6 months old and still not sleeping through the night!

Megan - posted on 12/09/2009 ( 31 moms have responded )

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My daughter is now 6 months old and I truly believed I would have her sleeping through the night by now, but unfortunately she isn't and no matter how much information I have read & advice I have followed nothing seems to be working and she will wake at least 2 - 3 times a night and will not re-settle herself. I can cope during the day and it's not the lack of sleep that is affecting me but more so the pure frustration of the feeling of failure and not succeeding in achieving this milestone.

Does anyone out there have some random advice that I may not have heard or tried yet or is there anyone experiencing the same thing with their 6 month old so I don't feel so alone and left behind in this battle?

We have a sleeptime routine for her & a sleep schedule, her bedtime is 6:30pm, we aim to let her fall asleep independently even if this means letting her cry for a short period of time before she drops off and we've followed most other tactics at this stage. She is a breast fed baby, however, there are many breast fed babies I know of who ARE sleeping through. Why won't MY child? Help!

Forgot to mention that she has been on solids now since she was 4 months old, morning and night (2 meals a day) and this made no difference to her sleeping at all.

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Megan - posted on 12/16/2009

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Quoting Julia :

DO you think maybe you are putting her to bed too early? I have a 6 month old as well he stared sleeping through the night at 4 months.. . breast fed as well. Sounds like you are doing somethings well! The sleeptime routine is important just start later? Mine sleeps from 8pm-7am like clock work with two naps a day one short one in the am and and one long one in hte pm. YOur daughter can sleep through the night she doenst need to feed. Let her cry it out. . .it will be hard. Our 1st ngiht was horrible 2nd ngiht not as bad 3rd ngiht slept through and has since. Go in and check on her when she wakes . . .make sure shes okay not an arm stuck in the crib or something tell her you love her and leave. ten minutes later go back in tell her you love her you'll be there in the morning when she gets up. . .15 minutes later go in and so on until she falls back to sleep. DO NOT pick her up. Try not to touch too much either. . .it will be so hard. . .but well worth it for both of you. I also have my son listen to calming music I out it on during pj time so he knows bedtimes coming. When we was waking during the night I would start the CD over again. . .best of luck. .



Thanks for all your helpful advice Julia. I have considered putting her to bed later and sometimes she doesn't go down until 7:30pm or so, however, I've found that it makes no difference to her sleeping and she still wakes at least twice throughout the course of the night regardless of her later bed time. Also my husband & I prefer her bedtime to be 6:30/7pm so that it can be a routine that will last her well into childhood and also it allows us time together - once she's gone down we then have dinner together & the overall nighttime routine runs a lot smoother for us without having to rush or run out of time.



We started 'cry it out' a couple of weeks ago & followed pretty much the rules that you mentioned - going in and checking on her after she woke, then leaving, then going back to her again after she'd cried for approx 10/15mins, not picking her up and we just tried to settle her with shooshing, sometimes putting our hand on her chest and putting her lullaby music back on which she has to go off to sleep with as part of her bedtime routine. All the while making sure I didn't give in and feed her, which is what I'd been previously doing to get her to go back down.



After over a week of this and no change (apparently most babies will start following the new routine in less than a week) - we had some awful nights where she was up for hours crying or would settle and then 5 mins later start again continuing to do this several times over - I had read enough advice and articles etc to make the decision to start giving her the early morning feed again. The last couple of nights she has gone down at 6:30pm, woken brieflly at 11pm or 12am and was easily settled going straight back to sleep, woken again between 2:30 & 3:30am, this is when I've fed her, she's gone straight back to sleep and then doesn't wake again until close to 6am.



With such conflicting advice, in the end I decided that there seems to be a hell of a lot of babies out there who are doing the exact same thing that my daughter is, so therefore it must be 'normal' and I'm a big believer in children developing at their own rate and feel that perhaps I'd been putting too much pressure on my daughter and myself to achieve expectations that she is just not quite yet ready for. Many believe that 6 month old babies do not 'need' to be sleeping through & that their night feeding doesn't diminish until they are 9 months old. I've read to 'start' reducing the feeds overnight at 6 months so that by the time bub is 9months she should be sleeping through 11 to 12 hours.



