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Anyone's 4 month old sleeping through the night?

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Old 02-13-2009, 01:52 PM   #1
Betty Bee
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Anyone's 4 month old sleeping through the night?

My little bundle of joy is 17 weeks. We just came back from our 4 month visit at our pediatrician, and my husband and I were handed a set of "instructions" which included that my son should be sleeping at least 8 hours straight at night, which he is not. Another was he should not be rocked to sleep, or nursed before bed, and he should not be falling asleep in the swing or stroller or in my arms...which I've done all of the above! So I guess we failed our 4 month check-up! My son goes down between 8 or 9pm. He sleeps for maybe 4 hours then gets up to eat. After the 4 hour sleep he wakes about every 2 hours to eat. My doc feels my milk supply (I'm nursing) is either drying up or my son just wants to be comforted by being on the breast at night? Are there breast feeding Moms out there who's babies sleep 8 hours straight at 4 months old? Why do I feel so inadequate as a new mommy?

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Old 02-13-2009, 05:29 PM   #2
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Re: Anyone's 4 month old sleeping through the night?

Oh my. It sounds like you got some really bad advice from the doctor. You did not fail. You are doing what is right for you and your baby. And it sounds to me like it is going just fine. All my children woke every 1-2 hours to nurse. They didn't sleep through the night until after two years of age. If your baby is gaining weight, growing, and has plenty of wet diapers, your milk supply is just fine. I am appalled that he would tell you that! Babies nurse not only for nutrition but for comfort too and there is nothing wrong with that. Your doctor should be giving you medical advice, not unsolicited parenting advice. You are doing great. Don't doubt yourself!

Old 02-13-2009, 08:06 PM   #3
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Re: Anyone's 4 month old sleeping through the night?

I don't agree with your doctor giving you that advice if you didn't ask for it. All it does is serve to make you feel inadequate a mother, which you are NOT. Do what seems right for you. I would especially resent the comments about not nursing or rocking the baby right before sleep. There is nothing more wonderful than snuggling with a sleepy baby in the rocking chair. These days will not last forever. Someday your baby will not want you to do that anymore, and that day will be here sooner than you realize, and you will miss it. And as far as the night wakings are concerned, cherish those too. Someday you'll be waiting up until those wee hours for your 17 year old to come home with the car. Believe me, I would much rather be up nursing my four month old every four hours!

Just enjoy your baby and cherish this time for all its worth!


Old 02-13-2009, 08:28 PM   #4
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Re: Anyone's 4 month old sleeping through the night?

I dont agree with your dr either! Some babies just need to be comforted and want to be with their mommys!! Your baby loves you...your not doing anything wrong. As long as your baby is growing and is good weight I wouldnt worry if I were you!

Old 02-14-2009, 04:15 AM   #5
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Re: Anyone's 4 month old sleeping through the night?

Don't feel bad at all. You did not fail. My twins are 10 months old and wake up constantly during the night. They don't want a bottle anymore but they just wake up crying out of nowhere all night long. In my house I look at it as I will do whatever it takes to get them to sleep. You are doing great!

Old 02-14-2009, 06:41 PM   #6
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Re: Anyone's 4 month old sleeping through the night?

Breastfed babies will almost always need to be fed more frequently than formula babies. They just digest it faster. And as far as how you put your baby to sleep, well thats between you and your baby. I do not agree with your doctor at all. Do not think that you have failed at anything!
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Old 02-15-2009, 11:51 PM   #7
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Re: Anyone's 4 month old sleeping through the night?

You are not inadequate. I learned that every baby is different even amongs sisters and brothers when they were an infant.

My milk supply wasnt very good from the very start so I have always used formula after breastfeeding. Now my milk is really drying and my son (Just turned 4 months yesterday) is sorely on formula feedings. I also started him on solid foods a week ago (pureed sweet potatoe) and he loves it more than the rice cereal. No stomach pain or constipation.

I think the formula is what making him sleep from 10pm to 7am straight and I was worried that he might not getting a right amount of feedings. I tried to feed him just before bedtime and burp him well and so far, no spit up or vomiting was noted. He started sleeping straight at 2 1/2 months and we constantly check him because I was sooo scared that he was too quiet. It turned out that he was just enjoying his sleep. If he falls asleep early like 8pm, I will wake him up and feed him by midnight just to make sure that his belly is not empty for 11 hours and I make sure his diaper is not soaking wet.

I also tried everything what your doctor was opposed to. I have an amby baby where my son was rocked and slept before we move him to his crib. The night when I could hardly part with him and I have him sleep in my arms. I dont see anything wrong with that. I think it is called bonding. Infant usually calms down when they are in your arms. It is affection and security and you cant spoil an infant doing that.

I think it also depends if your baby is a premature or very small in size or weight. I guess the doctor is scared that if we feed the baby before sleep that they have the tendency to aspirate in their sleep.

Enjoy motherhood! Is your baby rolling already?

Old 02-16-2009, 10:31 AM   #8
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Re: Anyone's 4 month old sleeping through the night?

Um, your doctor is so so so wrong. My 17 month old still does not sleep through the night. As tired as I am, I am not going to push her to sleep through because it is natural for babies to need comfort from their mothers, even in the middle of the night. We also still snuggle, and use bottles at bed time. You are a good mommy for snuggling with your baby, that is what they need. I am really appalled with your pediatrician for telling you that...

Old 02-17-2009, 07:33 AM   #9
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Re: Anyone's 4 month old sleeping through the night?

At four months, my daughter started getting teeth and was NEVER sleeping well. She would be up every few hours and I would comfort her every time - she was in pain, it's what she needed. For months I was told by friends/relatives that she "had" to sleep through the night, "let her cry", blah blah blah. You will realize, as I did, that you have an instinct as to what your child needs and what you want to provide to them. There is absolutely nothing wrong with rocking your child at bedtime and nothing wrong with going to them when they need you in the middle of the night. Maybe your pediatrician is trying to give you tools to use to help get your child more independent at bedtime - for instance, rock for a bit and then put your child down while their still awake so it can learn to fall asleep on their own; however, to insist that you should not be doing what you are doing (which is comforting and nurturing your child) is absurd!

One thing I absolutely learned (as another poster already said) is that ALL babies are different - they develop on different schedules and their needs are different. The most important advice I can give you is to do what feels right to you, no matter what anyone else tells you. I spent too much time in the first year as a new mom feeling inadequate or feeling that my daughter should always be doing more than she was -- now I know better and am very confident in my abilities as a mom and feel 100% tuned in to what my daughter needs. I realize this is coming from your pediatrician, but as far as sleeping/coddling/comforting - do what is right for you and your family, not what someone else thinks you "should" be doing.

The best of luck --- and by all means, enjoy!!!

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