My 3 and 1/2 year old stopped sleeping through the night

Danielle - posted on 02/10/2015 ( 3 moms have responded )

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At first she started waking a couple of times per night - asking to go to the bathroom or for a drink of water or to start her lullaby music again. But it has over the course of 2 months turned into nightmares or waking hourly. We get no rest! There are tears, lots of negotiation and sometimes she finds out way back to our bed. Extremely frustrated and considering some type of sleep behavioral therapy if that even exists... Anyone experienced what I'm going through? Thanks

Sleepless in Baltimore

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Sarah - posted on 02/11/2015

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Is she really having nightmares? Waking sweaty and shaking or is she telling you she is scared to get attention? If you feel it is an attention seeking method, give her reassurance and send her back to bed. Get her a special nightlight that will keep the bad dreams away. Follow a strict bedtime routine and bedtime. Bath, books, snuggles and trip to the potty. At tuck in tell her, it is time to sleep, you love her and you will see her in the morning. If you can, put the lullaby music on a continuous loop. When she wakes or get up, gently put her back, no water, no chit-chat, nothing. Just tuck her in and say good night. Repeat, repeat, repeat, if she gets up a hundred times you must stay consistent. I promise you it will stake less then a week for her to quit. If you cave at the 75 trip, you have just taught her to stick with getting up and asking for water, music, whatever.
Nightmares and night terrors are sleep disturbances that kids do have. This does not sound like terrors. She may be having nightmares, but kids with nightmares are generally soothed by some gentle words and a hugs and will go back to bed without too much fight. Kids will often say "I had a nightmare or I am scared" because they know you will respond. You will be helping her to develop better sleep habits if you can nip the constant disruptive behavior.

Susan - posted on 02/11/2015

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kids at that age often experience what they call nite terrors the child is actually asleep and due to stress or being over tired or sometimes it's just heredity. if this is whats going on never wake the child just sit near by and it stops on its own and they go back to sleep. if it continues more than a few months the nite terrors take her to the pediatrician but make
sure doesn't watch any nutty cartoons or movies before bed is she getting enough sleep before all this started and before bed say half an hour give her water and have her pees right before she get's into bed. if there is stress in her life that may be cause also so ask her if anything is making her unhappy or sad. also see if you have a button on your cd or radio where music plays continuously all nite if not you may want to purchase on. lastly, also try to increase her liquids during the day if she is waking up thirsty.

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