Friday, April 23, 2010

Please tell me this will end.

Teething.

Oh my gosh. Where did my sweet little good-natured baby go?

Did teething turn any of your children into cranky monsters? How long did it take for them to go back to normal? He can't be like this the entire time he's getting his teeth.... right?

Did any of your kids start waking up in the night again when they were teething? What did you do about it? Bennett's first tooth just cut through on Tuesday, and the week before that, we had been working on getting him to put himself back to sleep in the middle of the night. About a month or two ago, he started waking up occasionally in the night and so I would go in and wrap him back up and he would go right back to sleep. Well occasionally turned into twice a week, which turned into every other day which turned into every night. So we decided that was that, and when he woke up in the night, we just let him cry himself back to sleep. He cried for 25 minutes the first night and 16 the next. After those 2 nights, we figured out that if we wrapped him with one arm out of his blankets, he slept better, so we started doing that. That also made it harder for him to get completely out of his blankets, which is what seems to bother him so much in the night. He slept great for probably 4 nights in a row, but now he is getting out of his blankets that way, too. He HATES it. But he has to learn to sleep not wrapped up because a) that's how people sleep and b) he won't stay wrapped up even if we tried.

So the wrapping him up battle was raging, and we were just letting him cry (but we thought he was getting better). Now he's teething and last night he woke up at 1:18am and wasn't asleep again until almost 2:30am. I finally went in about 2am. I would be fine letting him cry it out, except that now that he is teething, I worry that his teeth hurt him and that he's not just needing to cry it out, but that I should be giving him tylenol or something. But at the same time, I don't want to go in there if nothing is wrong because I don't want him to learn that if he just cries for 30 minutes, Mom will come in. I am sure I am not the only one who has fought that battle.

The two nights before when we had let him cry himself to sleep, he got really wound up with his crying, and then spent about the last ten minutes of crying winding down. Last night, instead of winding down, he just kept getting more and more wound up. He was completely hysterical by 2am when I went in. But then, when I went in and picked him up (thinking I would check his diaper), he immediately stopped crying. His diaper wasn't messy, and he didn't seem to want anything besides to be held. NOT WHAT I WANTED!! I was so frustrated. Then when I went to lay him back down, the screaming started again. I was so mad that I just gave up and held him til he calmed down and then put him back down. I mean, we have neighbors above and below us, and I feel bad just letting my baby scream all night, too, because I know they can hear it. The insulation between our apartments is practically non-existent.

He has also been very clingy during the day, so I think part of it is the beginning of separation anxiety. Is this just a horrible bunch of events make each other all worse? Learning to sleep unswaddled and teething and separation anxiety all just combining to make the perfect storm?

Do you guys have any tips for getting your baby to get used to sleeping without being covered up? How warm do you keep your kids rooms? Is he just cold once he's out of his covers and that's why he hates it so much? We have had a space heater in there and generally keep the room between 70 and 72. Are we freezing him? He's in a onesie and long-sleeved, footie pajamas.

Did teething turn your children into rotten little grumps who are almost no fun at all?

What would you do in the middle of the night with your baby screaming, if you were in my situation? I know that he knows how to sleep through the night just fine. He has been sleeping 11 hours or so every night since December. We always put him down awake and he puts himself to sleep. Every night. Every nap. I know he knows how to do it. He sleeps for about 4 hours every day- usually split between 2 naps, sometimes 3. WHY THE MIDDLE-OF-THE-NIGHT meltdowns?! Help me!

12 comments:

Haws Family said...

So so sorry Erin. I always have a hard time with the sleep thing. When my babies teethe, they just want the comfort of my arms. So,
I usually hold them as much as I can.

I have no advice on the sleep thing. I always go through this dilemma. I can get them asleep through the night, and then they get sick, or are teething, so I comfort them as much as possible (night and day), and the sleep routine is destroyed.

I don't have the answer, but I do know that unless you "enforce" it (let them cry it out), they will continue to wake up for no real reason at all except to see you. And my kids do it till they are 3. I am still sleep training. I think that it's a never ending battle with some kids.

Sorry for the long, and perhaps useless comment. But, Know that you are not alone! :)

SassyTex said...

Erin I feel you.. Mickaela gets that way when she's teething. What I do is depending on which cry she's doing I let her cry herself back to sleep or I will go in there and give her her binkie back. If that doesnt help then I give her some tylenol and then give her her binkie and that seems to help.

After the tooth breaks through she goes back to her usual night routine. you might just have let him cry longer then 30 mins. Like with the other night when he stopped crying when you picked him up? Just let him cry longer. It sucks but thats what I have to do with mickaela. Or one thing you can do is not pick him up or touch his blankets and just lightly caress his face and sing to him and see if that helps calm him down enough that he can go back to sleep. or he can have ibprofen as well. that helps Mickaela more then tylenol.

Sorry this is so long. It wont last forever. Some teeth are more painful to cut then others. If you beed some more help let me know. you are more then welcome to call or come over with bennett if you need. do you have oragel? try that at night too

Kara said...

