My daughter is 6 months old. We went for her check up today, and I told the doctor that she is still getting up 3-4 times every night. The doctor told me that he believes this is a habit. He suggested that when she wakes up, I let her cry it out. I'm not a huge fan of this, but I am willing to give it a try. I have been so exhausted that everyone in my house is beginning to suffer. My question is what exactly constitutes "sleeping through the night" for a 6 month old? I put her to bed between 7:30 and 8:00 at night and with the way things are currently, she usually sleeps until anywhere from 7 to 9 AM (with her getting up 3-4 times during that time). I have a hard time believing that I should expect her to sleep for 12 to 14 hours at this age. Please help me understand what I should expect from her!! TIA!!
Most mom's would disagree with me, but I say co-sleep. I did this with both my kids and they slept through the night since 2 months old with only 1 nightly feeding. My daughter is 2 now and she converted to her bed at 18 months with no problems. My son is 3 months old and only wakes up 1 time. I can't remember ever missing much sleep doing it this way.
I strongly disagree with the cry it out method.....6 months is still too young to try it anyway.
You didn't say whether you are nursing or not. Sometimes they go through a growth spurt and need to be nursed during the night. Also, if you let her cry it out, what does thsi say to a 6 month old about your loving care of her needs, even if it is just to know someone is there and they care. Thsi to shall pass. Love her and nurse or soothe and sleep when you can. You are the mother, not the doctor. And no, not all babies sleep thfough the night at that age, yet.
Also, their tummys are not ready for cereal or solids until about 11 months, mother's milk is all they need, not even water, as your milk has water in it. And so many babies are lactose intolerant, even if you eat dairy while nursing, it can cause colic and extreem upset tummies in babies, not to mention rash, etc.
Love them while they are here and let go when they are grown.
Believe it or not, at that age babies ARE expected to sleep that long. They really need good sleep, since so much brain development is going on (doesn't happen again until their teenage years)!
With our son, he would get about 14 - 15 hours of sleep a night, which broke down as anywhere from 10 to occasionally 12 hours at night (8 pm until 6 or 7 am usually, with the occasional 8 am wake-up) and anywhere from 2 to 3 naps of 1 - 1 1/2 hours each!!
Once he was eating solids, we would give him a final milk feeding, then give him his solids (at 5 months, he started rice cereal, then moved on to oatmeal---much better re: keeping him regular---and veggies by the time he was 6 months old).
Once we were feeding him his solids, we knew that any wake up was not from hunger, so we would just go in and change a diaper, if needed, or soothe him with some back-rubbing in his crib. If we couldn't get him to go back to sleep, we knew he was also teething at 6 months old, so we'd give him some Motrin infant drops and he would go back to sleeping "like a baby" ;-)
I hope this helps!
*** Addition to my original response --- we also gave him Mylicon with each feeding during the day (every 3 - 4 hours) and his final feeding at night. He was a pretty gassy baby and that probably helped him sleep through the night, too! Good luck!
Have you tried co-sleeping? Let her go to bed with you so she feels secure and snug. Babies often sleep better this way. I wouldn't want to sleep alone, so I don't expect my little one to either.
Also, I think it's modern America's stinky opinion that "your baby needs to sleep through the night, mine did from the day they were born." As long as you can get them back to sleep within a few minutes with comfort or whatever they need, it's not as big of a deal as everyone makes it sound. That's my opinion anyways.
Sleeping "through the night" varies a little for each child. If you have a light sleeper she may wake more and vice versa. Usually you will see a little one sleep 4 hours at a time so 8-midnight, 12-4, 4-8, roughly. Each kid will find what works for them. I wouldn't worry too much, yours is still little and getting things figured out, eventually she'll sleep longer stretches.
I abolitely LOATHE "cry it out" and don't know where pedi's get the idea they know parenting as well as they know medicine. You know your child, if she needs something, etc.
My best recommendation is to try some strategies for helping stay asleep and eventually she'll do it. Good luck!
Take a baby bottle and widen the hole in the nipple. Put some rice cereal in the formula to thicken it a little. Give this to her at her last meal of the night. She should sleep at least 6 hours once she is full.
This is what my mom told me when mine was 5 months old. The pediatrician said absolutely not, but mom had 6 kids. It worked like a charm!!
