When Do Babies Start Sleeping Through the Night? Tips to Improve Sleep Habits

When Do Babies Start Sleeping Through the Night? Tips to Improve Sleep Habits - 4aKid

When Do Babies Start Sleeping Through the Night: A Guide for New Parents

As a new parent, your baby's sleep habits (or lack thereof) might have you feeling like a zombie. But don't worry; a full night's sleep is on its way. In this article, we'll take a closer look at when babies start sleeping through the night and what it means for their physical and cognitive development. We'll also share some tips on how to help your baby sleep better.

Sleep Needs for Babies

Babies' sleep needs vary depending on their age. Newborns do sleep a lot, but their sleep is in very short segments. As a baby grows, the total amount of sleep slowly decreases, but the length of nighttime sleep increases.

Generally, newborns sleep about 8 to 9 hours in the daytime and about 8 hours at night. However, they may not sleep more than 1 to 2 hours at a time. Most babies don't start sleeping through the night (6 to 8 hours) without waking until they are about 3 months old or until they weigh 12 to 13 pounds. About two-thirds of babies are able to sleep through the night on a regular basis by age 6 months.

Importance of Good Sleep for Babies

"Babies need good 'sleep nutrition' -- both the right amount and the right quality of sleep -- for optimal physical, cognitive, and emotional development," says Jennifer Waldburger, M.S.W., co-creator of The Sleepeasy Solution book and DVD. When and how your baby will achieve good sleep nutrition depends on a lot -- their age, weight, temperament, environment, and your family's routine.

Sleep Cycles for Babies

Babies also have different sleep cycles than adults. Babies spend much less time in rapid eye movement (REM) sleep (which is dream time sleep). And the cycles are shorter. The following are the usual nighttime and daytime sleep needs for newborns through 2 years old:

Signs of Infant Sleep Problems

Once a baby begins to regularly sleep through the night, parents are often unhappy when the baby starts to wake up at night again. This often happens at about 6 months old. This is often a normal part of development called separation anxiety. This is when a baby does not understand that separations are short-term (temporary). Babies may also start to have trouble going to sleep because of separation anxiety, or because they are overstimulated or overtired.

Common responses of babies having these night awakenings or trouble going to sleep may include the following:

  • Waking and crying one or more times in the night after sleeping through the night
  • Crying when you leave the room
  • Refusing to go to sleep without a parent nearby
  • Clinging to the parent at separation

Sleep Problems Due to Illness

Sleep problems may also happen with illness. Talk with your baby's healthcare provider if your baby begins having trouble going to sleep or staying asleep, especially if this is a new pattern.

Signs of Sleep Readiness

You can help your baby sleep by recognizing signs of sleep readiness, teaching them to fall asleep on their own, and comforting them with awakenings. Your baby may show signs of being ready for sleep by:

  • Rubbing eyes
  • Yawning
  • Looking away
  • Fussing

How to Help Your Baby Fall Asleep

Babies may not be able to create their own sleeping and waking patterns. Not all babies know how to put themselves to sleep, and not all babies can go back to sleep if they are awakened in the night. When it is time for bed, many parents want to rock or breastfeed a baby to help them fall asleep. Creating a bedtime routine is a good idea, but don't let your baby


Blog categories

This section doesn’t currently include any content. Add content to this section using the sidebar.

Recent Post

This section doesn’t currently include any content. Add content to this section using the sidebar.

Blog tags