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Do you want more sleep?   Yes! I need more sleep.

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  1. Stacy says

    My son is 2 and a half years old. We have never had sleep issues with him. Never fought going to sleep. He has been in his big boy bed for 6 months. Nothing has changed at home. He all the sudden started screaming bloody murder at night. I have tried laying with him, taking out naps, allowing him to sleep with me, cry it out, he has a night light, and I made sure the temperature is just right. He doesn’t have a fever and doesn’t appear to be sick. I do here a cough here and there. I really don’t know what to do anymore.

    • Danielle says

      Hi Stacy,
      Thank you for using The Baby Sleep Site as a resource. I’m so sorry to hear you’re dealing with this sudden, very difficult trouble at night! The most common reasons for screaming at night at this age (once you’ve ruled out a health issue) are either a scheduling issue, causing him to have trouble shifting between light and deep sleep, and/or nightmares. We have a short article series on dealing with nightmares and night terrors here: https://www.babysleepsite.com/toddlers/toddler-preschooler-nightmares-how-to-handle-part-1/
      And a sample toddler schedule here: https://www.babysleepsite.com/schedules/toddler-schedule/

      I hope these will give you some insight, but if you need further help, please do get in touch! Good luck!

  2. Sam says

    Hello all.
    My 27 month old daughter has been on nap strike most days for about two months now. The only way she takes a nap is rocking (which hasn’t been working lately) or sometimes I get desperate and put her in the car.
    She has never been a good sleeper whether nap or bedtime. That hasn’t changed but now that she is skipping naps she gets tired at 5 and is asleep by 6 or 6:30. She has been sleeping through the night so about 12-12 and half hours. I have been leaving her in her room for quiet time for about an hour.
    Not sure what else to try.

    • Janelle Reid says

      Hi @Sam, thanks for writing to us. I’m sorry your daughter has been on a nap strike! The average age to drop a nap is between 3-4, but for some it can happen earlier. Although, it sounds like she does still really need it since she is getting to exhausted by 5. My son went through something similar so I implemented a rest time and tried to not get frustrated if he didn’t nap (that just helped me, ha). Some days he would nap, other days he wouldn’t, and it went on for about 2 years before he fully dropped the nap (just before turning 4). Here is a link to a free guide with tips on toddler sleep that may give you some additional ideas on how to help implement the rest time, and encourage the sleep: https://www.babysleepsite.com/toddler-sleep-tips
      If you need more help, let us know!

  3. Stephanie says

    My two year old is having an awful regression. She skipped most of the “regular” sleep regressions (or if she had them it was so mild that I didn’t notice), and has always been a fantastic night time sleeper, and has napped dependably since she was about 9 months old. I can see there are some major things she is dealing with; she has recently developed a fear of the dark (yet yanks the night light out of the wall when she’s mad, so I had to get a battery operated one), we took away the pacifier the rest of the way about a month ago (which is when the worst of it started), and I’m about 6 months pregnant.
    Once I get her to sleep, she sleeps really well, provided she doesn’t have a nightmare (I’ve been figuring out those triggers and being very careful). But putting her to bed is a night mare in and of itself. I’ve set very clear rules and a good routine, but she frequently just runs and screams. If I try to hold her and calm her down she thrashes like a fish on land. I used the Ferber method to sleep train her in the first place, and have continued to use it when she has had regressions, but it’s a whole new ball game when she can get out of bed by herself. I’ve completely baby proofed her room so she doesn’t hurt herself, and I will leave the room for a few minutes (longer periods each time), and sometimes she is slightly calmer when I come back, and more willing to obey the rules, but sometimes she’s worse.
    I just don’t know if I need to start from scratch and coddle her at bedtime until it gets a little better and then back off, or if I need to keep consistent with the rules I’ve used her whole life, even though they suddenly cause marathon tantrums!

    • Danielle says

      Hi Stephanie,
      Thank you for your comment and for using The Baby Sleep Site as a resource! I’m so sorry to hear you’ve been struggling with these awful bedtimes. I’m not a sleep consultant, but from what you wrote, I wonder if she’s getting enough sleep overall and if overtiredness could be contributing to the mood issues? Is she still napping? We have a chart with average sleep needs by age here to help: https://www.babysleepsite.com/baby-sleep-needs/baby-how-much-sleep/

      Additionally, especially with a new baby coming and the nightmares, I wonder if anxiety is contributing to her trouble. We have an article about dealing with separation anxiety here: https://www.babysleepsite.com/sleep-training/baby-toddler-sleep-separation-anxiety/
      And anxiety does spike sometimes in this regression, too 🙁

      I hope those resources will help you tackle bedtimes, but if you continue having trouble, please consider a sleep consultation package. This is exactly that kind of difficult situation where having a consultant look at your routines, your schedule, her nightmare triggers, and everything could really help you figure out what’s going on and the best way to tackle it. Best of luck, and please let us know if we can help further!

