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3.5 year old DD tired and cranky all the time
What can I try?

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#1 LemonLyman

Posted 11 January 2011 - 10:34 AM

Hi there,

My gorgeous DD is a sensitive little girl - has always been noise sensitive, notices everything, has trouble switching off and so on.  Has always been prone to overstimulation.

Lately she has just seemed to be tired and cranky so often.  Crying a lot, can't find things to occupy herself a lot of the time and so on.  We did welcome our DS into the world nearly five months ago, so I think that and just her being three years old (I've seen lots of people say they found it was worse than two) is a factor.  

She doesn't have a day sleep - she stopped that a year ago.  She's often a restless sleeper overnight, which I'm sure doesn't help.  It's an issue all on its own really..  

A day with my mum (whom she adores, and who understands her really well and is attuned to her particular nature) tires her out, as does our two hour session at playgroup, her half hour swimming lesson, a trip to the shops..!  We often have a meltdown after any sort of activity.  Mum will drop her off and, I guess having been on good behaviour for most of the day with her, DD will then be completely cranky with me.  If we're just having a quiet day at home we still have these problems (boredom? tired mum trying not to be too cranky but not being successful?!).  

I know this might just be normal for this age and stage.  But I wonder when she'll be able to handle things better, or if there's anything I can do to help her - nutrition/health-wise, ways to help her relax, trying to make her have a day sleep occasionally...

Any suggesions welcome.   original.gif  (I hope I haven't just posted exactly the same questions and issues that I always do about DD!)

#2 Natttmumm

Posted 11 January 2011 - 11:01 AM

Your DD sound exactly like mine. We find it really hard going over the past 3 yrs although we have seen improvement with age and we have accepted her limits.

Here's how we have learnt to deal with her behaviour:

We try to make sure she is at home at least 3 days per week without friends over. She spends 3 days per week in daycare and that is enough for her at this age. One of the weekend days we organise one event for half the day. The rest of the time she is either at home or just with us going to the local park etc. Anything more than that is meltdown!

On the days at home I try to have a structure to the day which she responds well to. So in the morning after breakfast she can watch half hr of tv, after that (DD2 is awake) we go to the park or for a quiet pram walk (no rushing around). When we come back its lunch and sleep time. My rule is 1.5hrs in bed whether she sleeps or not. She sleeps most days.

Afternoon, we play in the backyard, paints, water play, tea party etc
Then we have dinner, relaxing bath and go for an evening walk (she pushes her doll pram around) before bed.

The days are quiet and relaxed. I have found if I do too much on the days when she is not in daycare she cant cope and we all have a bad day.

Food: I try to aim for regular snack and meals so she eats well.

Hope this helps! Its not easy by a predictable structure to the day has helped us a lot. DD2 is very easy placid child but she too seems to like the structure so benefits all of us.

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