My son never sleeps, help!

Katie - posted on 03/02/2012 ( 6 moms have responded )




My son will be 2 next month and he still doesn't sleep through the night. It usually takes about 2 hours to get him to go to sleep, then he wakes up 1-3 times a night, getting up for good any time between 4 and 8am.

He takes a 2 hour nap during the day, usually anytime between 12pm and 3pm, I never let him sleep past 4pm.

I've tried everything. Bath, books, singing, watching movies, rocking him, skipping nap time, keeping him super busy throughout the day etc.

He's never slept well since he was born.. I really don't know what to do. I've tried to be firm and just keep putting him back in his bed over and over until he falls asleep. This usually takes about 20 times and we both end up crying.

I cant let him cry it out because he's no longer in a crib (climbs out.)

If anyone has any advice for me I would appreciate it! I'm a single mom and a full time student, I cant go on for years and years with no sleep!


Ashey - posted on 05/28/2012




my son will be 4 in july, about 8 months ago i discovered a chewable tablet, it wont make him sleep but it calms him enough to fall asleep through the night. my son would wake up before the sun and wouldn't go to bed until the wee hours of the morning and his attitude was horrible. now he gets melatonin, he sleeps through the night and is asleep by 9pm and usually gets up around 8am. Melatonin is NOT a drug, it is a hormone already found in the brain. My sons attitude has improved dramatically, and he was finally able to potty train! Melatonin is chewable (and when chewed it works faster). hope this helps, good luck!

[deleted account]

Another area that I would look at is to start reducing his 2 hour nap during the afternoon, gradually from both ends. See if he'll go to sleep slightly later and wake up slightly earlier - taking it in small steps. Carry on till he doesn't need the nap during the day and hopefully he'll sleep better for you during the night.

Make sure that you've got a good settled routine so that he knows what's due next. Certainly found that as bedtime approaches our routine gets to the 'boring, calm down' section. In the last 20-30 minutes (or so) my girls have their hair done, while watching TV downstairs. Then after they've gone up, it's bedclothes, teeth and toilet. Into bed, where they're allowed their lamps on and to read all/part of a book (depending on size of course. Should add that my girls are older, but there's still a bedtime routine.

It also sounds like you (and possibly) your son are over tired as well. Get into a routine - keep to it and hopefully it'll sort itself out as well. Look at doing a reward chart of some description and lots of praise.

The areas I would concentrate on first would be the two hour nap during the day - worth trying to decrease it so that he will hopefully sleep better at night. Also your routine before bedtime. Maybe he could have a favourite item (toy/blanket) that he could take with him to bed to be his comforter. By making small changes to your routine then hopefully he won't notice the changes as they're introduced slowly.

At age 2, your son, like most children, should be able to grasp onto the concept of good behaviour/doing what mum wants me to do equals good praise/reward. So by introducing a reward system for him for the bedtime routine may help with a small reward appropriate for his age/development. As time progresses he has to do more for the reward until he doesn't need it. Also make sure that you do get it as well. Even if it's something like a box of colouring pencils as his reward.

Michelle - posted on 03/03/2012




He sounds like my little guy and unfortunately he was 6 when he started sleeping all the way through the night here are a few things that helped us get it down to only one wake up a night. We added basically a meal before he went to bed so this is the routine we did. He would go in the tub with some bedtime bath to sooth him, it was time for his snack which we would make him a sandwich or something that was substantial and fill his tummy up then he would sit with mom or grandma as my mom babysat while I was at work and we would read a story. Now my son has adhd so we would have to basically almost hold him down in his bed and rub his back to calm him enough to go to sleep I still had the early rise times but we resorted to putting a tv in his room and he basically got told he could watch a movie til mommy was ready to get up which worked for us and most of the time he fell asleep again. My daughter is now 2 and we have found this amazing stuff called quietaide it is a homeopathic stuff that helps her to calm and it has totally stopped her waking in the night. You can google it to see where in your area you can get it.


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Erica - posted on 06/08/2012




My daughter's routine of reading two books and singing a few lullabies starts around 8 or 8:30. She's usually asleep by about 9 9:30. I had recently heard in an early education class that I'm taking in college that tv or computer time stimulates their brain and that takes about two hours to wind down. So she gets none of that for at least two hours before bedtime, and she's been going to bed a lot easier now. I can't say that it's guaranteed, but it works for me :) Routine routine routine! Sorry you're having a rough time, sometimes that's just their schedule.

Jessica - posted on 06/03/2012




My son does the same. But his dad lives far away. He's 5 btw. Doesn't wake in the night or does and doesn't wake me. He finds excuses for I'm hungry or w.e. But some it can be a bigger issue. Emotional problems or add ADHD etc. hope things work out well. :)

Jennifer - posted on 03/03/2012




We're all different, including our kids. Just run through the basics . Is he over-tired, is he hungry/thirsty, need to get a diaper, could he have a food allergy (including milk/breastmilk). He could be a napper, like some kids are grazers when it comes to eating. Remember to get your sleep. There's alot of controversy over it, but I survived with bed-sharing. Maybe lessening the daytime nap... Remember, if he had a busy night nursing schedule, it's what he knows... best thing, patience. Good luck!

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