7 month old crying everytime she is put down for a nap.

Kailey - posted on 09/02/2012 ( 19 moms have responded )

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I'm a new mother and I do not know what to do about my daughters problem with sleeping. Up until about 3 weeks ago she was a perfect sleeper, we could put her in her crib and she would fall alseep on her own. Now its like she did a complete 360, we can not lay her down for a nap without her screaming her head off. She screams, cries, snot runs from her nose, holds her breath, she does anything and everything to avoid naptime.



We try to distract her with a toy or singing to her and that doesnt work, she just wants to be picked up. The only thing that soothes her is if we pick her up, sing or hum to her, cradle her and sway back and forth while walking around the house - then she drifts off to sleep. We put her in her crib when she fall asleep but sometimes she will wake up when we lay her down and the whole thing starts all over again.



We do not want to get into the habit of rocking her to sleep EVERY nap. Is there anyone else going through the same situation and if so do you have suggestions that may help us. We tried letting her cry it out but she laid in her crib and cried for an hour, so I gave in and walked around with her until she feel asleep. PLEASE HELP.

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Juliannemarie - posted on 09/03/2012

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Shes crying because she needs you. Its a primitive defence mechanism. Babies aren't meant to be alone. If we didn't live in a modern society, and still lived in a tribal setting, if a baby were alone that meant their mother was dead or injured. The baby would cry to alert other family members to come find her so she wouldn't die. When she's alone, she cries for survival. Even though shes not going to get eaten by bear in her crib, her instincts tell her otherwise. Babies don't manipulate, they don't know how to. They just want to survive. Nurturing her and rocking her to sleep will help her sleep, you'll bond stronger to her, and you'll teach her to rely on you for emotional support. Whats wrong with rocking a toddler? They are still emotionally immature and need their parents. They WILL grow out of it. My 3 year old was rocked the first 2 years of her life. She just goes to bed without a fight every night at 8:00 now. She even asks me to put her to bed some nights when its close to bedtime.

Amanda - posted on 09/12/2012

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At this age she is probably going through seperation anxiety. All three of my boys were SO BAD at this age with this stuff. For naps, I would lay down with them, read a couple short books, give them loves and kisses, talk to them for a couple minutes then tell them its nap time and walk out. After about 5 minutes of crying I would go back in, NOT SAY A WORD, lay them down calmly and gently and walk out. I did this every 5 or so minutes until finally they fell asleep. Talking to them just gets them going again, not saying anything shows them it isn't play time or talking time. By continuously going back in and gently laying them down, even if they get right back up, you reassure them you have not left them alone. Eventually she will figure out you are just in the next room, you can hear her, and she can feel safe to fall asleep. It may take a week or so of doing this everyday, but I promise, it gets easier and faster!!! When my kids got older and were put in toddler beds for the first time they started getting out of bed because they could. I did the same thing, I didn't say one word, I picked them up and put them back in bed again. Again, it takes about a week or maybe two till they get the picture. Just BE CONSISTANT!! I wish you luck!!

From a mother of 3 boys! Now 9, 7 and 6.

Stephanie - posted on 09/06/2012

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My daughter used to do that when she was little because she was held so much because she was the first grandbaby and my first baby, but you just have to put them in their crib and let them cry themselves to sleep....let her cry for about 15 minutes and pick her up to wipe her nose and stuff then put her back down and ignore her...once she realizes that you are not going to pick her up everytime she cries in her crib, she will start going to sleep. I know its hard, but you can do it.

I sat in the other room and cried too...

but it worked

Ashley - posted on 09/04/2012

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With my second child specifically I had chores that I had to do but my little one would scream if I put her down for even a second. Rocking her in a rocking chair seemed easier than walking around, and then I'd slowly set her down in her crib and she usually stayed asleep for a little while. Sometimes I'd set her in her baby swing and let it rock her to sleep gently. We also had one of those bouncers that vibrated and that worked for her. Or I'd stick her in a sling or those baby carriers that you attach to yourself. Worst case scenario, I put her in her car seat and rocked her back and forth gently with my foot while I did dishes. But that was more so when she was newborn and a few months old...later on I'd soothe her but she was allowed to cry a little bit sometimes. As they get older they DO test for reactions. I know my oldest did when she was 7-9 months old, especially!! Its nothing wrong with them, its just something kids do as they grow...but like I said, just find a balance.



Sometimes you just can't pick them up every single time they cry. My kids know I'm there for them but they also are a bit independent...you have to find balance. If you don't, they might not know what to do without Mommy...and that's not necessarily a good thing. Kids need to know how to rely on themselves AND their loved ones.



I hope you find whatever method works...try to be creative, I'm sure you'll figure something out. Good luck!! :)

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Kailey - posted on 09/06/2012

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Thanks everyone for the input.



We think we may have figured out what was going on. We recently changed her entire room around and where her crib was placed she couldnt see down the hallway. So we changed her room back around the orginal way. Ever since then we put her in her crib for a nap and she plays and then goes to sleep on her OWN.



I dont know if that makes any sense to anyone but it seems to be great for her and us. KNOCK ON WOOD, she continues to like the set up now. She doesnt even fuss - again knock on wood.

Aunt - posted on 09/05/2012

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Here is something that used to work for me. If your baby goes to sleep while rocking, but wakes when you lay her down try sitting with a pillow on your lap with the baby laying on the pillow. Rock your legs or bounce whichever works best, pat them gently on the back and hum or talk softly to them. Once they are asleep you can lift the whole pillow and gently carry them to the bed. Once you lay them in the crib gently move them off the pillow while humming. Once off the pillow if she seems to be stirring gently pat her on the back while humming or talking softly. A lot of times it is the motion of getting up and carrying them that starts them waking. With a pillow you can keep them steadier. If she is just fussing ( not screaming or crying ) when you are in the hall. Then just let her fuss. There are different cry's for different things. Fussing is just that fussing. She is letting you know she doesn't want to take a nap, but you know she needs one. They will usually fuss a bit then fall asleep.

