How exactly do you get 2 babies to sleep at the same time?

Discussion in 'Twins, Triplets & Multiples' started by babybx2, Nov 14, 2011.

  1. babybx2

    babybx2 Well-Known Member

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    Due to my twins reflux, they have been held a lot as once fed they can't be put down for up to 30 minutes after a feed so have got used to sleeping in our arms.

    Lacey will occasionally put herself to sleep in her bouncer but only if you catch her at the right moment!

    I really want to get my girls down together in their room at certain times to get some sort of routine going with their sleeping.

    You should know that my OH works shifts so is not around all the time so I will do most of it on my own. Plus I have a 5 yr old at school so have to do school runs and dinner for us both too.

    I just wonder how you have all managed it?? Please I am pretty desperate. The girls are sleeping on sofas most of the time so we are always tip toeing around them and they wake up within 15-30 mins so have lots of little naps rather than a good hour or so. Which is no good for any of us as I can't get anything done!

    I look forward to hearing from you x x x
     
  2. AngelUK

    AngelUK Mummy of twin boys

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    I am sorry I have no advice as I am still expecting my twins. But I too would be interested in reading other twin mum's tips and I didn't just want to r&r. Hope you get them to sleep better soon xxx
     
  3. xxxemsxxx

    xxxemsxxx Mum to identical twins

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    :hugs: it must be rough not getting a block of sleep. Is there reflux under control now? I can only imagine how hard that is to deal with

    During the day when you want them to have a nap can you take them for a drive or a walk in the pushchair? I find that works with my two, I can take them out for a walk and they will stay asleep most of the time until there next feed. I hoping this will lead to them having an afternoon nap in their cots when they are older, as presently I leave them in their pushchair so I don't disturb them.

    As for night time are they able to settle themself at all? I am sure someone else will be along with advice re controlled crying but not sure how that works with reflux. I can't really often any advice as I am lucky that my girls will just go to sleep when put in their cots at night.

    I hope it gets better for you soon. xx
     
  4. wondertwins

    wondertwins Well-Known Member

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    My twins aren't here yet, but I've been wondering this same thing. I'm looking forward to reading suggestions!!

    :hugs:
     
  5. Nut_Shake

    Nut_Shake Well-Known Member

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    Regarding the reflux, you can try raising the head end of the cot/mattress. You can get a wedge pillow to put under the sheet or 2 large books underneath the two legs of the cot. My two were refluxy and are still quite sicky babies at 11 months old. I would keep them up for 30 mins sitting up before putting them down, and tbh it never affected their sleeping, what's happening when you put them down to sleep?

    With the sleeping, I know it's tough but they have to get used to noise, each others especially. I've spoken to a baby sleep specialist and went to a sleep clinic and this is what I was told! I got my two into a routine from 8 weeks and they've slept quite well, I get the odd week where they are a bit restless but they sleep from 7pm to between 5 and 7am. The bad weeks it's 5am, the good weeks its 7am! I closely followed a book by Allison Scott wright and I spoke to her on the phone, it helped so much. I can give you a daily routine if you like? I first established a bath time, then milk, then bed routine. It was a bit of trial and error with their day naps but managed to get that sussed too. The thing is, some babies just don't need as much sleep as others, but they all need between 11 and 12 hours sleep at night (what the sleep professionals told me!) my friends baby sleeps 12 hours and has two 2 hour naps in the day, my 2 have an hours nap in the day, and that seems to be all they need, and me and her followed the exact same routine! No matter what I tried they just wouldn't sleep well in the day. Now at 11 months I've given up trying, haha.

    I used the controlled crying method, although some don't like it, and I personally swear by it. I never leave them to cry for longer than a couple of minutes before going in to reassure them I'm there and it's sleep time, and they are very happy babies :) if you want me to send you some more detailed stuff just let me know. But the first thing you need to do is not tip toe around them, they will get used to noise in the house and they will get used to hearing each other.