  4. Tiffanni says

    My son turned 2 in August. he was sleep trained at age 1 and went to bed like a dream in his own bed without night time waking with the expection of 18 month regression. It’s happened again and he won’t fall asleep until around 11:30pm now. Still wakes and naps at the same time and doesn’t get cranky until night. His bed time used to be 7:30 last year and since summer it’s been 8:30. What can I do to help him? He won’t let me close his door now and he just keeps messing around and has so much energy it seems.

    • Janelle Reid says

      Hi @Tiffanni, thanks for writing to us. I am sorry you’re struggling with your son’s sleep! As you read in the article, there is another regression that happens around this age, so hopefully it will pass soon and things will go back to normal. I know for my son that right around this age (maybe a little after) he started needing a night light because he was scared, so that helped us a lot. You may also want to download our free guide with tips for toddler sleep, which is so different than when they are little babies: https://www.babysleepsite.com/toddler-sleep-tips
      If this doesn’t pass or you need more help, let us know! We have many more resources that can help. Contact us directly anytime at [email protected]
      Hang in there!

  5. Dee says

    I’m at my wits end. My 26 month old WILL NOT sleep unless one of us is laying on the floor. He wakes up twice a night screaming and crying. It takes him so long to fall asleep for his nap and also at bed time. I tried a nightlight and it doesn’t work. I’m losing my mind. If I can’t correct this soon I think I’m going to lose my job. I get no sleep and I’ve been making a lot of mistakes at work because of it. I’m in tears.
    I’ve tried extending his nap time and it’s not working. I’ve tried extending his bedtime and it doesn’t work. HELP ME PLEASE! I can’t do this anymore. I’m so stressed out.

    • Janelle Reid says

      @Dee, oh my goodness! I am so sorry. We would love to help. I honestly thing since you are so exhausted that it would make the most sense to work with a sleep consultant that can get things on track for you and give you steps to get started very quickly. Here is a link to read more: https://www.babysleepsite.com/baby-toddler-sleep-consulting-services/ but if you have any questions please email us directly to [email protected]. You may want to look at one of our unlimited emailing plans as you get quick response (you will receive your plan within 2 business days after submitting your sleep history) and then you can email back and forth with a consultant for your set amount of days as many times as you’d like – with a quicker response time, even on the weekends. Hang in there!!!

  6. Jessica says

    This is exactly what my 18 month old is going through right now and it has been two weeks so far. She will wake any time between 12-4.30 and cry until i go in and change her and give her a bottle. She was sleeping 7-7 for a few months before this. I am pregnant and so sickly and tired right now so I am finding this difficult to deal with. Sometimes she can take hours to go back to sleep. I am afraid that by giving her a bottle it will take longer for her to come out of but i dont know how to stop it without her crying the rest of the night. I am also second guessing everything i do is she eating enough or going to bed too early, is she over stimulated. I am hoping this regression finishes soon.

    • Debbye @ The Baby Sleep Site says

      Hi @Jessica – Thank you for visiting us, and I am sorry to hear about your daughter’s new sleep issues! We know how tough this can be, especially if you are not feeling well from your pregnancy! Hang in there Jessica! You are not alone! have you checked out this related article?:
      https://www.babysleepsite.com/baby-sleep-patterns/why-18-month-sleep-regression-can-be-hardest/
      We also offer lots of toddler help in our e-Book, The 5 Step System to Better Toddler Sleep. It is written specifically to help parents of toddlers with sleep issues.
      You can find out more about this ebook, and order the book directly online here: https://www.babysleepsite.com/5-step-system-toddler
      I hope that things smooth out soon! Please do contact us if you need any help!

  7. Jo says

    This is really interesting and informative content, thank you so much. My 17 month old has always been a brilliant sleeper but we have recently seen a big change to that. I am expecting my second baby in December and I am certain she is sensing change. She is very clingy to Mummy and calls out to me if she wakes at night (she always use to just resettle). She has also learnt to take off her sleeping bag completely so we have bought her a cot duvet but the new feeling of freedom is leading to lots of standing up when she wakes, and even playing. I am having to go to her two or three times each night. She usually resettled after some reassurance and a pat on the back but it is exhausting. She also goes mental if we leave the room before she goes back to sleep so I end up sometimes patting her, then sitting with my back to the cot until she nods off. All a big shock having had a great sleeper. Not easy to deal with in my third trimester either 🙁 Fingers crossed it is just another ‘phase’.

