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nighttime help

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  • nighttime help

    I've been trying to get a routine that will help my daughter relax for bed a little easier. Here's an example of the routine and how she reacts.
    *quiet play before bathtime with the lights dim
    *warm bath with lights dimmed (she's happy as long as i'm in there with her)
    *Dry off in a dim room and a massage with lotion (eyes big and excited and lots of kicking)
    * Into bathroom to brush our teeth (she hates this but we use calm soothing voices and incouragement)
    *say good night to daddy (we blow kisses)
    *We head up the stairs (with lots of yelps of excitement and her little legs just a going)
    *We crawl into bed and turn on the music (soft relaxing music) all the lights are out and there a dark curtains hung to reduce light from outside.
    *We start to nurse (even if not hungry because she refuses to just lay there and if offered a pacifier will throw it as far a she can while screaming and kicking). We try to get up and crawl around. I calmly tell her it's bedtime, she returns to nursing. This can go on anywhere from 20 min to and HOUR

    Some of the things i've tried are wearing her down (which leads to more screaming and arching out of the carrier. reading (which leads to fighting and trying to crawl around.
    I assure you she is tired. She is rubbing her eyes, yawning and starting to just Look tired. But anything i try to do to calm her down either leads to a fight or more excitemnt. I would really appreciate any suggestions you guys have. I know my lo is very easily excitable (she gets that from her mother)

  • #2
    How long have you been doing this? On paper it seems great! What may be a miss is she dosn't sound sleepy at all! The bath and lotion might be making her more alert! When does she nap/how long --When does she wake up in the morning? What time is she finally falling asleep?


    Other then that you might have to be super boring but with enough of something for her to focus on such as music with a heavy beat, spinny nightlight or other 'light show'-- book on tape or something. I know the kind of kid you have, as I have the same kind! I would try to rotate whatever you use so you both don't get to reliant on one thing so would freak if that thing were lost or broken. Does she tolerate back rubbing, hair petting or patting? Something like that might help calm her body. Have you tried a heavy snack before bedtime? My 18mo old likes a hardboiled egg sometimes and that seems to give him fuel for sleeping! Have you tried without the lotion? Just brainstorming!
    Last edited by naomifrederickmd; 04-14-2009, 04:44 PM.

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    • #3
      I've been doing this for about 2 1/2 months now every night. She has a fairly consistant nap schedual. Bed at 7:30 she's doens't usually fall asleep until about 8:30. Lately she's been getting up at 6:00am (she appears to be wet and uncomfortable and unable to fall back asleep once up and awake). Her first nap is at 9:30am (she usually goes to sleep in a wrap but i'm working at getting her accustomed to nursing down) she sleeps for about and hour, an hour and a half if i'm really lucky. Her second nap is at about 1:30 and again she sleeps for about an hour. She will not accept any back rubbing, patitng, or hair petting while outside of the carrier. She wants the breast and only the breast will do. I've tried switiching her routine in hopes to help her adjust better but she doesn't want anything to do with it. I've tried sending my dh up but she becomes hysterical when he walks through the door instead of me. I haven't tried a snack at bedtime, i might see if that helps her sleep longer.
      I've read the no cry sleep solution and have implemented every suggestion in her book in hopes something will work, however she just seems to be very excited. And i don't want to move her into her own crib in another room as we enjoy the family bed. I had just hoped that if i found the missing link i would have a toddler that i could lay in bed and would just drift off easily to sleep and stay asleep until the morning (instead of me having to nurrse her ever 2 or 3 hrs). I realize how unrealistic that sounds.....I guess i'm just starting to feel frustrated.

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      • #4
        The other thing i'm having trouble with in regards to her sleeping is the babysitting i want to do. So far i have one child who's 15 months old (my daughter is only 1 yrs old)i care for 1 day a week. The toddler i'm babysitting has given up her morning nap while my daughter definatly needs one. However because my dd is so excitable she will not sleep in the same room as the child is playing and she must be parented to sleep. I can't leave the other child unattended while i take her upstarirs to nurse to sleep. I'm unsure of how to care for one while i parent the other child to sleep. I'm sure this sounds rediculous to you guys out there with more than one child so i would really appreciate any suggestions from you more experienced parents!

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        • #5
          Since you only have that 'extra' child one day a week I wouldn't worry about missing that nap on that one day. It is a difficult problem that even us parents of 2 children struggle with sometimes!
          Another woman also asked a similar question about that and I had thought of some ideas. Maybe put a little kid play tent in the living area for napping and then get some headphones for a kids book on tape (without a follow along book). I also took walks to the park when I was having the same problem. The napper would fall asleep in the baby carrier or stroller and the older kid could then play while we were at the park.

          Some kids just have a lot of energy! Does she eat a lot of sugars or fruit juice? How about if you took her on a long walk or other physical activity before bedtime? I have started taking my kids out to the backyard for an hour before bedtime starts. It does eliminate the 'craziness' that can happen because they got most of it out already.

          I totally understand the frustration you feel!

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          • #6
            I'm afraid what i'm doing is no better than the CIO method.

            I still do all the things i stated earlier, bath, massage, teeth brushing. I've also started taking her out lots during the day, and at night before bath if possible. Reduced her to no juices. however now when we go to bed and she seems determined to play instead of sleep i immediatly pick her up and put her in a sling and start walking with her. I try and offer her comfort and pace with her, but inevitable it ends up in crying and fighting against the carrier. If in about 10 min i don't see her calming what so ever i flip her over to nurse in the carrier. I con't pacing and comforting. if this doesn't work than i take her out of the carrier and return back to the bed and hold her in a firm hold to the breast and encourage her to lay still. Sometimes this work sometimes it doesn't. if i find either of us getting too frustrated i'll go back to the carrier for a while. I know it doesn't sound like she's tired, however she'll be running around the living room, lay her head down, close her eyes, and the pop back up and run some more. I'm told that I was the same way when i was a little girl.
            Does any of this stuff sound harmful or hurtful??

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            • #7
              what you're doing is LIGHTYEARS away from CIO. you are trying, you're comforting, you're responding to her. CIO is when you put her in a room, shut the door, and walk away for good. don't compare the two. give yourself a break, you're doing the very best you can, in no way is it harmful or hurtful.

              have you looked at her diet? could you be dealing w/allergies? is she getting too much sugar (including through milk and fruit)?

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