Infant Insomnia??

I have a 9 month old baby boy. Up until about a 5 days ago he would sleep all through the night..basically from 7 at night until 6 or so in the morning. However the past few days he seems to hate being put to sleep and wakes up at least once a night as if he is fully awake and it takes at least 2 to 3 (or more) hours of crying to get him back to sleep. My wife and I try everything, we change him and feed him as soon as he wakes up, (normally if he woke up before the changing and the feeding would send him right back to sleep until morning)....but now after the feeding he stays awake and sort of wants to play but at the same time he looks exhausted and whines and cries alot. He cries if we carry him, if we put him down, if we play with him, or if we try to put him to sleep. I do plan on taking him to his doctor if this keeps up..but its Sat. night and his doctor won't be available until Tues. So any advice? any at all??????


he does have his bottom two front teeth and his top two front teeth.

his stools are fine, he was gassy the first night he started this new routine, but his doctor switched his formula and he is no longer gassy but still waking up.

he doesn't have a fever and no discharge from his ears.

his irriation is only at night really. during the day he is completely normal, he has always been pretty well behaved (as in not cranky) and he's still that way during the day...

he does get flouride through his water, but he has been getting flouride for about two months now

i guess that only leaves the growth spurt, but wouldn't he be cranky during the day?

Update 2:

oh yeah and we do put cereal in his bottle.

19 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    You have a very smart little boy. It started as an innocent thing. He woke up one night, cried, you responded (as you should have), he was changed, fed, cuddled, played with. Who wouldn't want that? So when he wakes up the next time, he calls you again. He wants to play with you and you are cooperating with him beautifully. I know it doesn't feel like playing but to him, as long as you are up with him, he is pleased. (he loves being with you) Problem is, he is tired and so as much as he wants to be with you he is cranky and I will repeat, tired! Unfortunately, there is only one way to do this and HE has to do it. You know how you go to bed and have your little routine?? RIght side, left side, stomach, oh, asleep, etc. We all have one. Your baby has to learn and teach himself what his routine is. If you rock him, bottle him, walk him, take him to your bed, sing to him, play music for him, then these are YOUR routine that you are doing, and he just happens to be there. He will depend on you to continue to be part of his method of getting to sleep. So... and this is the hard part. When he awakens. Change him if he is really wet (If you have to check, he is not really wet- his weight or dampness should tell you). If he wants a bottle, give him water. (he may be "asking" for a bottle as a means of getting you to be with him- if you give him water then it no longer is as appitizing- and nine month old babies DO NOT need food (bottles with formula) in the middle of the night)- none of us do, either. Do not talk to him, entertain him or turn the lights on bright. Kiss him, put him back to bed, give him his lovey or blankie and bottle of water and leave. Do not return, do not talk to him. In a couple of nights he will have found his routine (not yours), will not expect you to be part of his routine and will be fine after that. There is a lot more leeway with younger babies, but your baby boy is smart enough to figure out how to keep you around, he is old enough to learn on his own how to go back to sleep routine.

    p.s. 1. He should not need cereal in his bottle unless he has a reflux problem.2. If you believe teething is the problem, give him HYLAND teething tablets. You can get them in the healthfood store and sometimes regular pharmacies. They are safe, melt in the baby's mouth and do wonders for teethers. 3. If you think that the problem is that he is really ill then insist that someone else in the practice see him. There is no such thing as a pediatrician not being available. He is liable if he says he will not see your baby. So, if you are really worried... insist that he be see. From you letter I still stick to my original advice but I reread you letter and burned when I got to the Dr is not in the house for four days. B---s---. And that's my professional opinion.

    Source(s): I am a Nurse Practitoner
  • 1 decade ago

    He may not be tired enough to sleep that length of time at once. Try putting him to bed later and see if he sleeps all the way through the night. Also, why is he still eating during the night? If he goes to bed full he shouldn't have to eat at all during the night. If moving his bedtime back doesn't work, I would honestly try ignoring his cries during the night. You said the first night he was gassy. So, maybe he woke up the first night because he wasn't feeling well. But now he knows that if he wakes up and cries for you, you'll come hang out with him for a few hours.

