Sleeping Issues... :(

Discussion in 'The Toddler Years(1-3)' started by haleystar, May 19, 2011.

  1. haleystar

    haleystar Well-Known Member

    Both boys have been excellent sleepers since about 5 months old. They will sleep all through the night without issues and napping, for the most part, has always been very good. Now, for the past few days, Alex has suddenly become a horrible sleeper. The first night he cried when we put him down even though he was exhausted. He cried off and on for about an hour. We went in and grabbed him to try and comfort him back to sleep a couple of different times and eventually just let him stay up and he went to bed around 10pm, finally. The next night he went to bed just fine at his normal time but woke up at 3am screaming and he wouldn't stop. I had to go in and comfort him but if I tried to put him back down the moment I walked 2 steps away from him he started screaming again. I had to lay with him for a good hour before he would go back to bed. The next night he cried for an hour off and on again. We got him out and the moment he calmed down he was ready to play so him and his brother (since he couldn't sleep from all the screaming) played for a bit and then Alex went poop and we tucked them both in again and all was well and off to sleep he went. Last night it was the same thing. He was tired but cried again. Daddy went in after about 15-20 minutes and got him tucked back in and rocked in the rocking chair quietly in the room with the lights off for about 30 minutes and Alex was quiet the whole time and went to sleep.

    Someone mentioned a possible ear infection but he's got no symptoms other than trouble sleeping. I think the 2nd night he had a nightmare or something but we are beside ourselves trying to figure out why he's suddenly doing this when he was such a good sleeper.

    Has this happened to anyone else??
  2. becasquared

    becasquared Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    Alice started having nightmares at about 20 months. That's what my vote is for. She still has occasional bad nightmares, but for a few months we had middle of the night wakings frequently. Roycie never did have wake-you-up-bad nightmares, but Alice certainly did.

    And both of my kids are normally excellent sleepers.
  3. mommylaura

    mommylaura Well-Known Member

    My older son has occasionally gone through periods where he tried to be a "bad sleeper" :) I think the most important thing is not to inadvertently reinforce the "bad sleep habits" with lots of rocking, attention, etc. If you are careful not to reward the behavior, hopefully it will just be a short phase and soon forgoteen. I definitely would not start laying down with him for an hour in the middle of the night!! That being said, I would consider a doctor's visit and maybe a preventative dose of motrin before bed. My DD had an ear infection at her 15 month visit and I had absolutely no idea - she didn't have a fever or anything.
  4. Danibell

    Danibell Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    I would get his ears checked, my kids all do that when they have ear infections, and they'll have no other symptoms, including no fevers. If we go 3-4 nights of horrible sleep, I take them to the dr and 9/10 times it's an ear infection.
  5. haleystar

    haleystar Well-Known Member

    It was only the one night that he woke up at 3am the other nights it was crying at bedtime not wanting to sleep but once he went to sleep he didn't wake up until morning. I'll keep checking though and if it doesn't get better I'll be sure to call their doc.

    Thanks ladies!
  6. haleystar

    haleystar Well-Known Member

    No I agree, I don't want them to think that if he cries I will come right to him but there are different types of cries, some it's okay to let go and others I don't feel comfortable letting go and these fell under the not feeling comfortable section. He cries so hard that he gasps for a breath in between the screaming. I don't want him to hyperventilate so those are the cries I go in to try and soothe because those aren't normal, to me at least.
  7. mnm000

    mnm000 Well-Known Member

    Teeth? Ear infections? That's what pops into my mind... If he's normally a good sleeper otherwise, and now screaming and gasping, I wonder about pain too. I'd say it's worth a trip to pedi... Mine have been fighting sleep some here lately, but it's more that they are jumping up and down playing together than screaming... Good luck
  8. DblStuffOreo

    DblStuffOreo Well-Known Member

    You may also want to add growth spurt to your list of possible causes. My twin B (13 mos) was a great sleeper since about 8 mos. Now she wakes at night screaming at 2 AM. Sometimes it takes hours and multiple tries to get her back into a real sleep. She'll drift off only to wake screaming again. Some nights, I am able to get her back down with a little patting. The other night I offered Tylenol and milk. I don't know if it was the Tylenol or the 6 oz of milk she drank, but she slept and it left me wondering if she wasn't growing with all of the other stuff going on with her. She's teething, has been eating more adult food and getting a lot of gas, there's just all sorts of stuff going on. That said, I haven't found one consistent thing that helps her get back to sleep and through the night. So good luck to you. Know someone is sleepless in AZ with you and completely baffled by it all.

