my 5 yr old does not sleep thru the night

Courtney - posted on 06/09/2009 ( 6 moms have responded )

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my son has never slept thru the night. at first, thought it was a power struggle or something that he would eventually go out of, but he hasn't. i have not had a peaceful nights sleep since i left the hospital. Ugh! help!

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Mary Ann - posted on 06/09/2009

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i had the same problem with my son and it may sound silly but when i saw an episode of the supernanny...jo frost i tried her methods and it really worked.Now my son sleeps in his own bed in his own room and sleeps through the night..i cant tell you how pleased i am.You should really look into reading up on her book or even catching a few episodes.It will amaze you how quickly her methods work.

Beverly - posted on 06/09/2009

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My daughter had the same problem. I know how you feel. Have you talkedto the pediatrician about melatonin? Natural sleep aide does not harm the child. my childs doctor recomended it for my daughter

Courtney - posted on 06/09/2009

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i have tried the cry it out approach but it lasts forever..i mean what normally takes him 2 hrs takes 3 1/2 then i just give up..have tried the door closing and that resulted in a new door...tried reading and that takes 10-12 books and by that time all the words look the same...you name it we have tried it...he has another appt in two weeks, but i was hoping to go back with some positive rather than the normal...we have called it a "day" and his "day" usually lasts longe than mine...i usually am able to fall out around three in the morning resulting in at least 4 hrs of sleep, but that is not uninterrupted sleep...i am one of those sleepers that if the bed shifts i am back up and it takes me forever to go back to sleep..my husband is the type that if you touch him once he is forever tossing and turning, but never wakes up, i do because of all the tossing and turning, and constant shifting, i can't sleep...we laugh and say ian is the combo of the both of us, but 5?...that is pushing the envelope...at one time the doc suggested a neurologist to see if there was something going on up stairs...i have thought maybe adhd because he is constantly moving, never focusing for very long...he plays some video games, but not for long periods at a time...he just "falls" out as if exhausted which i imagine he is from lack of sleep....

Jana - posted on 06/09/2009

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wow- when was the last time you talked to your doc about this? the lack of sleep cannot be good for either of you.
What would happen if you just switched him to his bed, set up a standard routine and called it a "day"? I mean, if you close the door and turn out the lights? Would he stay or be up?
Perhaps you can give him some books to look at and a music player? My kids have a thing that plays music and projects a light display on the ceiling. They can push it whenever they want to and it helps them get back to sleep.
What does he do when he wakes up? Go in your room? Then how do you get him back down? About how long does the whole process take? Have you ever tried letting him Cry It Out? Not that it would work now, but just curious.
When you can't sleep does it come in 2 hr spurts like that?
Sorry for all the questions but I am just trying to figure this out the best to offer the best help.
You know- he is 5, right? I would tell him that big 5 year olds sleep in big boy beds and they STAY in the bed all night. Make a sticker chart. Start small- maybe a sticker for every hour he stays in the bed? Then build up to a whole night. Maybe offer him a reward after so many stickers? Something like that might offer him a tangible way to see his progress and be proud of himself.
Has he said WHY he is waking up and WHY he doesn't want to be in his room? I am just curious if there is something he is afraid of or if something is bothering him? Maybe reflux or something like that?

Courtney - posted on 06/09/2009

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he is a co-sleeper...that is no fun either, but that is going to be easier to break because he does have his "moments" of sleeping in his own room, only to be up and in ours..he has some internal alarm clock that goes off every two hours after he finally falls asleep...i have talked to his dr about this since he was two...we thought that maybe it was a power struggle over what he is going to do versus what we want him to do...i am an insomniac myself, so we thought that maybe he somehow picked that up...we can't get him to take a nap or go to bed at bed time...i start the "process" at 8 pm and it is usually 2 hrs later before sleep sets in, but then up he is 2 hrs later, and so on...most of the time he goes back to sleep fairly easily...his daddy is army national guard who is deploying to afghanistan tomorrow, and we thought that maybe the stress of that is keeping him up, but this has been on going since birth...he sleeps with his daddy's pillow and his "daddy" doll, but that doesn't keep him in lala land...he wake's up to make sure he has it...the way we can tell he doesn't feel good is that he does sleep, and take a nap...when he was a baby (5/6 months old), i used to rock him to sleep, and that was a fight..you know what a perfect footprint looks like in bruise form?...i had plenty of them..the when he finally did go to sleep, i would put him in his bed, but then the whole process started over the minute his head hit the mattress...i got so used to sleeping in a recliner because that was the only way i knew to keep him to sleep...the 9 hr rock...sorry this is so long, but i am not sure what to do anymore...sleep deprivation is really starting to get me...once he's up at the crack of dawn, that is it for the sleep i just found being an insomniac

Jana - posted on 06/09/2009

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wow. that is a long time!

Is he sleeping in his own room or co-sleeping?

What time is he waking and do you know why?

Is there perhaps a pattern going on?

I know with my kids when they would get sick they would wake up more at night, then even after they were better it seemed that they just got stuck in that rut of waking up at a certain time. I know I am guilty of that- I wake up at 6:10 every morning when my alarm goes off at 6:15. :)

If you think it is just something that he has grown used to, you are going to have to break him of it. What have you tried so far? Does he have some built in comforting mechanisms? Like a teddy bear or some other lovey or a song he can sing to help himself get back to sleep?

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