  • 1 decade ago

    Well this is very tough I know I have a four month old myself. My only suggestion is to try tomorrow to keep him awake a little longer at night before sending him to sleep for the night. I know that does not help tonight, but maybe he is not tired... does he take naps during the day....try to get him completely exhausted before letting him sleep. It may be a good idea to see a doctor, because he may have developed a milk allergy and not be feeling good. Or he may be developing colic..that is where the baby gets the days and nights confused and cries all the time. NO FUN. For tonight your best bet is to sing to him and maybe rock him in a chair...let him cry, Which I know is hard to do...but he will eventually become so over tired from crying that he will fall back asleep. I am very sorry parenthood is tough... they are so worth it in the end.. keep up the hard work... and good luck

  • 1 decade ago

    Well, I would take him to his doctor. My son used to do the same thing and it was usually because he had an ear infection. If thats not the case, at nine months old he should be sleeping through the night without having to get fed. I would just let him cry it out. I think he's a little too young, but many children experience night terrors. Which would make them wake up and scream. Just let him know that he is safe, tell him its time to go back to sleep and walk out of the room. It's ok for him to cry.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    DO NOT play with him at all in the middle of the night. I know you must both be exhaused( been there, done that) just give him his feed switch off the light and keep an eye on him.

    MAybe he feels hungry and wakes up. Why don't you try giving him a bit more to eat/drink before he falls asleep and see if it helps.

    As he is 9 mts. old he must be on solid food by now. give him solids for his supper and maybe halfo a glass of milk just before bed time. He will sleep better on a full stomach.

    If its because he his teething use a night time formula teething jel(I used Orajel)

    Good Luck.

  • 1 decade ago

    All babys go throw a change in thier sleepinh paterns. My one year old son does the same thing to me every night. I put him in bed with me to get some sleep. I know that I should not do that cuss now he is always in bed with me at night now. My hubby is not to happy that our son is in the bed with us. I have two other kids that I have to get up with in the moring. I let my son sleep a long time for his nap in the day. When night comes around I like to have him in bed by no latter then 9. But that does not always work. So now I just let him play until he can't play any more. Give him his bottle and is alseep with in 20 mints. He sleep longer now in his bed but still ins in bed with us. I know that it sucks to lose all the sleep that you need when your baby won't sleep. My two year old daughter was not such a haapy baby with her mike that she was on. I did not get that much sleep for the first 6 months of her life. It may just be the change of his mike that is keeping him up like that. Give it a few more days and see if anything has changed. It uesly takes a couple of weeks for a baby to get used to drinking something new. I hope that he lets the two of you get some sleep.

  • 1 decade ago

    It will not hurt him to cry for a little while in his own bed.My son does this to my husband because he knows his daddy will stay up w/him all night,play and hold him.He does'nt even think of trying this w/me.He knows i will put him right back in his bed to cry.My best advice is don't let him take late naps,keep him up 4 hours b-4 putting him down at night,that way he is good and tired.

    If he is not acting sick then he is just being a baby.They tend to ddo this from time to time.Let him know u r not gonna play in the middle of the night.Do not jump up as soon as u hear him.He needs to know u will not jump to his every need.Crying for 15mins won't hurt him.Good Luck!!Hope u get some sleep.

  • 4 years ago

    3 Steps to Cure Insomnia Forever!

  • 1 decade ago

    My son is 9 months old to, and has started that too. He did that once before as well, and I had to add him another meal to his day. He now eats something like every 2 hours. Between baby food and water and juice, and pancakes. My son doesn't have any teeth yet, but since yours does, you can give him some more staple foods. That will fill his belly and keep you asleep all night.....once again. I don't know about your son, but I can't get mine to eat formula anymore, so I had to add an extra meal to replace all the calories in that.

  • 1 decade ago

    He may be teething or going through separation anxiety, 9 months is about that age - he may just miss you guys in the middle of the night. When he gets up, dont talk to him, dont really interact with him at all, keep the lights as dim as you can, feed him, then put him down. unless his diaper is totally full, dont even change him. Dont give him a reason to want to stay awake.

    Source(s): Experience - 3 year old and 5 month old
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