April 2014 Moms

Suddenly screaming at all nap times and bedtime?!

so DD has pretty much slept through the night since she was 5 months old with the odd wake up for milk / nappy changes here and there. When she was 8 months old we did CIO to get her to sleep in her own room and it worked really easily. Only suddenly, at the age of 15 months, DD is screaming uncontrollably at EVERY nap time and EVERY bedtime. She is def tired as she is rubbing her eyes etc but as soon as we take her in her room and try and lie her down she starts screaming and sobbing and is inconsolable. We tried CIO again but she got herself so worked up she kept being physically sick and we had to stop as I felt awful as that never happened before. Any ideas? She's now missed several naps and several night sleep because of this. Yet she fell asleep in the car and on the sofa! General routine is awake at 7.30am, play, breakfast at 8.30, play, nap at 11 for 1 hour, lunch at 12, play, 2nd nap at 3pm, awake at 5 to play, 6pm dinner, 6.45 bath, 7.30 bedtime stories and then bed.

Re: Suddenly screaming at all nap times and bedtime?!

  • I keep reading that with each developmental milestone, they can go through something like this. Did she recently learn something new like walking? As their brains develop, they don't want to miss out on things by sleeping. Or is she teething at all? I know laying down becomes painful when they're teething since the blood rushes to their head and causes more throbbing.

    Those are my 2 biggest guesses. That or she's finally old enough to realize she misses you at bedtime. Maybe she needs a little more cuddle time before bed.

    Good luck!

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  • I agree with all of the suggestions @Alli0322 made.
    Could it also be that she's ready to transition to one nap? Maybe she's tired but not tired enough to want to lay down and sleep?
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  • Teething, wonder week or early 18 mo sleep regression? That 18 mo sleep regression was horrible for our first two kids. It lasted a few weeks and then they went back to normal one night. She may be ready to go down to just one nap as well. Try taking her out and about to keep her awake until after lunch. Waking at 5 from a nap seems awfully close to bedtime.
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  • Thanks I will try some of these suggestions. She was awake until 1am this morning because CIO wasn't working and I had to take her downstairs so she didn't wake DH. But despite looking exhausted, everytime we stepped foot into the nursery to put her to bed she would start bawling like she was terrified! In the end I took her into our bed just to try and calm her down and she passed out instantly and slept there all night. I definitely don't want to get back in to bed sharing again. Can a 15 month old be scared of a room? She really seemed terrified. It was very weird!
  • Sounds like possibly separation anxiety to me. If she starts crying as soon as you walk in her room, she could be anticipating being left alone.
  • To me it sounds like she might be ready for 1 nap- and I agree could be separation anxiety as well.

    For naps I would try putting her down at 12 for one nap; at first she may nap for only an hour but as she gets used to it the nap should extend to 2 hours. Then she'll be plenty tired for nap and bedtime. Since your lo is only up for 3 hours between 1st and 2nd nap she is probably not tired enough for the 2nd (that is what happens with mine).

    Mine will cry more than usual before bedtime now I believe due to separation anxiety. I give her extra cuddles and then stay with her a bit while she lays in her crib.

    I also read somewhere that kids may become scared of the dark around 18 months, so maybe a nightlight too.
  • This just happened to us! My son is 14 months and I'm 6 months pregnant and many nights over the last 2 weeks he only slept 3-4 hours. He was sleeping 12 hours straight before with occasional wake ups... Needless to say I was so miserable not getting any sleep and he would just scream like I've never heard before and yell Mom! We went to one nap a day starting between 12-1, with a goal of 2-3 hours of sleep. Bath, etc starts at 7, sleeping by 8. The one nap helped ALOT and he's getting his molars so we have been giving a lot of IBU. He's also starting to walk so I think that major milestone has played a role in the sleepless nights. We started CIO again and we are back on track. Good Luck!! I just try to remember it's just a phase.
  • We're dealing with sleep problems as well. She wakes up EVERY night between 1-3 and stays awake for 2-3 hours. It's been going on for at least two months (it wasn't every night at first but steadily increased to 7 nights a week). Up until 2 weeks ago when she would wake up, she would just lie awake. Now she whines and cries almost the entire time.

