Sleep expectations from a 6 week old? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 12 Old 08-10-2009, 05:55 PM - Thread Starter
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Our 6 week old DS has suddenly forgotten how to sleep... or else we don't know how to help him sleep.

Firstly, our DS has pretty much been a good night sleeper for weeks. He usually goes to bed around 9 - 11 p.m. and sleeps until 1:30 - 3:00 a.m. depending on when he went to bed, nurses and goes right back to bed until 5 or 6 a.m. During the day it's always been a problem, he rarely naps no matter how much we try... except if he's in the car.

Now suddenly, the past four or five days, it's like he can't sleep day or night no matter what we do!

If I rock him, he wakes up after 10 - 15 minutes, same if we put him in a sling, drive him in a car, walk with him, nurse him to sleep... nothing works. He's right back up again. It's gradually been getting worse. What makes it especially difficult is he's upset; he has a sad tired cry and looks tired... so why can't he sleep? Nothing else seems wrong with him; no wet diaper, he's well fed, etc.

I read that at 6 weeks babies sleep changes and babies become more fussy because suddenly they have reached some developmental stages. I can understand that. Please just assure me our LO will be all right? I worry about him not getting enough sleep, I also worry about me not getting enough sleep!

What expectations should I have of a 6 week old? Should we be working on "sleep training" in some form to help him sleep better?
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#2 of 12 Old 08-10-2009, 06:14 PM
 
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DS is 7 weeks old and we went through this a couple of weeks ago. He was super restless (but obviously tired). He had a horrible time staying asleep after sleeping great. But looking back now I think maybe it had something to do with milestones. In the last couple of weeks he's found his fists and started sucking them on a regular basis and also babbling like crazy. After the phase of not sleeping he's now sleeping anywhere from 3 1/2 to 6 1/2 hr stretches at night. I would just give it time mama.

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#3 of 12 Old 08-10-2009, 06:20 PM
 
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There are some typical ages for growth spurts, 10 days, 3wks, 6wks, 3mos, 6mos. Almost drove me nuts, my DD couldn't nap unless I was holding her and walking. No sitting, walking all through naptime, and sorta fussy the rest of the time too. Just when I wondered how I'd broken my fairly happy baby, she reverted back to normal (which means things kept changing, but never so drastically).

One strange thing that helped my son's sleep, in general, was chiropractic visits. If everything goes back to normal within a few days, don't bother, but there are chiropractors with lots of experience with infants, it's very, very gentle, and my son slept significantly better after visits.
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#4 of 12 Old 08-10-2009, 06:30 PM
 
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He is just fine. Stop worrying mama. It is all going to be alright. My ped said that there was nothing we could do to "game" his sleep and that trying would only make it worse. Babies are so different and they change so much. Weather this storm, enjoy the peace that follows, and then get ready to weather the next one. I think my ds has been through every sleep pattern you can think of and we are still here, healthy and happy. It is easy to think "Yay we did it! What a great sleep pattern we have. This will just get better right?" WRONG. It changes all the time. Congrats on the baby!!!!!!

I have boys! My first baby boy was born 10/08 and my second baby boy was born 7/12

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#5 of 12 Old 08-11-2009, 12:35 AM
 
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This sounds very normal to me. Do you co-sleep? I spent a lot of time reading books (at night I always had a book light with me) while nursing DD to sleep in our bed while she was a baby. I'd usually try to slip away after she conked out... and it was much easier to do when she was lying down and I could simply roll away. She was one of those babes who could not be put down after she fell asleep in arms. She woke up every time and would scream bloody murder unless I picked her up and started the process all over again (which I always did). Then I figured out how to nurse her lying down and things got a little better. She still woke up a lot, but at least I was comfortable and was sometimes able to slip away.

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#6 of 12 Old 08-11-2009, 01:50 AM
 
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growth spurt, its normal. You will get sleep eventually, promise.

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#7 of 12 Old 08-11-2009, 03:44 AM
 
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Growth spurt. Totally normal.

