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Old Dec 3rd, 2017, 15:50 PM   1
jessmke
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5 month old awake for hours in the night


I'm not sure what to do with my DS. He has started to sleep a 6-8 hr stretch at the start of the night, but when he wakes he is wide awake and will be up for 1.5-2 hrs. Nothing I can do gets him back to sleep before that. Last night he slept from 7pm-2:45am, then was up until 4am, then back asleep until 7:30am. I leave the lights off and dont talk at all but he is just wide awake and ready to play. Last night I fed him and it became clear he wasn't going back to sleep so I just put him down in the crib and he rolled around blowing raspberries and sucking on his fingers for 45 min by himself. Then he stared to cry and I went back in and spent 30 min nursing and rocking him before he fell back asleep. The longer his first stretch of sleep is the longer he stays awake. During the day he gets 3-4 hrs of sleep spread out over 2-3 naps. Any ideas on what I can do differently so we aren't awake for so long in the middle of the night?!?



 
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Old Dec 3rd, 2017, 17:38 PM   2
Zephram
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It's really normal for babies to go through phases where they are wakeful in the night. Both of mine did at around that age. I've always put it down to the beginning of teething, which has always really thrown my kids.

You're doing the right thing by minimising activity - keep lights off, don't have a conversation except to gently tell him it's time to sleep, don't play or react to baby cuteness when he blows bubbles. This phase will pass - hang in there!

Btw, not sure if it's to do with naps as mine never napped as much as 3-4 hours during the day (1.5-2.5 hours was their max no matter what I did). Nearing 6 months many will be ready for only two naps, so you could see what happens without the third nap, but totally up to you.



 
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Old Dec 3rd, 2017, 20:50 PM   3
jessmke
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That's good to know it's a normal phase! My DD never did this. She would wake a lot at night but I would just put her on the boob and she'd be back asleep within 5 min. He's definitely teething, his cheeks were red and chapped looking today which is what always happens with my DD when she has a tooth coming in. DS sometimes wakes really early, like 5 or 5:30, so on those days he has 3 naps, but on days when he wakes at a reasonable time he only has two naps. I was wondering if maybe he's sleeping too much during the day and that is causing him to be awake at night, so if this phase doesn't sort itself out within a week or two then maybe I'll start shortening his naps and see if that help. I just really hate waking a baby from a nap, especially when both kids are napping at the same time and I get to have two hours of peace and quiet!



 
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Old Dec 5th, 2017, 06:50 AM   4
MrsButterfly
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What time does he wake from his final nap before bedtime? I often find if my boy has had a long period of awake time before bed and goes down a little overtired then hes more wakeful in the night?



 
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Old Dec 5th, 2017, 10:10 AM   5
jessmke
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrsButterfly View Post
What time does he wake from his final nap before bedtime? I often find if my boy has had a long period of awake time before bed and goes down a little overtired then hes more wakeful in the night?
It depends on the day, I try for no more than 3 hrs of awake time before bed, but sometimes it is a bit longer depending on what time he woke from his last nap. Sometimes if his last nap ends early I will try to get him down for a cat nap but he often refuses it. And then if I put him to bed early he ends up waking at 5am for the day. I think once I can get him waking at a consistent time every morning then I'll be able to time his naps better, but some days he is up at 5am and other days it's 7:30am. Also cat naps in the car can really throw off our nap schedule during the day.



 
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Old Dec 6th, 2017, 18:34 PM   6
Zephram
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I found that the theory about your child being overtired making them sleep worse and getting them to bed before they showed tired signs was absolutely untrue for my kids. It was actually the complete opposite for them both - trying to make them sleep too early and too much had them waking all night. I stressed about this so much with my first and just about went nuts so with my second I let him stay up until he was obviously tired, at which point he would easily go to sleep and sleep better than if Id been trying to follow the standard advice. All kids are different but mine especially were not text book children and I found that pretty much all the sleep advice I read was completely unhelpful. The only thing that worked for us is that they have their longest awake time before their longest sleep. So after their last nap they stayed up for the longest period of the day. Just saying that if the standard advice is not working for you, dont be afraid to try something different. Im pregnant with my third now and he will also stay up until hes 100% ready for sleep.



 
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Old Dec 7th, 2017, 14:55 PM   7
jessmke
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Last night he woke twice to eat, we were up for 15 min each time and then right back to sleep. Hopefully he keeps this up!

I find the "overtired" theory held very true for my daughter, as soon as she showed the slightest signs of being tired I would put her down and she just went to sleep. My son, however, really fights sleep and needs to be really tired in order to give in to sleep pressure. But if I wait too long then he has short naps and wakes up constantly all night long, so it's really a science to pick the right time to get him to sleep! He definitely needs longer periods of awake time than what I've read is "normal" for his age, but it's what works for him so I just go with it.



 
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Old Dec 7th, 2017, 15:34 PM   8
Zephram
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Yay, I hope he's quit with the long awake time at night!



 
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