Sleepless nights

My LO is nearly 8 months and is on solids but recently he has started to sleep less and less. Just before xmas he started to sleep really well at night and would even sleep till 9am!! Which I knew wouldn't last long. He has had on and off colds since then and teething(still no teeth) but he now barely goes an hour or two and quite often ends up in bed with me. And even then he still cries in his sleep. He usually goes to bed by 8.30pm (depending on his mood) and will wake about an hour later wide awake ready to play. My partner keeps things quiet and low lighting till he eventually goes back to sleep - maybe after an hour. He then wakes 5-10 times a night and sobs in his sleep. He naps anywhere between an hour to 3 hours during the day. But tends to only want to sleep on me which isn't realistic. Last night he was awake for about two hours from 2.30am but was ready to play. Anyone have any tips on anything that could help?

20 Replies

  • Try to establish a bed time routine maybe and I know it's difficult but try not to go running to him when he starts sobbing. He needs to realise it's bed time. Maybe bath, feed, play, story, then lights out. Make sure his room is dark with no disturbances.

  • This is exactly what we do. I currently live with my parents so after dinner he has a play and then we say goodnight to my parents and brother then my partner gives him a bath - he comes into his room with lights dimmed and calming music on. I give him a massage with some lotion and then we read him a story. He has a cuddle and some milk and goes to sleep. He has a perfect bedtime routine and usually goes off to sleep with no issues. It's the waking up constantly. I wonder if it's just habit from when he wasn't well and when he starts to sob we don't go to him. We wait a few mins to see if he will go back to sleep or is just dreaming. Sometimes he then screams like he's been murdered lol

  • If you think he's teething have you tried any teething gel or a one off dose of calpol to see if that makes any difference? But sounds like he needs a bit of a routine and sleep training. My daughter used to sleep with me for a long time and she sleeps so much better alone now, fixed bed time at 7pm every night. (She's 16months) She does use a dummy to sleep but I avoiding rocking her etc as I found she want that ever time she wakes at night. It's hard work but pays off in the end

  • We use teething gel and I try not to give him calpol too much. He has a good bedtime routine and usually gets off to sleep easily. It's just the night wakings. We don't rush over to him but if we leave him to long he screams as if we have murdered him but doesn't seem to want anything. I wondered if it was habit from when he was ill but it's getting worse

  • Does he want milk? Could he be hungry? If you're breast feeding him, maybe try formula milk at night. I've been told formula milk is more filling.

  • He's on formula milk and has a bottle right before bed. He use to drink milk in the night but lately refuses it. I don't think he's hungry

  • Actually you shouldn't give honey under the age of 1, due to risk of botulism

  • He falls asleep no issue. It's the nighttime wakes and I'm not prepared to leave the house in the middle of the night and that then would mean doing it every time he needs sleep. He's still a little young for honey and doesn't want milk in the middle of the night

  • I wouldn't take a walk in the middle of the night either!

    It's really hard because multiple things could be happening.

    My son got to a point where he was waking up in the night at a particular time for hugs and I actually fell asleep holding him in my arms for over an hour. After that I wouldn't get him out of his cot at that time. I would still comfort him rub his back, kiss his cheek, sing, just not pick him up.

    Also if my son wasn't full enough before bed and would wake in the night hungry he would be up for 2 hours straight, as you say full of beans. Depending on how he ate throughout the day I would give him a couple yoghurts after his bottle just before bed. That helped. I alway made sure he had enough carbs in his meals throughout the day.

    Do you find when he has a shorter nap in the day he sleeps better at night? I used to have to limit my son to 1.5 hrs nap and he had to be up by 3 or 3.30 in the afternoon the very latest or he would have me up at night.

    Good luck! Let us know how you get on.

  • Hey thanks for agreeing about the midnight walks. You never know who/what is lurking around!!

    Hmm that's interesting. My partner quite often falls asleep on the chair with my son so maybe it's time to stop picking him up in the night.

    He's very attached to me to the point I've stopped picking him up in the day so much (in the nicest way possible)

    He's started to really enjoy food and has his dinner and about an hour later has his milk right before bed and seems full we offer milk in the night still and sometimes he will have it but lately not so much.

    His cheeks are bright red tonight and his gums seem sore (we have used gel and calpol) so maybe again that's bothering him.

    His napping his all over the place because his nights are. Today he barely napped and then crashed at 4pm for an hour and now is not wanting to sleep.

    I try so hard to have a good daytime routine for him but he's just all over the place atm

    Thanks for your reply :)

  • It's really hard when they are not well and teeth are playing them up. You can either just roll with it and just go with the flow or be strict about nap times waking them early from a nap so they sleep at night. But I would wait until his teeth have settled down.

    I also used to plan activities to try to wear him out in the morning so I would have a better chance of getting him to nap on time.

    Personally I don't think controlled crying ever worked just made him more anxious. The retreat method worked much better for my son.

    Good luck. Keep an eye out for patterns forming. And never under estimate how crafty these little people can be to get their way (even at this young age)

  • The teething has been going on for months but they just won't come through. Although it's been particularly bad lately so hopefully it will hurry along now.

    We do lots of stimulating activities in the morning and even have some calm time before nap (just a book) but anytime I start to get him back into a good routine something gets in the way.

    Controlled crying doesn't work for us either. It just really angers my son and works him up more.

    Oh he is very crafty and knows how to get what he wants. He gets very spoilt by the grandparents and uncles 🙄

  • Sounds like your doing all the right things just keep going with it. 2 steps forward and 4 steps back.

    It's not just your kid though. I used to hate it when my cousin used to complain cos her son had woke her up for a dummy and just went back to sleep and mine used to wake up for 2 hours at a time regularly.

  • Ford has designed a new crib which helps babies with sleeping difficulties. You may want to investigate purchasing one. Many parents we'll take their child for a late night ride in the car to help them fall asleep this crib was to alleviate the necessity of parents leaving their home in order to Aid both Benton sales and their new bundle of joy with having a restful night

    Sincerely hope this helps.


    Adrienne 112;:)

  • I have seen that ford crib, looks great but it looks very small, I doubt an 8 month old would fit!

  • I think it's time for sleep training. But by sleep training I don't mean sleep training that only teach your baby to fall asleep without rocking but training that teach your baby to sleep properly. I sleep trained my LO with How to teach a baby to fall asleep alone guide. After a few days my daughter was able to fall sleep on her own (before only rocking), she stopped waking up every hour to eat at night and she started to nap longer (before training she slept like 15 minutes and that was it - she was exhausted all day). So the method described in this guide seems to works on anything related to sleeping.

    I got the guide on this website:

    I tried it so I can really recommend it.

  • Thank you I will have a look at this

  • Kim987 looks like you were right about “How to teach a baby to fall asleep alone” guide! 4 days and my daughter falls asleep on her own without rocking! WOW!

    I would not believe it if I didn't try it myself!

    Thanks for sharing

  • It sounds like you have a great bedtime routine so I don't think it's anything you are doing wrong 😊 Have you considered that it may be night terrors that is causing him to wake?

  • Thank you 🙂

    That's what I thought it could be but not sure how to overcome it...

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