All in all, my main aim now is to chill out a bit, not stress so much about it, let bub develop at her own rate & slowly start trying to push that early morning feed later and later 10mins by 10mins until one morning will magically come along when I wake and realise I didn't have to get up during the night at all! : )



 



Thanks again. x

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This is totally and completely normal. Formula feeding wouldn't make a difference. Solids don't make a difference. Some kids just wake more than others. Here is a link with some great information: http://www.kellymom.com/parenting/sleep/... Here is another one about formula and solids: http://www.kellymom.com/nutrition/solids...

Maybe your babe is making some developmental advancements. Maybe she is teething. Maybe she's in a growth spurt. Maybe she misses you. There are so many reasons she could be waking. My six month old wakes at least twice between 9:00 and 6:00. It doesn't bother me in the least. I know of moms who have tried everything and their babe didn't sleep all the way through the night until they were 18 months old. It's all normal. Don't worry about it.

Bonnie - posted on 12/16/2009

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My baby (6 months) wouldnt sleep thru the night either so I asked my doctor and she said it would be 3 nights of misery but to let him cry it out. the hardest part about it is that my baby can scoot in his crib and he would put his head up on the headboard, or stick his arm in between 2 of the side bars.... It did work though. I put him in there awake (you dont want to nurse them to sleep because they get used to that. Try dinner, then bath, then bedtime) and he cried a few times a night for about 3-4 nights but not anymore. he sleeps from 9 pm to 8 am now :)

Eleisha - posted on 12/09/2009

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Add some protein to her nightime meal. My daughter who is breastfed also (except I have to express and feed) started solids at 4 mo and because she started on the earlier side of what is accepted (like your daughter) she is now having protein. I started her on chicken 4 weeks ago (she now has some steak and lamb) and she then started sleeping 12 hours. Up until then she would waked up at the 6-7 hour mark.

Laura - posted on 01/20/2014

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I have a 6 month old breastfed baby who has been on solids since 4 months and is now taking them 3 times a day. He also does not sleep through the night. He actually sleeps less than he did when he was a newborn! He came home from the hospital sleeping 5 hour stretches. He now goes through phases where he wakes sometimes 1 time a night or there are some nights that he wakes 2-3 times. He goes down at 7:30 or 8:00 (no rocking just put to bed drowsy but awake) and sleeps until 2:00 some nights and others it is closer to 3:00 or 4:00 before he wakes. I only feed him when he wakes up at 3:00 or 4:00. Anytime before I just stick the pacifier back in his mouth. He is not wrapped anymore as we weaned him from that a month ago but that doesn't make a difference in his sleep habits. He does how to fall asleep on his own and I don't like the cry it out method so it is what it is at this stage in life. He will sleep through the night eventually.

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Alison - posted on 05/06/2013

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My little lady is 6 mouths old and has had a ruff time of it from the beginning with the bad night sleep nearly every night for 6 months :( we was getting into a routine then she got a throat infection and that was it . I have tryed everything even the crying but she is to srong minded and get herself in a right state :( like last night every hour or less :( lol. She has diner about 630 ish then a bath then she will go sleep till abot 9 10 ish have food then go back to sleep about 1030ish the some times she will go till 4 then she will wake up for food.

Natalie - posted on 12/16/2009

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I hear you... .my 6 month old isn't either... even though we give her a dummy to suck on. My first daughter slept through the night at 3 months old with no dummy... my 2nd daughter is a little different (also has had hip dysplasia and was in a brace to plaster and now in another brace) I don't know if this makes a difference though. She still may not have been sleeping though without her hip issues too.

My daughter is breast fed and she's been on solids once a day for about 3 weeks now. I'm feeling like you, not sure what else to do! Thought my daughter would be well and truly sleeping though the night by now?? Help!!

