Need help getting 8 month old to sleep!

Andi - posted on 06/17/2009 ( 5 moms have responded )

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My son is almost 8 months old and for a while he was on a pretty good schedule. Wake at 7, nap 9-11, nap 1-2, nap 4-5, bed at 7. He would then wake at 11 and 3 to breastfeed and get up for the next day again at 7. Then he started teething and all that went out the window! It would take me forever to get him to go to sleep (even with rocking, and singing to him like I normaly do and when it go really bad, breastfeeding to sleep) and still it would take me an hour to get him to fall asleep and then he would only take a 45 min nap! At night he wakes up every hour or two! I just don't know what to do! He finally has his two bottom teeth, so hopefull I can get him back on a schedule. I have tried everything I can think of and nothing is working so I am going to let him cry himself to sleep. Question is, do I let him do that for naps too or just bedtime. He seems like he needs a nap every two hours (like he's done for a while now) but it takes forever to get him to go to sleep! I used to rock him for a while and he would go right to sleep. Now he cries and tried to get up or wants to eat (even though I know hes not hungry). Should I just put him in his crib and let him cry? Please help!

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Corinne - posted on 06/17/2009

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I just started this with my 6 month old yesterday. She used to be on a great routine too until she started teething. She cut her bottom teeth at 3 months, but when she started cutting her top teeth, she started waking up at night every hour after sleeping through the night. It was horrible! I knew she wasn't hungry. She just couldn't go back to sleep without me picking her up and rocking her. So yesterday we saw the pediatrician and he recommended letting her cry in her crib and every few minutes going in and checking on her, patting her back and then leaving. He said to go in after 1 minutee of crying, pat her and leave. Then after 5 minutes and 10 minutes until you get to 15 minutes and keep going in every 15 minutes after that until she stopped crying. Well I went in every 2 minutes or so until she stopped. I wanted to reassure her more often. She cried for a total of 20 minutes at nap time and then fell asleep. At bedtime, she cried for 8 minutes and then this morning for nap time, she only cried for 2 minutes. She is catching on quickly. I cried on her floor in her bedroom the whole time she cried, because I felt like a horrible mother, but I know that she needs to learn the skill of being able to go to sleep on her own if she wakes up during the night. I also need sleep as well! I can take much better care of her during the day if I get some sleep at night.

My daughter is also breast fed and usually wakes up between 3 and 4am to eat. If she wakes up any other time, she'll just have to cry. Of course, I'll go in there every few minutes and kiss and pat her. You have to make it very brief. Just reassure her and leave.

Something else that I think helped last night, is I bought her some jammies that are one piece that have long sleeves and pants. I was letting her just sleep in a onsie, and I think what was happening, was during the night she would kick off her blanket and get cold. She didn't wake up at all last night except once to eat, so I think that helped as well.

I also established a bedtime routine last night. We bathed her with Johnson's Bedtime Bath, played and I fed her then I put her in her crib. I think as we do this at the same time every night, she'll get used to knowing that after bath, playtime and eating is bedtime.

I hope some of this helps you. Know that you're not alone! So many moms are going through the same thing! Let me know if you want to talk or need anymore advice! Good luck!

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Andi - posted on 06/17/2009

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thanks for the help ladies. so for his afternoon nap he cried for about an hour (with me going in like every 10min and laying him back down and leaving. he gets up on his knees and holds on to the side of the crib) then the last time I went in I stayed just a minute with my hand on his belly and humed a little, then left and he finally went to sleep! He only slept for an hour though (from 1-2pm) and has been awake since. I'm about to put him to bed at 7 after daddy gives him a bath. Let the "fun" begin :(

Pam - posted on 06/17/2009

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My daughter use to take a lot of naps like your little one does. When she was getting closer to turning 1 we cut out the evening naps and shortened the morning nap then just cut out the morning naps all together. She would just take her 2 hour nap in the afternoon. Eventually she started sleeping the night without waking up. She just wasn't tired enough to get into a deep sleep at night so she would wake up.

With our son he wouldn't go to bed by himself. We had to let him cry himself to sleep. We would go in and check on him every 10 min (not picking him up just giving him a rub on the back and some comforting words) He eventually started sleeping the night. It took about a week to get him to sleep without crying. Yes, you should do it for naps too! It will confuse him to sometimes have you rock him and sometimes be left alone.



Good Luck!

Corinne - posted on 06/17/2009

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Yeah she sleeps on her tummy...always has. We have a breathing monitor since there is a greater risk of SIDS with tummy sleeping. She never would sleep on her back! Since she's gotten older though, she now rolls back and forth during the night.
I know her pediatrician said yesterday that some babies will cry for even 2 hours and you just have to keep it up and be consistent. I sure don't know if I could do it if my baby cried that long though! Hang in there!!!!

Andi - posted on 06/17/2009

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Thanks. I will keep trying. I'm afraid that since he is older this might not work though. I have tried letting him cry himself to sleep before and he cried for over an hour! When you say "pat on back" is that because she is sleeping on her tummy or because she has rolled over and you don't put her back on her back?

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