You might think this post is about you, based on the title, but no, it's about Paola's kid. She writes:
"So, my second boy, who is 10 months today, has for the past months, off and on, but mostly on, been waking up around midnight screaming murder. It usually takes him about an hour to settle him down but sometimes as long as two hours.
At first I thought it was teething pain or an earache but his teeth have broken through and he doesn't have an earache. I no longer think he is in physical pain because neither motrin/tylenol help. I should also mention he had reflux, for which he received medication for about 6 months but I believe its under control now. he also doesn't appear to be in pain during the day.
Any ideas of what it could be? Any insight would be appreciated."
Does this sound like night terrors? I feel like I have a blind spot for night terrors similar to my blind spot for the slope formula. Like, I can tell you that y = mx + b, but every time I want to graph something I have to walk through what actually goes where. (This is why I didn't do so well in MBA Econ until we got to Game Theory.)
Anyway, I feel like every time we talk about night terrors I'm all "Ohhhhh, yeahhhh..." as my mind slowly grinds around it, in a way that never happens when we're talking about pacifiers or teething or tension increasing/releasing or tantrums or navigating fifth grade friendships.
But the fact that neither Tylenol nor Motrin is doing anything to stop the screaming makes me think it's not physical pain. Otherwise I'd say that if it's at a certain time every night, check what he's eating or when, and see if that's it. (One of my kids went through a period of waking up screaming at the same time every night for a week, and then I realized he'd been eating ketchup at 7 pm all of those days and it was probably the acid. Stopped the tomato products that late and the waking went away. 1. Duh, and 2. Ronald Reagan said ketchup is a vegetable so it's between me and God.)
So I think this leaves us with night terrors, right? Fortunately, the last time we talked about night terrors, commenter Melinda cracked it for us (inasmuch as there's no actual real way to prevent it):
"Night terrors are related to sleep walking and there is a genetic component. If others in your family have walked in their sleep you are more likely to have children who do the same and/or have night terrors. It does not have to do with dreaming but something to do with changing from one sleep stage to another. They usually occur around one hour from going to sleep. The best advice I've seen is to rouse the baby/child before the normal time the terror happens. In older kids you can have them use the bathroom. For the little ones maybe just pick them up. They won't usually wake up fully but it will be enough to disrupt the terror.My oldest (now 8) have them from around 3 to 5 and I did not know the above until the end. Boy do they suck!"
So if it is night terrors, maybe waking him right before he usually wakes will help.
If it's not night terrors, I'm not sure what it is, since you've ruled out the physical stuff.
What do you all think, readers? What am I missing, or does this sound like night terrors?