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5 month old resists sleep

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  • 5 month old resists sleep

    I am hoping someone can help me!
    Our 5 month old daughter fights nightime sleep. We have a routine which we start at 7:30pm (when we first notice her sleepy signs)...massage, bath, nurse, read two books, lay down in the crib, put on white noise machine, kiss goodnight. She was learning to put herself to sleep and generally would go to sleep with just a little fussing (a few "mehs" and she was out, more like her just trying to get comfortable). All that changed last week. We'd do the routine but as soon as we kissed her goodnight and went to leave the room she'd start screaming and crying. So we'd hold and rock her and nurse her. eventually she'd fall asleep while nursing around 9pm. I'm really tired of taking an hour and a half every night to get her to sleep and I do want her to learn to sleep on her own with out me nursing her! right now I have to nurse her in bed and then sneak her into the crib asleep. What I can't figure out is I nurse her as part of the routine and she's not sleepy from it (around 8pm) but it's not until I nurse her again at around 8:45pm that she falls asleep.

    I know she can put herself back to sleep because she does it when she wakes in the middle of the night (I nurse her and then put her back in her crib and she's awake and she's fine). It's not the crib because she's been sleeping there since 4 months old (we previously co slept and she needed her space so we moved her to the crib and she was happier).

    My husband thinks she is just wired to have a later bed time but I disagree...I don't think it's healthy for a 5 month old to be awake for over 4 hours at a stretch. I'm also wondering if it's connected to teething, and/or developmental as she's learning to roll from back to front and just mastered front to back.

    Please help!

  • #2
    My DS also resisted sleep at 5 mths (still does at 16 mths). I think that some babies, just like some people, are able to stay up for longer stretches then babies are "supposed to". I also used to try and put my son down at what I thought was a reasonable bed time for him, and had the exact same issues you were describing. After a few weeks of this, I started putting him to bed later. I think at that age, he would typically go to bed around 9-9:30. He started going to bed earlier as he got older, but is still up until about 8:30 each night. Even if he doesn't nap well during the day, if I try to put him to bed any earlier, he will not go to sleep until around that time.
    How does your baby nap during the day? What time does she wake up from her last nap? Why do you think that 7:30 is her bedtime? Is she seeming really tired at that time? If she seems ok (not too fussy, tired etc.) at 7:30, perhaps she really isn't tired enough for bed yet. I would suggest maybe experimenting with a later bedtime for now, and seeing how it goes. Good luck!


    • #3
      Her naps were pretty terrible for a while but around the time she started fighting the night sleep her naps got better. She would usually wake from her last nap around 4 or 5pm so we thought 7:30 or 8pm was a pretty reasonable time for her to be in bed. Yes she is starting to fuss and rub her eyes so we know it's sleep time.
      Knock on wood the last few nights have been good but I've had to nurse her to sleep and then sneak her in the crib again. I always feel like mission impossible when I'm doing it...LOL. She was asleep by 8pm last night. It was like winning the mini lotto!