My 5 1/2 month ols son wakes up every hour at night and the only way to calm him is to nurse him. He does NOT nap during the day only little cat naps for 15-20 minutes at a time. I need sleep but I have tried to let him cry and he is just persistant. What should I do?

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Colleen - posted on 11/15/2008

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Thanks so much girls. I also hate hearing my babies cry. I have a daughter who is 7 but she was a great sleeper. My son won't take a pacifier either. He is such a good baby during the day. Even with only taking his little cat naps, and honeslty I don't mind that he doesn't sleep during the day. But at night I need to sleep. I find it hard to get out of bed every morning and start my day because I am so exhausted! I will also be going to Boarders tomorrow for that book. Thanks again.

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Lori - posted on 12/26/2012

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My son is 5 months old today and I feel like he has regressed in his sleeping habits. He sleeps for approximately 3 to 4 hours in the beginning of the night, but then wakes up almost every hour. I will not feed him more than twice and do not think I can handle the crying it out method. Any help, suggestions or feedback is appreciated.

Amanda - posted on 11/18/2008

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is he teething??? sometimes over stimulating them can make them not sleep well. Its exciting when they start interacting but i think it makes there minds go round and round with all the things they are taking in

Ana C - posted on 11/16/2008

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Hi Collen!! I'm so happy to hear that Austin slept through the night yesterday! Hooray!! :)

Ben was up from 3am to 4am :( but besides that he was all good. Lucky me got to sleep all night by myself yesterday while my husband was taking care of Ben and slept in his room so I could have a full night of sleep!! Yay!

But hey, try not to give him fruit in the evening, I realised it makes a huge difference for Ben, after all fruit is sugar!

Blessings!

Claire - posted on 11/16/2008

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Trya a dummy and if not leave them for while to cry soon he'll understand who's boss! When he's asleep take his dummy out so he doesn't get dependent on you! Also maybe he needs to sleep during the day to get used to nt waking up and having feed? At the end of the day its hard but you have to be even more persistant!

Karen - posted on 11/16/2008

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I had very similar problems with my twins when they were babies. I hate to say it but I had to follow some very difficult advice. When he crys, the first time go in and give a pat on the back and say good night. 5 minutes later go back in and just smile and leave again. Increase the intervals until you reach 1/2 hour. Then just keep at it. My daughter cried 2.5 hours that first night, but then the next night it only lasted 1 hour. After they realize they are not getting up out of the crib they give up. It's really a test of wills. You just have to be strong and realize that his sleeping is in the best interest of both of you. Now my kids are 3.5 and still take naps in the afternoon and sleep 11 hours a night. Be strong.

Colleen - posted on 11/16/2008

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Oh and I also tried letting him sleep with me. He actually was in my bed for the first 4 months but I think I was disturbing his sleep so I put him in his crib and at first he loved it but then after about a week he started the waking every hour so I did bring him back in with me to no avail. He still woke every hour the only difference was that I didn't have to get out of bed to nurse him i would just roll over. However I would not sleep well with him in the bed because I was always anticipating him waking up and I was afraid if I moved around to much I would disturb him. So basically I would lie in bed half awake, very uncomfortable, afraid to even cough for fear I would wake him....UGHHHH

Colleen - posted on 11/16/2008

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Thank You ladies for all your great suggestions. To answer your questions. I had him to the Dr's Friday..No ear infections and he is completly healthy. W had a milk scan done when he was 3 months old because we thought he had reflux...scan came back clear..NO reflux. I have been giving him cereal and baby food for about 1 month now and he eats GREAT! I always give him a warm bath before bed and feed him a bowl of cereal and a fruit. As for a milk allergy he was also tested for that and again all was fine, I should say that we are very on top of thinks with Austin (my son) because Amanda, my year 7 old had many medical issues when she was born. So we try to leave no stone unturned. I should also say that last night after I posted this question. Austin slept through the night for the 1st time EVER!! I am going to go to the book store today and purchase some of your book suggestions. Thank you all for your help..:)

Christina - posted on 11/16/2008

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Oh and sorry my name is Christina and also you could start him with baby food, i feed him veggies for lunch and then a couple weeks later i started with dinner, like the turkey or chicken and what i will do is give him a jar and then like 2-3oz. of formula. Just an idea for ya.

