My 8 month old is waking more often at night

  • I'm a first time mom.  My 8 month old sleeps beside us in his pack n play since we're in a one bedroom (soon to move).  He used to wake only once, I'd feed him and put him back down; at times he'd wake a couple of times for about a week at a time but go back to his usual.  He's never slept completely through the night though.  The last month or so, he's woken every 2-3 hours and won't go back to sleep unless I (not dad) feed and rock him back to sleep and his nap times have become more sporatic too.  I usually lay down beside him and feed him till he dozes and then put his pacifier in his mouth and transfer him to his bed, have I created a bad habit? He's cutting his second tooth and  constipated from starting solids (we're trying to work that out too), do you think that could be part of the problem?  Does he need more of a structured scedule? We do the same bedtime routine most nights except for a couple each week when we're out a little later for church activities. 

    Tonight I tried the "self-soothing" method, kneeling beside his bed and calming him with lullabies and calming touch without picking him up; he just kept getting hysterical and was soon clawing at the mesh side of the pack-n-play trying to get to me. So I'd pick him up, rock him till he was on the brink of sleep and lay him back down, trying to get him to take the last step on his own; as soon as he touched the mattress he'd wake up and cry, I'd try and soothe without picking him up, he'd get hysterical again.  We did this for over an hour until finally I rocked him a few minutes longer, trying to get him right before he drifted off, but I think I waited too long.  So what was the point of all that when he ended up falling asleep in my arms anyway?!.....so tired and frustrated right now.

    I know crying it out is usually suggested but It's hard to let him cry that long when he's a foot away from our bed.  Any other thoughts, suggestions, book referrals, words of comfort :) are appreciated.

  • This is a hard one....my first advice is always to have your pediatrician check him out to rule out any ear infections or illnesses. Talk to her about the constipation and see if you can get that under control. Then you can work on any "bad habits"  that you have developed. Babies sleep better at night when they sleep well during the day. Try to start making his naps a bit better if you can. Darken his room with dark curtains...anything to promote a longer nap. This will then translate to more restful sleep during the night. Good luck...hope this helps a bit.