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  1. #1
    New Member

    Join Date
    Feb 2014
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    13

    Want to sleep through the night!

    My daughter is almost 7 months old. She still wakes up at least once, usually twice a night to eat. Does anyone have any suggestions for how to help her sleep all night??

  2. #2
    Senior Member

    Join Date
    Feb 2014
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    569
    Congratulations on breastfeeding for 7 months. I'd like to ask a few questions, does your baby co-sleep with you? Or is she in her own room?

    I've found that every baby is different, and some sleep through the night earlier than others (schedules or food usually have nothing to do with this). Your baby may be hungry (keep in mind that breastmilk digests in less than 2 hours) or she may just want time with you. Babies whose mothers work during the week often nurse more at night and on weekends, perhaps to reconnect with mum.

    It is common for breastfed babies to not sleep through the night for a long period of time. On the other hand, some breastfed babies start sleeping through the night when a few months old.
    My children co-sleep and tend to sleep through the night around 3-4 years old.
    I understand that time frame is not for everyone.
    Every baby is very different, each having their own sleep cycle.

    Possibly try having dad cuddle with baby and rock or comfort in the night rather than mum getting up to nurse. Maybe a night time routine of bathtime, gentle massage a long walk, all will help baby relax and possibly aide in a restful nights rest.

    Remember that night waking in babies and young children is normal and temporary.

  3. #3
    New Member

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    Feb 2014
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    13
    Thanks! She sleeps in our room. We have thought about moving her to another room, but that would mean sharing with my 2 year old son, and we don't want her to wake him up, so we have kept her with us.

    She had been doing really well - down to just once a night - but then just the last couple weeks it has jumped back up to every couple hours. But I think you are on to something - I have been working more this month. I typically only work about 4 hours a day, but I have had to put in a bunch of overtime recently. So it would make sense that she is just making up for lost time. That makes a lot of sense.
    After this week, my work schedule should settle back to normal so that should help.
    Thanks for you thoughts!

  4. #4
    Dear egamblin,

    I also agree with sunnymumof5's advice above. My 15 month old still wakes at least once in the night to breastfeed and I co-sleep with him to allow me a good night's sleep whilst still feeding him. He also likes the comfort of me being near. I recently wrote a post which I called 'Are we losing our perspective on sleep and young children' which you may find interesting to read. I'm not, by any means!, implying that you are losing your perspective on your baby's sleep. I have found that there are a lots of expectations in society for our babies and toddlers to be 'sleeping through the night' when much research shows this isn't normal (for example, research by the infant sleep lab at Durham University, UK) for this age group.

    Another thought I had was that, if there has been a change in your daughter's sleep, then she could be going through a growth spurt or even a developmental leap. Studies have shown that just before a baby goes through a developmental leap (e.g. starts crawling) the baby needs more breastmilk (and so needs to feed more frequently for a time to increase mum's milk supply) in order for the brain to make this developmental leap.

    Warm wishes,
    LJ

  5. #5
    New Member

    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Posts
    13
    Thanks for your thoughts LJ. I will read that post. Having 2 under 2 it just seems like it's been years since I have slept a whole night. My sister's kids slept through the night almost from birth so I think I'm just jealous! It hasn't helped that my 2 year old seems to be waking up 2-3 times a night now as well. Right when one goes to sleep the other wakes it seems. My husband gets up with our son, but it still wakes me.
    What you said about her needing to eat more frequently to increase my supply fascinated me as well. Just how the whole process works is simply amazing! Thanks for your words!

  6. #6
    You are very welcome.

    I can really empathise with you - I have a 1 year old and a 3 year old who both wake around two times a night. Most of the time I am able to accept that this is normal for them and that my 1 year old still needs to breastfeed in the night. However, on difficult nights I feel frustrated and I wish that they would sleep for longer. It does help me to know that some research shows some children will not sleep through the night until they are between 3 and 4 years old and this is normal and natural for them. It is our society (including the frequent use of formula milk) which can sadly make us think there is something wrong with us or our children if they are not sleeping through the night without any comfort from us.

    Yes breastmilk is amazing isn't it - and the whole breastfeeding process and relationship is an incredible one. Did you know that breastmilk has been found to contain stem cells? Our bodies will produce the right breastmilk for our babies as long as we put them to the breast whenever they need feeding (day and night).

    Thinking of you and here if you need any further support.
    Warm wishes,
    LJ

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