    T&Ps to everyone going through sleep issues!
  • So the last two days she's now only had one nap a day in the afternoon and only when lying on me after a LOT of crying. At night we did her usual bedtime routine That has always worked before (dinner, bath, bottle, stories) but every time we tried to put her down she started blood curdling screams. It went on for hours. She finally passed out in our bed again at 1.30am after hours playing, snacks, milk, books and lullabies.

    Then she woke up screaming at 3.30am and we tried everything (milk, new nappy, cuddles, dummy, rocking, etc) but she was inconsolable twisting over in our arms and throwing her dummy out as soon as we tried putting it in. After hours of her screaming till she was sick I have given in and brought her downstairs where she has been playing now for the last 3 hours. Gah! Zzzzz
  • We did a spell of this too and are just coming out of it. I ended up cuddling with him in the recliner downstairs and giving him a sippy of warm milk. Most nights that helped and now he is back to better sleep. Actually made it through the night last night for the first time in a loooooong time. Hang in there mamas.
  • Right I've reached the end of my tether now. We're 10 days down the line and on average from the start of her bedtime routine at 6.30pm, it's taking about 8 hours to get her to go to sleep (it used to take half an hour).

    She's down to one nap a day from
    12-2.30pm. She still gets the same consistent bedtime routine as she always did, always had a nightlight etc. The only sleep she has had for the whole ten days is when she has passed out either on the floor of the living room or the end of our bed because she refuses to sleep anywhere else.

    I don't know how we're coping at the moment. I am literally hallucinating from lack of sleep and DH has had to take 2 days off unpaid because he was too tired to drive the hour to work.

    Doctor just said on the phone That it sounded pretty normal for a toddler and could be any number of things but just to get on with it basically. But I don't know how we can carry on like this much longer. We're losing money from DH not working and I'm on the verge of tears pretty much all day.

    There must be an end in sight to this?!
  • Oh my gosh. That is awful, @BeckyF82 An 8 hour process for getting to sleep seems far from normal. Someone posted on the RTT thread about a sleep consultant/doula who could help. Would looking into one of those be an option? I know a family who actually worked with one who was based in Israel and they did all the consults over the phone. It worked wonders for them and they went from totally desperate to sleeping decently.
  • Thinking of you @BeckyF82 and hoping tonight is better....
  • Mmm well I don't feel good about this but after it was recommended by our Health Visitor, we bought some Piriton (hay fever allergy medication) for kids. The major side effect is drowsiness and our Health Visitor said that there wouldn't be any harm in giving her a dose just to try and get her sleepy at bedtime. So we dosed her up yesterday At dinner and although she still refused to sleep in her cot, she passed out on our bed at 11pm (after just 4 hours of craziness as opposed to 8 hours like the rest of the week), and slept there With us all night until 8am!

    I feel bad resorting to Unnecessary medication but the health visitor reckons it might help for a few days to get her sleep patterns back on track. Zzzzzz
  • @BeckyF82 I'm so sorry you've had to resort to that. It's so rough when you think you have your kid figured out and then you have to change everything you were doing. Thinking about you and hope you get some rest!
  • Do what you have to do, it's not going got hurt her and if it's better for her to get back on track then It will be worth it.
  • @BeckyF82 --sorry you have to do something you're not especially keen on, but I'm glad you all got some sleep! Here's hoping a few days of this will somehow push a "reset" button on your LO's sleep!
  • Both our 15 m/o and 2.5 y/o are pulling this stunt now, which is reminiscent of the 4mo and 18mo sleep regression that they went through together last year. DH gave DS Benadryl after his sixth waking since I was sleeping in the baby's room. The joys of parenting!
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  • My son is 15 and a half months. He seems to have this going on last couple weeks as well. Screams hysterically when he gets put in his crib. Has his night light, blankey, singing star, everything. It must be a common time for them to go through this. He is over tired because of lack of naps and so its just making it all worse. Hopefully they all sleep again soon
  • What a friggin nightmare. :(
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    ****trigger warning****

    1 LC, girl 5 years old

    TTC #2 Summer 2017

    BFP 1/5/2018, MC (D & E) 2/23/2018

    TTCAL May 2018

    BFP 9/20/2018, MC (D & E) 11/16/2018 :'(

  • I could have written this post!! I literally have been going through everything that you all have commented on for the last week... and I have no idea what to do but I'm exhausted!!
    Married: 2012 --- BFP: 2013 - Little Miss arrived: 2014 --- BFP #2: 2015 - EDD: 2/2016 (Team Green)
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