Help! Baby won't sleep in bassinet anymore! — The Bump
Babies: 0 - 3 Months

Help! Baby won't sleep in bassinet anymore!

My 6 w.o. used to sleep in the bassinet fairly well (sometimes we'd even get 4 hours between feedings at nights), but starting last week he's been sleeping less and less. Last night was the worst since the first week - he only slept 15 minutes in the bassinet the entire night. I've resorted to bringing him to bed with me out of sheer desperation, but I can't make my sleep environment entirely safe for him, so I'd like to avoid this (I have a memory foam mattress and am so sleep deprived that I'm not waking very easily). My husband works 12+ hours most days, and when he holds the baby at night he falls asleep with him, which I'm also sure is not safe, so there's not much help there. Does anyone have any suggestions? I don't mind the night wakings (I'm not asking for him to sleep through the night), but I can't keep going on 1-2 hours of sleep (or less, now).

Re: Help! Baby won't sleep in bassinet anymore!

  • edited May 2017
    Hang in there! Sleep will get better eventually!  If at all possible, try having a friend or family member you trust come over during the day or night to watch baby so you can catch up on some sleep.

    Have you heard of wonder weeks? They're periods of intense neurological development that often coincide with increased fussiness and, for some babies, reduced sleep. Week 5 is generally when babies start the first wonder week and it can last as long as a week.

    Your baby is also at an age when they hit a physical growth spurt, which can also increase fussiness and interfere with sleep.

    Does baby sleep better during the day? If so, where is he napping? Do you swaddle him? What does baby do once you are awake with him at night? Is he feeding the whole time? Does he have a lot of gas, spit up, reflux, or any other issues going on? My little girl ended up being milk and soy intolerant and her sleep improved when I changed my diet. 

    I don't know if you've seen the safe sleep 7 before, but if you haven't, you should review it before bringing baby into bed again and do everything you can to make sleep as safe as possible. If you can meet all of the points you don't need to worry so much about bringing baby into bed and the bed would definitely be safer than falling asleep with him in a chair. I had that problem with my daughter during several night feedings and I decided to baby proof my bed when I couldn't stop falling asleep in my recliner. 

    Here's a link to the safe sleep 7:
  • Thanks for the reassurance. I feel like there is just so much going on at once - it's very overwhelming! He have been sleeping much at all (day or night) so I'm also worried he's overtired. I have a wrap coming in the mail hopefully today, so I'm going to try wearing him and see if that helps.

    He is gassy, and I don't think the gas drops are helping much. We do swaddle him, but I don't think he likes it much (he fights against it most of the time).

    I hadn't seen the Safe Sleep 7, so thanks! He's a day pre-term, so hopefully that's not too bad. I'm just really worried about the mattress because it does dip and he ends up sleeping on his side up against me. Honestly, I've been falling asleep nursing and so that's probably another reason he's on his side, but if I try to turn him on his side, he wakes up and wants to nurse again! Hopefully this is just a fussy time, like you said!
  • You're right; it is much harder to get an overtired baby to sleep. I hope your wrap works out well. I've heard great things about them. I've heard some people can wear their babies until they fall asleep and then the gently ease the wrap and baby off together for naptime. I'd love to hear if it helps with your little sweetie.

    If you want to evaluate your mattress in greater depth,  Sweet Sleep (a great read I highly recommend if you decide to bedshare regularly) included a link ( ) with instructions to check if your bed poses a suffocation risk. I've noticed my little girl ends up on her side fairly often, too, but that seems to be because she's tossing herself back on to continue nursing. She also wakes a bit when I roll her onto her back. I've found surrounding her with my arms and legs as completely as I can helps soothe her back sometimes. Other times, I have to roll her back on for a while more. 
  • catem07catem07 member
    500 Love Its 500 Comments Second Anniversary First Answer
    If he is fighting the swaddle try leaving his arms out. That worked wonders for us. M spent so much energy trying to get out she couldn't sleep. 
    TTC since June 2016
    BFP on July 22, 2016 (12 DPO)
    EDD April 2, 2017

    Gave birth to baby girl M on April 3, 2017

  • Why should a baby be unswaddled when bed sharing? I looked at the safe sleep 7 link and I'm just wondering. 
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  • The book Sweet Sleep says it can interfere with breastfeeding, probably because babies generally orient themselves to the breast better when they can feel their way around with their hands.

    Also, the book noted that babies with free hands would better be able to "wriggle out of trouble." They then had an anecdote from a parent of a swaddled baby that was panicking while choking on spit up, unable to move around or do anything to calm itself. An unswaddled baby could also presumably smack or kick you if you did start to roll onto it.

    Before I started bedsharing with my daughter, we had to swaddle her if we were going to have any chance of sleeping. Since she's been sleeping in the cuddle curl with me, we haven't needed a swaddle. Having my arm around her and my legs at her feet keeps her from startling just as well, and having a breast handy soothes her before she can fully awake if a very sudden, loud noise scares her.
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