sleep patterns

  • Hello, I am having trouble getting my 6 wk old son to sleep for more than 2-3 hours at night.   He's also eating 3-4 oz every 3 hours.  Any suggetions on how to get him sleeping longer throughout the night.  Thanks.

  • Try getting your baby on a night routine. My baby is 8 weeks old and sleeps about 6 hours. I give him a bath every night around 8:30pm, feed him after, and then lay him down. He knows right after bathtime the bottle is next and then its off to sleep. Swaddle your baby tight and try that. it seems to work great for my son and he even slept 8 hours 2 nights ago! Hope this helps.

  • Hi-

    My daughter is 4 weeks old.  I've started on a night routine also.  She has a bottle around 10:00, I lay her in her crib and she falls asleep.  She sleeps about 5 hours usually.  When she wakes up I feed her in her room.  I don't turn on all the lights.  I just have a night light.  I lay her back in her crib.  I also got a baby gift that is wonderful.  It is a little lamb it has 4 settings and a timer.  It is called Sleep Sheep.  I love it and it is very calming. I also swaddle her when I lay her back down.  She is my fourth child.  I've learned that routines work best.  With my third he would fall asleep with his bottle and a particular lullaby cd.  I played it every night until he was 21/2 and in his toddler bed.  I hope this helps. Good Luck.

  • I was at 32 weeks when my son decided to show up early, so he spent 2 weeks in the hospital before I brought him home.  While in the hospital they fed him every 3 hours whether he woke up hungry or not, and there really wasn't a big difference between night and day routines.  Now that he's home, should I continue on the hospital schedule or should I start building a schedule around our home life?  During the day I don't mind waking him every 3 hours to feed him if he hasn't woke himself up yet, but at night I'd like to let him sleep.  Should I wake him anyway or let him decide how long to sleep?

  • When my daughter was 7 weeks old, she was still waking up once during the night.  I really wanted to break this habit and felt safe doing so since she seemed to be gaining adequate weight (She was 9.4 at her 2 week checkup).  So my husband and I tried the pacifier instead of automatically shoving a bottle in her face, and it worked.  She fell back to sleep in a matter of minutes.  some nights she still wakes at 2 am, but the pacifier does the trick.  She's almost 10 weeks now and still doing wonderful!  She sleeps from about 9:30 at night to 6 in the morning (give or take one quick pacifier pop-in).  She gained a decent amount of weight at her 2 month checkup, so it doesn't seem as if this is hurting her.

  • LeslieAnn- I would definitely ask the pediatrician about this one. Due to him being a preemie, they may want you to wake him up for feeds.

  • BabyNurse3

    LeslieAnn- I would definitely ask the pediatrician about this one. Due to him being a preemie, they may want you to wake him up for feeds.

    I agree with BabyNurse3, newborn feeding needs are far too important/sensitive to get blanket advice from other parents, you must consult your baby's pediatrician ... although some other posts might say that their baby seems fine based on how they chose to feed or not feed, I would not chance it, nor would I condone pacifying a newborn with a pacifier in place of a feeding ... nutrients and calories are very important to a developing baby for growth and development of the brain and other developing organs. 

  • I wouldn't let a peemie sleep either, but I think every parent needs to evaluate (with the help of a pediatrician), whether or not their child is ready to sleep longer.  If a child is waking in the middle of the night and not really interested in eating,  other options are okay.   At some point, contuining to feed a child in the middle of the night when he/she clearly does not need it can lead to some poor sleep patterns.

  • Hi, I’m responding to Darcy707 here (for LeslieAnn I agree with other posts that preemies should be evaluated by a pediatrician).  About night routine, everyone told me to try one, but I never got organized enough to do one early on, and I later found this accidentally totally worked in my favor and I have a wonderful little sleeper – (although – what works probably depends most on the baby). 

    Instead, I cued my baby off light levels, like I said I just stumbled on this system by accident.  This is how it worked:  1. During the night, I’d leave the night-light on in the nursery, but the main light off so it was pretty dark (be sure you first put him down at night right after a feed so he’s content– yes his bedtime will vary day to day at first).  If he cried at night, I’d turn on the light, diaper him first, no matter how frantic he was for a feed, then go immediately into feeding.  Burp for a full 5 minutes after feeding to help avoid gas.  That way, you can put him to bed all happy right after the feed, and not rile him up with diaper change.  Turn off main light, go back to sleep.  I just did this all zombie-like, I wasn’t real awake or interactive with him (‘cos I was so exhausted myself). 2.  During the daytime, in return, the expectation is that he doesn’t have to put up with being bored, and he had to be in a well-lit area, even if just napping.  So, if he woke up and cried during the daytime, the rule was I ‘had’ to get him and play with him.   So, night-time = dark, people take care of his needs but aren’t fun.  Daytime = light, he can do as he chooses (nap or not) people play with him when he calls.  Gradually, intervals between feeds became longer at night-time until he slept through the night.  

    The system worked out well, ‘cos then I never had to do a big routine at bedtime – still don’t at 9 months old – just put him down for the night after a feed and turn out the light.  Then, if he later got to where he was having trouble sleeping at night, I could add in things to start a routine as needed, but actually that was never necessary.  It helps A LOT to have the smallest possible routine if you ever travel with baby later on.  I do reckon the baby itself has a lot to do with it though.  Having said all this, my baby was 2 and a half months old when he started sleeping through the night (I think they need to get to a certain weight to be able to last that long without food - 6 weeks might be a little early for that) – but my baby was fully consistent about it once he accomplished this.