I wake up every night in a panic that my baby is smothered in the covers...help please!!

Chellsi - posted on 08/17/2009 ( 18 moms have responded )




Ok so here is a little background info...My son is 8 months old and sleeps in his crib every night. When he was a newborn, he slept with us for about 3 or 4 weeks untill I transitioned him into his bassinett. My son has a borderline abnormality with his t waves in his heart and because of that the doctors told me early on that there is a greater chance that he could have SIDS--in addition, my brother died of SIDS so it runs in my family. I was totally freaked out at first, and was really worried that he was going to die in his sleep. I have since calmed down about it and rarely think about it. However, every single night, I wake up 2-3 times positive that he is in our bed under the covers somewhere, I start to panic and pat the bed all over looking for him. I wake my husband up saying "where is the baby" he tells me every night "he is in his crib--where you put him" and sometimes I don't believe him and I have to go check on him. It is almost like I am still asleep and sleepwalking or something, he hasn't slept in our bed for at least 5 months! I have even got up and walked over to my husbands side of the bed and checked in his arms to see if the baby is there!! Am i crazy?!?! I tell myself before I go to bed, that the baby is in his crib and if I wake up its okay and I can just tell myself this and fall back asleep--and then when it happens, I am convinced that he was just laying next to me and now he is gone....

Any advice? I am not depressed nor do I feel like I have anxiety problems-- anyone else sleepwalk or talk in their sleep?



Malinda - posted on 08/18/2009




I second the video monitor. They are pricey, but imo so worth it! Ours has a quick-hit button on top of the monitor that you can just hit and it flickers the picture on - two seconds and you have your peace of mind.

That said, it still can't hurt to discuss these waking panics with your doctor. As someone who has had issues in hypnogogia (the space between fully asleep and fully awake) there are definitely exercises and medications (though I wouldn't jump to the med route) that can help.

Good Luck!!

Charlie - posted on 08/17/2009




Hi , Have you checked out the Grobags you can buy ???
They are basically sleeping bags with arms and neck . The child CANNOT wriggle out or down into the bag , they are actually reccomended by SID"S for kids as they are safer then loose blankets , i have used them and they are fantastic !!

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Zandrana - posted on 11/10/2012




I do the same thing although the baby has never slept in the bed with us. She has fallen asleep on my chest and I've nodded off a couple times especially if its in the middle of the night. I will wake up thinking the baby is still laying on my chest or the pillow I hold onto is her. I woke up this morning looking around for her and husband asked what I was doing told him I had to put the baby back in the crib. Kinda annoying to wake up like that in a panic that I fell asleep still holding her. I've never experienced anything like this before. I wondered if it could be from lack of sleep. I'm the only one that wakes up to feed her so I end up getting 4 or so hours of sleep during a night. Nice to see I'm not the only one that goes though this. Makes me feel like I'm going crazy

Carol-Anne - posted on 08/23/2009




My son never slept in our bed with us, but I woke up the same way every night, desperately searching through the sheets to find him. My husband would grab my hands and tell me that he's not in our bed, and that's when I actually woke up. This went on almost every night for about 6 months or so. I attributed it to hearing of a few cases on the news where the parent had rolled over on top of the baby and smothered them. I guess the news so bothered me that it brought on nightmares. Unfounded, because my son NEVER slept in our bed once. Eventually the nightmares stopped. My son is 4 now and I don't have those dreams anymore. I certainly can associate with what you are feeling though. Try to relax, and I think talking it out with someone, anyone, helps. I hope this forum heps you as well.

Amy - posted on 08/19/2009




I had a similar issue, when I spoke to my doc about it, he sent me to the therapist, where I was diagnosed with PPD. PPD can manifest as depression, anxiety and other mood issues. You have to remember your dreams come from the subconscious, which means that if you are sleep walking and freaking out, then your subconsciously anxious. Like a recurring nightmare, It's something you may not even really think about during the day, but it's really burnt into your brain. I would see a Doc (therapist, or sleep disorder) they will be able to help you with getting over this.

