3

Our 14 months old daughter has been sleeping 11-13 hours per night without breaks for a few months and she is able to fall asleep by herself; however, she tends to go to bed and wake up rather early. While initially it was simply perfect for us as she could sleep from 6.30 pm until 7 am, since a few weeks she gradually anticipated her wake up time until 5.45 am, which is getting a bit too early.

We tried to gently push her sleep time five minutes per day until 7 pm but it had no effect on the wake up time: she would simply sleep less. Reducing the snacks after 4 pm and delaying the dinner until 30-45 minutes before bed time seemed to help but, after a few days waking up at 6.30-6.50, she started waking up again before 6.

Since when she wakes up she stands in the bed, we also tried to put her back down and comfort her or even picking her up, cuddle her a few minutes and put her back to the bed: while we could get her to stay 10-30 more minutes in the bed some weeks ago, this is also getting less and less effective. We eventually take her to our bed to gain some more time before getting up; there, she is normally quiet until 6.30, breastfeeding or simply lying down, as if she wanted to sleep more but something prevents her from falling asleep again.

Do you have any suggestions on how to delay her night sleep by 30-45 minutes? This is something that will become even more pressing in a few weeks where all of our rythms will delay by an extra hour due to daylight saving time...

2
  • Is your daughter in a bed or a crib? – Pyrotechnical Oct 5 '20 at 2:18
  • She always slept in a bed – Mikhail Oct 5 '20 at 6:29
3

A few months after I'd finally gotten my daughter to go to bed without it turning into WWIII, I was dealing with a problem similar to what you're describing. My daughter is a bit older than yours, so these tricks might not work for you because of that, but then again, who knows.

There's a few things I specifically do to facilitate her sleeping in bed to a reasonable hour. Or failing that, just not being overly noisy or needy if she wakes up early:

  • Blackout shades or other window dressings. In general, I want her room to be dark and to minimize the likelihood of the sun waking her up too early (because I don't want to be awake at dawn).
  • Nightlights are required to make the room lit enough for her to use without fumbling and becoming scared in the dark.
  • Quiet toys that she can play. This isn't to suggest silent toys, but if she's playing with her toy zoo, I may stir awake briefly, realize she's in her room playing and just go back to sleep.
  • Water and some cereal in spill-resistant containers.

Additionally, I tend to incorporate everything above into the bedtime routine. We'll clean up her room a little bit and put her toys back where they belong (so now she knows where they are); I'll pull the shades down and she'll turn on her nightlight (so she knows the room isn't completely dark). I'll then bring her some cereal and a cup of water and place it in an accessible spot for her (so she knows where to go for small snack).

There are some drawbacks to this, most notably my need to vacuum stray cheerios, but it otherwise works very well.

2
  • 1
    Thanks: we'll try the nightlights and encourage her to play by herself for a while. We probably overdid the first bullet and during the night the room is pitch-black. – Mikhail Oct 7 '20 at 12:40
  • 2
    @Mikhail I doubt you overdid it, my daughter's room is also pitch black with the shades drawn. But there's a night light which makes it very easy for her to see. She also has this toy whale that lights up by her bed. If she wants more light, she squeezes the whale and it makes light and pleasant noises for like 10 minutes and then shuts off. – Pyrotechnical Oct 12 '20 at 1:41

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.