Bonnie - posted on 12/16/2009

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Also, my baby is breastfeed,and started on solids a month ago. Dont let anyone tell you that breastfeed babies need to wake up in the middle of the night to eat, they can sleep thru the night too. My doctor said its at 6 months age that babies have figured out if they cry enough, you will come to them

Heather - posted on 12/16/2009

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oh megan, i just realized you said she gets up a couple of times a night. i don't think that's unusual at all. when you read about "sleeping thru the night," the definition varies. many times professionals consider 6 hours to be sleeping thru the night. our girl gets up once a sleep to eat (around 5 - 6:30 a.m.). she'd been doing that awhile, however, she was more restless or needing an extra feed when the weather got colder, while going thru a growth spurt, or when she started rolling. maybe she's teething? perhaps shilah will wake less once she's crawling? sounds like she gets good naps. viv still mostly only cat naps! about 4 naps/day of approx 35 minutes. i thought nap consolidation would happen by now, but that hasn't been the case. hang in there - i think you are doing the right thing in putting her to bed early. sleep begets sleep.

Joan - posted on 12/16/2009

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I have the same problem with you. I would also like some advice. I have 2 boys, 2 yrs 10 mths and almost 6 mnths baby. The eldest one have never been sleeping throughout the night since he was born, only until recently i trained him to sleep through and not asking me for milk. He often asked for milk in the middle of the night for 3 times. If anybody has same problem with me(for 2/3 yo kids), i can recommend you to use sticker (or anything else) as his rewards. IT REALLY WORKS!...but now i need help with youngest one. He is a breastfed baby, just started solid few days ago. I couldn't let him sleep on his own bed becoz he keeps waking up, so sometimes i have no choice to let him sleep with me on my bed (coz i'm so exhausted by then).
I hope somebody can help me (so that i can hv a good sleep at night...i really need that)

Anita - posted on 12/16/2009

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My 16 month old still wakes up a few times a night but my 6 month old (bless her) only wakes up once, sometimes twice. I think it's normal for a 6 month old to be waking up a few times a night. My eldest was waking up every 2 hours at that age but my daughter is different. It's a big ask for a baby at this age to be sleeping through all night. I think 6-7 hours without wanting a feed at this age is appropriate. My 6month old sleeps from 7-8pm until about 4am and then wakes for a feed.
Not sure what advice to give other than just go with the flow lol.

Megan - posted on 12/16/2009

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Quoting Heather:

How is her sleep during the day? Lack of good naps may affect sleeping quality at night. Any idea how much breastmilk and/or formula she gets per day? We've also found that a dark room that's not too warm helps to keep her settled at night. I found the book Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child really helpful.



Thanks for advice Heather. She's still having 3 sleeps during the day, soon to probably drop down to 2 and she generally has 1 & half hours in the morning, approx an hour at midday and then an hour to hour & half in the afternoon. She used to be a catnapper during the day and a fairly good sleeper at night and now the last couple of months she's switched completely and sleeps well during the day and wakes more than what she used to at night.



Not sure how much breastmilk she gets per day. I feed her roughly every 3 -4 hours which works out to be around 5 - 6 feeds a day.



Thanks again. x

Christine - posted on 12/16/2009

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my baby girl has been sleeping through the night since she was 2 months old. if i was you i will try keeping her awake a lot longer dewing the day and put her to bed abit later then 6:30 cause then she might sleep through the night

Megan - posted on 12/16/2009

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Quoting Alicia:

Do you still wrap your daughter I have wrapped my last three babies till they were around 10months old and they all slept from 6pm till 6.30am / 7am since they were 6wks old my first baby I didn't continue wrapping and he would wake once a night till 2yrs old. wrapping does make a difference.



Yes, she's still being wrapped, however, is a little escape artist and no matter how tightly we wrap her she now manages to wriggle her way out. She falls asleep with or without the wrap though now and as it's summer now here and she is at the age where she is changing positions in her sleep we will ween her out of the wrap very soon.