    For those of you who said symptomless ear ache, when your kiddos woke up, was it at a consistent time, or was the waking sporadic? Since twin B consistently wakes at 2, I wasn't thinking ear ache, but now I am curious.
  9. Danibell

    Danibell Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    My son went thru something similar to this, I was literally exhausted for about 6-8 wks. He would wake crying in the middle of the night and NOTHING would sooth him other than getting up. I tried everything I had, many many times. He suddenly just started sleeping again. I really still don't know what was going on. It was around the same age, 13/14/15 months or so, I can't remember for sure, it was a very sleep deprived time. I tried tylenol, motrin, gas drops, suppositories, warmer jammies, lighter jammies, different blankets, different paci's, raising the head of his bed, turning the lullabies on repeat, I tried earlier bedtime, later bedtime. I tried bringing him to bed with me, or with dh. I tried sleeping on the couch with him. I tried rocking, I tried cuddling. I tried food, I tried drink. I have 4 kids, and this was the first and only time I was completely dumbfounded what to do. Like i said, all of a sudden he started sleeping again. I hope that happens for you too! :hug:
  10. slugrad1998

    slugrad1998 Well-Known Member

    Unless the child is prone to recurrent ear infections, the likelihood of an ear infection is very low unless the child has had a cold first. The mechanism of the ear infection is that when there is a lot of mucous the eustachian tubes can't drain, and stagnant fluid turns into infection.

    Teeth is definitely a possibility (always a possibility until they're all in!). The other big possibility is just the developmental age. They are developing an active imagination and can develop fears because of it. Sometimes crying at bedtime is due to that. The crying in the middle of the night could be nightmare or night terrors. Both are very common at this age and happen more frequently on nights where the child is overtired.

    I totally get what you mean by the cries. I was one who did CIO with mine pretty early but now when they cry out I always go in just to check. Usually it's X having a night terror and you can tell he's not even awake. I just lay him down and rub his back until he's quietly asleep again. If he's awake (nightmare, etc) I comfort him, tell him it's ok, and once he's calm I give him a favorite toy or stuffed animal, turn on his music, tell him it's time to go night night, and then leave.

    Hopefully this is a brief phase. Some kids are just more active sleepers and prone to this kind of thing. If there ia any history in you or dad of sleep talking, sleep walking, etc it is more likely he will continue to wake occasionally as he gets older.
    2 people like this.
  11. haleystar

    haleystar Well-Known Member

    Yeah, he's never had an ear infection before and no colds in this house for some time now so I definitely don't think it's ear related.

    You did too?? Oh thank god I'm not the only one who did CIO early

    Thank you ladies all of you!!!
    Last night was just like it's supposed to be. Bedtime, no cries, sleep and wake-up at the normal 7am time without tearful screams throughout the night. So hopefully it was just a phase :)
  12. lianyla

    lianyla Well-Known Member

    Same. And my kids DO NOT and I repeat DO NOT get colds before their EI.
  13. Danibell

    Danibell Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    Mine never get colds either, but we have very bad allergies in this house, and it has caused ear infections in the past. Mine also don't have re-occurent ear infections, Liam has had the most at maybe 2-3, but every single time he started off not sleeping at night, and after several nights I took him to the dr and it was ear infections. :unknw:
  14. haleystar

    haleystar Well-Known Member

    Thank you so much everyone for your advice. I wanted to give you a little update and let you know that Alex is back to sleeping like he used to, no more crying. So, I guess it was just a phase...thank god!! :)
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