Sleeping FAQ: 4-6 months – Lunchtime Nap

Rolling over is causing my 18 week old to wake at lunchtime

My son of 18 weeks can now roll over onto his tummy and wants to practice at every opportunity. He refuses to sleep on his back (which was, initially, very worrying until I spoke to the Health Visitor) and, if put into his cot bed on his back, he will roll onto his front, even when half asleep or completely asleep. He is also trying to crawl and has learnt how to manoeuvre himself around his cot; including moving up and down, swapping ends or lying transversely! The trouble is that he often gets stuck and/or becomes frustrated and cries out! I suspect that this is one of the reasons why he is waking at lunchtime. I have tried a sheet over his sleeping bag and tucking the end of the sleeping bag under the mattress but my son is a very strong and determined baby! Is there anything else we can do?

Many babies will sleep in the most uncomfortable looking positions and move around their cots a great deal. If your son does cry out in the night and you suspect it is because he has got himself stuck, give a few minutes before going in as a lot of babies will move themselves again whilst still asleep. If he sleeps on his front and your Health Visitor has told you that it is allright to do so, let him settle himself to sleep in his favoured position. Providing he is able to roll back onto his back with ease, he should get himself out of any tricky positions. Rushing in too quickly could cause him to start becoming dependent on you to settle him back to sleep.
Some mothers decide to pad the head and sides of their cots either with bumpers or better still towels or blankets which have been rolled up and pushed down well between the side of the mattress and the cot sides. This should protect his head a little and help prevent him getting too “stuck”.
Now he is moving around so much it would be better to put him in a warmer sleeping bag (2.0 tog) and remove any bedding such as sheets to prevent him from becoming tangled.