Heather - posted on 12/16/2009

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How is her sleep during the day? Lack of good naps may affect sleeping quality at night. Any idea how much breastmilk and/or formula she gets per day? We've also found that a dark room that's not too warm helps to keep her settled at night. I found the book Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child really helpful.

Quita - posted on 12/16/2009

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It is so great to know that I am not alone. My son has just made 6 months on Dec. 8th and he still gets up at least 2-3 times during the night (between 2am and 5am). He doesn't go to sleep until 10pm. I work a full time job in which once we get home in the evenings around 5:30, I will feed him at approx. 6ish and bath him around 8. My little one is eating solids twice a day, but still not sleeping through out the night.

Alena - posted on 12/16/2009

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my son has had rice cereal in bottle since 2 weeks old (DR recommended for his chronic fussiness & colic & it worked perfectly), he has been eating solids for awhile now from the jar (took to that like it was his job b/c the 1st day he ate 2 jars), all of this and he still doesnt sleep through night. so my point is, u are def not alone. this is my biggest frustration right now. it does take a toll on me and prob him as well. i want him to be a happy baby! btw ive been putting him in my bed in the middle of night & he sleeps perfectly...but this is not a habit i want him to get into but sometimes ur desperate for sleep /:)

Julia - posted on 12/16/2009

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DO you think maybe you are putting her to bed too early? I have a 6 month old as well he stared sleeping through the night at 4 months.. . breast fed as well. Sounds like you are doing somethings well! The sleeptime routine is important just start later? Mine sleeps from 8pm-7am like clock work with two naps a day one short one in the am and and one long one in hte pm. YOur daughter can sleep through the night she doenst need to feed. Let her cry it out. . .it will be hard. Our 1st ngiht was horrible 2nd ngiht not as bad 3rd ngiht slept through and has since. Go in and check on her when she wakes . . .make sure shes okay not an arm stuck in the crib or something tell her you love her and leave. ten minutes later go back in tell her you love her you'll be there in the morning when she gets up. . .15 minutes later go in and so on until she falls back to sleep. DO NOT pick her up. Try not to touch too much either. . .it will be so hard. . .but well worth it for both of you. I also have my son listen to calming music I out it on during pj time so he knows bedtimes coming. When we was waking during the night I would start the CD over again. . .best of luck. .

Alisha - posted on 12/15/2009

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My son cayden is not sleeping through the night either Although he is bottle fed, he has a routine aswell bath at 8 then I rock him while I feed him his bottle and he falls asleep almost instantly He wakes at about 1 for something to eat then falls right back to sleep then sometimes he wakes again around 5 as something to eat then back to bed until 8 I am frustrated also Not because I have to get up, Im used to that part, but because like you most ppl say how there babies slept through the night at 3-4 monthes I too feed him solids Since he was 4 mos old Cereal in the morning then at super I feed him vegies and fruit

April - posted on 12/15/2009

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My baby is 6 1/2 months old and does not sleep through the night either. I usually put him to bed at 7:30 pm - 8:30pm depending on how tired he is. He wakes up at around 2:30am. I would like him to sleep through the night, but I really do not think it's unusual or a failure of mine if he does not. All babies are different and the way I look at it, he is sleeping about 6 to 8 hours a night.

Andrea - posted on 12/15/2009

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My little guy will be 6 months on the 22nd, and he still wakes for feedings in the middle of the night. He gets 2 solid meals each day, and I have a bed-time routine for him, too. Sometimes I have to let him sleep in his swing to get 5 hours of consecutive sleep.

Alicia - posted on 12/15/2009

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Do you still wrap your daughter I have wrapped my last three babies till they were around 10months old and they all slept from 6pm till 6.30am / 7am since they were 6wks old my first baby I didn't continue wrapping and he would wake once a night till 2yrs old. wrapping does make a difference.

