18 mth old that screams constantly!!

Mandy - posted on 03/29/2011 ( 3 moms have responded )

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i have a 18mth old boy who has until the last week or so slept right through and suddenly he is up screaming half the night (usually bout 8:30-12pm) i have tried everything bathing, feeding (bottle), nappy change, bonjella, panadol, i have even put him in bed with me to try and see if that helps sometimes it does sometimes it doesnt the only time he stops is when he is running around and after 2 weeks of this it is getting really fraustrating especially with 2 other kids (4yrs and 3 yrs) and having to do everything for them and get 4yr old ready for kinder every morning!! any ideas on how i can try and settle my little man????

thanks in advance :)

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[deleted account]

Aw you poor thing! I know how much of a struggle this can be, especially without the luxury of a sleep in the next morning! As well as a nightlight, you could try putting a radio alarm clock in his room and set it to go off 15-20 minutes before he usually wakes up and have it at an in-between frequency so it plays quiet white noise (or a classical radio station) to soothe him when he wakes up. A security item such as teddy or blankie may also help (or a superhero in case he's scared of monsters). My son tends to sleep pretty solidly after going swimming in the evening, so you could try that as well - see if it wears him out a bit. Or let him sleep in a sleeping bag - the cocoon effect might make him feel more secure. Whatever you do after he wakes up, try to do it whilst giving him as little attention while he's up screaming as possible - kids' behaviour is all fuelled by attention! Don't make eye contact, minimise touch and talking and go in at regular intervals so he can see that you're still there - just standing in the doorway is fine.

Louise - posted on 03/31/2011

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It sounds like something has spooked him and now waking has become a habbit. Use a nursery light so it is not quite as dark and let him take a teddy to bed to soothe him. Ask him whats the matter and if he just stares at you then you know he is not scared. Then be quite firm with him and tell him to stop that noise and leave the room. He has to learn to self soothe so let him cry for a while and then go back in again do not give him eye contact or talk to him. Lay him back down and leave, let him cry. He will eventually realise that he is not going to get any attention by screaming all of the time and with some luck he will stop. These night terrors are quite common and you just have to manage them as best you can but try not to be to sympathetic because it then becomes a habbit to wake just for the cuddle.

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Elizabeth - posted on 04/06/2011

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yes...he is doing what works...he screams you come..he screams you come......tell me if it is clicking...LOL

stop coming when he screams and he will stop ..you already know there isn't actually anything he needs

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