time. Get it and if you cant really afford it go to the book store and read as much as you can and then take another trip back read some more take some notes. Or go to your local libary and ask them to get it in, look for it what now.
S.

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K.

answers from Phoenix on

I've been there. My oldest daughter (now 4) just wouldn't sleep when she was a baby. When she was 5 months old, she would at most sleep 2 hours at a time, it drove me nuts. I liked Amazing Baby Sleep Secrets by Michael Quarrles -- you can download it off the internet and it helped my daughter sleep. He summarizes all the "major" baby sleep experts' theories and puts it together to make his own.

My child had an intolerance to milk, which I didn't realize at the time, since she wasn't spitting up. That could have a lot to do with it. She also has a neurological disorder that wasn't recognizable until she turned 3, which also may have contributed to sleep problems. I hope you find something that works. I would try the book or the other responses given. Something will work, I promise!

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K.H.

answers from Fort Collins on

Hi M.,
First off, I remember those sleepless nights and hope never to return to them. Just a question, does he sleep a long time during the day?

K.

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M.

answers from Phoenix on

Hi M.. I'm in the exact same situation that you are. I have a 21 month old and a 6 month old. My 6 month old does not sleep well at night. Part of the problem is the pacifier...he wakes up and then doesn't have his pacifier so he cries until someone (me) replaces it. I'm very sorry for your sleep loss. Please let me know if you get any helpful advice. Do you mind me asking where you live? We seem to have a lot in common.

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A.B.

answers from Phoenix on

First of all I just wanna say I am so sorry. I know what it is like to have no sleep. When you miss sleep it is not good.
I tried these natural tablets from henry's or sprouts. They have them in the vitamin section, I don't remember the brand, but it worked for me. They have colic, teething,etc. All natural. I would try those two items. First the colic tablets. Do you think your baby may be teething early. My middle son started at 5 months? Then try the teething tablets. They just dissolve on the gums. Some times if all really does fail, you will just have to him cry himself to sleep in order for you to get some sleep. I did that with my youngest son and it worked but it was heart wrenching at first. try sleeping at least 20 minutes every time he sleeps. Little bits of sleep is better than no sleep. Have you gone to the pedetrician yet? Maybe there is something more than the eyes meet. I have three children and their ages are 4,2,& 1. You learn different things with them all. I hope this has helped somewhat. Let me know and if you need to just talk, email me. Mother of three, LIS

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C.

answers from Denver on

Two words: Ferber method! I know every child is different, but mine is a stubborn one that woke every two hours for the first several months until we tried it--and it worked. Thank goodness! Good luck.

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B.D.

answers from Oklahoma City on

My baby would not sleep either for a long time. Someone refered me to a book called "on Becoming Baby Wise". My 6 month old now sleeps 11 hours at night! There is a book 1 and book 2. I would recommend getting both. The first one explains everything to you (newborn and up) and the second covers age 5 months to pretoddler stage. I have had nothing but great results from following the routine and advice in this book. I really hope you can do this because it will make your life so much easier and you will have a great night's sleep. let me know!! :)

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