Christina - posted on 11/16/2008

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hey i was wondering are you giving him any cereal, maybe if you pump and put some cereal in a bottle it will keep him full longer and he will sleep longer??? I hope this helps, i have a 5 and 1/2 month old also and he sleeps pretty good now, some nights he might wake up just for his pacifier but other than i cant complain, i see it CAN be worse. I wish you the best and i hope you get some sleep soon!

Laura - posted on 11/16/2008

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Hi colleen- my name is laura glaser and I too have had the a similar situation with my son who is now 14mts. It turned out to be Reflux. Once we gave him an H2 inhibitor and a acid reducer he was a new baby. Given my education background as an RN I still missed the signs. Probally b/c i was sooo sleep deprived. What has your pediatrican said? Bring up the idea of reflux and see what comes out of it. I 'll give you some more specific examples of how we came to this diagnosis, and maybe this will apply to your situation. First, my son would not sleep for any lenght of time, we wake up crying in pain. He'd also only consume small amounts of breastmilk 1 oz 1/2. Which inturn would no allow him to sleep ( belly not full). Then the cycle would start all over again. so it wasn't until we gave him Axid 0.7mg every six hours, and previcid 30 mins before his first meal her turned the corner and slept throught the night. ( in the evening we'd squirt the axid in his mouth while sleeping to prevent awakening) He is now 14mts not on meds and perfectly fine. he grew out of it just like babies usally do. i hope this helps.

User - posted on 11/16/2008

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Hi Colleen, it is normal for a 51/2 month old baby to wake up so often at night, my son is 17 months old and he still waes up and I nurse him back to sleep. Try giving your son a nice warm bath before putting him to sleep, or you could start feeding him baby food, when my baby is full in the tummy, he/we get a whole nights sleep. It is so often that babies have growt sprouts, which can mean that they will eat non stop. Have you thought of formula yet?? They fill up babies way better than breast milk, and if you don't eat right, your bearst milk won't be as filling as you might think, so that might be the reason he keeps waking up, because he doesn't get full, he just falls asleep for a short time because he gets tired. Think about it, if your breast milk is the only food for him, he might not be enough.

You try to get s much cat naps as you can possibly get or else you won't have the energy to nurse at all.

Erin - posted on 11/16/2008

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I nursed also - and what finally helped to stop him from waking up at night was to not nurse when he woke up, but put water in a bottle and give him that. He'll soon realize he is not getting up for what he wants, so he'd rather sleep!

Amy - posted on 11/16/2008

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Hey there I have a 7 1/2 month old and the only way I could get him to stop was to feed him cereal at night before he went to bed. This works and he sleeps all through the night. I was still nursing too and I think he just wanted that security.

Tanesha - posted on 11/16/2008

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Is he eating food yet. He might be hungry. Breastmilk is only just so filling and he's getting older. That might be why he's not napping as well. I know they tell you to wait til they are 6 months old sometimes... but....

Deirdre - posted on 11/16/2008

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I don't know if this will help you but when my daughter was born she did not sleep through the night until I stopped nursing. I started giving her formula and she started sleeping that night 4 hrs then she would wake up and I would feed her formula again and would fall back asleep for another 3 hours. If you don't want to stop nursing all together a suggestiong would be to nurse in the day and do formula at night. Just a thought. I hope you get some sleep soon.

[deleted account]

The book "The Happiest Baby on the Block", "Goodnight, Sleep Tight", and "The No-Cry Sleep Solution" have great strategies for bothof these issues and helped me enormously (I went through it twice). Good luck!

Jodie - posted on 11/16/2008

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Well, I am going to assume you have had his ears checked because ear infections make kids have these issues. Have you tried sleeping with him? That is what I did with my daughter out of self-preservation. I needed sleep and that was the only way she would sleep.