If you are bottle feeding, then a 6 month old might be able to sleep through the nite. But, if you are breastfeeding, this is too much to expect IMHO. However 3-4 times a nite is too much. If you are breastfeeding, you may just need to nurse more during the day. Also, what I did at this age was to go to bed early myself and then have my husband bring the baby to me when he went to bed (11-midnite). Then, I would nurse at least once during the nite and then at 5:30 or so. All babies are different and you need to listen to your instincts. And strictly speaking "sleeping through the nite" means they sleep from midnite to 5 am (i.e., 5 hours straight). Our pedi thought my son should not sleep in our room but crying it out was not something I could do. In the end he stayed in our room and nursed in our bed when he needed to - we all got sleep that way. You can put their crib right by your bed to make things easy if you don't want them in your bed. In my experience, most pediatricians (male in particular) don't know a thing about nurturing infants and in my experience they're best ignored. As long as your baby is gaining well, there's not much advice you need from them.
My son is going to be 6 months on the 16th and just started STTN about 2 weeks ago.. but there have still been nights he wakes up several times. Our schedule is the same as yours, but we're dealing with teething and growth spurts, so you have to factor that in, too. If you're breastfeeding most likely she wakes for the comfort. When I quit BFing at 5 months is when he stopped waking (not that I am recommending that because I would have loved to keep BFing, just circumstances prevented me from continuing).
At 6 months, I don't think you can put all babies into one category. Some STTN early and some later. I don't believe in crying it out - I think if your babe is up at night, something is wrong. She's cold, bungry, needs to be burped, needs a new diaper, wants the fan on, is too cold, etc.With us, there is no pattern and I honestly don't believe one mom is telling the truth when they say their babies are consistently STTN. Sometimes, babies just wake up.
I don't know if that helps, but hang in there!! Try the back pat when she wakes without taking her out of her crib. Use some magical seahorse creature that sings like we have to lull her back to sleep. Good luck!
With my daughter, she didn't sleep through the night until she was 1 because I refused to try CIO until then. Once I did CIO she still woke 2 to 4 times, but I wsa able to just giver her a drink of water and lay her down and she get right back to sleep, no more rocking for endless hours. I think it's pretty normal for a baby that age to sleep restlessly, but I do think they probably can be taught to comfort themselves better- if you are willing to do that.
Believe it or not, 6 hours is considered sleeping through the night at this age. Their stomachs are the size of their fists, so they don't hold much. If she's waking that much, she could be going through a growth spurt or teething and you should try and address that first or else she's likely just to keep crying. I would also recommend Elizabeth Pantley's book -- No cry sleep solution. It's based on a lot of research on the sleep habits of infants and draws on that. There's also a google or yahoo support group for parents implementing her sleep techniques. There are some really good resources out there if you look. Good luck!
every child is very different. my first started sleeping through the night at three months. with my second I expected the same; however, she started sleeping through the night at around 7 months. I think sleeping through the night is 10-4am! Are you still feeding in the middle of the night? Is your baby eating solids yet? Mine was not very interested in solids until after 6 months - we noticed an improvement. Also, since our baby was within the 95% for weight the pedi said that she really doesn't NEED a middle of the night feeding. Once I took that away as well, it seemed like she started sleeping through the night as well; however, she started going down around 7pm and sleeps until 7am if I let her. She has been doing that since close to 7 months. I think that is wonderful - I never had that with my first daughter. She would wake up before 6am all of the time and ready for a bottle! However, even though my first started sleeping through the night at 3 months she started having night wakings again around 6 months (teething). She is now 2 and still has night wakings. I really believe that all kids are different. I hope this helps.