    Honestly, I know how you feel, there were times I'd just cry and cry and cry wondering if I was ever going to sleep again, but when the routine kicked in (it took about 2 weeks for them to start understanding when it was sleep time) and things got SO much better. Getting them into a routine earlier rather than later is huge thing too. My friend has girl twins and she doesn't sleep at all, the girls are now 1 year and 2 months and they are just getting worse she tells me. I really feel for people having these issues, but I truly believe my routine has kept me sane! Xxxx
     
  6. Dancingkaty1

    Dancingkaty1 Well-Known Member

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    hi...i have always had a fab night time routine for my twins, both down in their cots by 7pm & they go to sleep theirselves. Day time naps have always been a bit trickier...they just dont seem to like their cots during day. So when they were little i would allow them to sleep in their bouncy hairs, pram, sofa etc. & yes most of the time they would sleep at dif times :( Mow they are a year they have finally got into a nice routine themselves really, i put them both n their twin pram at around 10.30am & they both sleep well for about an hr, sometimes an hr & a half.....they tend to only need that sleep now, good luck & hope you work things out with ur little ones....
     
  7. wondertwins

    wondertwins Well-Known Member

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    Nut_Shake: That's great information. :thumbup: I'd be interested in seeing your schedule! My DS was very scheduled and slept like a champ from a very young age. However, that was 11 years ago, and I feel overwhelmed thinking about recreating that with twins. When they were little, did you feed them simultaneously? And when one woke up, did you wake up the other to feed?
     
  8. loveacupcake

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    Nut_Shake I would love to see your schedule as well. This is something that I've been thinking about a lot lately and obviously it is very early but just wondering about logistics. I'm very worried about going back to work after they are 3 months and having the nightmare of them not sleeping a wink.
     
  9. babybx2

    babybx2 Well-Known Member

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    Hi hun

    I would love some more information. I will try anything. I have a wedge for them, well for Aimee as she is the more sicky one, Lacey seems to be much better now.

    I look forward to hearing from you x

     
  10. Nut_Shake

    Nut_Shake Well-Known Member

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    This is my routine I followed when my babies were 6 months old. I've gotten most of it from a book called the Baby Sleep Plan by Alison Scott Wright (she specialises in reflux and recommends buying an under mattress breathing monitor and putting babies with reflux to sleep on their front as it helps a great deal with the reflux) and have also used information from other books and I also just finished attending a sleep seminar where the woman followed the same plan. The 5 women there that had issues with their babies not sleeping properly had their babies sleeping through the night within a few days. Below is a routine for a 26 week old:

    7am - wake up and bottle/breast feed
    8am*- breakfast (solids)
    9am*- nap for 45 mins/1.5 hrs
    10am
    11am - at 11.30*lunch (solids)
    12pm - nap for 1.5/2.5 hrs
    1pm
    2pm
    3pm - bottle/breast feed
    4pm
    5pm*- Dinner (solids)
    6pm*- at 6.30 pm bath then bottle/breast feed
    7pm - Bed


    Below is a routine for a 16 week old(I started getting mine into a routine just after 8 weeks old, I have routines of 8 week and 12 week olds too so let me know if anyone wants these too.) Allison scott wright suggests to start weaning at about 18 weeks old, but this is completely up to you, I started weaning mine just after they were 5 months old. Also, don't expect them to sleep through the night at this point, they still may be getting up for a feed or two in the night, but getting a day routine into place for them will help structure their day and help them settle at night, and they should start to wake at the same time for their night feeds, and gradually they should stop the night feeds altogether (there is a section in the book about reducing night feeds but my two weaned them off night feeds by themselves, however if anyone wants helps with this just ask me):

    7am - wake up and bottle/breast feed
    8am - solids?
    9am - nap for 1/2 hrs
    10am
    11am - bottle/breast feed
    12pm - nap for about 2 hrs
    1pm
    2pm
    3pm - bottle/breast feed
    4pm - 4.30pm, short nap for 30/45 mins
    5pm - solids?
    6pm - at 6.30 pm bath then bottle/breast feed
    7pm - Bed


    At nap time, you put them into their cots, say 'nap time, have a nice sleep'. They will start to pick up on the key words and understand what time it is.

    At bedtime you put them into their cots and say 'goodnight, sleep time'. Again, they will start to understand what it is you're saying and know that it's night time. I'm not sure they are still having night feeds but at this age they don't need it. You can give them a little water if they are used to having night feeds and won't settle. This will also push them to think there's no point in getting up just for water.

