Sleep schedule problems...

Jolene - posted on 02/24/2009 ( 6 moms have responded )

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Hi. I have a 4 month old girl. I am trying to figure out how long I should expect her to sleep each night before I feed her, but so many of the things I read refer to babies who are formula fed and I know that effects how long babies can go between feedings. My daughter is 16 lbs and I have her sleep 8 hours before her morning feeding. She can generally do this just fine, but some nights wakes multiple times crying and I just pat her and wait for her to go back to sleep. Am I expecting too much of her to go 8 hours? Or are those crying nights just flukes?

ALSO, I want to hear about other babies' sleep habits, like how long yours sleep at night, if they have mid-night feedings, and what time?? And naps? When should those be? And how long? Basically I just want to hear what your baby's schedule is.

6 Comments

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Emily - posted on 02/25/2009

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My favorite baby sleep book is the "No-Cry Sleep Solution" by Elizabeth Pantley. She helped me teach my kids to fall asleep on their own, and to self soothe at night... once they're sleeping better, I know when they do wake they actually do need me. My 14 month old was sleeping 8-12 hour stretches until about a month ago... then she started waking 3-4 times a night... turns out she's teething. She cut 4 teeth within 2 weeks, and now has 4 more just below the surface (I can see them all... they just haven't broken through yet). It's nice to know what's bothering her, so that I can help. Once these teeth break through, she should go back to sleeping longer stretches on her own (at least that's what she's always done in the past!). :)

Stephanie - posted on 02/25/2009

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My son is eight weeks old today. I have been wondering when my son will start sleeping more at night and he's beginning to show signs that he's going to start sleeping more soon. I know he's really young still but this lack of sleep thing is beginning to get very old. I fed him every 2 1/2 hours since birth and now he's beginning to be able to stretch to three hours. He can go four or five hours stretches at night. He usually wakes up twice a night to nurse. If it's only been two or three hours, I don't bother nursing because I know he's probably not hungry because he can go longer. I agree with trying to use other methods to get a child back to sleep if you know they are probably not hungry. I don't want my son to get used to being nursed to sleep. The only time I nurse him to sleep is for his last feeding of the evening.

His nights are still irregular but I'm trying to stick with a regular routine during the day of nursing, wake/activity time, and then a nap. I then get him up after it's been three hours to nurse him again. Rinse and repeat. He doesn't always sleep every cycle but I can tell when he's getting overtired and try my hardest to get him to sleep at that point. Overtired babies are no fun. I know some moms don't agree with putting their children on schedules but I think it's good for children to have regular routines.

Anyway... I hope that helps.

BTW... it's nice to hear from other moms who are up at night. Reminds me that I am not alone when I am up at 4am.

Katy - posted on 02/25/2009

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My  almost 6 month old son has JUST started taking naps that last longer than 30 minutes!  We get him up @ 7am, nap by 9am (usually 1 - 1.5 hours) and then another nap at 1pm that's about 30 min - 1 hour.  He also takes a really short nap around 4pm that lasts about 30 min.  He's not a great sleeper at night - sometimes he wakes up every hour or two from about 11pm until 6am.  Other nights he wakes @ 11pm, I pat him and shhhh him, and then he sleeps until 3am for a feeding.  He goes down pretty early at night, usually between 6:30 and 7.



There are definately some nights that he wakes up at 1am and I try to get him back down with no luck until he's fed. 



Whatever works for you... I would LOVE it if my son slept 8 hours straight!

Carly - posted on 02/25/2009

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I agree with Nancy - if bubs is not hungry, they won't feed.  More likely they'll just suck for a while then go back to sleep.  This is what I found with my son when he was about 4 months.  If he woke at night, I would get him up for a feed but he would quickly fall back asleep at the breast.  I took this as a sign to start trying other things to help him get back to sleep, like patting and sshhhh-ing.



My son is now 8 months.  At 4 months, as far as I remember, he was sleeping about 8 hours, then having a feed and a nappy change, then sleeping another 3 or 4 hours.  Now he is sleeping a full 12 hours.  He used to have 3 naps (now down to 2) during the day.  At 4 months, my son could only handle being awake for 1.5 - 2 hours at a time.  Then he would get grizzly and yawn and rub his eyes so I knew it was time to sleep.  We didn't have set naps times.  A nap usually lasted an hour, sometimes 2 if we'd been swimming or something else a bit more demanding.



I hope this has helped.  Of course, every baby is different.  Also, just when you think you've got a great pattern worked out, they completely change the rules!!  Good luck :-)

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my child is 12 weeks, so far his pattern is that he sleeps average 5 hours, wakes to be fed (breastfed) then sleeps for 3-4 hours longer, I too have been wondering when to stop feeding him in the middle of the night.

Nancy - posted on 02/24/2009

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I found with my three girls that they did not have schedules.  They ate when they were hungry, slept when they were tired, etc.  I nursed my girls at night any time they woke up wanting to nurse.  I always offered.  You cannot force a child to nurse, but I always offered.  If that was not what they wanted they would not nurse.



 



Good luck finding out what works for you and your daugher!

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