My son is almost 6 months old, and is a pretty good sleeper for the most part. For the past few nights, though, he wakes about one hour into the evening and screams at the top of his lungs. By this point I know all of his different types of cries-this cry is one unlike anything I've ever heard. It sounds like he's experiencing a horrible pain and he isn't immediately soothed by nursing-which typically cures anything. Could this be a sign of teething? Is there something developmental I'm missing? He's not hungry and has a fresh diaper, so I know neither of those is the culprit. After 15-20 minutes we can often get him back to sleep by rocking, nursing, back pats, etc., but before then he just shrieks. However, we'd love to figure out what a cause might be-if there is one.
admin / wonderful grape / 20724 posts
@ChiCalGoBee: Could it be night terrors? I used to think they only happened to kids in the toddler stage and up, but I've read about babies who seemed inconsolable and acted like they were having night terrors!
pomelo / 5228 posts
For us it seems to be solids causing digestive upset.
nectarine / 2028 posts
@Mrs.Someone: Well he is getting solids a few hours before bed so it's definitely worth a shot! They hadn't bothered him previously, but he's getting more now than before so I'll bump up the solid feeding tomorrow and see. Thanks!
@mrbee: That's the first thing my husband said, but a quick look online made me think he was too young? I swear the way he's screaming, though, he sounds scared-which I haven't heard out of him before. We see our ped in a week so I'll ask her. Thanks for chiming in!
apricot / 411 posts
Sometimes our LO does this if he awakens and finds himself alone (usually 30-60min after going to bed). At around 6 months, he started getting very upset if we were out of view at any time and this has persisted into his sleep as well. Could you try going into the room just before you think he might wake up in order to soothe him quickly when he does?
cantaloupe / 6171 posts
My lo went through a period around 5 mos of having night terrors-- she'd start scream-crying not long after bed time but wasn't actually awake. We would rock and shush her until she calmed back down.
grapefruit / 4418 posts
My daughter does this randomly. I want to say it first started around 6 months or so. It comes in waves and then passed after a few nights. Never figured out what it was!
wonderful kiwi / 23653 posts
Boo! I don't know if this is it at all but I think sooner or later they start developing separation anxiety too. I'm starting to see it in K where she kinda yells and fuss if we leave her in the jumperoo or something to go into the kitchen/bathroom...
pomegranate / 3127 posts
If he calms down that quickly, it's probably not night terrors, especially if he doesn't seem confused when he wakes up. Maybe it's teeth or separation anxiety... Is it happening more around now? DS woke up like that a few times when the moon was bright - I never quite figured it out, but it seemed like he was freaked out that there's a bright light in the sky but it's still night!
GOLD / papaya / 10166 posts
I think it might be night terrors. DD1 had them early (I can't remember when). When your LO wakes up, does he seem out of it? Like, he keeps screaming even when you hold him?
grapefruit / 4988 posts
Could be a sleep regression, or nightmares. We've gone through this a few times. Luckily, it usually stops after a few days or a week. We're actually in the middle of the 18 month sleep regression and she's been doing something similar. I have no advice except it sounds like you're doing the right thing and hopefully it will just resolve on its own soon (for us, it always just went away as suddenly as it started).
cherry / 127 posts
I'd vote night terrors. DS started getting them around that age and his pediatrician confirmed it. He generally got them when he was overtired (days when he fought a nap) or if he was in a new situation (traveling).
pomelo / 5228 posts
We had this happen last night. Maybe it's night terrors for us? He woke up about 30mins after we put him down, then was shrieking and inconsolable. He kindof even seemed scared of his crib. DH finally brought DS upstairs where I was and once I held him he calmed down, but was still whimpering a bit. Anytime I passed him back to DH he started screaming again, which is odd, because he usually leaps out of my arms to DH when he's home. I think it took an hour and a half or longer to finally get him down (boob), and he still slept poorly all night.
honeydew / 7463 posts
This happened to us a few days before his first two teeth broke through. Almost exactly as you described. It's the only time I've picked him up in the night to comfort because it was a tortured cry. And I know it's controversial, but orajel was a lifesaver at the time.
Once the teeth came through he went back to his normal sleep.
persimmon / 1141 posts
our LO is currently 13 months old and still does this, and did it throughout the first year on a regular basis. she suddenly cries BLOOD CURDLING screams randomly while sleeping. we haven't been able to figure it out but it has become less frequent as she has gotten older. she usually goes to sleep without having to be nursed - it lasts just a few seconds or minutes at most. it's very alarming for me still however!
pear / 1622 posts
We've gone through something similar the past 2 nights. LO is 8 months and wakes up a few hours after we put him down crying like never before and then he seems more unsettled through out the night crying periodically. He doesn't have any teeth yet so I wonder if that is it but he has no temperature.