Oh Erin I remember all too well, and unfortunately I will be there again in six months or so! :) As for the teething thing...have you tried Orajel?? They have dissolving tablets or an actual gel that you can rub on their gums and it helps numb the gums so it's not so painful. That seemed to help ethan a lot....that and tylenol.

As for the sleeping thing. Ethan was a wrapper too. Eventually he just got used to not being wrapped up. When he got a little older I went and bought one of those Fisher Price music things. It has fish or I've seen like a little rain forest one. Anyways it plays all kinds of music. I started turning that on for him during nap time and night time to calm him down. This seemed to work great. He got used to hearing it and knowing it was bed time. Once he got old enough he started turning it on himself in the middle of the night to calm himself down.

I don't know if any of that helps but I hope it does. Know that it's just a stage and he will get through it. Good luck!! If you have any questions let me know!

Jessica Madsen said...

I agree with Kara, Erin. It is just a phase. He is still your sweet little baby boy, he's just growing and changing and learning. I remember going through something similar with Miley around nine months. She outgrew it, and I probably wasted too much time worrying about it and getting upset. Looking back I should have gone with the flow a little more, held her, and rocked her more.

I know how you feel too, with having neighbors up and down. There are other methods than letting him cry if you are worried about waking your neighbors. Perhaps he is hungry? Maybe it's a growth spurt, or perhaps he needs a little extra comfort and love while he is teething.

You are a great mom, and you are doing a great job. Be patient with him. It will get better.

Jessica Madsen said...

Oh, and P.S... Justin said they use Oragel in the dental office. It is a topical numbing agent. I have personally never tried it, but they use it on patients in his office...So it must do something! Good luck!

Jessica Madsen said...

Oh yeah, one more thing. 70 degrees should be plenty warm for Bennett's room during the night. My kids still sleep in fleece jammies because they don't keep their covers on. And about the wrapping thing... He will eventually grow out of it. Soon, or not so soon, bu the won't have to be swaddled forever. I would love to talk if you ever need/want to! Miss you guys!

Jake & April said...

Try massaging his gums. Just be patient it will fix it's self. At least he wasn't like Brenden. When Brenden was teething he literally was physically sick from it. To the point of throwing up.

I wouldn't try weaning him off being swadled. I swaddled Brenden for almost a year and one day he was just done with it and didn't need it anymore.

Cathy Brooksby said...

It will pass. He will relearn everything. It will just be a hard couple of weeks. For now just get up with him till you are sure he is done teething. It is very frustrating, but like I said he will relearn everything and you will be sleeping through the night agian.
We will be up there for good on Friday.

Grant and Christine said...

I don't know you but I say go to the library and check out this book: "The sleep easy solution: an exhausted parents guide to getting some sleep" (if it isn't that exactly, it is very close) They talk about EVERYTHING and helps you feel a lot better about what you have to do! Good luck! (it never ends, my 3 year old wakes up in the night now because she is scared, just enjoy the time in between being woken up!)

Brady and Gretchen said...

Teething is going to be the death of me. I remember when Lucy was getting like 4 at one time, she would wake up at least one time a night, even though she had been sleeping 10-12 hrs since 8 weeks. Soooo I thought it was the end of the world but I'm here to tell you that it's not!

Maybe some people don't go about it this way but, when I knew that Lucy was teething, I would pretty much keep her on Orajel and Infant Motrin all day and night. I mean, can you imagine how much that hurts?! My Pedi told me that Orajel only lasts about 20 mins and parents think they are doing more than they actually are when they give it to their kids. So, I just put on the Orajel first because it is instant and then give them Motrin so that by the time the Orajel wears off, the Motrin has kicked in.

Also, I think that Motrin works better for teething because if you read the labels on both Infant Tylenol and Motrin, both say they are used for toothaches but only the Motrin continues to work on toothaches when it turns to Children's Motrin.

Sometimes it takes a while for the teeth to cut so don't give up hope. I'm not saying I kept Lucy drugged up for like 3 months straight, but if I knew she was teething and she woke up in the night, which I knew was out of the ordinary, I would go in, give her the treatment then lay her right back down.

Also, sometimes when they are teething their nose runs so they have trouble breathing. We run a humidifier in her room too if that is going on because if they are having trouble breathing, that can also wake them up.

72 is plenty warm.

We swaddled Lucy till she was 7mo then one day I just had the same realization that you have had, and just went cold turkey with her. It probably took 3 good nights for her to cry and get used to it. If he is teething though, I probably wouldn't try to throw in that change as well.

Sorry for the novel! :)

Jenni M. said...

My advice is simple....Let him cry. If you have to go into him, don't pick him up. Connor cried for 2 hours one night when he was teething but I didn't go in, and be broke himself of it much quicker than Bear who will still occasionally wake up in the middle of the night.

As for your neighbors, they will survive a couple nights of lots of crying and I bet they'd be willing to live through it for a couple nights so that they don't get woken every night for the next year.

Also, I still put my 17 month old in a loose swaddle at night and at nap time. I don't think he really needs it but he likes it, so I don't really see the problem. It'll be easy to change when he moves to a big boy bed.

Raelle said...

Little Matthew would cry when we put him down and found out he had gas and it was hurting his tummy. They have stuff for babies to help them. It really worked for us.