Helping baby to sleep

Ive been awake since 1.45 with Niamh this morning and she won't go back to sleep.

She's fed almost constantly (and then sicked some back up), burped both ends well, changed her bum, given her cuddles, gave her a bath as that normally calms her and she's still screaming. I'm currently on the sofa listening to her scream in our bedroom.

I've got a baby massage class this morning so hoping that will help me with a way to relax her, but have any of you lovely mummies and mummies to be got any suggestions?

Not a happy mummy, yet again! 😢 xx

18 Replies

  • Hi,how old is your baby?Is she breast or bottle fed.maybe shes suffering from colic or reflux.if shes on formula maybe her milk isnt agreeing with her?when my son was a baby he had colic+he would scream in pain.i hope ive been of some use.good luck.xx

  • How old is Niamh? Feeding for hours on end is normal in the early days. If you are breastfeeding, she gets the best milk overnight. Is she going through a growth spurt? The screaming is possibly more wind, you will get to know your baby and recognise their cries as time goes on. I found wearing my babies in a sling helpful as it calmed them, being near me, hearing my heartbeat, smelling me and being tightly wrapped like when they were inside me and it helped me because I could do things with both hands. I worried about what was normal with my first, with my second I just went along with whatever baby was doing and it was a lot easier, accepting each day as it came and not expecting certain sleep/routine. I hope your massage class helps. You're doing a fab job, but remember happy mummy equals happy baby.

  • Oh I am sorry LottyB, hope you've managed to sneak some sleep in since you posted. I know how you are feeling and I totally think you did the right thing taking some time out in amongst the madness. When my husband is working away and our baby has a meltdown sometimes I still have to put him somewhere safe and leave him for a few minutes while I go compose myself (or usually have a little cry too!)

    The early days are so hard when you have no idea what their issues are (mine's now nearly 7 months and sometimes I still have no idea but it does get easier to work out what they need)...

    She could be going through another growth spurt hence the constant feeding, there are many when they are tiny. And never underestimate wind, sometimes babies need burping for a ridiculously long time (that will get better soon when they can burp themselves).

    Are you swaddling your baby? I didn't at first with mine because I was afraid of creating bad habits, but eventually I just needed to get through that particular day and realised that habits can always be broken. Swaddling made such a huge difference to how my baby settled at night. He would scream for a few minutes initially but then would calm and sleep really well. I had to go on youtube to learn how to do it, I also learnt a couple new ways to hold and burp him from youtube too which helped.

    I hope you find today helpful and best wishes this evening. xx

  • Lotty B I feel ur pain, as my 12 week old little boy can sometimes be awake & feeding between 1:00 & 5:00/5:30am for approx 2 / 2.5 hours a night. Also has meltdown tantrum most evenings. All of this started since growth spurt & start of teething (yep - had to buy small teethers from Boots suitable for 2 months+) approx 4.5 weeks ago. Calpol (one dose) sometimes help in evenings, but lately been screaming due to bad wind (even tho we only use anti-colic bottles), which I think not helped by constant chewing fingers & dribble cod of teething. So we are now giving infacol some feeds too - quite cheap in Mothercare / Boots. This or calpol & cuddling close while singing, humming, rubbing back, rocking and / or doing the shhushing thing helps calm him & sometimes put him to sleep. Last night he did massive poo that was quite solid, screamed all way thru - eventually calm after bath & feed, he slept 9:30pm- 3:15am, then again 4:30-7:00am - best night sleep he (& we had for ages); so cycle legs & rub tummy clockwise in case she's constipated.

  • Thanks ladies, she's 5 weeks 3 days now, mostly breastfeeding with a bottle of formula before bed to help her settle. We have used formula from day one as my milk wasn't co-operating.

    Its not her hungry cry, she's just using me for comfort so I thought wind, but like I said she's burping fine. Ive maybe missed a couple though. I hope it's not colic.

    She does get swaddled sometimes but it depends what mood she's in as to whether she likes it.

    The boyfriend went to work a bit late while I got a couple of hours sleep. Off to baby massage now. Fingers crossed! Xx

  • Also, NCT postnatal teacher says sometimes they get overstimulated - best cure for this is hold them looking at something plain (eg patch of magnolia paint wall in ur house) as this will help to de-stimulate & therefore calm them. Our lad is getting his bottom front & top back (both sides) molars & is obsessed wiv CBeebies these days, so needs calming often. Very hard to breastfeed now as always wants to be looking around him.

  • Good luck at Baby massage!! 😀

  • Is the crying normal crying or a 'pain cry' like after an injection? She maybe unwell or may have a sore stomach. Does she wake up crying as this might be a sign of silent reflux (which GPs can sometimes miss). Have you tried making her cot slightly higher at her head end so her tummy contents don't flow into her food pipe when she lies down? We have a crying and colic massage online course if you think she may have colic or you could ask your baby massage class for tips on how to soothe tummy ache. I can send you the link to the course if you'd like. I'm sorry it must be very distressing and exhausting for you all.

  • Thankyou! She wakes up and 'talks' to me, doesn't cry at that point, its like after she has fed, she doesn't want to be away from me and does a whiny cry. Its her cuddle me cry.

    Her Moses basket is propped up with a reflex wedge as she hates lying flat anyway.

    We do lots of boring staring at walls and quiet time in the evening to de-stimulate her, so hope its not that she's over stimulated.

    If you could message me the course link I'm willing to try anything!

    The baby massage seemed really relax her. Both Patrick and I are very easily wound up so I think its probably just that she's the same. I just need to learn ways to help her relax.

    😊 and she is actually feeding now rather than chewing on me which is much more pleasant. Xx

  • It could actually be the bottle before bed thats unsettling her. Breastmilk is very easy to digest and formula isn't so sits in the tummy for a long time. This can give them an ' overfull' feeling of discomfort. Just something to possibly think about if nothing else works

  • sounds like maybe she has some discomfort - potentially colic but no need to assume that from one stint of it. how are her poos colour wise? if they're green and runny this could be an indicator of gastro discomfort xx

  • She's got perfect breastfeeding baby poo according to the health visitor. 😊 lovely yellowy and runny. Xxx

  • We got six hours sleep last night! 😊 she was swaddled and then rocked gently and she slept for four hours from her 11pm feed!

    Thankyou for all your support. Xxx

  • I am so glad :) seems just a one-off hellish night!! there will be a few of those LottyB but fingers crossed they are far between xxx

  • I hope so. She's not a great sleeper, the norm for her is two hours from the end of the last feed to when she next gets hungry, but once a week we seem to have a similar night of none or very little sleep, its just been a bit more often recently. Its such a horrible feeling not being able to calm her! Makes me cry every time. Hopefully the swaddling will work again tonight. Xx

  • sounds like we have had very similar experiences LottyB. Hang in there ... things will improve in time. For now it's a case of trying to reduce your own stress levels and get to rest for as many of those 2-hour slots as you can manage whilst also just about keeping on top of the other necessary things in life. Even after the inconsolable crying stage of her life was over, it took weeks and weeks for my own anxiety levels to come down. at the first sound of a cry I was in fight-or-flight mode for a very long time!!

  • Thankyou. 😊 I thought that I would be ok as I've had lots of friends with babies and helped them a lot, but there's obviously something about your own that makes it much harder. Practically I know a lot, but I was not expecting the emotional side. Luckily my boyfriend, Paddy, is amazing, really supportive and that helps loads. Xxx

  • I think you are right - you simply don't feel the same distress dealing with another baby's cry as you do with your own baby's cry. glad paddy is helping a lot :) take care x

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