All babies are different and just because one baby sleeps through the night, doesn't mean they all should. First of all, there could be a valid reason that your baby is waking up. Sure some of the time, they may be waking up out of habit. You won't know that unless you go in and check on them and help them out. I reccommend that you just keep going in there and helping her. She is only 6 months old and does not know what time it is, my 6 month old was waking up 3-4 times a night also at that age. It is perfectly normal. As for crying it out, I think it is cruel. They are too young to understand what is going on and I think it is mean to leave a young baby to scream and cry for any amount of time. You should not leave them so confused and scared that they are crying. Babies are learning to trust you at this age and if you do not respond to their needs they will learn that. If they need to be picked up and rocked, they need it. They are BABIES. They need tender loving care from their mommies. Someone told you to let her cry, they said you may have to trun off the monitor or put on headphones because it goes against our instinct to leave them crying like that. There is a reason it goes against out instincts...it is wrong. That is why we have the urge to go care for them when they are crying, it is what we are supposed to do. You said that you are not a big fan of crying it out, go with your instincts and don't do it. Keep taking care of her. This too is a phase and it will pass, you will look back on it soon and be glad that you did not let your precious baby cry at the top of her lungs. I never let mine do that and she is one year old now. She sleeps through the night just fine. She goes to sleep on her own, happily without crying. So, your baby can learn perfectly healthy sleeping habits without crying it out. I too felt like you did when she was 6 months, but things imroved and now she rarely wakes up in the night, if she does it is only once and it is usually because she did not eat enough right before bed. Trust your gut, don't let her "cry it out". She will sleep through the night eventually and then you will miss the times you used to have to get up with her in the night, I know because I miss the times that I was up feeding my daughter at 2am. Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night and I just wish she would wake up and cry so I could go hold her. If you are that tired, like I know I was, since you stay at home, you should take a nap also when she takes her nap. Even if you are busy, just stop and take a nap. You may get less done, but atleast you and everyone else would be happier, without making your baby cry!
There is a 6 month growth spurt where they are hungry during the night. If she has never slept through, you might let her cry. I set a tie limit for myself (5-10 minutes during the night). Also, you might start this on the weekend.
Sleeping through the night is a stretch of about 6 hours. If your daughter is breastfed, then it is reasonable that she should be waking up once or twice to eat (though some babies don't even need that at this point). I am a big fan of cry it out. It has worked with both my 22 month old and my 6 month old. Basically, if your baby wakes up before the 4 hour mark (at least) just let him cry. You will probably have to turn your monitor off or wear headphones because it goes against our instincts, but they will stop eventually and they will sleep. Sleep is the most important thing! Sleep is when their brains grow! Please read the book Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child. It is so helpful. Your daughter needs to learn self soothing skills, so you may have a few nights of screaming before she figures out how to put herself to sleep. It took both of my boys about 24-48 hours of crying before they learned how to put themselves to sleep. Now, I just lay them in their beds awake, they go to sleep, and stay asleep. My six month old sleeps from 7:30 to 5:30 and then eats, goes back to sleep from 6:00-8:00. Please email me if you need support!
Wow I went through this pretty much at the same age with my daughter!! Please purchase and read Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child. My daughter was six months old when I started reading this. She was waking up 4 or more times at night and napping for 30 minutes at a time. Is your daughter napping very well? One thing I noticed with my daughter is that her napping and night sleep are connected. ONce I got her nap schedule in order, her night sleep fell into place. Are you still feeding her at night? This is the age where I had to stop that. You basically need to reset your daughters internal sleep clock. The book I mentioned will explain exactly what you need to do! Please please read it! It was a miracle worker in our house!!
Your daughter will begin sleeping through the night eventually. Does she nap alot during the day? If so try to keep her awake longer during the day and feed her about an hour before going to bed; she should sleep longer through the night then. If that doesnt work; please let me know I have some more suggestions that may help.
I know it's hard to believe but yes, babies do sleep 12 hours by 6 months. There is a book called 12 hours of sleep by 12 weeks that is a step by step guide to help you get your baby on a good sleeping schedule. I didn't know of it until by baby was older.
My baby was waking up once during the night until about 7 months. I finally took the plunge and let her cry it out. I know it's so hard to let them cry but it only took two nights until my baby's habit was broken. It was defiantly worth it because since then, she has been sleeping 12 to 13 hours every night. Good luck!!!
I have 15 month old twin boys and they were sleeping 8-9 hours a night by the time they were 3 months old. Since then they sleep 10.5 - 12 hours a night and only wake when they are sick. We followed our doctors advice and set a 10 hour time frame that we wanted them to sleep as a goal and that was all we ever expected. We laid them down awake in their cribs for naps and bed time. If they cried at any of these times or overnight for the first two weeks we waited five minutes. Once five minutes were up we would go in and calm them down without picking them up (caress check, shhh, paci and so on) and start all over if needed. Then two weeks later we waited 10 minutes and then finally two weeks later 15 minutes. This is not easy in the beginning, but I assure you that only a couple of days into this they were usually asleep in 5-7 minutes. Be sure to set a timer and keep to it.
Hope she is sleeping through the night soon. :)
I forgot to add that we have a 2 hour schedule and always have. Wake- breast milk, 2 hours later - solids, 2 hours later - cup of milk, 2 hours later - solids, 2 hours later - cup of milk, 2 hours later - solids, 2 hours later breast milk and straight to bed. We focused our feedings, play and love during the day. When they were much smaller they slept one hour out of every two. We grew to see their tired cues and we put them down for naps as soon as we see there cues.
