Im a Desperate Exhausted mommy, I've tried everything to get my son to sleep nothing works??

Cristina - posted on 06/19/2009 ( 14 moms have responded )

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My 10 month old son just refuses to sleep through the night hes up every 2 hours, hes usually up for the day at 4am. I try to put him to bed around 8pm but it takes me about 2 hours before he actually falls asleep. I rock him, make ssshhh noises in his ear, car rides(which he absoluttely hates), vaccum. I've really tried everything the doctor has said, and i refuse to let him scream for an hour. Please help with any suggestions??

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Kelly - posted on 06/21/2009

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I personally did the cry-it-out with a book called On Becoming Babywise by Gary Ezzo. I also tried to read my son's cues to see if he was hungry or tired, etc. The book helped me a lot to know what a schedule for each day should look like, how often babies need to eat, sleep, etc. each day. I was majorly messed up before that. People told me that babies start sleeping through the night around 3 months old, that babies know what's best for them and will fall asleep when they're tired and cry when they're hungry or need a diaper change. Maybe some babies are like that but not mine. He only rarely fell asleep without nursing and barely slept during the day or night. He also cried all the time. We were both miserable. That's why Babywise helped me so much (4-months-old). I became more deliberate about his naps and daily routine and he became a happy baby the very next day, though it took a couple months before he was sleeping 12 hours, regularly.



I too don't like to let my babies cry for a hour and you don't need to. The best thing I've found to help reduce the crying significantly is having an age-appropriate schedule. It doesn't need to be rigid but try to do things the same way so your son knows what to expect. This goes for waking up, diaper changes, nursing, eating solids, going down for naps, play time, going to bed, etc. Do these things in the same order, at roughly the same time of day, and in the same place. After your son becomes more used to it, I would expect him to calm down because he knows what to expect from you. You can still go out and blow the routine every now and then so don't feel enslaved to it--it's there to help both of you be happier.



To give another side to what's already been given to you in responses: In my personal opinion, I believe that many babies need to cry to settle themselves to sleep. I have witnessed this with both my kids and I can tell the difference between their crying to settle to sleep and their crying because they need me. This took some practice and I often mistook one for the other in the beginning (getting my baby up prematurely and ruining her nap thinking she needed me, and leaving her crying for a diaper change thinking she'd go back to sleep). I don't think I ever could've learned the difference if I didn't let them cry, sometimes too long. Neither of my kids seemed upset by these mistakes after a minute or so, though they were always grumpy until their next nap and uninerested in feeding if I go them up prematurely. I just now put my 8-month-old daughter down for a nap. She sat up and waved good-bye to me, sang for 5 minutes, and then cried about 2 minutes (this is typical for her). Now she's asleep. I know for a fact if I had gone in to check on her, she would've started her desperate cry and then would've been too upset to take a nap for about 20 minutes. So it's because of this that I think crying is a very natural way for many babies to settle themselves.



I hope you get the rest you both need soon.

Ashley - posted on 06/20/2009

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His bedtime is way too late, especially if he starts his day at 4am...that's a dead give away his bedtime is way too late. If you are up at 4am with him aren't you exhausted come 8pm? Try a much earlier bedtime...like 6-7pm. Usually you can tell if a babies' bedtime is too late (an older baby that is capable of sleeping a longer stretch at night without feedings) if they wake up somewhere between 3-5am, or if they are waking multiple times per night. It's because their brain is overtired, overstimulated, and agitated and therefore cannot rest well. My daughter is 7.5 months old and goes to bed around 6-6:30pm and doesn't wake up again until around 6am the next day. She's been doing this since she was 10 weeks old. Also make sure he gets at least 1-2 naps during the day. An earlier bedtime will significantly help you both get some more sleep. Good luck!

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Louise - posted on 06/22/2009

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hi if you are desperate i actually booked my son into a sleep clinic you both stay there for 2 nights (there are 5 night stays for people suffering post natal depression and the likes) and they teach you to just let them self settle for 2,4,6,8,10 mins and overnight the midwives settle them so that you can get some sleep and i wasn't a mum that had really strict routine but you do need structuer in your day and be consistent, so ask your maternal health nurse for a referral, it was also free in case money is an issue too good luck i fel your pain.

Sara - posted on 06/22/2009

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"How to Solve Your Child's Sleep Problems" by Richard Ferber. I did this method and my daughter goes to sleep at 7:30 and then wakes up at about 6:30 the next day. You can kind of mold the technique into a way that makes you comfortable, like sitting in the room with him until he falls alseep. But, the biggest thing no matter what is he needs to learn how to put himself to sleep, then you won't have to struggle so much. Good Luck!