Natanya - posted on 11/16/2008

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My son had the same problem at about 5-6 months. We realized he had a milk allergy. As soon as I took out all milk out of my own diet...so I wasn't giving it to him through breast milk....he started sleeping much better. It was really hard but I switched to goat milk and he started sleeping much better. Now he is two and is fine with all milk products, and he sleeps ok. not through the night, but pretty close.

Ami - posted on 11/16/2008

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hi,

i once watched a programme on a baby who wouldnt sleep at night unless her was nursed, his mum had to get help in, they got him to sleep after a day of the nanny being there by sitting with him until he stopped crying, its very hard work and takes a lot of time but if you try sitting with your baby so he knows your there but not touching him in any way, eventually he will sleep hun, good luck an keep at it, we all need sleep x

Nicole - posted on 11/16/2008

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I know this is not what you probably want but why not let him sleep in your bed with you. I have two boys and am pregnant again and l will do exactly what l have done the last two times. They always went to there own bed first and after the first night feed then l was too tired and took them to bed if woke again. With the second l didn't feed him as often at night as l had a 2yr old to content with during the day but if he kept waking he would sleep with me. I didn't have trouble getting them to sleep in there own beds as now 2 and 4 the little one comes into the room to try and get in with mummy most nights and is simply cuddled and taken back to bed, until light outside! My motto is just do what feels right and works for you don't worry what other people think of you!! Good luck.

Alysia - posted on 11/16/2008

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I had the exact same problem, and the mid wife sent me to a sleeping boot camp i call it, but it works wonders and my girl now sleeps through,ask around or see your doctor and they should refer you to a place good luck and hope all goes well

Danielle - posted on 11/16/2008

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Have you tried pumping a bottle then feeding him? I found that Jadyn sleeps better on a full tummy, and when Dad feeds her off the bottle of mom milk, she gets more fluids at one time. She sleeps for a long stretch afterward (3-5 hours). Best of luck!

User - posted on 11/15/2008

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I'm a big fan of the Baby Whisperer method! When he was a little younger, we let him cry it out and it worked at the time, but he would start the crying a week or so later. It always felt like we were listening to him cry and it really started to wear on me. I got the Baby Whisperer book and it really helped - he would cry, but we would be with him and there was a plan.

Ana C - posted on 11/15/2008

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Hi Collen! I know exaclty how you feel... My 6 months old just started to get a little better now and about a month ago I thought I was going crazy with the lack of sleep!! I ended up at the doctor with severe stress because of it and going to marriage counseling! I also read Healthy Sleep Habbits, Happy Child - and it did help me a lot!! And I also read all about sleeping on the internet and other books as well. He takes great naps during the day now and is starting to sleep a good 5 hours strech at first and then 2-3 hours strechs. He also use to wake up from 3 to 7 times at night!!! And worse than all we were living in a 1 bedroom apartment and Ben's crib was in our room, so we found out we were also waking him up with our exhausted snoring! Now we are in a 4 bedrooms house, we just moved! Now that he has his own room he does sleep better but still wakes up to nurse. I too got him use to nurse to sleep in the rocking chair and now I'm suffering to wean him out of this bad habit. I also hate to hear him crying but I know it's the right thing to do.

I hope our sons will sleep through the night sooner than soon! ;)

Blessings!

Kathleen - posted on 11/15/2008

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I have a 7 month old daughter, Lucy and she loves to take a warm bath before bed. It helps get out her wiggles and I use a lavender wash that helps calm her down. Plus a warm bath before bed causes the body temperature to drop a bit which is a natural trigger to the body to sleep. Then I put her in her pj's and lay her down awake, sometimes she fusses but she usually passes out after about 15 minutes. If she is still crying i go in but do NOT pick her up I try gently rubbing her back or patting her butt. Then I give her about 30 minutes and then I go in and check on her and talk softly to her and pick her up for a minute to comfort her (I rarely have to anymore). I know it is hard but give it a week or two and he will be sleeping better. Lucy used to have trouble at night but after my husband and I roughed it out she sleeps 8-12 hours straight a night! I can't promise you that much success but hopefully you can get at least 5 hours. Best of luck!

