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Does anyone have a child that is a toddler and just will not sleep through out the night?

If you have any advice please let me know! My daughter is 3 years old, and she wakes up every 20-30 minutes per night just screaming and crying. She has been doing this since birth on and off! Please help!!


Asked by ali_1107 at 12:08 PM on Dec. 16, 2008 in Kids' Health

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Answers (10)
  • i would do some research on sleep issues... we have irregular sleep issues here because of autism... and there was a time when our middle child seemed to be having night terrors...and it was evident she was having nightmares, sweating...and thankfull that was a short phase, but to help our children fall asleep who all have some sensory issies and may have at least a toe on the spectrum of pervasive developmental disorders ie..our son with classic autism and maybe aspergers other not specified.... we have used melatonin to help them fall asleep at night, but I would onsult a doctor to find out whati causing your child's disturbances...and opt for natural solutions and environment & lifestyle cues to what may be contributing if anything...  *hugs*


    Answer by YasminBoheme at 4:29 PM on Dec. 16, 2008

  • maybe she has nightmares. I dont know how to fix it but that might be a reason behind it.

    Answer by Mommy2B04 at 12:10 PM on Dec. 16, 2008

  • I am sure you've tried umpteen million things, but does she take a nap? Does she drink anything with caffeine in it? I would try cutting out the naptime and caffeine if she gets any and see if you can basically just get her so exhausted she will sleep. Also, if she is scared in her room...what about a night light or leave the hall light on. I always wanted the hall light on when I was a kid. At 3 she should be able to tell you if anything is scaring her. That's my best advice. Hope it helps. I also had nightmares when I was a kid...I don't know why, I had a great child hood so please don't think if she is having nightmares it's cause something is automatically wrong.

    Answer by Anonymous at 12:29 PM on Dec. 16, 2008

  • Talk to your doctor. A normal sleep cycle is 45 minutes long - not 20 - 30 mintues.

    Also, please do not drop the nap if she still takes one. While the idea of getting a child completely exhausted so they will sleep better seems logical on the surface, the human body does not work that way. An overtired child will wake more easily during the night and will sleep less deeply - leading to more exahustion and worse sleep, night after night. I really wish this old-wives-tale would die.

    Answer by kaycee14 at 5:01 PM on Dec. 16, 2008

  • my son never slept through the night, we were told that it was ADHD when he was 6 and since then have found out that he also has Aspergers Syndrome, he's 13 years old now....

    Answer by lisarose45 at 7:03 PM on Dec. 16, 2008

  • My nephew had night terrors. He would seem to wake up and he would scream and scream but there was no reasoning with him. It turned out that he was never really waking up. If she seems completely unreasonable and there is nothing you can say or do to calm her down then I would research night terrors. If you can calm her down during these periods then it is most likely not night terrors and you need to help her learn how to self sooth herself back to sleep. Ask her during the day why she has such trouble sleeping then come up with a "magical" device that will help her. My father told me when I was a kid that the reason I wasn't sleeping was because my sheets were all bunched up, after that I always made sure my sheets were straight and I slept great! Good luck!

    Answer by beckcorc at 7:21 PM on Dec. 16, 2008

  • BTW ... Kaycee14 is totally right about the naps. Don't cut them out. The only reason to start taking out naps is if your child doesn't seem to need them (doesn't really get tired during the day anymore).

    Answer by beckcorc at 7:21 PM on Dec. 16, 2008

  • Don't take away naps, but do try to find if there is a reason for the sleepless nights. Is she afraid? Hungry? Stressed about something? Possibly having issues like sleep apnea? If you can't pinpoint something then check with your dr. By age 3 she should be able to sleep longer without interruption.

    Answer by GrowingMama at 1:48 AM on Dec. 17, 2008

  • My 22 month old has been doing the same thing. But when she was 6 months I took her to her check up and asked the doctor what could be going on, and she said that it sounded like GERD. (acid reflux) So she prescribed med. and it was like magic. NOW she has been off of it for 9 months or so and it has started again. Now whether or not that it is GERD again i'm not sure. But we are going to hopefully get her figured out soon. But that is something to consider asking your pediatrican.

    Answer by agallardo at 12:33 AM on Dec. 19, 2008

  • do u let her try to go back to sleep on her own will? Have you ever let her try to cio? I don't know if it would work or not. If you've already tried it, I'd try something like a dream catcher or here's what I do, I tell them that the cold side of the pillow, the underside, is the good dream side, so we flip it to the good dream side! I hope you can get some rest soon!

    Answer by Central_IL_Mom at 8:40 PM on Dec. 22, 2008