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Dear Daisy, It is your first day at school...

Toddler sleep regression is doing my head in!

What is it with little people (as in children?) and their sleep patterns? One minute they're settled and sleeping a solid 12 hours, and the next day they refuse to sleep any longer than an hour or so. I can not tell you how frustrating it is, mainly just because you know they are capable of sleeping through and there is no physical reason why they should be waking so often! 

I know they go through development stages and sometimes need reassurance, and I am happy to give it to her but that doesn't mean it doesn't frustrate me too. 

When you look up "toddler sleep regression" you get mixed results. One camp is saying how it is all behavioural, you need to train them into sleeping properly again, basically letting them cry out and act out until they give up and drop back off. This is so difficult, I am in two minds on it. Part of me wants to let her do this (to am extent) but she screams the place down and will do things like head butt the cot headboard, which I obviously don't want her to do but on the other hand does she think if she does that then she will get picked up and cuddled? 

And then even further down the line, she thinks she can come into our bed for a few hours sleep. The monkey sleeps like a dream cuddled up between us. Which is difficult because it is so tempting at 4am when you just want sleep and you know she will easily sleep until 8am in our bed!! 

The Babysleepsite (which I visit often at 4am!!) states the following:

 These regressions usually last for a period of time (anywhere from 2 – 6 weeks); then, your baby or toddler’s sleep should return to its normal patterns. (The exception to that rule is the 3/4 month regression; those changes to your baby’s sleep patterns are permanent.)
There are two regressions that happen during toddlerhood: one happens around 18 months, and the other happens right around the 2 year mark.
Which would really ring true with us, it has been the last month or so and she is approaching 18 months rapidly. 

Some more info:
All sleep regressions can be traced to a baby’s physical and mental development at that particular stage. At 18 months, some of these physical and developmental milestones contribute to the sleep regression:
  • Teething (many toddlers are cutting their 4 canine teeth around 18 months)
  • Separation anxiety (this tends to peak and be at its worst from 10-18 months)
  • Growing sense of independence (18 month olds are learning to exert their own wills, and are likely to resist doing something they don’t want to do — like going to bed)
This is Daisy down to a T. She is teething, pretty much all of her teeth seem to be trying to cut through, but she is also going through a "needy" stage, a bit clingy. 

How have you managed with sleep regressions? Any tips?

Lots of love, 
Hayley & Daisy xxx

1 comment

  1. Oh I hear ya! Not sure if you saw my post from a couple of weeks ago but we were going/are going through the exact same thing. Complete and utter sleep regression. The hardest thing was that Jasmine wasn't even properly waking up, but just screaming in her sleep which obviously meant we all had disturbed sleep. It lasted about 3 weeks or so and seems to be petering off a bit now, thankfully. Just keep reminding yourself that it will pass.

    Jenna at Tinyfootsteps xx