Another great book that has CIO, a middle road and a no cry option is Happy Baby, Healthy Sleep Habits. Great book for understanding sleep needs for babies and its association to happy babies that are more social and have the ability to learn more while acquiring healthy sleep habits for life.
Sleeping at least 6 hours straight is considered thru the night. You will probably have to work up to 10 hours straight once she is trained to sleep longer periods. If you are feeding her when she wakes up in the middle of the night....I suggest you start there. I wouldn't feed her if she wakes. Also, try not to pick her up out of bed. Just rub her back or whatever she likes to get her back to sleep. You have to encourage what you want her to do. If you have been feeding her then her body is use to eating and you have to reset that schedule.
My daughter actually started sleeping through the night (yes, the entire night) around 3 weeks. She would literally sleep from 8 - 8:30 p.m. to 7 a.m. (11 hours is "supposed" to be average). I was a little concerned at first because I always heard that babies needed to be fed every 2 or so hours, even at night. But she was fine and I was well rested, so it worked out for everybody. Somebody did tell me that babies that are formula fed may tend to feel fuller longer and don't need to be fed throughout the night, so that may be a reason. Maybe it depends on whether yours is breast or formula fed? Does she eat at the times she wakes up?
firstborns are definately the trial-runs, huh? :) its so hard when you have nothing to go-by!! :) i have 3 boys, and yes, they can sleep thru the night at that age....:) now, part will depend on your baby, and also if you are bottle feeding, or nursing. i have done both...when you are nursing, they say 8-10 hours is considered sleeping thru the night...and if you are bottle feeding...its more like 10-12. that's just because formula makes them a little more full.
here's what i would suggest:
start with dropping one feeding at a time...when she wakes up, let her cry for for 15 min...then get her. the next night...let her cry for 20 min before getting her...right now her body is just eating out of habit, so her tummy wakes her up and says its time to eat...so if you start to stretch what the tummy is waking up for, she may start waking up later and later...and then one morning you will wake up and run to the room to make sure she's breathing, because she just slept thru the night!! :) another way to do it is to give her less and less at each feeding. if you nurse for 10 min...only nurse for 5....if its a 6 oz. bottle, only give 4oz...that kinda thing, and slowly back off--to where eventually, she's not waking up for those calories.
this worked great for my first son.
not to write a novel, but all kids are different, and my 2nd son, i did have to let him cry it out. this is so hard K., but remember, that babies are not going to remember crying at this age...they will not be scarred, and its actually healthy for them to cry. you need to have your husband on board, because in the middle of the night, a crying baby is difficult to handle. let me give you good news though....my son cried for about 1 1/2 the first night, then fell back asleep...the next night, he cried for about 20 min...the 3rd night, it was about 10 min...the 4th night, i heard a whimper...and then that was it!!!! 4 days....of difficult nights...for the prize of uninterrupted sleep!!!! :):)
i actually had to close my door the first night...its so hard...but if you hold your ground...they learn so fast!!
since she is waking up 3-4 times...i wouldn't go cold turkey of dropping them all at once...but i would try stretching her to eliminate a couple of the feedings, and it may work for all of them, but hopefully you could at least get down to 1 feeding, and if she won't give that one up, then try crying it out.
hang in there girl! for your sake, i hope this all works!! :)
Yes your Doctor is correct, it is a habit. All 3 of my children slept through the night by time they were 2 months old. They were exclusively formula fed though and formula is heavier than breast milk. However, even a breastfed baby should be sleeping through the night at 6 months. Does baby take a pacifier? If so try giving her the paci when she wakes up instead of feeding her. (This is how I got my kiddos to sleep through the night.) Everyone does it differently. There are a lot of women who think they should feed their baby in the middle of the night for comfort. I do not agree with this as it makes for a horrible sleeper. (my opinion) I could understand the baby waking up one time during the night but I think 3-4 times is too much. You need your sleep and your sanity.....
