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Toddler Night Checks - To Wake or Not to Wake

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by DylansMama, Jan 3, 2010.

  1. DylansMama

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    We do not do middle of the night checks every night, but rather a few times a month depending upon how his numbers have been going. Usually, by the time I finish checking, Dylan has usually at least stirred a little, although he's not really with it. Other times, he hasn't awoken at all.

    Last night, he did not wake up when I tested him around midnight. Around 1:30, he came into our bedroom crying and screaming saying that the bad buy dinosaur had grabbed his hand and tried to get him. I don't know for sure if it is related to the testing or not. I tried to explain that I had come in and tested him, but he couldn't get away from the bad guy dinosaur story. Needless to say, we had a full bed last night. This afternoon and tonight, all we have heard are his concerns about the dinosaur coming to get him.

    Just curious if anyone else has run into something similar with small children and how you've handled it. Also, do the majority of you try not to wake your young children for tests? Again, that is the approach we have taken since diagnosis, but it may have backfired here. Any words of advice would be appreciated. Thanks.
     
  2. Christopher

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    I am sure parents with small children will give you some good advice here. But testing at night is a very individual thing. There is no right answer. My opinion is that it is very important to check at night and I have done it multiple times every night for the past 2 years. In the beginning it was very tough because my daughter would wake up screaming and crying and it would be a 15 minute ordeal. As time went on she woke less and less. Now I can check her and she does not even wake up.

    I check her every night because it allows me to correct her when she is high and treat her when she goes low. I would not go 8-10 hours during the day and not check her, so why do that at night?

    Do what feels right for your family and your child and don't compare what you do to anyone else. Good luck...
     
  3. Corinne Masur

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    Night Time Toddler Checks

    If you wake him, is he typically able to go back to sleep fairly quickly? If so, you might want to explain to him during the day about how you have to test him at night and you will wake him up to do so and then he can go right back to sleep.

    If he has a hard time going back to sleep after waking up in the middle of the night then you might want to try talking with him during the day about the fact that sometimes you need to test him in the night. Even tho he is only 2 and 1/2 he will still benefit from your explanation. Then you can play it out with one of his favorite stuffed animals - you and he can put it to bed and then pretend that it needs to have a check in the middle of the night and HAVE YOUR SON do the check. I would try doing this quite a number of times. I think it will help without your having to wake him.
     
  4. Flutterby

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    we test every night, multiple times, since dx four years ago.. she hardly ever wakes, sometimes she pulls her hands away, sometime she sleeps on her hands so I can't get to them, sometimes she puts a hand up for me to test.. I've also been called some choice words in the middle of the night.. if at all possible we try not to wake her unless she needs glucose.
     
  5. StillMamamia

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    From dx (age 2), we've tested overnight fairly often, and usually our son doesn't wake up. Sometimes he'll budge a bit or pull his hand away, but will still be sleeping.

    Are you using the lowest setting on the testing poker?

    Some kids are just light sleepers.

    ETA - sounds like he was having a nightmare. Maybe a nightlight would help or a toy with "powers" to protect him. ;)
     
  6. Kayeecee

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    Have you considered a cgm? Waking my 7 year old up every night to test was getting to be overwhelming for her and for us and it was interrupting her REM sleep. She has to get up at 6:00 for school. With the cgm, we can take a peek and see how she's doing. It's not to be relied on for a spot-on number, but you can watch trends and know when to take action or at least when to keep a closer eye on her.
     
  7. DylansMama

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    He's always used a nightlight. We turned the monitor back on in his room and told him that all he had to do was call us and we would be there and that we would check on him during the night. He's a pretty heavy sleeper, so when we do have to have him eat or drink in the middle of the night it can take a bit to get him awake enough to take anything. It's probably more of a toddler thing than a diabetes thing, but just wondered if anyone else had a similar issue.
     
  8. Leece

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    The last test I usually do is 1130-0000 I know from that number if she is gonna be okay for the rest of the night. I physically cannot wake up in the middle of the night all the time and still function during the day. If I really have to get up I will set another alarm and put it where I cannot reach it otherwise I will not get up. Our day to day routine is pretty much the same. I will only test her again if we had a "different" sorta day. We have not had the nightmare thing yet...
     
  9. mjtjmcouch

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    We used to wake Jeffrey up to test, now we don't, but I do talk him through it sometimes. He doesn't wake up but if he tries to pull his hand away, I just tell him I need to test and he relaxes, waits till he hears the meter beep and pulls his hand away. I'm sure at some level he is waking up, but just enough to know what's going on at the moment and he never remembers it the next day.
     
  10. bbirdnuts@aol.com

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    There are some awesome resposes posted here.

    I test Carolina in the middle of the night. I have only had to treat one low that was (69). She is a hard sleeper and does not want to get up. When she first went on insulin she would fight in her sleep. I would prick her finger and she would pull away, hide her hands, kick, scream, you name it she did it. We have had blood on the face, body, and sheets from her pulling away. She does not wake up anymore when I check her blood sugar. Sometimes she will pull her hand and I say, "honey I need to check your blood sugar", then she relaxes.