    For naps and for bed time, when they cry you leave them for 2 mins then go in, don't pick them up, if they are standing lay them down, pat them on their head or chest/back and repeat*'goodnight, sleep time' and leave the room. Do not spend extended periods of time there as there is no need, you are just going in to reassure them for a few seconds, then leaving them as they need to sleep. Carry on until they fall asleep, this could take any time from 10 mins to 1 hour. If at nap time they cry for the duration of the nap time it doesn't matter, go in after an hour and pick them up and cheerfully say 'that was a good nap!' and carry on the rest of the routine.
    In the morning go into their room and say cheerfully say 'good morning did you have a good sleep?'*

    i know i sound mad and it all sounds ridiculous but they will start to understand the words and tone you say things in, trust me! Of course it doesn't work Every fight like clockwork, there will be weeks where they wake earlier and wake a few times in the night from being restless or teething. When they are ill leaving them to cry isn't something I'd advise anyway, the routine may go a bit haywire when they are ill but as soon as you can just start it again and if it's already well established they will fall back into it very quickly.

    I know it all looks very structured but it's meant to be quite flexible, and once the routine is established the babies can fall asleep anywhere, whether it be noisy or quiet, light or dark. If babies are asleep at a feed time during the day, you should wake them so that they get the right amount of feeds in the day which also helps them to stop waking for feeds in the night as they would have had everything they needed during the day.

    I know it all looks really scary and too much to implement but it's really quite simple once you start it!

    I start my day at 7 but you can change it to 8 of you prefer them to wale a bit later and if you put them to bed a little later. It will take about 3 days for things to fall into place and the first couple of days will be hardest, but stick with it and you will sleep again, I guarantee it! xxxx
     
  11. lizziedripping

    lizziedripping Well-Known Member

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    Great advice Nutshake, and I echo everything you have said. I don't like to call it controlled crying, because if you can get the technique right, there is no need to be leaving a baby to scream themselves into meltdown.

    With a dark, peaceful bedroom, recognised by your baby as their 'quiet, sleeping room', it is possible to put them to bed firmly and with minimal interaction then walk away. The door should be all but closed - tho I leave it slightly ajar so I can hear them, and they can be allowed to cry. If implemented correctly, you'll find that there is an initial period of crying, maybe even for up to an hour, but eventually this gets less and your baby recognises that it is time to sleep not demand attention. It is so important that they get this message for their health and well being as well as yours - a tired, fractious baby is miserable and below par during the day and night, and it becomes a vicious cycle.

    This week my 'good baby' has been tricky to settle where previously he would go down with zero fuss. I found myself falling into the trap of returning immediately to him as soon as he cried. As soon as he saw me at the door he shut up, so i knew there was nothing wrong with him. After that I settled him back down, closed the door and left for atleast 10mins. Initally there ws protest and crying, but after a few returns within the hour he settled himself back to sleep and all is well again :)

    It's hard to perservere, because you're never quite sure if you're doing the right thing or not, but trust me, sticking to this approach really does pay off. Very quickly you have a settled happy baby who sleeps thru. Being consistent with the bed time message you send out is key - keep the routine EXACTLY the same, no chopping and changing in panic if they don't intially seem to respond to the method. Stick with it and it does work. I have had by nature 'difficult to settle ' babies, who don't automatically self-soothe, and each of them has responded well to this approach. xxx
     
  12. wondertwins

    wondertwins Well-Known Member

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    You ladies are the greatest!!! Thanks for all the info. Nut_Shake: the detailed schedule is awesome! :kiss:
     
  13. Nut_Shake

    Nut_Shake Well-Known Member

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    Also, just to add. Mine started sleeping through the night at 4.5 months old, but depends on every baby. Mine still have their weeks where they are all over the place waking through the night but generally they are so good bless them.

    My routine now is slightly different; first nap is at 9.30, lunch is at 12, nap at 1.30 and dinner at 5.45. Everything else is the same.