Ouch K.! :) I know what it's like to not get sleep! My little guy is 4.5 months old though, and started sleeping through the night w/out getting up at about the 2 month mark. He goes down between 7:00 - 7:30pm and sleeps until about 6:15am w/out waking up. It actually started the night we brougth him home from his 2-month shots - he had the shots in the afternoon, and was so exhausted that night that he slept straight through - he's been doing it ever since. I do agree that your daughter is probably just in the habit of waking up - and I totally understand that you're not completely on board with 'crying it out' (I'm a first time mom and that is HARD). The few times when my little guy has had trouble going down and I've let him cry have been for less than 10 minutes at a time, and I've stood over his crib and placed a hand along side his face or patted his belly until he settled back down to reassure him that I'm still there. Of course, since he isn't doing that throughout the night, I can't say that I wouldn't try something else if he were. One thing I have found that is an effective 'tool' is a Wubbanub - it's a pacifer attached to a small plush animal and when placed on baby's chest, it helps keep the pacifier in baby's mouth at night. My son doesn't really take a pacifier except for these occassional nights when he's having a hard time going down - I place that in his mouth and it always soothes him to sleep. Here is the site: http://www.wubbanub.com/ - I think they only cost $12 or so, so definately worth a try. It could be that if she were sucking, she'd be soothed. Good Luck!
PS - My little guy is exclusively breastfed. We did begin oatmeal cereal last week on doctor's recommendation. It has had no impact on sleeping more/less.
You've already got some great advice, but some conflicting also so I just want to add one thing (just my opinion, but when applied to my kids it worked). If she is waking up at the same time every night it is likely habit - we broke our oldest of that habit by giving her water instead of formula (and it was right around 6 mo old). It only took a couple nights, she didn't have to cry it out, and we were all happier. On the other hand, if it is at different times, she is probably waking for other reasons (hungry, diaper, teething, etc). Good luck!!
I don't like the cry it out method. My son, also was still waking up 2 times during the night a 6-7 months old. My peditrician told me that he should be sleeping through the night. I was exhausted, so I went to the library & checked out a book, something to the effect of how to teach your baby to sleep through the night in 3 nights & it works!!! It is a cross between the cry it out method & comforting. At first, you let them cry for 5 minutes, then go in there & make sure they're dry, don't take them out of the crib, pat them on the back, lay them down, tell them you love them & sleep well & walk out. Then you let them cry for 10 minutes until you go in. Make sure they're all right, lay them back down, (again, don't take them out of the crib) pat them, go out of the room. Each time, you extend the time out of the room, so they know you will be back. I'll tell you that it only took 2 nights for my son & he was waking twice at night & drinking 2 full bottles. It was habit & I was glad to get a good nights sleep:) I couldn't stand for my son to cry, but he quickly adapted. Best of luck:)
My daughter is 9 months old now and she slept thru the night on her own at about 4 months. As soon as she did that I stopped nursing her at night. I am still nursing now but only about 4 times a day and never at night. She would wake up every once in awhile and I would go get her and try to get her to sleep with us and she would be up playing in our bed. Then I knew there was nothing wrong she just wanted to be up. Sorry not at 3AM! I then just let her fuss if she woke up and she went right back to sleep. I do believe they have to learn to comfort themselves. She has been sleeping 12 hours at night now for probably 4 months and she and I are both better for it! She is a completely happy baby and I do not feel that she every felt uncared for because I let her cry it out some. Good luck to you and God bless!
A 6 month old should be able to sleep for 10-12 hours at night if she is getting enough nutrition during the day. It can be a habit, or she could have day/night confused if she's taking a long nap or sleeping too much during the day. Or, if she isnt getting enough nutrition during the day, she could be looking for more nutrition during the night.
I would start by making sure she isn't sleeping too much during the day. She still needs about 2 3-hour naps during the day, but she should be awake "most" of the time.
Then make sure she is getting enough nutrition...make sure she's not falling asleep while eating so she doesn't finish a full feeding...and starting solid foods should help make sure she's getting enough food. Keeping her up a bit after dinner so the process of digestion doesn't wake her is a good idea, too.
If after doing these things, you aren't getting at least 8 hours, but preferably 10 of solid sleep, then I'd start the "let her cry" stuff. Then you'll know she isn't crying because she is hungry. I dont know if I could listen to the crying for more than 15 minutes. I've watched my clock and that time passes very slowly! I know that it is perfectly OK to let the baby cry...and very helpful and necessary, but I also know how hard it can be!! Which is why I would watch the clock and tell myself that if she is still crying after 15 minutes, then I'll go in and check it out. Ive also read that when trying to get a baby to sleep through the night, the habit can be broken in three days.
