Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

3 year old suddenly not sleeping through the night

My daughter slept through the night and now suddenly over the past month or so, will go to sleep at bedtime, wake up 3-4 hours later and stay up all night. I am exhausted. It seems I have tried everything under the sun to get her back to sleep and nothing is working. Tonight I tried making her stay in her room and cry it out, letting her have fits. She finally, after 5 hours went to sleep. That's the best so far. I have tried warm milk, time outs, letting her sleep in our bed ( only to wake up finding crayon markers all over the wall and bed ), watching movies, making her stay in bed with me, but when I fall asleep, all h*** breaks loose and she gets into the fridge and pours syrup all over the place or breaks all the eggs onto my carpet, etc., spanking, I even tried melatonin once, a small amount and that did not work. I am at my witts end. Please, anyone, any suggestion. I need to sleep !! even not taking naps doesnt work.

Answer Question

Asked by eblue3 at 7:56 AM on Oct. 12, 2009 in Preschoolers (3-4)

Level 2 (10 Credits)
Answers (4)
  • ok this is going to sound bad but is there anyway you can safely lock her in her room? like put a babygate up in front of her door so she can't get our of her room? idk. or just keep doing the cio. have you tried adjusting her bedtime?

    Answer by nurbabe82 at 9:05 AM on Oct. 12, 2009

  • 1st - Never have a child watch TV or videos of any kind at least an hour and a half before bed, especially a child who's having trouble sleeping. The illuminated pixels stimulate their little brains & make it harder for them to unwind and sleep.

    2nd - You need a consistent bedtime routine that makes bedtime & fun and positive experience. Also, emphasis on "consistent." In your desperation for sleep, you are changing tactics and confusing her...especially with letting her come to bed with you.

    3rd - Letting her CIO for hours and spanking her over this is terrible and making things worse. You are making bedtime a traumatic experience for her now. You need to make bedtime comfortable, loving, pleasant, and relaxing. This also means you must hide your frustration.

    4th - Have you changed her bed recently? My DD did fine with the toddler bed for about 3 months then wanted her crib back. She's 3 yr old & back in her crib for now.

    Answer by ThrivingMom at 9:51 AM on Oct. 12, 2009

  • cont'd

    Also, her sleep problems may be related to being over tired. If she does not take a nap during the day and/or you are making her bedtime too late, then she is over tired at night and will always wake up before morning. Getting little ones over tired back fires on parents. An over tired infant or toddler does not sleep well.

    My 3 year old eats lunch at 11:30, has a nap at 12:30 (any where from 2 to 3 hours long), and bedtime at 8:00pm.

    Answer by ThrivingMom at 9:54 AM on Oct. 12, 2009

  • Thanks for all the suggestions. Yes , her bedtime is always consistant, bed at 9 pm and always takes naps ( yesterday was the first time ever she went without a nap ) for 2-3 hours and always at the same time ( either at 2 or 3 pm) and wakes up at 5-6pm. Yes, we did actually get her a new bed but this started before we got it. I ended up giving her the baby bed back, so she has 2 beds now lol. I have tried to make her naptime earlier but she just will not do it. We have a routine at bedtime- bath, book, bed and she always listens to my classical music quietly in her room when it's bedtime. She DOES go to sleep but wakes up 3 hours later and can't go back to sleep. Bedtime used to be at 8 but with her naps so late, she won't go until then but in that hour we are reading and singing bedtime songs. I will try to make her naps shorter by an hour and see how that works. My oldest who is 15 now, stopped taking naps at 3.

    Answer by eblue3 at 3:21 PM on Oct. 12, 2009

Join CafeMom now to contribute your answer and become part of our community. It's free and takes just a minute.