    My two have NEVER been big sleepers in the day, they sleep generally for about 40 mins at each nap, sometimes a little longer but 45 mins on average, so don't pull your hair out wondering why they won't sleep longer even if you try. My friends boy is 4 days older than my two, he has 2 naps a day and each is 2 hours long! Just depends on the baby. However from what I've been told by professionals they need a sleep of 11 to 12 hours at night.

    There are some amazing women on here to help, honestly, I was in such an awful state earlier on. The ladies on here gave me so much strength to get though it, lizziedripping being one of them :) if you ever need to ask a question we are here, I couldn't have survived without this special little multiples community! Xxxxxx
     
  14. lizziedripping

    lizziedripping Well-Known Member

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    Just to add, Nutshake's lo's still have two naps a day which works well for her and her family, but in general by this age and from approx 6mths onwards, babies can drop down to one longer nap after lunch. Initially it is hard to stretch them from early morning to afternoon without some whinginess, but eventually they can cope with the transition and are able to manage to around 1pm. The sleep can then be around 2hrs long. Apply the same rules if they wake after 40mins, and a firm 'sleep now' command on waking and a hasty retreat, and baby will learn to re settle themselves. Eventually they will stir after '40 winks' but return to sleeping without any help at all.

    All theses schedules are about having confidence to carry them out and know they will work. Babies actually want and need to sleep and look to you to help them achieve this. If you waiver then they waiver too, quickly taking your cue of uncertainty and following suit. Be firm, keep the message simple, and walk away. As NS says, initially it will be hard, but within a few days the transformation is remarkable. Remembering that your babies need you to teach them how to sleep will help you to stick with it - they would thank you if they could for a sound and peaceful night's sleep x
     
  15. xxxemsxxx

    xxxemsxxx Mum to identical twins

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    Thanks for the great info nutshake and lizzie :thumbup:

    My girls are 9 weeks old so I would love to see the schedules you have for 8 and 12 week olds when you get chance.:kiss: xxx
     
  16. TntArs06

    TntArs06 Mum of Twin Girls

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    Nut-shake...

    Awesome info thank you so much! I would love to know about the 8 week schedule! I think I have a routine but my OH left me when they were 5 weeks old so I have been by myself and I am quiet exhausted and for some reason can't nap during the day when they do. So any extra help to try something would be lovely. I dont expect them to sleep thru the night but would love to have more than 2 hr stretchs of sleep. :sleep::haha:
     
  17. Nut_Shake

    Nut_Shake Well-Known Member

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    Here is a feed and sleep pattern/routine for an 8 week old. My babies were still waking 3 times in the night for feeds at this point which soon dropped to 2 when I introduced the routine.

    7am - wake up and bottle/breast feed
    8am - 8.30am nap for 45 mins/1.5 hrs
    9am
    10am - bottle/breast feed
    11am - nap for 1/2 hrs
    12pm
    1pm - bottle/breast feed
    2pm
    3pm - nap for 30 mins/1 hr
    4pm - bottle/beast feed*
    5pm - nap for 30 mins and a top up milk feed at 5.30 if you think baby wants it
    6pm - at 6.30 pm bath then bottle/breast feed
    7pm - Bed

    Here is one for a 12 week old. Mine dropped from 2 feeds to 1 in the night and they were waking at set times every night before they stopped waking for a feed at 4.5 months, which was about 3 weeks before I introduced solids.

    7am - wake up and bottle/breast feed
    8am - 8.30am nap for 45 mins/1.5 hrs
    9am
    10am
    11am - bottle/breast feed
    12pm -*nap for 1.5/2.5 hrs
    1pm
    2pm
    3pm -*bottle/beast feed*
    4pm - nap at 4.30pm for at most 45 mins
    5pm
    6pm - at 6.30 pm bath then bottle/breast feed
    7pm - Bed

    Really hope it helps. Stick to it TntArs06, you are so amazing doing it by yourself, please message me if you ever need any help xxxx
     
  18. xxxemsxxx

    xxxemsxxx Mum to identical twins

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    Thanks that's great, I will see how I get on with the 8 week routine. xx
     
  19. TntArs06

    TntArs06 Mum of Twin Girls

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    Thank you soo much! That is awesome!! :hugs:
     

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