Sleep Issue - Long Beach,NY

Updated on April 20, 2008
G.E. asks from Long Beach, NY
13 answers

My daughter is 19 months and will not sleep after 5:30 the past few nights she only sleeps till 4:30 THIS HAS BEEN GOING ON for a long time we have tried letting her cry,books in crib,putting her in our bed nothing works we end up in her room playing or in the living room watching elmo as I doze on the couch.
I am at my wits end as I am not able to function. If any one has any suggestions that would be great!!

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answers from New York on

I have the same issue, but it's been going on since my son was 10 months old...we'll have a phase where he'll wake up at 6 or 7 then back to btwn 4:30 and 5:30. i've tried everything too. i'd love to know what kind of responses you get!

a lee

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answers from New York on

Hi G. E! Guess who? See you tmw!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from New York on

I feel for you.. my daughter did the same thing and still does occasionally... I can say it may be a "phase" and just let her cry it out... if you do bring her into your room and she falls back asleep,, she will get used to it... (that is what happened to us!!!)

I am a fan of putting kids down early,, but maybe you need to push it back abit?

Hang in there... I swear I haven't had a good nights sleep in two years (my daughter is two).. but they are worth it!

; )



answers from New York on

I got one of my favorite bit of parenting advice when my firstborn was fighting me on a sleep issue. I was going crazy trying to get him to stay in his bed at night, around 2 years old. I talked to my uncle, who is a father of 4 and a pediatrician, and I told him all of the things I had tried. He pointed out that although I had tried everything, I probably had not given anything a chance to work. So pick the thing that you think you can stick with for what will seem like an eternity, and stick with it. When the going gets tough, you won't have to rethink it--just stick with it. It's just another sleep-training thing, really, like when you tried to get her to sleep through the night in the first place. Your daughter is probably exhausted, too, and just needs a chance to relearn how to sleep past 5:30. Then you'll both be happier. Good luck!



answers from Syracuse on

have you tried putting her to bed later at night? or possibly limiting her naps during the day so she isnt sleeping as long? or completely eliminating a nap completely if she is taking more than one nap a day.or is she waking up hungry and maybe needs a snack before bed or a bigger one.. sometimes its the most obvious things we dont try. lol i am a mom of three girls..



answers from New York on

I hate to say this, but that very well may be her natural wake up time. All three of my kids were early risers as well (4:30 - 5:30 am) and it is tough. You could try to put her to bed a little later at night... you could try to get her to nap a little later in the afternoon but these may or may not work. One thing that helped with my now 2.5 year old is that when he cried I brought him into bed with me and he would fall back asleep about 50% of the time. Other times I would go downstairs, let him play on the floor next to me and I would lie down on the couch with an early cup of coffee. Good news, however, this will not go on forever. It may take another 6 months but at some point she will sleep a little later for you. Is there any way you can get to bed earlier at night a few nights a week?



answers from Albany on

Does she have a night light? If so turn it off before you go to bed. We have to do this with our 2 year old since he used to wake too early & think the light meant it was time to rise.

Do you have room darking shades? These really make all the difference in the world. Even though the sun isn't quite up at those times it is lighter out and a very dark room helps!

What are her naps like during the day? At 19 months one
2 hour nap is appropriate.

Whenever my kids woke too early, I never ever ever ever entertained them as I am not a morning person and am very grumpy before the sun is up. Do not play, do not go to the living room & watch elmo. She needs to learn that it is still bedtime. When she wakes do not go to her immediately. Wait 30 minutes or so to see what she does. If she starts to cry go to her, do not talk to her, do not make eye contact, tuck her in, give a quicck kiss, quickly & firmly say "goodnight," and leave. The shorter the better & the less stimulation the better. If you have a monitor, turn it off. This make take a few nights. But do not reward the behavior you are trying to correct.