Both my kids slept through the night at 8 weeks. I would "officially" put them down at about 10:00 and they'd be awake at 6:00. So I would suggest you try to start with that schedule. A 6 month old can certainly handle that! That, to me, is sleeping through the night. I'd go to bed as soon as i put the baby down and that way I was getting enough sleep, too.
Good luck. You need sleep!! I cant imagine how tired you must be!
All babies are different. Some sleep right through, some don't. My son is 2, still nursing a little, and he sleeps 3-5 hours at a stretch. I have a friend who has 4 kids and they all slept differently. So don't let a 6 month old cry it out. I don't believe it it myself, but REALLY don't believe in it at this age. They communicate through crying, and need attention, affection. Trust your gut, I know it's hard not getting the sleep. I'd check out some of the no-cry sleep help books to see what works. That way you can help train her to sleep better if possible, without the crying thing. Good luck!
My nine month old still wakes up off and on during the night to nurse and cuddle. We co-sleep, so I do not have to really get up and wake up too much, helping me feel more rested in the morning. I would second the suggestions to read the Dr. Sears Baby Book and No Cry Sleep Solution -- even if you do not co-sleep, they have great suggestions.
I am with K. that responded about Baby Wise. That is the method we used and my daugther started sleeping eight hours a night around six or seven weeks. She worked her way up to 11-12 within a few weeks after that. Baby Wise was recommended to me by two friends before I had my daughter, but it does have a guide for parents starting later than birth. The book's full title is "On Becoming Baby Wise" by Gary Ezzo. BTW, my daugther was 100% exclusively breastfed until after she was six months old. She began rice cereal at almost seven months. Best of luck!!
Sometimes they sleep 7 hours at this age. With one of my four children, she went to sleep with her last feeding around 9 p.m. and slept until 5 a.m. the next morning earlier than 6 months. Every child is different, but I don't think getting up 3 or 4 times is needed. I fed her rice cereal the last feeding, and if she would happen to wake up in-between sometimes, I would give her a pacifyer, and she would go right backto sleep.
I have 3 boys, and the oldest will turn 3 in May and my youngest just turned 5 months. My boys all slept through the night by 3 or 4 months. I would give them their last bottle at around 7 or 7:30, and they would sleep until 6 or 6:30 (sometimes I would get really lucky and they would sleep til 7). I did give them formula as the last bedtime bottle, because it lasts in their tummy longer. I don't think that it would be expecting too much to have your little one sleep from 7:30 p.m. to 6 a.m.
I know you're frustrated, and tired. I hope that you get some good sleep soon.
Every baby is different and may need a different amount of sleep. What works for my 7mo old is cluster feeding throughout the day especially close to bed time, a bed time routine and an early bed time. I nurse him roughly every 2 hours during the day in addition to solids 3 meals a day. The nursing sessions aren't always full meals and sometimes for comfort but he definitely makes up most of his calories during the day so he can sleep all night. He nurses at 4, 5, then solids at 6, then bed at 7. Bath every other night and he always falls asleep nursing at 7. Try moving up bed time a little and get a white noise machine and nightlight if you don't already have both. That can help keep the bedroom in a "sleepy" environment. I cannot listen to my son cry so I only let him cry for a couple minutes before going in to nurse him but I have always been lucky that he isn't much of a napper and sleeps for 10 to 12 hours most nights. You could try to give more exercise and playtime to wear her out and maybe shorten the afternoon naps. Be careful to not deprive of sleep though because an overtired baby will not sleep well. Try to make sure to try for a nap whenever you see that first yawn and if you think she is sleeping too much during the day or too close to bed time then try for more exercise (a jumperoo is great for that). Good luck!
As a child development educator, I completely agree with Sara T's response. Read Dr. Sear's books and/or The No-Cry Sleep Solution: Gentle Ways to Help Your Baby Sleep Through the Night by Elizabeth Pantley and William Sears. Six months is very young, babies that age are still developing trust and need to know you are there for them. People and babies have different sleep patterns, some sleep soundly and some don't. Give your baby what she needs now - it will not be forever. Some day you may be waking her up to go to school but, she will be a secure individual who trusts you and will obey you. Parents need to know that the ways they treat their babies are foundational and will effect their children and their relationship with them when they are older. What parents do to get a baby to go to sleep on their own may work but, it could cause behavior and attitude problems later giving the parents sleepless nights when the child is 8, 12, or 16!