Chanmi - posted on 11/15/2008

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Before you read on, I want to let you know that I have also been nursing my daughter to sleep since she's been a newborn. Now, I did this after reading countless books that recommend that we need to put our babies down when they are awake. However, the combination of nursing and rocking her to sleep was the only way I could get her to sleep on her own in her crib. Otherwise, the instant I placed her in her bed (even though she was asleep in my arms prior for about 10-20 minutes), she would immediately cry herself into a frenzy. So, the nursing and rocking her worked really well until she was four months old. She was even almost sleeping through the night.

When she turned four months old, she started waking up every 2-3 hours. The only way I could calm her down back to sleep was to nurse her. I thought that perhaps she was going through a growth spurt or teething. Nope! This lasted for almost a month. I too was extremely exhausted and she was not such a happy baby either since she wasn't getting a good night sleep nor was she a good napper during the day.

I sought the advice of my pediatrician. My doctor checked her out to make sure there was nothing physically wrong with her. Then, she said that I simply need to let her cry it out. My months of nursing her to sleep was keeping her from soothing herself to sleep. You can't imagine how guilty I felt. I hated the idea of letting her cry it out. But because I was so exhausted and I knew she was not doing well with such little sleep, I had to try. Because my daughter was getting older, my pediatrician warned that it might take more time to learn how to sleep on her own.

The first few nights were terrible. We went through our usual bedtime routine (getting into pjs, diaper change, reading a book, and feeding), but this time I put her down wide awake. She cried (or should I say screamed) bloody murder for two hours!!! UGH!!! It was horrible to hear her crying like that. We did not go into her room at all. She did fall asleep on her own. She also slept for 5 hour stretches the first night. After a few days, the amount of time she cried when we first put her down decreased. She would cry 40 minutes, then 30 the next night. She continued to sleep longer stretches through the night. Now, she still wakes up a few times in the middle of the night, but I don't go in right away. Most of the time, she only cries for a few minutes, and then falls back asleep. At around 2-3am if she is crying for 15 minutes, then I go in to feed her. She doesn't wake up again until about 6-7am. Since I've started letting her "cry it out", I have been only going in to feed her once at night.

I also want to add that you should follow your mommy instincts. I have read plenty of books about sleep training and have tried them to help my daughter become a better sleeper. I wouldn't endorse one single method. For easy babies, anything works. For the rest of us, we need to use our mommy instincts to try to find what works best for our babies and us. So, I hope my experience with my daughter may help you. And if it doesn't, it does not mean that you are a bad mommy. All kids are different. Being a mommy takes a lot of patience, persistence, and creativity.

Patricia (Patty) - posted on 11/15/2008

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Hi ! Oh ... I so feel for you ... I remember those days !!! I also remember THE greatest sleep book ever Healthy Sleep, Happy Child by Dr. Marc Weissbluth. It is a wonderful book from birth up, through puberty and it works. He is a renowned dr in Chicago and I sometimes wished I lived there so I could go to him directly.

The greatest thing about this book is that you can read just what applies to your age group and then start working.

It was recommended by some friends and I have to tell you it's worked for everyone !

Good luck ...

Sarah - posted on 11/15/2008

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That is so hard! My kids were so bad at sleeping, too. I nursed all of them to sleep, which I think was a big problem. They didn't know how to fall asleep on their own. I'm pregnant again, and I think I need to do things different with this next one. I just HATE hearing my babies cry and they would never take a pacifier. I am going to try and not nurse in bed and to lay them down before they are all the way asleep so they learn to fall asleep on their own. At 5 1?2 mo. old, he does not need to eat every hour! It's purely for comfort and he needs to learn to find other things to sooth him. I feel for you! It is so hard. Good luck.

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