Cristina - posted on 06/21/2009

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Thanks everyone for your advise i plan on trying it all i really want this to work out great!!!

Clare - posted on 06/21/2009

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my baby is good and sleeps 11 hours at the moment, just try warm bath, gentle massage, warm bottle, kiss goodnight and leave in cot, leave to cry for a bit then go in room and just settle him and walk out and just keep doing this until baby falls asleep. my baby sleeps with a dodi but it comes out whens she asleep.

Kyndra - posted on 06/20/2009

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My daughter did the same thing at about 9 months. She was sleeping through the night and all of a sudden would just not sleep. Babies can do that inbetween growth spurts, because they have more energy. First make sure he's not uncomfortable, like teething or gas. If you think it's just that he'snot tired try getting him to do more active play in the evening before winding down for bed, then try bath, story and bed. Holding him or staying in his room until he falls asleep might help too.

Kelly - posted on 06/20/2009

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I have also heard great things about the Dr.Sears books....i haven't read any of them but my son, 7 months old, goes to bed around 7:30-8pm and sleeps till anywhere from 7:30am - 9am....i just depends on how much he ate that day and what all activities were done that day......my son will also eat more right before bed than he usually eats during the day at a feed, sometimes he will drink about 8-12 ounces.....you might try to feed him more also.....like one other mother said, i also put music on when i lay my son down and sometimes he will suck on his binky....and he has a musical light up crib toy that hangs on the side rail of his crib and he loves it, i will turn it on and when it turns off he has lurned how to turn it back on.....good luck

Lynlee - posted on 06/20/2009

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I can vouch for Mary too - I have read and reread the Dr Sears book and it is great! Finally an alternative to 'cry it out'.

Natalie - posted on 06/20/2009

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also i think sleep is a weird thing for each baby, but i would peronally make bedtime earlier, i understand your reluctant as he is getting up earlier but maybe he is overtierd, and when you say he is up at 4am is he really up for the day ? I only say that as my daughter would get up at 5.30am feed and then go back in her cot happy as anything for about ten mins playing and then be asleep again, but looked wide awake at 5.30am.

my daughter is breastfeed so goes down at 7 ish then is up for about 4 to feeds a night, but on occasonal has slept from her last feed at 7.30am.... well morning feed as it were ! till 10am !!! so all babies sleep differently

Natalie - posted on 06/20/2009

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oh my goodness 4am ! i'm feeling for you

maybe advice you've heard before but what about real major activities a couple of hours before bed, so like play with him for a while, then maybe a bath and let him splash around, be all excited and noisy for a while then after the bath put low lighting in his room, take him in there talk to him in happy but getting calmer voice (i used to play a nice lulbay cd in the background) and give him a massage (i do this with my daughter and she loves it, you don't need to attend a course you can pick up most helpful tips on baby massage on the internet) and then he may get better...hope it helps !

Mary - posted on 06/20/2009

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Hey there! First off, don't stress...babies no when you're stressed out! I personally love the advice of the Drs. Sears Family. I don't know if you have heard about them or explored their websites/books. They do have a sleep book which I believe it's just "Dr. Sears The Sleep Book" but they also have "Dr. Sears Baby Book" which is a huge reference for all things related to baby. They have a really great section in their about sleep and how it's NOT beneficial at ALL to let your baby cry it out. They talk about how you can soothe your baby and wind them down when it's bed time, etc. There is another book that I am reading now, which is called, Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child. It explains different sleep patterns that babies go through, however, it promotes leaving the baby to cry it out. So I use it more for what's going on when and why, instead of "what to do".

So with that being said, you should take a look into the Dr. Sears website and books! My 2 month old, Autumn, sleeps pretty good but she uses a Sound machine with the white noise which I highly recommend. She sleeps on her tummy, however, she holds her neck up with ease and can move it from side to side. Hope this helps.

Ruth - posted on 06/20/2009

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As Lynlee said he maybe teething. Try teethers, gel, Calpol etc.

What I've had to do with my 6 month old is to feed her just before bed, put her in her cot, put her mobile on and sometimes leave light music on. She cries for a while but goes off to sleep. Do you have some sort of light in your sons room? I was talking to another mum and she said that because she always had a night light in her baby's room, the boy wont go to sleep and is now afraid of the dark! Try to make the room as dark as possible and I'm afraid you are going to have to let your son cry. Your son has got so used to you going into him and giving him cuddles he is now using that. If you put him in your bed, he will get used to that too and you will never get him out. YOU need your sleep too!

Lynlee - posted on 06/20/2009

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Maybe try and see if he would sleep in your bed with you? Could he be teething?

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