    What I am trying to say here is checking blood sugar in the middle of the night has become easier, quickly. Now, Carolina will ask me to make sure I check her in the middle of the night and often we will talk about when I will be checking. She always asks the next morning what her blood sugar was throughout the night.

    You have to decide whether or not to check in the middle of the night and what works best for you and your family. The few times I have slept through the alarm clock, I have felt terrible. Not just one clock, but two (two of the loudest I could find).

    I need a different plan to not let that happen again.
    I only feel comfortable checking. It is not easy to break your sleep to get up and check. For me it is peace of mind, so when I can sleep, I do sleep.
     
  11. Heather(CA)

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    Seth didn't have bad dreams about getting tested, but he does have a history of having bad dreams. Two things worked for us. When he was little in your situation I would have told him in no uncertain terms not to worry, I would have said something like, "It's ok, I was just testing you, Mommy doesn't allow bad guy dinosaurs in the house" Say it not like your mad at him, but that you mean business towards the dinosaur kwim? When he got older, it worked to pray for only happy dreams. Worked like a charm:D
     
  12. Spongy

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    We check every night at 1am and 3am (hopefully not for too much longer!) Liam doesn't usually wake but I'll talk to him and tell him what I'm doing. He's used to it by now but I imagine if we weren't doing it every night he would freak out.

    We did deal with him being "scared of the whole room" a few months back and he was inconsolable so we got him a new special teddy and told him he had a guardian angel keeping him safe - but I'm not sure if that's helpful for your situation!
     
  13. RosemaryCinNJ

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    I test while mine is sleeping, I do NOT wake her for it..she usually does not even stir...Of course if she was headed towards a low you have to wake..but other than that...no..let them sleep.
     
  14. Toni

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    That is heartbreaking. I wonder if you could use the Pelikan (very pricey) lancets or order the Tiniboy lancets that are much less painful. Just saw them mentioned recently on a thread here. After the first two weeks, E was completely oblivious. I suppose I would keep explaining to him when I was about to check and hope that he would get used to it after a while. Have had no luck with forearm testing, but maybe that would be less painful. For us it has never been an option not to test overnight.
     
  15. Beach bum

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    We've been doing this 4.5 years now and have always done night checks. Abby has a history of having very vivid, scary dreams when bg's are high. We always make sure we tell her we are checking her sugar. She does sense it, she has said she remembers us coming in checking her.

    So, maybe try telling him softly it's ok, I'm just going to check your sugar. Do what you need to do, and then make sure to kiss the finger! This is what always worked well for us.
     
  16. tom_ethansdad

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    Even though it sounds like the check might have kicked in the nightmare, I would address the issues separately since he may have other nightmares that are not triggered by anything you do.

    As far as nighttime checks, we do not wake Ethan, check him pretty much every night, and haven't had a problem.

    Small children having nightmares is fairly normal. Of my three older children, Ethan is the only one who hasn't complained of nightmares (yet). My oldest son would sometimes wake up screaming and crying at night due to bad dreams. He used several stuffed animals to "guard" him at night and that helped a lot. My next one uses a big fuzzy blanket and wraps herself in it. For both I have explained to them that bad dreams are not real and that they can, if they want, control their thoughts. I encourage them that whenever they have a bad dream that wakes them, to think of happy things. The first few times with this I would lay in their bed with them and would describe various happy things that I knew they had experienced recently - a new toy, playing with a friend, visiting Grandma, etc. They would soon be fast asleep. Having gone through that exercise a few times now I just remind them to think happy thoughts as I tuck them back into bed and that's it.

    I would suggest try offering a "guard" in the form of a stuffed animal or similar and help him work through learning that bad dreams aren't real and that he can with practice control his thoughts (which may take several occurrences).
     
  17. Beach bum

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    We have this too and it helps a lot. Maddy has a very large stuffed tiger and Abby has an "army" of stuffies at the end of her bed. This strategy definitely helps!
     
  18. angiej

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    Here's what we do; I try not to wake Alice, and many many nights she sleeps soundly through, but every now and then she will stir a little - on those occasions, I use a calm and low voice simply explaining what is happening 'just doing a blood test honey, you can stay asleep ' etc, and then assuming I do not need to treat a low, I would say 'levels are perfect, back to sleep now' (even if she is already asleep!)

    I find that talking calmly about my actions (even to a sleeping child) have stopped the random blood test related dreams that can happen.
     
  19. Logansmom

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    Logan will be 3 in a couple of weeks. We check him every single night at 230am. We check him more often if his numbers are off. 75% of the time we check him at 1100p as well. We do have a CGM but sometimes he sleeps on it and numbers are off. We always feel better safe than sorry and check

    He sometimes wakes for it, sometimes not. If he does he usually wants a drink. We get it for him. He drinks it and goes back to sleep. That said, the kid is used to it, we have never had a night where we don't test.
     

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