Autistic 4 year old middle of the night screaming.

Yesenia - posted on 12/08/2009 ( 6 moms have responded )

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My 4 year old autistic son wakes up every night screaming to the top of his lungs bloody murder. The Dr. does not think its "night terrors" because it has been happening for more than a year every night without fail. The scream is very high pitched and we are tired of waking up around 2 am every night in such abrupt manner. Are we alone? Is this "normal" for autistic children. Please help us.

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Tammi - posted on 07/23/2010

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My son went through this as well and when we removed gatorade from his diet they stopped.It is my understanding that it is caused by diet so try removing something from his diet,it takes about a week to be out of their system,til you figure out what it is.Our son went through night terrors for 1 year and it has now been 1 1/2 years since his last one.Best of luck it is horrible to see your child going through that.

Heather - posted on 04/16/2010

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MY DAUGHTER IS GOING THRU THE SAME THING ALTHOUGH SHES TURNING 5 IN AUGUST BUT SHES TERRIFIED OF CROWDS, BLACKLIGHTS AND NOW THE DARK I THINK ITS NORMAL FOR EVERY CHILD AUTISTIC OR NOT TO GO THRU THE MONSTERS PHASE
AS MINE TELLS ME THERE ARE MONSTERS WHEN SHE WAKES UP SO WHO KNOWS WITH IT BUT I FELL YA WITH THAT MINE WAKES UP AROUND 2 & 4 AM EVERY NIGHT OR MORNING LOL

Heidi - posted on 12/15/2009

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My son is 5 and he is not a screamer, but he will lie in his room whimpering some nights. He is non-verbal, so it is difficult to know what is wrong. Sometimes he has had stomach aches or ear infections. It can take us weeks sometimes to figure out when he is hurting. I agree with Stacey and Jennifer. Try to find a cause. It may just be night terrors, but something may be really wrong. It may not even be something that hurts. It might be a noise that wakes him every night, or the way his room looks in the dark. Is he potty trained? Maybe he is starting to recognize when he needs to pee and that scares him. Just some ideas. Keep trying to figure this out. Good luck.

Jennifer - posted on 12/11/2009

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My autistic child did this and it turns out that it was reflux. It started out just during the night and then started in the day. He was non-verbal, so it wasn't easy to figure out what it was. He has reflux as an infant. When he had screaming fits, he would at times say owwiee and put his hand up to his mouth. Finally a doctor suggested OTC Pepcid and he started sleeping. It also can be caused by food intolerances, specifically milk and wheat. It can cause stomach pain which can wake kids up. I do not think this is "normal" for any kid, though I think that you will get from some doctors that kids with autism have sleep problems. I hope you get it solved. There is nothing worse than not getting sleep!

Stacey - posted on 12/11/2009

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We started our son on the gfcf (gluten-free, casein-free) diet about 5 months ago, at first he didnt accept soy milk, but after a while he drank some one night and he woke up in the middle of the night screaming. We changed to rice milk and it stopped. A few months into the diet I tried him with soy milk again just to make sure and again he woke in the middle of the night screaming like he hade belly pain. Im not sure that this could be the case for your son, but it gives you something to think about.

Susan - posted on 12/10/2009

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my son is 9 and autistic and still does it but not everynight maybe 2 sometimes three time a week and more than one time a night. we have been told by his ped neurologist that it is night terrors and would eventually out grow it but in the mean time it is very stressful especially when i have a 17 month old that wakes up when he does it then i have both kid's up.ugh!!!!!!!!

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