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Toddler not sleeping through the night

  1. #1
    shalom is offline Registered User
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    Cool Toddler not sleeping through the night

    Help! Am i the only mother with a 19 month old boy who still doesn't sleep through the night??!! my friends' kids are all sleeping through the night, but not my son. He goes to bed at 9.30 pm and he will often wakes up at 5.30am for a feed, and went back to sleep till 7.30 am. personally i dont mind getting up at 5am to give him a feed, but my friends have been bombarding me saying that this is not normal and that he shouldn't get his feed at 5 in the morning. is it really that bad?? what's the big deal anyway? i just want to know if this is really bad for him, if it is, i guess i will have to do something about it. otherwise, i will just continue on and hoping that one day he will just grow out of it. please give me your honest opinion. thank you.

  2. #2
    barbwong_130 is offline Registered User
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    Dear Shalom,

    There is absolutely nothing wrong with a little one (or an older one) waking up during te night. The main reason people get so upset with the idea is because it disturbs the adult sleep. But if you are OK with being woken then there is no problem.

    My son is now 16 years old (and doing well at school – so night waking isn’t affecting him there) and I don’t think he has ever slept through the night. I often hear him going to the bathroom in the early hours of the morning. The difference is that now he is 16 years rather than 16 months when he wakes up he doesn’t wake me too.

    If you are happy with your family arrangements just tell your friends that this is how you do it your family but that you understand that all families are different and that they do it a different way in theirs.

    Best wishes,
    Barb

  3. #3
    joannek is offline Registered User
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    my daughter is 19mths & she still wakes up at around midnight for a feed. she sleeps at 8pm & wake up at around 7am. but she has never not waken up for her life. maybe once to 5 times, but she's always waken up at least once. sometimes twice at around 3am to play or for a drink of water.

    she's thriving well (60% by height & 75% in weight, whereas us parents are more like 40% by height & 60% by weight, so sh'es doing so much better than us!!). she wakes up happy, plays well & naps well at noon. i've got friends who bombard me about my baby waking up at night, too. but hey, she's relatively healthier than their kids, so who cares if we don't mind in our household!!

  4. #4
    joannek is offline Registered User
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    and i've asked 2 peds, 2 chinese doc, they say as long as she's healthy, happy, it's OK.

  5. #5
    loraine is offline Registered User
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    My son generally sleeps through the night but if he wakes up and is thirsty we give him something to drink. Why deprive him? If your child sleeps till 5 am and then wakes up thirsty, then it seems you're right to give him what he wants. And if he then settles down again - that's great! To me, he doesn't have a sleep problem, sure if he did it several times each night it might be a problem.

  6. #6
    kara23 is offline Registered User
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    My 15 month old is still waking up several times a night, sometimes not going back to sleep for 2 hours. Told the pediatrician but he said if he is healthy and growing well, no need to worry. But the thing is I am sooo tired. I only give him milk when he wakes up around 4-5am, but those times before that, i will either let him cry it out or just a pat. My elder son was "well-trained" after 3 nights of the controlled crying method, and sleeps well till this day (he is 6). Trained the little one when he was abt 5 months and haven't been successful!!

    kara23

  7. #7
    JennyB is offline Registered User
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    I would say that if your child is going back to sleep quickly at that time, that's not bad going. Many kids are up for the day at that time or shortly thereafter - and that is still called sleeping through the night. The status quo might be easier for you than a child who slept through but was up for the day earlier than 7.30am.

    The great thing about toddlers is that they do understand a lot, so if and when you become unhappy with his sleep pattern, it is much easier to persuade him to change gently. When I decided to put a stop to nighttime nursing at about 16mo, I just cuddled my daughter for a while, said the milk had all gone until morning, I would sing a lullaby instead, and she was eventually quite accepting of that.

    She has also had phases where she has found it difficult to go back to sleep by herself when she has woken in the night. I've tried to think of "tools" to give her to help her fall back to sleep by herself - she likes the Mr Men book "Mr Lazy" so I say, "When you wake up in the night, why don't you do what Mr Lazy does: yawn, yawn again, and fall back to sleep?" There must be millions of different ideas along those lines - it's just a question of finding one that works for your child.

    At around two years old she also went through a phase of howling for us when she woke up in the morning at first light. One evening I had the brainwave of suggesting, "When you wake up in the morning, instead of crying for mummy or daddy, why don't you play with your toys for a while and then call us when you are bored and want to play with us?" Overnight, she transformed from an upset child howling at 6am to a happy girl calling "Mummy, I want to play with you!" at 7am.

    That kind of thing is much easier once they get into "imaginative play" where all their toy figures and stuffed animals have conversations with each other - now she doesn't disturb us until even later because she is enjoying playing by herself so much!

  8. #8
    Pekkerhead is offline Registered User
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    here is a solution that we tried

    we read about it in a G.O.S.H book we were given when our daughter (now 3.5) was born.

    basically, when she was around 2 she was waking up 3 or 4 times in the night. It wasn't for a feed but she just liked to be cuddled back to sleep, and sometimes it would take hours. But the more you pick them up and cuddle them the more they are encouraged to wake up again for more cuddling.

    Anyway, the book recommends that parents (if there are two) take shifts in going to see baby/child. First time one parent, second time next parent and repeat. Each visit should be no longer than a couple of minutes. You go in, try to lie them down and reassure them, do not pick them up. You leave baby when the time is up regardless of how much they are crying.

    If baby continues to cry, wait 5 minutes then the next parent go in and do the same reassuring without picking up...and repeat. The timing isn't too important, the most important thing is not to pick them up.

    We did this for 3 nights running, each time, she would cry and cry. First night she took an average of 1 hour to get to sleep (we would go in every 5 mins and do the reassuring thing), next night she took about 30 mins, the third night she was getting back to sleep after 15 mins and finally by the fourth night we had her sleeping through.

    I am not joking, we were totally astonished by the results, after 3 days of fairly hard slog for us both we finally got her sleeping through. We tried this way because we were really at the end of our tethers in terms of tiredness and irritability, and were both working at the time which meant the tiredness was getting to us. I hope this will work for you but you really need to be strong to withstand the crying, and it really helps if both parents can do it.

    She is now a healthy 3.5 year old and has been sleeping soundly since. Ok, she has the odd moment, but now instead of her sleeping through maybe 1 night out of 3, she will go weeks without waking at night.

    The important thing to remember is that you are not alone, your baby isn't some kind of freak, all kids are different and what works for some kids may not work for others. But if you don't know you can't try can you?

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