should I wake a sleeping baby?

(13 posts)(9 voices)
  1. DS is 5 weeks old. At night at most he goes 2 hours between feedings but often at night he will wake every hour. During the day is another story...he can do 3 hour block (I think he would even do a 4 but I wake him).

    I am struggling as I have had little sleep lately b/c he wakes to nurse so frequently at night...should I wake him more during the day to see if he will reverse and do longer blocks at night? If yes then what wake so that he feeds every 60-90 minutes during the day? Any other idaes?


  2. update---so I just woke him to eat (after a 2.5 hour nap so 3.5 hours since last feed). He was very groogy and basically slept through the feeding (think dream feed) and is now still asleep again (even after a diaper change). Do I just start playing with him and make him stay awake???

    Mind you last night he woke up to eat at 2am, 3am, and 4 am (woke up - eyes open for those feeding not \"dream feed\" like at all) amd then was up and would not go back down till 6am. Granted DS#1 was also up and in our room causing havoc last night so maybe that kept DS#2 up but seriously what is up with this. Are his days and nights just backwards. All day \"naps\" are in well light places, there is noise around, and are even sometimes in car, swing, or just any old convenient place I can lay him down where as night \"sleep\" is in bassinet, all light off, and unless DS#1 is giving me a hard time totally quiet.

    any thoughts? seriously should I force a 5 week to wake up and stay up during the day?

  3. Cricket - don't have a ton of advice but perhaps starting to wake him at a set time each day i.e. 7am - and start his day. And not sure what to do about changing his confusion of nights and days - b/c you are doing all the right things to try and change that habit. If he likes to eat that frequently at night - perhaps you can just try keeping a very set schedule during the day and offer to feed him every 2 hours say and see if you can get him to reverse his frequent feedings to the day. DS at that age age every 2 hours during the day - like clock work but managed good stretches at night - so if you can get him to switch, you might have some better nights.

    Sorry its going so roughly, I know how much you need a few good hours of sleep especially w/DS #1!


  4. cricket I replied to your thread about routines and thought this age is too young for that. Even so I definitely think you should wake your baby during the day based on what you're describing.

    Don't have much time to reply and I can go into details but I based my approach to babies on Gina Ford's Contented Little Baby. Author comes off as a nut with some of the pedantic detail but the premise is: feed baby often during the day so they stock up on calories during daytime and don't need as much during night and limit/schedule sleep during day so they are ready for a longer sleep period at night (this includes waking baby in morning and after naps). Ignore the nuttiness (she'll tell you when you need to east breakfast) and take the practical advice she offers (she's got hands on experience with hundreds of babies).

    ok, I've got a few minutes as dh is doing dinner for kids... yes, I would try to keep baby awake a bit more during day. on other thread I suggested things like singing and making baby to actions to the song, playing with toys, walking around with them and pointing out stuff. Start with small goals (20 minutes of alertness and add to it) especially since it sounds like your baby does have days and nights turned around a bit. The bath was my favorite for the most tired part of the day - did not 'save it' for bedtime.

    Happy to offer more details if you want them.

  5. i used to strip my son down to his diaper in the daytime when i fed him so he would maybe feel a little cool. also i kept a cool wet rag and would put it on his head if he started to dose. this at least helps them stay awake to eat during the day.

  6. During the day I would wake him every 2 hours to feed. (if you wake him at 6am, start to wake him again at 8a....not 2 hours after he is done eating)
    To wake, if the diaper change doesn't do it, I have used a cool wash cloth, taken off clothes to make him uncomfortable, stroke the feet. Since you are nursing, he needs to eat 8-12 times per day so if he cluster feeds during the day...he will hopefully go 3 hours between at night! Good luck!!


  8. A NICU nurse gave us the trick of scratching the back of the head to wake our DD. It really irritated her and would wake her for few minutes at a time for feedings. We would have to keep at it as she kept dropping off.


  9. Hello.

    I am a new mother son is 2 weeks old. Up until last night..he has been pretty consistent with his waking up and wanting to eat every 2-3 hours. Last night I fed him around midnight..then put him down to sleep by 1am. or so. I slept in my bed and he slept in his car seat/in his bed. After I feed him I feel better having him upright as I am worried about him choking. So anyways..I have the monitor in my room and I was OUT! I woke up at 3am surprised that he hadn't woken up to eat, etc. I went and checked on him..he was sound asleep,. So I said..what the heck and went back to sleep myself..I do need it as you all know how it catches up with you! So went back to sleep til almost 5am..he still hadn't cried or woke up! I felt bad ..thinking I was starving him or something so I went and got him up , changed his diaper and put him to the breast as by then I heard him sucking his fingers. He ate a little..still sleepy and then went back to sleep! Is this ok? I mean if he is it ok to just let him sleep and he will wake up when he is ready? He eventually did wake up fully around 7am and ate pretty good and then drifted back to sleep..woke up again around 8am, wanted to eat and then I gave him his bath. It is now close to 11am and he is napping after playtime on his little mat. He is awake alot more during the day which could be the reason he wants to sleep more at night..which hey I am grateful for as I could use the sleep!

    Sorry to go on and on..but opinions about not having to wake him up to eat ,etc would make me feel better.


  10. becky- let that baby sleep and you sleep too! what a wonderful baby. sounds like he is going to be a good sleeper. My ped says it is all about calories consumed during the day. He is obviously getting what he needs so he can start to form his longer night stretches of sleep. What a gift!

  11. Becky- Congrats on your new son! As for the baby sleeping, if he sleeps for a longer stretch at night, great! As long as he gets in 8-12 feedings per day and he is making at least 6 wet diapers per day. Your pedi will be monitoring his weight gain . If he is doing all those things you are on the right track! Enjoy the rest!

  12. Thanks everyone for your positive feedback. I feel better then.

    Last night that little turd cluster fed from 5pm til Midnight..Ugh...I was exhausted! paid off as he slept from around Midnight til 7am! Again..I kept waking up checking on him. Finally my dh brought the carseat(that is what he slept in again last night) to me in bed..and I felt better having him by my side. I then got him out at 7am and put him to the breast and both him and I fell back asleep til almost 9am.
    So if that is what it takes to keep him sleeping thru the night is feeding him on demand during the day..I will do that! I wish I had a scale that was sensitive enough to weigh him. I would feel better knowing he is gaining too!

    The worry never stops does it? LOL


  13. Our ped always recommended starting the day at 7 am, with the first feed. And, not allowing the baby to sleep more than 3 hours at a clip during the \"wake hours\".

    Try that, while incorporating your daytime feedings and try to aim for bedtime at 7 pm - pajamas on, feeding, nighttime routine (songs, etc.). If he doesn't wake by 10/11 pm, feed him again and hopefully he will then go until morning.

    It worked for us. Good luck and congrats!

RSS feed for this topic


You must log in to post.