When a mother sees her baby sleeping all day and up during most hours of the night, she wonders whether it is normal. She is concerned about her child getting the right amount of sleep and questions the erratic sleep patterns.
If you’re a new mom, there is no need to worry about the way your child sleeps. Babies are known to be night owls. The only problem is you may, without an option, have to endure a few weeks of sleepless nights.
This article sheds light on the topic- baby sleep.
How much sleep does your baby need?
During 3 months after birth, according to (sleepfoundation.org), babies sleep almost 14 to 17 hours, while 4-11 months old baby sleeps around 12-15 hours a day on an average. This is not fixed and may be more or less in some infants. Doctors state that it is normal for a baby to sleep even 20 hours a day. The sleep period decline as the baby grows older.
A newborn baby -recommended- should gets at least 15 hours of sleep.
Why baby sleeping so much?
- Proper and adequate sleep is considered necessary for the baby’s development, especially the brain. The secretion of the growth hormones by the pituitary gland is faster when the baby is asleep.
- Growth spurts characterize the first few months of the baby. It gets tiring, and the body needs rest.
- Another reason why your baby sleeps so much is that it is still adjusting to the new environment. They have even not learned to distinguish between night and day.
- Eating also puts your baby back to sleep. The very act of feeding, whether it involves suckling at the mother’s breast or bottle, uses up your baby’s pent up energy. In order to regain its energy, it goes back to sleep.
How can new parents cope with irregular baby sleep patterns?
Babies have their nights and days wholly reversed for the first few weeks. They sleep during the day for long hours and are wide awake at night, either demanding food or simply kicking their legs happily. However, this could be very exhaustive for the parents.
A solution is to sleep when your baby sleeps. This way, your body gets rested, and you won’t feel tired and sluggish the next day. This phase is only temporary. Within a month and a half, your baby with adapting to the day-night schedule you follow.
(Tips : how to get your baby to sleep at night ?)
Interesting facts about baby sleep
How many times have you tiptoed into the bedroom while your newborn baby was asleep or spoke in hushed tones fearing the baby would get up? You turned off the lights to create the best sleeping atmosphere for your baby.
The fact is babies can sleep in the brightest and noisiest surroundings in the first few weeks after birth. They are accustomed to loud sounds in the mother’s uterus, including her heartbeat, the whooshing of her blood, and the rumbles of her digestive tract.
Babies have individual sleep patterns. Some will sleep sound while some will toss and turn in their sleep. Selected babies sleep throughout the night, and some wake up after intervals of 3-4 hours for their feed.
Your baby loves to curl and sleep with his hands and knees tucked under his body. But the best sleeping position for a baby is on its back. Besides, the toys, pillows, and blankest you use to comfort your baby need to be removed to ensure your baby breathes well.
So, a note to all new mothers- As long as your baby is comfortable, happy, eating, sleeping, and waking up for more, there is no need to worry.