I guess it depends how how much she is eating at a feeding. My 2nd son has always eaten so much at a time and sleeps through the night. He is 4 months old (formula fed). He eats 8 ounces at a feeding. I put him to bed at 7:00 and wake him up around 10:30 PM. He then sleeps until 8:00AM.
Now if she only eats 3 -4 ounces, she will likely need to eat throughout the night. If she is getting enough food throughout the day, then don't feed her at night. IF she isn't, then you do what you think is best.
Our first son woke up a lot and we ran in there every time. It's hard with the first baby to know what to do. Find a good book that you agree with on sleep and try to follow it. There are lots of different ones for the different parenting styles.
I think sleeping through the night means the last feeding being around 11 at night and waking in the morning around 5. Both my children did sleep through the night by 6 months, but I know many who did not. Waking 3-4 times does seem a bit much though, I would think she might wake once. You didn't say whether you breast or bottle feed or if you even give her a bottle when she wakes, but I'm assuming you do. Since I didn't breastfeed at this age, I really don't know about that area, but if you are feeding her formula, she should be getting close to sleeping through the night. Does she eat solids? I would definetly start her on some, if not. I would make sure she eats a bowl of cereal for her last meal and that you give her a full bottle around 10 or 11 each night before you or your husband goes to bed. I do not believe in letting a child cry it out either. So, I would never go that route. If she wakes during the night and drinks from a bottle give her a smaller and smaller amount in her bottle. If you normally give her 6 oz. at night, reduce it to 5 for a few nights, then to 4 and so on to wean her off that bottle. How do you put her to sleep-rock her or just put her in her bed? If you rock her to sleep, rock her until she is very sleepy, but not asleep and lay her down, so she is falling asleep on her own. Eventually, you will be able to put her down when she is a just a little sleepy without her crying. It is a long slow process, but to me better than having my baby cry it out for long periods of time. Good luck and do what you feel is right for your daughter. and above all be consistent.
My son is 6 months and he totally sleeps through the night! It is very possible! He goes down at 8 and doesn't make a peep again until 7 am. He is on a schedule all day and we have a bed time routine which I think really helps him. All babies are different but I wouldnt think she needs to eat 3 or 4 times during the night. It doesnt hurt them to cry it out a bit and it will be better for you in the long run! Good Luck!
As someone else said, all babies are different, and I think it's very unfair to say that all six month olds should be sleeping through the night! My oldest soon, who's now 4, slept through the night (8pm-7am) by 8 weeks, but my youngest (who's 2 now) didn't consistently sleep that long until he was a year old! With my first, I obsessed over what he was "supposed" to do - what the books said, what the internet said, what friends said. With my second, who has the same parents, the same schedule, the same toys, books, etc., I have realized that no matter what we do, kids don't all behave the same way! I was lucky not to have to use the cry it out method with my first because he slept well on his own. I tried it with my second sometime during the first year (I don't remember when - the first year was a blur because I was so tired!), and I just couldn't do it. I'm not judging people who use the method and find that it works for them, but I couldn't relax knowing my child was crying for me. He woke up 2, 3 or even 4 times a night for the first year, and either I or my husband always rocked him back to sleep. Sometimes I nursed him too, but he many times he was clearly not hungry; he just wanted the comfort of touch.
I guess my only advice is: do what makes you feel most comfortable. If you don't want to let her cry it out, don't! She WILL eventually sleep through the night, whether it's next week or in a few months. Good luck!
I have had 3 children and all are different. Only one was a champion sleeper; the other two like to get up for "snack breaks" and also respond to stress by wanting a little extra time with me.
My first child needs very little sleep. He stopped taking naps very early. No naps for my second child either, but he likes to sleep for 12 hour stretches even at 4. And my 15 month old has just started sleeping from 8 to 6, with a nap from 12 to 2.
A 12 to 14 hour night would have only happened with one of my children. I would define sleeping through the night as a 7-8 hour stretch.
I think you are doing great! But I'll bet that you are exhausted. Hang in there. She will start sleeping more soon, especially as she starts crawling and exploring. Hope this helps.
One more thing: be very careful who you take advice from. My doctor has 8 children. Yes, EIGHT! He's great. I've learned not to care much about titles, education, or profession- a lot of people give out advice about children and have no experience or common sense. I'm not picking on anyone here, I'm just saying that some of the things people said to me when I was a first-time mom I now find completely hilarious. Additionally, some of the mothers that were the most opinionated in my early time as a mother turned out to be people I want to be nothing like.