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Nap time issues

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

Ok, I have a 7 month old baby boy who screams every time I set him down for a nap. And I am not talking just an upset, "why did you put me down?" cry but an all out scream of intense anger that lasts for hours. I have tried rocking him, singing, reading, a bath, holding him until he is almost asleep and all the way asleep. Every time, he is so sleepy but as soon as I put him down he is awake and screaming for hours. And no matter what I do then, he won't calm down. Does anyone have an suggestions?

post #2 of 13

Are you nursing? If so, have you tried nursing him to sleep while laying down with him and then sneaking off once he's out? My son is not one who will sleep on his own for very long, but sometimes this gets me 30 minutes to do things I need to do. 

post #3 of 13
Thread Starter 

I am not breastfeeding unfortunately. Thanks for the help though.

post #4 of 13

Can you wear him? A lot of babies prefer to be worn for naps.

post #5 of 13

You've probably done this, but just to make sure - do you wait until you see the "limp limb" signs of deep sleep before putting him down?  Do you have the same problem at night?

post #6 of 13
Thread Starter 

I do not wear him currently but I do hold him while he naps occasionally. I try not to set him down until he is deeply asleep but, as most moms know, that isn't always possible. The big problem is that no matter what I try, he just gets so angry about being tired. Sometimes he will fall asleep with no problems but it really seems that he still can't self soothe even though we have given him the tools (pacifier, blanket, letting him know we always come get him). Anyone have any suggestions on that?  

post #7 of 13

You know, sometimes I think that the idea of teaching very young babies to "self soothe" is just not going to work for every baby.  My daughter has never once fallen asleep on her own, but I'm sure one day she will.  Right now I put her in a comfy carrier and she usually falls asleep within 15 minutes.  Other than that, the only way I can get her to sleep is to nurse her down which I see is not an option for you.  Even then, I have to stay right there next to her!  So I've just accepted that this is how naps will be for a while.  My house is a mess, but if she gets a good nap, it's been a successful day!  Sorry I don't have much advice except to wear her and possibly change your expectations :)

post #8 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by sma 365 View Post

You know, sometimes I think that the idea of teaching very young babies to "self soothe" is just not going to work for every baby.  My daughter has never once fallen asleep on her own, but I'm sure one day she will.  Right now I put her in a comfy carrier and she usually falls asleep within 15 minutes.  Other than that, the only way I can get her to sleep is to nurse her down which I see is not an option for you.  Even then, I have to stay right there next to her!  So I've just accepted that this is how naps will be for a while.  My house is a mess, but if she gets a good nap, it's been a successful day!  Sorry I don't have much advice except to wear her and possibly change your expectations :)



I totally agree. Cecilia did not take a nap off of me (and only me) until she was over 3 months old. I learned how to stock my "station" (the couch) while she was awake so that when she slept I would have water, snacks, Kindle, remote, etc nearby. I also got good at leaving my wrap half done when we sat down to nurse so that getting her wrapped up while asleep was fairly easy, and then I was free to get up and do stuff. But anyway, back to your point, I do believe that some babies just need that extra help, and once they are good sleepers they can slowly be transitioned to sleeping in another fashion. With Cecilia, I would try putting her in the swing when she was totally limp-asleep, and at first, she woke up every time. Gradually, though, she'd sleep for 15 minutes in the swing, then 20, then 30, then an hour, until she was sleeping for 3-4 hours in the swing. When she was 8 months old, her swing stopped working, so I transitioned her to sleeping in the bed (where we all sleep at night), and it went okay. Again, it just took time.

post #9 of 13

From what you're saying, it sounds like he might be a little overtired when you're trying to nap him. Sometimes this results in the naptime hysteria that you're talking about. Maybe try to put him down 15 minutes earlier than you've been doing. There's a tip I use from the Dr. Sears book about having a firm hand on the baby when you put them down, this reminds them that you're right there. I firmly have a hand on Daniel's back when I put him down and he starts to cry and he'll almost immediately close his eyes. Then I start to lighten my hand and take it away.

post #10 of 13

Yeah, nap time hysteria in our house is usually connected to exhaustion (the day we have a gymboree class from 11:30-12:15 is a nightmare).  When DS is overtired (he's 10 months) it can take WELL over an hour of screaming, crying, snotting all while I pat/console/nurse to get him to take his desperately needed nap.  And, if he's overtired he ALWAYS wakes up 40 minutes after falling asleep, wailing and needs to be patted back to sleep.  But, when we get him to bed BEFORE he becomes overtired it takes 15 minutes and there is no crying.  

post #11 of 13
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the advice everyone. I think based on what everyone has said that he is overtired by the time I try to get him to nap. So far, we have been letting him set the daily schedule but I think it's time we start to slowly introduce scheduled nap times. Hopefully that will help.

post #12 of 13

I swaddle ds for all naps. It helps with the transition from arms to bed. May be worth a try if you are able to visually monitor him to make sure he is not rolling over or anything.

post #13 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by belacmsage View Post

Thanks for the advice everyone. I think based on what everyone has said that he is overtired by the time I try to get him to nap. So far, we have been letting him set the daily schedule but I think it's time we start to slowly introduce scheduled nap times. Hopefully that will help.


Personally, I think it's less about scheduling and more about being sensitive to cues and to timing. What I mean is, rather than setting nap times of, say, 10 am and 2 pm every single day, instead look at how long he has been awake and how he is acting. At 7 months old (hell, sometimes even now at 10 months old) Cecilia was hard pressed to stay awake for more than two hours. So, if she got up at 6:30 am, I would start to get her ready for nap around 8:15, and she was usually down easily by 8:30. Around 8 or 8:15 she would slowly start to ramp up, getting more and more hyper and less in control of her movements. I always strove to get her down at the first sign of those behaviors, and it worked quite well.

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