Sleep routines revised

Thank you all for your thoughts and encouragement about sleep! Last night Linnea was able to fall asleep with me after 40 minutes (an improvement of 5 minutes on the screaming and not having to have Leah step in!), and Darwin was asleep by 9:15. A full 45 minutes earlier. Now, one data point does not a trend make, but here’s what we did. 

First, no screens in the bedroom, even for mamas. Screen addiction is a real thing, and I’m hopeful that more focus on the kiddos will help them feel more secure and safe to fall asleep. Plus screens disrupt melatonin production! The one hitch is that we don’t have a clock in our bedroom, which makes me feel nuts. So today, I’m picking up a new clock. 

Second, I’ve taken over bedtime with Linnea and Leah with Darwin. I’d been nursing Darwin in the bedroom and when I would leave it would trigger 45 minutes of upset. So I nursed her in the living room, and she went and did her stories in the bedroom with Leah. All told it took her an hour from the time she left the living room to fall asleep, but the real metric here is the 9:15 sleep time. That tells me this may actually help. 

If we’re not seeing more improvement in a week, I’m going to talk to our pediatrician about melatonin. Here’s hoping we can just knock this sleep thing out!

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6 thoughts on “Sleep routines revised

  1. That’s a solid win! We too need to drop the screens, but some nights it doesn’t matter because she’s so exhausted. But then she wakes up pissy at the light.

    I would really recommend avoiding any melatonin supplementation unless there’s a verified issue with it. Supplementing tells the body not to make it anymore which creates a lifelong need for supplementation when there wasn’t a melatonin issue to being with. I really dislike how casually it is promoted by people and made available without understanding of the big picture. Some kids and people are just night owls. There are other ways to make adjustments, and sometimes it just takes time, which I know sucks when you just want sleep.

    Have you tried the sleep stick from posh? it’s lavender oil but in a stick form, like putting on a thick ointment. It often helps kids quite a bit, especially when you are doing the other things like avoiding the screens. We also use a diffuser for calming oils.

    Good luck! We need to start addressing this all ourselves, I just don’t want to yet. lol

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah, we have a diffuser too, but haven’t noticed any difference with sleep. We’ve ended up mostly using it to help with breathing when the girls have colds.

      Yeah, everything I’ve read about melatonin so far is that if you’re going to use it, you should absolutely not use it longer than two weeks at the maximum to avoid the issues with decreased natural production. There’s a big research need there for use in kids.

      We have used lavender some, but it doesn’t seem to do much for our issue.

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  2. Sleep is hard. So hard. I’m glad you’ve had some success with your tweaks, and I hope it continues! Your changes make a lot of sense. It takes Charlotte anywhere from 20-60 minutes to fall asleep once our bedtime routine is complete and she’s in her crib, but she just plays happily by herself with her lovies until she passes out. She is so much like me in that way–it takes me ages to fall asleep once I’m in bed.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah, that works for Darwin sometimes (quiet play), but we’re in the unfortunate situation currently where if we try to leave the room she has a panic attack. So once we have bedtime moved up, we’re planning to start normalizing falling asleep when we aren’t there.

      Sleep. I knew it could be tough, but daaamn. I had no idea how tough.

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  3. Shell says:

    I remember 8/9 months. It’s about that time they need you the most (like, it was really hard to leave the house) ’cause apparently that’s when the baby begins to understand that he is someone apart from the mom and they do NOT like that! Still, my girls slept started sleeping through the night when they were about 2 and half. Today, I think they sleep fine and I find it very weird how early adults and children sleep here! Where we come from, it is not common to go to bed before mid night, and even parties usually start at 1am. So, my girls sleep at 11pm and wake up at 7. They still nap for 1.5 hours after lunch (which I think is healthy and very common also in other countries even for adults) and if we cut nap time it results in mad children and they still will not sleep before 11 so I figured what the heck….
    I do miss sleeping in just like everyone else!

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