Sleep tight!




answers from New York on

I feel your pain. My 16 month old son sleeps to 5-5::30 almost every morning starting at age 5 months. I was losing my mind with sleep deprivation. Then my doctor gave me a list of suggestions. First some kids need as little as 10 hours of sleep at night. So he told me to try putting him to bed later ( but you need to try it for a week to see if it works). Then try putting them to bed earlier, for some reason this works for some kids.
Neither worked for us ( but the earlier trick worked for my friend's son). Then he said get black out shades and a nosie machine ( or fan). There might be a some noise you are not hearing that she is every morning. The last two work for us.
THe last thing he told us. If they are not crying, you do not go in till 6. That is morning, before that is not. They need to learn there is nothing worth getting up for at that hour. Leave safe, soft toys in her crib for her to entertain herself with. ON the mornings my son does get up early still that is what we do. I turn off my baby monitor and set my alarm for 6 and go back to sleep. UNless he is hysterical crying I never go in before 6.
HOpe that helps.



answers from New York on

I'm having the same issue, except that my 12 month old wakes up at 12am AND 5:30. I tried putting her to bed at 6 instead of 7:30, and it DID work, but she was HARD to get to sleep at 6. Then we got lazy, b/c the idea of her screaming for an hour (which ended up with us rocking her) was a bear. soon as I started putting her in bed at 7:30 again, she started waking at 12:30 and 5:30! I'm exhausted. Tonight it's back to 6pm, so we'll see what happens.

I have always had great results with both of my kids by "shaking" up their schedule, usually by putting them to bed considerably earlier than they were used to. My son just hung out in his crib, while my daughter screams. Both slept longer and woke up later. I tried putting them to bed later, that definitely didn't work for me, they were up at the same time, and crabbier than normal!

I, too, am getting sick of ELMO at 6am!!!



answers from New York on

Maybe you might want to try to put her to bed maybe an hour later. Don't start putting her in your bed, or you will end up with another problem. Good luck.



answers from New York on

How long has it been going on for? Always? If so, then yes it may be her natural wake time. Some babes are early wakers, and that is just that. My daugther wakes 6-7am every morning. It doesn't matter if I put her down at 7, 7:30, 8, 8:30. I've tried every thing to get wake time to be 7:30 or 8am, just a little bit later. Nothing worked. It is just her natural setting. However, there have been pockets of 5 or 5:30am wakings. That was just not going to happen. We needed our sleep. I did some research and below is what I found. It is a mix of different things I learned:

Early morning waking is one of the most common sleep problems experienced (community pharmacy 2001) and can be one of the most difficult problems to correct. (Ferber 1986) (Hames 2002)
However, don’t let this put you off trying to understand and fix the problem. There are many reasons why babies wake, and some of these problems are straight forward to remedy.

Early morning waking is subjective, in that it depends on what parents’ think of as early. Generally speaking the average sleep cycle runs from 7.30am-7.30pm. Having said that, these times depend on how old your baby is and they may not be sleeping 12 hours a night until around 6 months old. (Ferber cited by CChiang (BW general sleep FAQs) There are several reasons why early morning waking occurs.

1. Hunger
Early waking can occur due to straight forward hunger, because the baby is too young to be able to go longer between feeds.
Remedy by feeding and treat this as a night feed. This means, feed your baby and put him/her right back to bed. Considering your baby is 19 months, this is probably not the case.

2. Learnt hunger
Babies can learn to feel hungry. When they have been used to being fed at a certain time every day, they come to expect that feed and so wake wanting to be fed, even if perhaps they don’t actually nutritionally need that feed. Think about when you have perhaps been on holiday and had a cooked breakfast every day, when you come back home, you may start to feel hungry at the same times you ate this meal.
This problem can be rectified, by gradually delaying feeding times in very small increments. (Ferber 1986). If bottle fed, feeds can be eliminated by gradually watering down the milk (Hogg 2005).

