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Longest Stretch of Sleep

  1. #1
    clowe77 is offline Registered User
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    Longest Stretch of Sleep

    My 3 month old baby boy usually has bedtime at 7-8pm and we usually wake him up around 11pm for a feed before he goes back to sleep for the night. When we do this, he normally sleeps til 4-6am, a few times straight to 7am! However on weekends we sometimes do not wake him up at 11pm and just let him sleep on, in which case he inevitably wakes up around 1-2am. One would think he would then just sleep through til 7am but he then will still get up around 4:30-5:30am (thus only sleeping about 3 hours this stretch).

    My question is - should we keep be consistent and even on weekends wake him up at 11pm, hoping to first phase out the 4-5am feed? Is it bad to be inconsistent with his night time sleep/wake schedule?

    Any experiences on your baby's longest sleep stretch and how you did it would be great!

  2. #2
    LeahH is offline Registered User
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    Hi, I would say consistency is extremely important. We did the same, a dreamfeed at 11pm or so, then the stretch afterward went til 5amish then slowly got longer until she was waking at 7am. We dropped the 11pm dreamfeed once solids were well established at around 7 months, but a lot of people manage to drop it much earlier on.

  3. #3
    peainpod is offline Registered User
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    I think it depends on your baby. We have a four-month old and we usually put him to bed at 9 pm, and wake him up for his dream feed at 1 a.m. (This is the feed my husband gives with EBM.) Hubbie has to set his alarm for this feed and there are times when he will sleep past the alarm and not give the bottle til as late as 2 a.m. Still, even with the hour's difference, bubs will get up in the morning at 7 for his first feed.

  4. #4
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    cyberfish88 is offline Registered User
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    clowe77,

    I seem to be on a similar schedule as you. I have a 4 month old. She goes to bed 7-8pm and then we dreamfeed her with a bottle of EBM at 10:30-11. She then wakes up once during the night anywhere from 2:30-5:30 and then up for the day at 7 or 8am.

    I have been playing around with the two evening feeds with different combos of nursing/EBM to see if I can get the middle of the night wake-up more consistent but no luck. BUT have kept the feeding times consistent every day.

    Peainpod, how much do you feed at the 1am EBM feed? I have been giving 4oz and have no idea if that is too much or enough. Sometimes I give less and she sleeps longer so can't find any rhyme or reason.

  5. #5
    Lucylou is offline Registered User
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    I have never woken my baby for a dream feed even from birth. I always have fed her on demand. She has her bedtime bottle of milk at 6:30pm and sleeps through until 6-7am and has done since she was 4 months old (10mths now). There has been the odd occasion she has woken in the night for her milk. My baby seems to sleep longer than those I know that are woken for a dream feed. Perhaps I am lucky, but I just can't get my head round the whole dream feed thing - if you leave them to sleep then they will wake when they are ready - are you not waking them to feed therefore breaking their pattern of sleep so they never go back in to a deep sleep therefore waking again in the night? I am no Doctor but just curious to know!

  6. #6
    clowe77 is offline Registered User
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    Cyberfish88 - I totally hear ya! There is no rhyme or reason because we too have played around with the "dream feed" timing. One thing though - generally, the more we feed him at the 11pm feed, the longer he is able to feed. It also depends on how well he has fed throughout the day. They say a baby only wakes up hungry in the middle of the night if he/she has not taken in all the nutrients he/she requires during the day. I try to feed my baby as much as 6oz at the 11pm feed but he seldom takes more than 3, as he is generally so sleepy when we wake him up at 11... and I hesitate to over-stimulate him to wake him up as it might put him off his sleep-mode.

    Question for you, Cyberfish - how much does he drink at 2:30-5:30 feed? Mine only drinks a bit - like 5-8min on one breast and then he falls asleep on my breast and then he doesn't wake again til 7am-ish (and he doesn't act hungry when he wakes up!) So I think in my case, he wakes up between 4:30-6am sheerly out of habit, not so much because he actually needs it. Then again, with b-fed babies it's so hard to tell if they've gotten all the nutrients they need during the day because we can't measure out the amounts. Mine is both b-fed and formula fed (about 70% b-fed), so I can't tell either...

    Lucylou - you are very lucky indeed. Dreamfeeding does not work for every baby (exactly for the reasons you mentioned - after all, every baby is different) but it does work for many. You are very lucky that you never needed to consider it because your little one sounds like such a good sleeper naturally. Do you breast or formula feed?

  7. #7
    clowe77 is offline Registered User
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    Sorry I meant, "the more we feed him at the 11pm feed, the longer he is able to SLEEP afterwards..."

  8. #8
    tstmum is offline Registered User
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    Dreamfeed's never worked for me, either. Baby's mouth is either clamped firmly shut or she wakes up and is difficult to settle.

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