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TherapistJen, LCSW, CPC
Category: Parenting
Satisfied Customers: 3442
Experience:  Licensed Clinical Social Worker. Certified Coach Mom of Twins.
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15 month screaming crying wont go back to sleep unless bring

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15 month screaming crying wont go back to sleep unless bring him in bed
How long has this been going on? Is it every night? How long does he cry until you get him? Have you seen a doctor?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
We sleep trained our son at 5 months with the sleep easy solution book and he has done great sleeps usually 10 hours a night, if he cries we do the 5,10,15 minute intervals until he goes back down always has worked. But starting 2-3 weeks ago he is at the height if his crib rails and he gets so upset he flings his head back an forth and has hit his jaw and hit his face scratched his face cut his gums cut the inside of his lip so we just CANNOT let him cry because we can't let him get hurt. And even with the intervals he screams and cries horribly until you pick him up. For about a week it was ok to rock him in his rocket recliner and sleep with him but now he won't even settle that way the only thing that works is taking him in our bed and lying him next to one of us. But of course several worries now - don't want him to get in a habit of sleeping in our bed, want him to get good restful sleep at night, and very worried about him rolling out of and down from the bed. I have spoken with his pediatrician who said it is likely a phase and to take him in our bed to sleep for a few weeks and he will eventually outgrow but I am still apprehensive. Now, to make matters worse, he used to go down really easily and now we cannot get him to go to bed unless he is completely passed out on us and them we sneak him into the crib which I know is bad because they're supposed to be aware of what's happening so they don't wake up freaking out. :-(
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Relist: Answer came too late.
Hi. Welcome. I am a Licensed Master Social Worker with more than 20 years experience working with individuals and families. I am also a mom of Twins.

Fears become evident at this time and if he wakes up at night he can be filled with fear and unable to soothe himself back to sleep. Clearly you know what you are doing as you sleep trained him well and he did well. I do think it is a phase too but that doesn't make it easier as you are going through it. Do you think he may be ready for a step down from the crib where you can sit next to the toddler bed and rub him while trying to calm him in his own room? I tend to agree with you that once he is used to sleeping in your bed it will be hard to get him out. I know that 15 months is young to come from a crib and do a variation of it but maybe removing the front rail if possible and putting up a safety rail may help. I would also ask the pediatrician about their thoughts on that.

If not I would go back to the sleep training you did earlier while keeping him safe. He may be having night terrors and holding him and calming him for a few minutes in his room could feel calming. Try as best you can to remain in his room rather than yours. It may take a week and you being very exhausted but I am hoping he begins to feel safe again.

I feel for you and I know how hard it is. Let me know some thoughts.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

We tried both Sat and Sun night to soothe him rubbing the back on his crib mattress to no avail, really can't even keep him down he just wants to stand up and scream and cry until he's held. Last night the worst wouldn't even lay in our bed on his own just tossed and turned and cried and then back to the recliner where he kind of settled down to sleep but again tossed and turned front to back all night on my husband. It just seems so strange he is so tired yet fights the sleep so much and he just wants to be held but can't get comfortable and cries. We even tried last night giving him a bottle of milk at 1 am to settle him down which we haven't done in almost a year which he guzzled down and seemed content for a few minutes and sleepy, but then started crying and tossing again. I just feel so bad that there is nothing that seems to be comforting him and I want to make sure he is getting a good night's sleep, and also starting to take a little toll on us now sleep wise....

I am also wondering about teething. Are there any teeth coming in? this can certainly disrupt his sleep and his need for this extra comfort.
Is he getting all the cuddles during the day too? Sometimes babies can feel that they want the cuddles and love in the night too, but I believe it could be the teeth, a change in growing up and it will pass.
I might take turns between you and your husband so that at least on alternate nights one of you can sleep until this difficult space passes. There are hardcore views out there that suggest that you let him get through this and not go in and comfort....I am not suggesting you do that, but only making you aware of other theories out there. I know you worry for his safety and rightly so. I would not switch routines every night though because that would be confusing to him. I would try one method and stick with it to the letter for at least a week.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I wondered about teething but because this has been almost 4 weeks now, wondered if that was too long to be considered a teething phase?


He started day care M,W,F back in April and seems to love it but could he be having separation anxiety and want us at night? Even so, if we are holding him or taking him in our bed, I would think he would then settle and sleep but he still seems to have trouble getting comfortable and sleeping soundly.


I was tempted to buy the corner cushions meant for end tables and put them along his crib rails and try to do more sleep training with him, let him do a little crying it out to go back to sleep, but not really sure if it will work, the crying and screaming just seems to be really bad this time, but then again maybe it's just me being worrying momma :-)

I think it could be a combo of the things you mention above. Teething and then the start of daycare...that is a huge change for him and that is why I asked about the cuddles during the day. He has sensed the change and if he wakes for any reason he wants you to soothe. I like the idea of making it all safe for him and giving his so much love when you see him at end of day and then go back to some gentle sleep training. It will take some time, but be consistent and stick with one plan so he can feel safe. If you try too many things he will not feel safe and this phase will last longer than it already is.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

so teething really can last that long? i think i'll try to make sure lots of hugs and kisses from day care to bedtime and try the 5,10,15 minute intervals again the next few nights?

He could have a bunch of molars coming in right after one another. I do also suspect the change of putting him in daycare has rocked his world a bit. Yes some gentle sleep training and consistency will be key. Lots of hugs and giggles when you are together.

also do a calming routine before bedtime and make it the same every night. Milk, soothing bath, low lights, book in bed and sleepy time.


Please let me know if I can support you further. If not, please take a moment to offer a rating of my work. My goal is to provide excellent support.

TherapistJen, LCSW, CPC
Category: Parenting
Satisfied Customers: 3442
Experience: Licensed Clinical Social Worker. Certified Coach Mom of Twins.
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