Xana - posted on 12/15/2009

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I feel your pain my little boy is nearly 6 months and still not sleeping through the night. :-(

Megan - posted on 12/13/2009

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Devin, I have tried her on numerous different formula's and she is not a fan of any of them. We had been trying to give her formula for her last feed of the day before bed time but alas she kept spitting it out as soon as she tasted it and knew it wasn't breastmilk (she takes expressed breastmilk from a bottle no worries)

Also, she unfortunately only lasts awake for 2 hour brackets at the moment. So she generally needs her afternoon nap around 3:30/4ish as I don't like her to sleep past 5pm and then she's well and truly ready for bed by 6:30, 7pm at the latest.

Thankyou so much for the suggestions anyway. x

Jennifer - posted on 12/12/2009

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My little girl is bottle fed and does not sleep through the night. She wakes up once and still has 6 oz, of formula. They all do it in their own time. :)

Danielle - posted on 12/12/2009

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my twins who turned 6mths 7 days ago still dont sleep threw the night! i have them on a strict schedule 2 naps a day none after 4pm eat a solid at 630 then bath then bed! I have tried the rice in the bottle before bed wit no luck! I guess they will sleep on their own time

Amy - posted on 12/11/2009

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i breastfeed. my son just started sleeping all night last week. he turned six months testerday. good luck

Jessica - posted on 12/10/2009

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OMG I feel your pain. My son will be 6 months on Sunday and he still wakes up many times per night. At the very least he still wakes up to eat 2 times, and most of the time he wakes up even more often- sometimes every hour. I don't know why, he is just so restless, he wakes up and can't put himself back to sleep. He's also breastfed, we do 2 solid meals a day, that hasn't helped. Itss terrible. Nothing seems to help. Its seems like its gotten slightly better since we moved him to his crib, in his own room- before that he was sleeping in the pack n play in our room and I think we woke him up a lot. But still.

I really don't think its anything we are doing or not doing, I think some babies just take longer to learn to sleep long stretches. My MIL is constantly reminding me (to my annoyance) that none of her 4 boys every slept through the night until they were a year. I've heard other people say the same thing... I've resigned myself to the fact that it will be a while before I can get a good night's sleep :( But it has to happen sometime!

Jennifer - posted on 12/10/2009

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My son was breastfed until a few weeks ago and now we are having to use some formula but I started to pump and would give him a bottle at bed time with a little bit of rice cereal in it and he sleeps 10-12 hours. I have gotten some nasty remarks for using cereal in his bottle from other moms on this site, they keep saying that it is a major choking hazard but it is not like I put a lot in it, I don't even use enough to have to use a different nipple (it is not thick) and I am holding him the whole time so I am right there. You might give that a try but don't get to discouraged you are not a failure just because she is not sleeping through the night!! By the way, my older son did not sleep through the night until he was 7-8 months (and then it was only for 8 hours) and he was formula fed from day one!! I really don't think the breastfed or formula fed thing makes much difference on their sleeping after about 3 months so don't switch to formula for that reason, breastfed as long as you can!!

Devin - posted on 12/09/2009

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I stopped breastfeeding because my son (also now 6 months) would wake up to 6 times a night. I switched to formula, then started using Enfamil night time formula at night, and now he only wakes up once a night. Try getting her to take breast milk from a bottle and once she masters that try adding formula or cereal to it, or just give her formula only at night. Hope I helped!! I know the constant night time waking thing gets old and frustrating, it took me a few weeks to figure it out. You can also try not letting her go down for a nap after say 2pm... my son's bed time is 8:00pm and he gets no naps after 4pm. He gets a little fussier in the evenings but he sleeps much better this way.

User - posted on 12/09/2009

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your not alone. although my daughter Grace isnt yet 6 months, she isnt far off, and she still does not sleep through the night either! I've tried a lot of different techniques, but nothing has worked. she is a very happy baby and has a regular sleep pattern during the day and night. she goes to sleep very easily. but she will still wake once or twice in the middle of the night for a feed. glad to hear im not the only one who has to wake at night every night!! hang in there, I'm sure as they grow, and they are eating more solids, the sleeping patterns will change..least thats the hope i'm clinging to! ;-p

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