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4 month old crying in sleep

  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from capecod1818. Show capecod1818's posts

    4 month old crying in sleep

    Hi everyone, thought I could get some advice as to what this might be.  My DS is 4 months old today and for the past 3 days has been crying in his sleep around 3 or 4 in the morning.  He appears to still be sleeping.  Has anyone gone through a similar thing with their little one.  I am baffled as to what may be causing this.  My only thoughts is that it could be night terrors (but from what I have read online this usually starts when the baby is a lot older) or perhaps teething which I think he is currently starting to do.  I am trying to get to the bottom of this as I don't want him waking his other brother up.  I may try to put him to bed a little earlier tonight as perhaps it is due to being overtired/over stimulated?

    Ugh....I wish these babies came with an owners manual. Wink
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from medfordcc. Show medfordcc's posts

    Re: 4 month old crying in sleep

    Hey there, we went through night terrors when our daughter was about 9 months.
    The sort of "hallmarks" we saw were (a) same-ish time each night, (b) not comforted by us picking her up or anything else; in fact, often made it worse, (c) tended to happen when she had been really tired and crashed hard at bedtime.

    So the big question I would ask is whether or not he seems to need anything or whether or not he is soothed by rocking, walking, whatever.  It's hard for me to remember 4 months... now, at 19 months, we have had them very occasionally (after that first bad spell where they happened a lot), but it's easier to tell since she's older.  For example, if she doesn't reach for us when we come in, doesn't calm down when she sees us, doesn't respond when we ask her if she wants us to pick her up... then we know she's asleep.  I know that's not very helpful in your situation; not sure if a 4 month old can make any cues to that effect.

    It was very, very helpful to me to read Ferber's book on sleep.  People associate it with letting your child cry it out, but that is only one tiny part of the book (and a part we never followed specifically).
    The whole beginning section is learning about sleep (which helped me a lot because then I felt like I knew what I was dealing with).  And there is a whole chapter on sleep terrors and related habits, called "partial arousals" or "confusional awakenings".  It helped me to understand and to recognize them.

    In the end, we don't get her if she's asleep, but it was a process we had to go through to figure it all out.  Best of luck -- a manual would be great!
  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from Daisy75. Show Daisy75's posts

    Re: 4 month old crying in sleep

    My daughter started having night terrors around 7 months, as she was gearing up for crawling.  Everything I read said they don't start until around 2 years, but the pedi confirmed that they can happen earlier (it helped that one of his own kids had had them at an early age, so he had personal experience with it).  They tend to happen around milestones as they work out things in their sleep.  When my daughter was gearing up for crawling, I would find her--asleep--rocking back and forth on her hands and knees, screaming/crying at the top of her lungs. 

    The important thing to remember is that they don't remember it in the morning--it's akin to sleep talking and sleep walking.  As Medford said, they tend to happen at the same time(s) every night.  They tend to happen more around impending milestones.

    Our pedi told us his "official" advice was not to go in.  He also told me that if it's happening at a predictable time every night, that we could go in and rouse her to half-awake about 1/2 hour before it usually happens.  That will disrupt the sleep-cycle and avert the night terror.  We weren't able to do that successfully.  SOMETIMES we were able to wake her up during one, but usually not.  For my own mental health, when they happen(ed) before I go to bed, I usually go to check on her (esp. now she's usually screaming for me or DH) and rub her back, brush the hair off her face, and say calming things.  After I'm asleep, if it wakes me up, I try not to go in, but just laying there and listening to her if it goes on for a while is rough (even though I know she's asleep), so I end up going in for the longer ones.  You have to do what you're comfortable with. 

    Some kids grow out of it.  My daughter hasn't.  She'll be 3 in May and we've already had 2 episodes of her walking in her sleep.  The first time, she managed to climb out of her crib.  Good times.  She was making noise and then I heard a thud and thought she was just rolling over and hit or kicked the wall, but then her crying went on for a while and I finally decided to get up and check on her.  We had to walk through their room to get to our room and then there are two steps up into our room (it's technically an office/sitting area attached to the master bedroom, but we used it as a nursery).  So I open our door and step down to the first step and can't see her in her crib and I'm squinting and trying to make out her shape in the crib--as I almost step on her clawing at the bottom step like she's trying to crawl up the stairs.  She was sound asleep. 

    So...just be aware that if this continues that your DS may be more prone to sleep walking as he gets older.  Our pediatrician had warned me about it, so I was expecting it to happen at some point.  For now, just do what you're comfortable with and know that he's not going to remember either way.
  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from medfordcc. Show medfordcc's posts

    Re: 4 month old crying in sleep

    I also had read some things that said they didn't start until older, but both our pediatrician and a few references (can't remember which) talked about them in babies under a year.
    Our pediatrician said the same as Daisy's, that the "official" advice is to leave them alone.  But the only real reason to do that is if you're making them worse.  For us, that was the case -- she would cry even harder and thrash around and arch if we picked her up.  We usually go in to check, but if we determine she's sleeping we leave her alone.
    Daisy - best of luck with yours!  So far we also have sleep talking, but I'm crossing my fingers for no sleep walking!
  5. You have chosen to ignore posts from kargiver. Show kargiver's posts

    Re: 4 month old crying in sleep

    What do you mean by "crying?"  Screaming and wailing or something more like whimpering?
  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from LCGCmomma. Show LCGCmomma's posts

    Re: 4 month old crying in sleep

    I forget exactly how old DS was when he started doing this. I think he was closer to 6  or 7 months old. He would do it consistently 45min after going to sleep, almost every night. The first time it happened we were confused by it, because he "woke up" screaming like he was in pain. It was pretty frightening and he had been a pretty good sleeper prior to it. So we picked him up and he very quickly quieted down. It happened a few nights later, and then more frequently. It was strange b/c he would never actually wake up or open his eyes or need anything during them. Our ped said that it could be a night terror/nightmare since it was consistent in its timing during his sleep cycle each night, even at the earlier age than typical, etc. Just like other people had posted. He went through a pretty good patch there where it would be the same thing 6 nights out of 7. Our ped never told us not to go in or to pick him up, since it seemed to help him, not make it worse. He did seem to grow out of it - I'm not sure if his teething/growth spurt cycles just made that one period more difficult for him or what. And now at 16 months old he doesn't have consistent problems with them or any other sleep walking/talking.

    Our ped did reassure us that if that is what is going on, that it doesn't actually hurt them, despite the screaming, etc. So if it helps to do something to intervene, go ahead. Otherwise you may have to wait for that particular terror to be over :-( GL!
  7. You have chosen to ignore posts from CT-DC. Show CT-DC's posts

    Re: 4 month old crying in sleep

    Wow, Daisy, your daughter is serious!

    My mother told me that when our family was staying in a hotel once, my parents were in one double bed and my sister and I were in the other, in the same room.  We'd gone to bed and my parents were chatting in chairs in the other side of the room.  I got up, picked up the kleenex box on the bedside table, walked to the other side of the room, put the box on the credenza, then went back to bed and climbed under the covers - all while sound asleep! I was in abour 4th grade.  I used to walk when worried or stressed (like with a new job) - my boyfriend once woke me up as I was feeling all over his room - I didn't have my glasses on and was trying to find the one of the kids in my classroom who wasn't on his mat!  Of course, nothing like that had ever happened, but I was a new teacher so stress "walks" were my thing.  I also talk in my sleep, still do, my husband thinks its so funny - he can have a pseudo conversation -  I answer him but don't make sense when doing so.