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Help! Irregular sleeping pattern at night

  1. #1
    premama is offline Registered User
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    Help! Irregular sleeping pattern at night

    Hi,

    Thank you all for your comments on my other post (short naps and 5 minute feedings). I am still tackling that problem but your comments made me feel A LOT better.

    I am now having another issue with my 3 1/2 month old and would appreciate any advice. A couple of weeks ago, he would sleep 4 to 4 1/2 hour stretches at night, but for the past few days, he has been waking up at 2am, and then needing another feed about 1 1/2 to 2 hours later. I have no idea what has changed....so his current schedule is:

    7pm - sleep
    10pm - feed for 10 minutes, goes back to sleep
    2am - feed for 5-10 minutes, goes back to sleep
    3am or 4am - feed for 5 minutes, goes back to sleep
    6am - feed for 5 minutes, awake but looks sleepy

    I would really like to get rid of the feed at 3-4am and try and get him to sleep from 2am to 6am (obviously if I could get rid of the 2am feed that would be fantastic!). I am going back to work in just over a month and would really like to get rid of any night time feedings, if possible.

    I am exclusively breastfeeding at the moment - would feeding formula at the 10pm feed help?

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    tstmum is offline Registered User
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    Sounds about what my exclusively breastfed baby did at the same age. Could be a growth spurt, so baby is genuinely hungry, and it may well settle down again in a week or two. Are you expressing any milk? You could try giving a bottle of expressed milk at 10 pm instead of a breastfeed (if hubby wants to give the bottle then even better, and you can get to bed earlier!).

    Unfortunately, babies don't always fit in with your plans...so you may not be able to eliminate night feeds completely before going back to work. At 12 months mine would still wake for a feed once a night a few nights a week.

  3. #3
    Shenzhennifer is offline Registered User
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    My baby who was exclusively breastfed (until 9 months or so) was the same, waking up a couple times a night. But his long sleep was from bedtime (around 7.30) til 11, 12, 1 etc. But he still always woke up...:( In fact, he didn`t really properly sleep through the night (unless he was super exhausted or by some weird chance) until he started drinking formula. Until he was older though, he never accepted a bottle. Otherwise I would have given him one for his later feeding in hopes of him sleeping through the night.
    If your milk supply is established, and you don`t mind giving him formula, I would just try to do it, if he accepts it. Better you have sleep.
    But keep in mind that 3.5 months is still really young and it`s totally normal for your baby to be waking up every few hours to feed.
    Another thing is that if your baby is having trouble feeding in the daytime, it might be easier for him to feed at night, when he is relaxed and there are no distractions. He could just be catching up on what he`s missed during the day.

  4. #4
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    carang is offline Registered User
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    sounds like a growth spurt to me...

  5. #5
    LeahH is offline Registered User
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    Sounds similar to mine at that age too... I would try as big a bottle of EBM as he will take at the 10.30pm to see if it makes a difference.

  6. #6
    premama is offline Registered User
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    Thank you all for your advice.

    Does feeding EBM as opposed to directly from breast for the night feed help him drink more?

  7. #7
    premama is offline Registered User
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    Exhausted...

    Also, how long does a growth spurt typically last? Everything I've read so far has suggested a few days but my situation has now lasted 5 days. I am getting very tired and exhausted waking up every 1-2 hours at night (and I've also got a 2 1/2 year old who wakes up twice a night - she seems to get a lot of bad dreams) and wondering whether switching to formula will help at all....last night I was so tired I was crying as I was feeding my little one. This can't be healthy....

    Also, he doesn't seem to feed for very long when he does get up at night - he seems really hungry when I try and settle him down but when he feeds, he will fall asleep within minutes (only to be up again in an hour). So now I'm not even sure if it's a growth spurt.

    Thanks all for your advice.

    Confused and tired.

  8. #8
    Shenzhennifer is offline Registered User
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    Growth spurts should last that long, unless a habit was developed because of it.
    Do yourself a favour and give some EBM (drinking from the bottle should make him drink more as he does not have to work hard to get the milk) and if it`s not improved after a couple days, I would go to the formula.
    Crying while feeding your baby doesn`t sound healthy for either of you.
    Another thing to consider...is there are developmental change going on in your baby? This could cause the disruptions - he is 3.5 weeks, suddenly waking up to the world, can do more things...this can cause sleep disturbances.
    I don`t think we will ever sleep well again. If not this, then sickness, or teething, or nightmares, or moving, or....

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