If at all possible, SLEEP WHEN HE SLEEPS. Seriously - it can make ALL the difference. Even if it's just a little catnap here and there throughout the day - nurse him to sleep on your bed, and stay there with him. If you can't sleep, lie quietly to recharge. I've found that DD often naps better, longer when I nap with her - and she sleeps better at night once I'm in bed with her.

The laundry can wait; your sanity can't.
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#8 of 12 Old 08-11-2009, 09:05 AM
 
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I am surprised no one mentioned possible silent reflux and/or food sensativities (I am just assuming you BF) If hes tired and your rocking him and he suddenly wakes up after 15 minutes, maybe something is bothering him? How is his input and output? My son had/has a dairy intolerance that caused him horrible gas and vommitting when he was that small until I cut out dairy. he litterally stopped throwing up half his meal when I stopped drinking milk and eating cheese. His gas improved too. He still had it, but was able to expell rather then be horrible uncomfortable with it.

Just some suggestions incase it DOESNT get better.
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#9 of 12 Old 08-11-2009, 09:14 AM
 
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When you say he wakes right back up after 15 minutes, what do you mean? Are you putting him down, and he wakes up 15 minutes after that? Or are you continuing to hold him?

Do you wear him? Have you tried different carriers?
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#10 of 12 Old 08-11-2009, 10:12 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the support and responses.

Last night I ended up giving DS a bath at 7 p.m. and nursing him for the first time while lying in bed. It worked! He slept so peacefully. What's great, is I read many of your responses this morning that said to do this I was able to slip away and get some things done, since I had been holding him all day; I never had an opportunity to place him down for a nap because I usually wait 15- 30 minutes to be sure he's fully asleep, and he always woke up before that. We do have a sling, and I put him in that a few times yesterday and walked with him outside, after coming inside (since it’s summer and hot out), he woke up every time.

So from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. he slept with us; I nursed him in bed and every time I thought he was asleep I went to put him in his crib, he fussed, and I ended up picking him up and he was out like a light. He ended up sleeping on me and DH all night; I'm glad he finally got some sleep. I don't mind the nursing in bed, but I hope we can get him back in the crib because it wasn't restful sleep; I wasn't comfortable and I worried about him suffocating. I had to keep him elevated because after feeding he made a lot of grunting noises, even after I managed to burp him. Once elevated he slept better. For now we’ll deal with it though.

We did / do have issues with him being gassy and I thought he had a milk allergy (we took him to the doctor). But it turns out I have a abundant milk supply that comes too fast and he ends up gasping a lot of air.
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#11 of 12 Old 08-11-2009, 02:57 PM
 
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My DS hated to sleep on his back. We would work so hard to get him to sleep, lay him down in the crib & BAM he would wake up. We finally realized he was a side sleeper & loved his tummy. So, we purchased a wedge and used rolled up towels to keep him propped on his side. It worked like a charm!!

Also, we started swaddling him at 7 wks and used a white noise machine. We put the machine in the crib with him at the top of the crib & set it as loud as it would go. He slept great!

We tried co-sleeping & while I loved snuggling with him it was not a restful sleep for anyone, so the crib worked for us. He's been in the crib since 7 wks old. Now he is 1 yr old and for naps we just turn on a floor fan put him in the crib, offer his paci and down he goes.
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#12 of 12 Old 08-11-2009, 03:23 PM
 
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there is a growth spurt at 6 wks, also 3 mo, 6 mo, 9 mo. there is a sleep regression at 4 mo. our dd is now 9 mo. one thing that really helped at that stage for us was wearing her for naps. she had days where she wouldnt sleep at all, and then the next day or two she'd crash.
6 wk is WAY to early to do any kind of sleep training. dont worry that you are doing anything wrong or somehow messing up his sleep habits. imo its best not to have any expectations for their sleep at all. they are trying to figure out how they got themselves into this big loud crazy world and will experience lots of sleep changes. as everyone else said, lay down yourself when they do. it makes it so much easier to be a patient and logical parent.

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