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2 Year old suddenly waking in middle of the night crying - help me!

My DD who is 2 years 3 months has been sleeping through the night in her own room with no problems since she was 5 months old. Suddenly, in the last 2 weeks she has been waking up in the middle of the night crying. Anywhere between 1am-3am is when this starts. She starts crying and gets out of bed and bolts for her door. I usually get up and bring her back in her room and tuck her back and she falls back asleep within 5 minutes. Sometimes she cries for another couple of minutes before she falls back asleep and other times she just stays quiet and goes back to sleep. I don't know what stirred this up, as she hasn't watched anything new on TV, rarely watches tv actually, her diet has been the same, no changes at home or with our routine, she hasn't been sick either. Last night she wokle up at 1am, then between 3am-6am she was up basically every 45 minutes. This is exhausting to say the least. Any help, suggestions, insight???

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Asked by CarolinaQ at 9:23 AM on Jul. 15, 2010 in Toddlers (1-2)

Level 8 (247 Credits)
Answers (10)
  • does she have her molars yet?

    Answer by kyriesmommy13 at 9:25 AM on Jul. 15, 2010

  • same thing happened with my niece, far as I know he was having nightmares.
    2 is a difficult time, lots of growing and adjusting. Maybe it's just part of her growing up.

    Answer by Anonymous at 9:28 AM on Jul. 15, 2010

  • Could be lots of things. My son (he's 3) gets night terrors. He'll wake up screaming and you just can't get through to him to calm him down for like 15 minutes. She's at an age where she's starting to fit the world together and is understanding not everything is all rainbows and butterflies. A persons brain dreams to make sense of things, file things away, and have fantasy time. She may be exerperiencing some of her fears she has during her sleep as her brain tries to figure out what these fears are and why she has them. It could also be a developmental physical thing, as said above, teeth coming in, having a growth spurt, working on milestones will always interupt sleep. You sound like you are doing exactly what you should be doing. Reassure her but put her back to bed without making a big deal about it. I know it's exhausting, so was feeding a newborn every couple of hours, but we all made it through that. :)

    Answer by Cassarah at 9:31 AM on Jul. 15, 2010

  • My daughter is 3 and she has been doing the same thing for the past 11 months. :( She screams, "NO!" or stuff like, "I don't WANT to!", "I don't want you!" (<-- her version of go away) and other things. She cries and refuses to lay back in her own bed. She runs to me. She sleeps in the hallway or sneaks into her sisters room to sleep.
    Some people have claimed it could be night terrors, some have said it could be just a stage and some have mentioned the possiblity of spiritual activity (which I totally believe in by the way).
    I don't know what to tell you except to make sure she is safe, comfortable and feels secure. That's all I do... even if it means she refuses to sleep anywhere but the hallway (I put her back in bed like 5 times one night and even put her in her sisters bed and she kept going to the hallway so I gave up, lol).

    Good luck and feel free to message me if you need someone to talk to about it further. :)

    Answer by Memigen at 9:31 AM on Jul. 15, 2010

  • Probably getting her 2-year molars, which can be very painful.

    Answer by NannyB. at 9:31 AM on Jul. 15, 2010

  • My 2 YO son does the same thing, I think it's night terrors--no teeth are coming in, and he doesn't even really wake up, just starts screaming and shaking like he's freaked out. He sleeps with me so I just hold him and comfort him until he feels better and falls back asleep

    Answer by bethany169 at 12:29 PM on Jul. 15, 2010

  • Mine has been doing this since he was born. He;s now 14 months old. I gave up and ended up bringing him to bed with us. Oh well, what can I do? nothings, jsut watching grow happy

    Answer by Nenakarina at 12:34 PM on Jul. 15, 2010

  • My children did the same thing at that age; they normally grow out of it.

    Answer by happytexasCM at 1:06 PM on Jul. 15, 2010

  • Children naturally have bad dreams without having to have anything specific trigger them. They're seeing the world in a whole new way, so their mind (as anyone's) can exaggerate and twist any story into something scary. It normally doesn't last very long. Sometimes music, a night light, or something of that nature can help. It's good she goes right to sleep, which shows that it is something that woke her and scared her.

    Answer by JazzlikeMraz at 1:50 PM on Jul. 15, 2010

  • Don't freak out. It is most likely what I've read...a mental or phisiological developmental issue that will resolve itself with patience on your part.....Once again I will say don't freak out...I would discreetly observe the people in her life right now and just as discreetly observe her for s/s of possible sexual abuse. I would not approach it as if I were expecting it to be the explanation, but unfortunately we live in a time when the statistics related to abuse are so staggering we have to be vigilant. I sincerely hope this did not insult......Our children are too precious and defensless. We just have to be observant without scaring them further.

    Answer by KISS1224 at 3:29 PM on Jul. 15, 2010

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