    • Janelle Reid says

      Hi @Jo, yes hopefully it will pass!! If it doesn’t and you need help before you deliver, let us know! We can help her get back on track if you need, just contact us directly anytime at [email protected] and we can help get you started.
      Hang in there!

  8. Irritability Sucks says

    I’m not coping. At all. What’s worse is that her dad is a deadbeat who sleeps in till noon and no, he does not work a graveyard shift so there’s no reason he should be sleeping in. I’ve been up since 4am and it is almost noon. She hasn’t napped. I know why she won’t nap. It’s too bright in my room and I’m too broke for blackout curtains and she won’t sleep anywhere else so I guess it’s tantrums with no nap for the next 2-6 weeks. My work is gonna LOVE that (end sarcasm font) The tantrums don’t start till nighttime after a certain time. But for the last few nights now, she’s been waking up a lot more often than usual but with a bottle, she’ll go right back to sleep. We did just start potty training her, but this started before potty training so I’m not sure if it’s that. You say not to make long-term plans for a short-term phase. I’m not exactly sure how I can avoid that so I guess I won’t. Like you said, it’ll pass so what’s it matter?

    • Janelle Reid says

      @Irritability Sucks – Thank you for sharing your situation with us. I am SO sorry to hear you are struggling and essentially are doing this alone. This can be such a challenging age. I would love to help send over some more information for you, but it would help to know her exact age so I can point you in a better direction. If you’d like, please reply here or contact us directly to [email protected] and we can point you in the direction of other articles and resources that may help. Hang in there!

  9. Wendy Gallacher says

    My son is 22 months and has begun to scream the house down over naps/early rises. The issue is that I am a teacher and he’s had 7 weeks of it just being the two of us. I’m sure this is a side effect of separation anxiety. We have two issues: 4 of the days that he is looked after he gets picked up at 1pm (which is his nap time) so he is naturally falling asleep in the car. Now he’s refusing to go for naps in his cot. I tried to persevere for 45 minutes but in the end I had to put him in the car – which I do not want to form a habit of doing. He is now waking between 4-5am from his sleep (he goes to bed around 8ish) and he will not go back to sleep. He used to sleep till 6.30/7am. I’ve resorted to lying on the floor next to his cot to stop him from screaming but again I don’t want to we a habit of this…. I understand that these are phases but how do you stop forming new habits? xx

    • Neosha says

      @Wendy – Thank you for reading and for sharing with us. Teachers are such a value to our society! The best way to not form a new “bad” habit is to work to consistently reinforce the behaviors you want to see, even if it’s a little uncomfortable for a while. It’s unrealistic to think that we won’t have to do things we’d otherwise prefer not become a habit here and there to give our little ones the TLC they need, but you’d just want to be sure not to do this for more than a day or two or here and there as needed. Let us know if we can be of any further help to you as we regularly help families through these episodes. Hang in there, Wendy!

  10. Joana Town says

    My 20 months old son started to cry all the time recently when I put him to his cot for his nap time and bedtime. His routine is having his nap at 10:30am then bedtime is at 6pm. Suddenly it changed, now he’s sleeping when he wants to for his nap time and last night I put him to his cot at 6pm then he started crying because he’s not sleepy yet, then fell asleep with a bit of him crying around 9pm. What should I do about it, is it a sleep regressions what I’m experiencing at the moment about my son?

    • Janelle Reid says

      Hi @Joana Town, thanks for visiting the Baby Sleep Site! I am sorry to hear you’ve been struggling with your toddler’s sleep recently. It is hard for me to answer your question without looking at his full schedule and sleep history, which is what we would do for you in one of our one-on-one consultations with our sleep consultant team. What you may want to do is check out our free toddler schedule which will teach you about the sleep patterns and needs of toddler sleep which you can view here: https://www.babysleepsite.com/schedules/toddler-schedule/ If you need help troubleshooting this we have a toddler sleep ebook you may find helpful, or one-on-one consultations for a more hands on approach, and a variety of resources in between. For more information on everything we offer, please feel free to contact us directly and we can explain everything in greater detail: https://www.babysleepsite.com/contact
      I hope this helps, hang in there!