Suzi - posted on 08/19/2009




I did exactly the same thing! My baby is 9months old and for the first few months I would also wake in a complete panic and look around for her in the bed - this started when she slept with us for a few nights when she was unsettled and then I kept dreaming I was suffocating her! It is completely normal, not sure what advice I can give you on how to overcome this.. Don't worry too much about it being abnormal though! :-)

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Invest in some sleeping bags! They are great because they cant wiggle out of them or get tangled in them. It also stops the moving around the cot as much and they are great for taking with you if you are out at someones for dinner :)

Carly - posted on 08/18/2009




You are not crazy! :-) I used to do the exact same thing and my son NEVER slept with us. I would bring him into bed to feed him then change him and put him back in his own bed. I would later half wake up and be CONVINCED he was still in the bed somewhere, that I had fallen asleep feeding him or something. I would shake my husband awake too. It's normal and will pass as your baby gets older and memories of having him in the bed fade. Don't waste your money on a monitor.

[deleted account]

I just wanted to second (or third lol) Loureen's "grobag" idea....they're called sleep sacks here in the US though. I loved them!

Krista - posted on 08/18/2009




First of all, SIDS is NOT hereditary, so you can stop worrying about the connection to your brother.

What you might want to try is to write yourself a note before going to bed that your husband can give to you. It will be in your handwriting so you'll know it's true that your baby is safe in his own bed. That, or buy yourself one of those video monitors. Then, all you have to do is look into the little tv and SEE for yourself that he's there.

Karen - posted on 08/18/2009




hi l used to dream,my son dan under the blankets,also dreamt l was bathing him an his head would fall off,and wake up looking for him,anyway his 16 this november and the dream left me,now my kids dream and wake themselfs up lol,must be in the family,l think it happens alot just people dont say incase they think your mad lol,talk to the docter if it helps or try a relaxing cd before falling asleep you think your ok but the mind is a funny thing,good luck hunny.

Cathralynn - posted on 08/18/2009




Don't stress as long as when you fully wake up you are rational about checking the right places. My cat sleeps with my husband and I and I wake up thinking I am rolling on the baby, she's 15mo and never slept in our bed. Too funny! I think when we are sleeping we are still moms, just not quite coherent! Don't worry.

Chellsi - posted on 08/17/2009




I like the idea of the video monitor thanks for that Christina! Sharon, I appriciate the advice but I really don't think that I have a 'severe anxitey issue' I spoke with my mom and she told me that she had sleepwalking issues for years...maybe it runs in the family? And I do check the crib, its in the other room so I usually check in my bed first because its closer I guess...and because I am half asleep when I do it and confused...lol

I have heard of the breathing monitors and the movement mats, I just don't think that those are necessary. My son is pretty much out of the SIDS risk age so I don't think that is what I am worried about....I just can't explain why I search for him like I do at night under my blankets... Maybe I will talk to my doctor about it!! THanks for all the help ladies 8-)

Haven - posted on 08/17/2009




Oh my goodness!! My sister does the same exact thing. She has two kids. One is four years old and the other is 5 months old. She is always searching under the covers for them. She looks for my son too. You aren't crazy.

Kylie - posted on 08/17/2009




hello, i do the same thing. my background information is that when i was pregnant with my first child my brother fell over at school and they discovered he had a massive brain tumour it nearly killed him it took years of treatment surgery. they say he had it from birth and without the fall we might never have known untill it was to late.i check my kids before they go tosleep i check them before i go to sleep i get up to check them while im sleeping and have evem stayed awake in their rooms when they are asleep when they are sick.my daughter had sleep apenia when she was little and would go into such a deep sleep she would stop breathing i had an alarm matt underneath her that the hospital gave me..it made me more anxious so did the baby moniter as i would work myself up if i couldn't hear anything.over the years i have gotten better i make sure their rooms a dust free my house is smoke free zone.your a mum that child is a part of you it is normal to do what you are doing. although ihave learnt that my kids pick up on alot of stuff i was doing and it was more harmfull then i thought they couldn't sleep peacefully. my advice find ways to put your mind at ease slowly it will get better.

Sharon - posted on 08/17/2009




I'm not sure why you don't check the crib first? You do have a severe anxiety issue. With a basis in reality though. I used to utterly freak out when the babies were just sooooo still!!!

I can't even tell you its not a worry because it is. What about one of those breathing monitors? It has an alarm that goes off when the baby stops breathing?

I wanted one but couldn't get one. But my family doesn't have an issue like yours does.

Christina - posted on 08/17/2009




how about a video monitor. when you wake up in a panic just roll over to see him sleeping in his own bed.

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