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How can I get my 8 week old to sleep longer at night?

She is breastfed and Ive tried some single grain cereal. Also tried lavender lotion, bath, etc. She has slept 6 hours a couple times thats all though. She is on average up every three hours. Iam going back to work in a few weeks and getting worried that I wont get sleep.

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Asked by peace4mama at 7:18 PM on Oct. 28, 2008 in Babies (0-12 months)

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Answers (10)
  • Feed her every 2 hours on the dot during the day, even waking her. A LC told me this. And a 6 hour stretch is considered sleeping through the night. A baby that young needs to eat and breast milk digests faster than formula. I think you may just have to deal with it for a few weeks. I also would NOT give rice cereal unless you're doing it by spoon, but I still think that's too young. JMO.

    Answer by Jessy0419 at 7:23 PM on Oct. 28, 2008

  • I would say to relax. She is only 8 weeks, and its totally normal for her to want to get up every couple of hours. Try keeping her on a routine. Also if you know that she isnt hungry try letting her cry or about 5 minutes or so. It wont hurt her, and more than likely she will fall back asleep. I did that with my little one, and was felt bad that I was letting her cry, but she just fell back asleep. Hope that helps.

    Answer by NewMommy061808 at 7:24 PM on Oct. 28, 2008

  • It's been a while for me, 16 years exactly but I remember with my second and third baby...I would just stir in some baby cereal for a thin think, something I knew they could suck down and fed that to them with their formula only at night and it worked it for me. I would give them a bath first and get them all nice and warm and then feed them the formula and cereal mix and they slept atleast 6 hours maybe 8.

    Answer by stayhomemom22 at 7:25 PM on Oct. 28, 2008

  • I agree with the second poster up until the crying part. Babies this young can only communicate by crying. Not responding to their cries only because WE think there is nothing wrong is not a good thing.

    Rest assured that she will sleep or longer stretches of time when she is ready. All babies develop differently and there is no 'rule' that one should follow. By the sounds of it, you have a perfectly healthy and normal baby!

    Here is a link with tons of information. I hope it helps!

    Answer by ivansmom07 at 7:42 PM on Oct. 28, 2008

  • JMO but breastfeeding might be half your problem. My son is just shy of 12 weeks and just started sleeping thru the night. He's formula feeding tho and now eats 6 ounces. Formula is alot thicker so it doesn't digest as fast like Jessy0419 said. A friend of mine's son is about 3 weeks older then my son and is breastfed and still wakes up every 3 hours even at night. And rice cereal to a 8 week old is probably a little too early especially if she can't sit up on her own. Its harder for such a little one to digest if they can't sit up and eat it.

    Answer by DessaG20 at 7:43 PM on Oct. 28, 2008


    Sorry!!! I forgot the link!

    Answer by ivansmom07 at 7:50 PM on Oct. 28, 2008

  • This is partly dependent on physical changes in her brain. You can't alter that.

    As you have discovered, the cereal thing is a myth. So is denying her naps so she gets extra tired - that will actually make her sleep worse. It is also a myth that breastfed babies wake more often - some babies do, some don't no matter what they are fed.

    At this age you pretty much are stuck with whatever they do. She is way too young for letting her cry it out. You can let her fuss for a few minutes to see if she will go back to sleep but you should respond to full cries promptly.

    Just so you know, my daughter was formula fed and didn't sleep for longer than 4 hours in a row until nearly 5 months. She didn't sleep for 8 hours in a row until about 7 months. And didn't sleep from bedtime to morning until 10 months - and then only did it once! She started doing it regularly at 14 months.

    Answer by kaycee14 at 8:06 PM on Oct. 28, 2008

  • First, be patient. Second, make sure her last nap isn't too close to bedtime. Try to keep her up as long as you can in the evening so she's tired, not just ready for another nap. I wouldn't recommend cereal, it could make things worse. It may give her a stomach ache, which means even less sleep for you. Keep in mind that breastfeeding is definitely the best thing you could do for her. Maybe try pumping so the s.o. can give a bottle at night, if that's an option.

    Answer by michelle6_10 at 9:25 PM on Oct. 28, 2008

  • when you nurse her the last time and put her to bed, try putting her on her tummy til she is totally out, and then roll her over before you go to bed.. we did that to our son, and he's almost 4 months old, and sleeps from 7pm til about 6am. An has yet to wake up in the middle of the night for a feeding. Once a baby regains their birth weight, they dont need to be woken up in the middle of the night any more. Unless your doctor tells you otherwise. We do a bath as well and a baby massage with unscented lotion. He loves his massage. Then we do a diaper, pj's a rocking and his last breast or bottle feeding, then tummy, then out like a light. Good luck,

    Answer by sweetscrappin at 10:53 PM on Oct. 28, 2008

  • Ok whoever said that breastfeeding is the problem is WRONG. BM is more caloric than formula, and formula is hard for their bodies to digest and ruins their GI tract. Your baby is still very young to be expected to sleep longer! 6 hours is great, and I would be satisfied your getting even that. Try co-sleeping, that way you can just pull your baby close, get them latched on and then fall back asleep. Nurse often during the day, nurse at the smallest cue! Still your baby is young though and needs those frequent feedings, at night as well. Dont give up nursing, whatever you do, formula will not solve ANY of your problems, if anything, it will worsen them and keep your baby up at night because it makes babies more gassy, colicky and constipated.

    Keep up the good work!! Your doing great, relax a bit, and remember, being up at night is just another part of having a baby :)

    Answer by kate_jocelyn at 1:04 AM on Oct. 29, 2008

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