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Daytime sleep help
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Posted 03 December 2012 - 02:42 PM
I recently received some extremely helpful and kind advice from some wonderful EB members about sleeping routines for my 6 week old baby boy. I had a couple of follow on questions I'd be grateful for your feedback on.
If baby wakes up after say 45 or so minutes from a day nap, do I resettle and try to put back to sleep OR feed and start the feed/activity/sleep cycle again from scratch? I guess I'm not sure at what point a day nap is adequate? how long am I aiming for him to sleep between day time feeds? (Am breastfeeding on demand approximately every 3hrs)
Similarly - If outside the home and trying to stick to the 1.5 hour awake time between feeds, do I need to put baby down for sleep in capsule/pram/arms etc or is something else recommended? I find he sleeps for shorter (eg 30 mins) naps if not in his own cot, do I try to resettle and put to sleep again after a short nap or feed etc?
Posted 03 December 2012 - 02:56 PM
Babies don't normally consolidate their naps to more than one sleep cycle (45 min) until they are between 4-6 months. Some do, and you'll hear about babies that always have two hour naps from day dot. This is the exception, not the norm.
I would not resettle a 6 week old. Get her up and feed her. This makes the days more work, but it also means that the more feeds she gets in the day, the more likely it is she will start to drop night feeds. Babies are sleepier at night, so they are more likely to start to consolidate night time sleeps before daytime sleeps.
She will probably start to consolidate day naps all by herself sometime between 4 and 6 months. If she hasn't by six months you could try resettling; definitely don't even attempt it at six weeks!
A half hour nap at this age is fine. Try for. Couple bps a day in the cot, but a couple shorter naps in the pram are fine (and will also tech her that its ok to sleep out and about).
ETA - put your baby to sleep by any means necessary either in or out o the house! Don't get hung up on it MUST be pram, or cot or whatever. DS1 liked his pram, DS2 hated to sleep in the pram and only slept in the Ergo. It doesn't matter. You can't create sleep associations (good or bad) until at least 4 months (they don't have enough of a memory for it), so do whatever works with the least amount of effort possible!
Edited by MsN, 03 December 2012 - 02:59 PM.
Posted 03 December 2012 - 03:14 PM
completely agree with MrsN's advice. My DD would usually only do 45min day sleeps up until she was around 4 months old. I stressed myself out as she wasn't always doing the feed-play-sleep thing as she would sometimes refuse to feed when waking up. I would offer her a feed when she woke up, sometimes she wouldn't want a feed straight away but would have one a bit later. In the end, I didn't need to worry as it all kind of fell into place from just after 4 months of age.
Though since the age of around 4 months, she has refused to sleep anywhere but her cot (or the car) except for the very odd occasion!
Posted 03 December 2012 - 03:25 PM
I agree with MsN too BUT I would also say there's no harm in trying to resettle. If it works, great, and if it doesn't, or you can't be bothered, nothing lost.
Once my DS was 11 weeks, we had great success with a feed, play, sleep routine where the feeds were at least 3 hours apart. However, there's nothing to say that he wouldn't have naturally improved at that age, anyway. I wouldn't try it with a baby the age of yours unless advised by a professional to do so.
Posted 03 December 2012 - 03:39 PM
Thanks for the advice!
My boy is a terrible sleeper, and at most is sleeping 9-10 hours a in 24 hours! with catnaps and much unsettledness in the day time between sleeps. I got great advice fromTresillian about not keeping him awake more than 1.5 hours between feed/sleep and how to settle/put to sleep which has been very effective the past couple of days.
Also - Though I have exclusively breast fed since bub was born, I have low supply which I'm trying to increase by expressing after most feeds and motillium, fenugreek etc... So I wonder if I offer the breast even after a short nap whether there will be much/any milk anyway? (silly question?!)
Edited by Miss Lily, 03 December 2012 - 04:41 PM.
Posted 03 December 2012 - 03:58 PM
I would aim to resettle after 45 mins but wouldnt invest more than say 5 to 10 minutes of time in doing so. I found anymore stressful and pointless
If he is still awake and wont resettle I often tried to hold out the next feed until it was close to 3 hr mark from the last feed and then I put the bub straight back down after the feed. If that sleep was again 45 mins and I couldnt resettle again. I tried the swing, pram or baby carrier to see if she would sleep again before the next feed - with DD2 i tried not to stress over it. If not - feed again.
If I was out I just played it by ear and used the pram - I actually found mine slept better out and about if I kept the pram moving. They would sleep for hours.
I found feed, play, sleep routine didnt work for me with either baby - It started off like that but by the end of the day the feeds got closer to the sleeps etc and they fed more often in the evenings. By 6 months it all sorted out to a nice routine. Dont stress about a routine at a young age - it is best to follw the baby and you will see a pattern that probably changes every few weeks. By my second I worked to follow the baby will work better. she was a catnapper except for one good sleep per day
Posted 03 December 2012 - 04:55 PM
Also agree with above posts. My DD has always been a woeful day sleeper but the following suggestions helped me.
From about 4 months I began trying to resettle. I would give it 10 minutes and if no sign of success then get up and keep going with day.
I'm personally not a fan of feed/play/sleep. To me it doesn't make sense to feed and change baby and then play for two hours before putting to sleep with most likely a wet and/or soiled nappy and a tummy that is already empty! (breastmilk digests in about 20 mins). I always make sure we have a full tummy and a dry bum before a sleep. Feeding before nap time doesn't have to be feed to sleep if you don't want it to be.
I find fresh air helps both day and night sleeps here.
Bad day sleepers are hard - the day feels very long, but as PP have said, by 4 months + it got easier.
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