Anthea - posted on 09/04/2012

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There really is no right or wrong way. Control cry vs rocking etc. I've known lots of mums who used either method and their kids have no problems emotionally, going to sleep. I do believe that which ever method you choose be prepared to stick to it. Rocking and attachment parenting does make that child need/want you more to help them settle but there's nothing wrong with that. My first 3 kids were always picked up, rocked, given dummies to help with sleep and yes through the night as well. They all outgrew it by age 2 and were happy to go to sleep by themselves by then. My last 2, by default were left longer periods when crying because I was usually busy and couldn't attend to them for 5-10mins. As a result, they were perfect sleepers who could self settle and never used dummies. However now they are older ( 3 ) they will wake a few times a week during the night and want me, so we all hop into one of their ( double ) beds and sleep together. Whatever method you feel is best for you, go for it! they grow up in a blink of an eye, so cherish the time you have with them when they are little.

Dawn - posted on 09/04/2012

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My daughters are 19, 17 and 8 and I rocked everyone of them to sleep and never laid them down to fall asleep. I loved having a baby, and they grew up fine. I read to them and sat near while they begin to fall asleep when they were toddlers. I still read my 8 year old a bed time story and occasionally she will ask for me to sit with her while she falls asleep. I believe that if you let them cry they will learn they can't depend on you, whereas if you are there to comfort them, they learn you will be there and they are safe and secure. Enjoy her while she is a baby, they grow up much to fast.

Jennifer - posted on 09/04/2012

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She might have reflux or an ear infection. Although, reflux usually starts earlier. I agree, that something is possibly wrong if she was a wonderful sleeper before this. Of course, she could just be going through seperating anxiety early. I would start with the pediatrician to rule out any ear infections and then discuss the possibility of reflux. If you can rule those out, it just might be a "phase" for her. 2 of my 4 children have/had reflux and they refused to sleep laying flat. Does she sleep fine in her carseat or swing? That could be a good indication. And ear infections always hurt when laying down. Good luck!

Gwen - posted on 09/04/2012

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The only thing predictable about a baby's sleep habits is that they will change. Growth spurts, teething, separation anxiety, etc. can all disrupt her sleep patterns. I agree with the others that there is nothing wrong with soothing your anxious infant.

Leah - posted on 09/04/2012

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your baby is probably teething and might be needing the extra attention. its completely normal for them to start this and there is nothing wrong with rocking your child to sleep up into toddler years sometimes they just need to feel you there.

Sylvia - posted on 09/04/2012

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Oh, see, I loved rocking and nursing my baby to sleep, and I was happy to keep doing that as long as she needed it. Before I had DD, I had lots of experience with babies who needed to be rocked/nursed/walked/snuggled to sleep, and had never met one who didn't, so I just kind of expected that that was going to be part of the deal.



There's a great book called The No-Cry Sleep Solution that might be helpful to you. The author is Elizabeth Pantley.

Kailey - posted on 09/03/2012

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We just dont want to get into that routine because we have numerous friends who have rocked their children to sleep when they were infants and now that they are toddlers they still have to rock them to sleep.

Sylvia - posted on 09/02/2012

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I'm not trying to be snarky, but ... what's wrong with rocking her to sleep?

Kailey - posted on 09/02/2012

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Does anyone else have any suggestions or ideas on what we can do? We feel like we have tried everything.

Kailey - posted on 09/02/2012

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She didnt cry for an hour straight, sorry I should worded it better but I was trying to shorten the story.



She fussed for an hour. We would leave her room and she would start crying. We stayed in the hallway and she stopped crying just fussing, we peek around the corner when she is quiet and she seen us then started crying again. So we went back in the hallway and she cried a little then went quiet so we peeked around again and she seens us and started crying again. That's why I asked is she learning to get what she wants because she seemed to start screaming and crying when she seen us but when she couldnt see us we would just fuss a little.



We would not let our baby scream and cry for an hour straight none stop. This is my first post on this site, so now I know for the next time that I post I will give a full discription on every situation so people do not get the wrong idea.

Juliannemarie - posted on 09/02/2012

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Shes crying because she needs you. Rocking her to sleep is a bonding experience. By allowing her to cry or try to teach her to self sooth your distancing yourself from your child. If you want to have a strong bond and have a well rounded independent child, be there for her when she needs you. Rock her to sleep and she will learn to rely on you, in turn she will grow into an independent child because she will know she has you to rely on if anything goes wrong. If she feels like noones there for her and has to become self reliant too soon, she will cling and be scared to try new things because she will feel noone is there for her. She doesn't have a problem. Shes a baby. Babies need their moms.

Don't try letting her cry excessively. You let her flip out for an hour?! That can really hurt your child. Its extremely dangerous. . The cortisol(stress hormone) increases from that amount of crying, causing a change in the chemical balance in the brain. This changes the way the brain develops which results in anxiety, depression, low self esteem, high stress levels in adult hood. Worst case scenario it can cause brain damage or give her an aneurism. Have you ever cried that intensely? How do you feel? You get a headache, eyes feel puffy, have a hard time breathing because your nose stuffs up, throat is sore etc. What if your spouse or loved one didn't comfort you when in a state, and just let you cry? How would you feel? I would feel unloved, neglected, hurt and I would feel less for the person who allowed me to cry like that without offering condolences. After going through that do you really feel like sleeping?

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