3. External stimuli
Babies can wake early due to physical stimulation, such as noise or light, heat (central heating coming on) or cold (kicking off covers), or a leaky wet nappy etc,
By 5am, after completing most of the night time sleep, the levels of the hormone cortisol starts to rise and motivation to sleep is less strong (Ferber 1986). If babies experience any one of these stimuli frequently enough, they can begin to anticipate it and wake spontaneously, thus becoming a habit. (Ferber 1986)
The following ideas may help.
Blackout blinds
Sleeping bags / gro-bags
Double diapering
Safe toys, left so that the babe can amuse themselves
Using an alarm clock (toddlers)

4. Accidental parenting
Early morning waking can be due to accidental parenting. (Hogg 2005) The idea is that the baby wakes randomly, and your response reinforces it, causing the baby to repeat that behaviour. For example, if they wake and you feed, rock, or bring them in to bed with you frequently, they will then get into a habit of waking at that time, and will need the same response to go back off to sleep. Anything that motivates them to continue waking will reinforce this behaviour. (Ferber 1986) (Community Pharmacy 2001)
If you are feeding them, try to gradually delay this over a few days (Hames 2002). If you are rocking them, you will need to implement a new method to get them back to go sleep, i.e. pat/shush, pick up put down or wake to sleep (Hogg 2005). If you are bringing them into bed with you, you will need to get them used to going back into their own cot, and use the above sleep training methods. Please check out the FAQs on the boards specifically relating to the use of these methods.

5. Needing less than average sleep
All babies are individual. Some just need less sleep than average.
Watch for behavioural cues, which will tell you whether or not your baby is well rested on the hours of sleep he or she is getting or whether they are overtired (Hogg 2005).If they need less than average sleep, then delaying bedtime gradually will result in them waking later.

6. Unrealistic expectations
If you are expecting too much sleep from your baby, they may start waking early in the morning, simply because they are well-rested and ready to go for the day.
Solution: Some combination of shortening naps and delaying bed time so that the total time sleeping is less, making your LO need that morning sleep.Check out FAQ’s on the general sleep board for typical hours of day and night time sleep.

7. Overtiredness
Early waking can be caused by the baby being overly tired. (Hogg 2005, Community pharmacy 2002, Ferber 1986) due to too much activity time, or too little sleep. If the activity time before bed is too long, babies can become stressed, irritable and overactive. (Ferber 1986). This then makes it hard for them to relax and they may fight against going to bed. Overtiredness increases the number of wake ups during the night (Ferber 1986, Hogg 2005)
Address this problem by keeping activity time short, closely observing non verbal behaviour for tiredness cues then acting immediately. Ensure they get correct amount of day time naps.

8. First nap of the day is too early
Early waking can be due to the first nap of the day being too early. The final part of the night time sleep cycle can become separated, appearing as an early morning nap. (Hames 2002) (Ferber 1986)
This can be resolved by gradually pushing the first nap of the day further forward very slowly, over several days.

9. Having an early sleep phase
A normal sleep phase is suggested to run from 7.30am-7.30pm. (Ferber 1986) If a baby has an early sleep phase, they will be irritable in the late afternoon, or early evening, waking early in the morning, but also wanting to go to sleep early in the evening or even late afternoon. An early sleep phase can be created by regularly allowing the baby to fall asleep early (Ferber 1986). Early sleep phases are more common in infants than in toddlers. Many early risers eventually outgrow this problem. (Hames 2002)
It is sometimes possible to alter the pattern and can take a couple of weeks. To do this, get them into a good 12 hour daily routine, starting at that early hour when they wake (which also means an early bedtime), and then gradually shift the entire day back in 15 minute increments. You will need to alter the whole routine,including naps and feeds as well as bedtime.
However sometimes it is not possible to change an early sleep phase, but most babies will outgrow this problem. (Hames 2002) If you have tried all that you can, with patience, consistency and persistency, it may be that you need to accept that for the time being they are ‘larks’ and just need to go to bed early (and you too), so that you both get the sleep you need. (Hogg)

10. Developmental Changes
Babies can sometimes start waking early (or at other times), due to experiencing new physical or psychological milestones (Sears and Sears 2005). They may wake to play or try out their new found skills.



answers from New York on

I think Jessica is right, it might be her natural waking hour. My son used to wake up around 5:00 am for about 7 or 8 months. there is nothing you can do. fortunately I am a morning person, so although it was hard, I used to get up with him at 5am, gave him breakfast and went for a walk. then he usally had a nap around 9-10am so I always napped with him. those naps saved my sanity. it is best to go with the flow with your baby and just adapt to it as much as you can.



answers from New York on

What time do you put her to bed? Have you considered keeping her up an hour or two later? Maybe then she would sleep later in the morning. Good luck!

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