parenting personal stories

Missing the signs of my overtired baby…

We read that tired babies are fussy and can often seem gassy or colicky when all they actually need is to sleep more. We’ve learned this the hard way.

We bought Gripe Water, Mylicon gas drops, we made catnip & lemon balm tea for her, gave her digestive enzymes and basically tried everything to cure what seemed like tummy pain that caused her to fuss and cry inconsolably.

Turns out she was awake way more than she probably should be and she was getting so overstimulated and overtired that getting her to relax for sleep was practically impossible by the end of the night.

When we headed home with her everyone was all “babies will tell you what they need when they need it”. I nursed on demand, let her sleep when she wanted to, changed her when she screamed. All that resulted in was a fussy, rashy, unhappy baby that would sleep right through the night and fuss all day.

Once we figured out that babies typically shouldn’t be awake for more than about 2 hours at a time it was easy to see what the problem was…

She was getting overly tired and overtired babies only have more issues going to sleep which is probably why E would only doze off in my arms but would not fully sleep or let us lay her down for a nap. The whole time we were thinking she was fussing and crying in pain, it was just exhaustion though.

We committed a baby signals interpretation fail! Poor E.

Now we have made a few changes to help Everly with falling asleep and staying asleep per our reading.

Things like keeping our bedroom dark, changing her and feeding her in the dark when sleep should follow and building a bed time routine have helped. Also, we are having to swaddle her and also place her in the swing to get her to initially fall asleep at night.

The good news is she is actually napping during the day these days which in turn makes her easier to get back to sleep thought the day and night. A well rested baby fights sleep much less and isn’t as fussy. It is amazing and kind of “duh” all at the same time. This revelation is all thanks to reading, Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child

Some parenting books have been very helpful reading material, I’ll admit there is quite a bit of conflicting info out there though. We were lucky enough to find some helpful stuff this time. If you’ve got a parenting book you love please let us know @laurensnellings from twitter recommended the above mentioned book to me and boy are we glad she did.

0 thoughts on “Missing the signs of my overtired baby…

  1. We had the same issues with Amy. She was awfully fussy. However, knowing that she needed to sleep didn’t help us in actually getting her to sleep. She was a difficult baby.

    With Isaac, if he doesn’t want to feed, isn’t wet and won’t play happily on the floor, I know that he is tired and I put him down. He still wakes lots overnight though, sigh.
    .-= Veronica´s last blog ..Birds falling from the sky? =-.

  2. That last picture of E is so darn cute! I’m glad that you were able to narrow down what was causing all of her fussiness. I wish you much luck in getting her to settle down to sleep when she starts showing you her sleepy signs πŸ™‚
    .-= Becky´s last blog ..We Don’t Need No Education =-.

  3. I have that book too! Although it probably would have helped both of us a lot more to have read that while pregnant!

    Its a good book, hope it works as good for you guys as it did for us!
    .-= Krystal McCarthy´s last blog ..Brain Dump =-.

  4. Emily is a great sleeper…I was told by the midwife to try to change her before her last feed at night, then not change her during the night, just feed her in the dark and settle her back down and change her as soon as she wakes in the morning. It works for us.

    Emily gets changed and fed at 10pm, sleeps until 6am or 7am and then I get up and change her, then feed her again and she will usually be up for an hour or so before a nap. She used to get up at 5am as well and I just fed her. I keep her in dark at night and very bright during the day. I also let her cry for a few minutes before coming into her room as sometimes she will go back to sleep on her own.

    When she was in our room in the cradle I used to call out to her if she was crying and try to soothe her to sleep with my voice before getting up to her.

    But all babies are different.
    .-= Tanya´s last blog ..Today’s the Day =-.

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