Babies sleep, babies feed, and then they sleep again. It seems that that’s all they ever do, right? Well, that’s just normal for they need all the sleep that they can get for their overall development. But what we should be wary of is that their sleep should have a specific pattern or schedule as much as possible.
We need to make sure that if they sleep, they sleep the right way. This is not in any way being strict or being the authoritative parent at all, but having a good sleeping schedule will help your child in the long run and you as parents at the same time. Here are baby sleep patterns by age.
What Is The Normal (And Recommended) Sleeping Pattern Of Babies?
We’re going to as much as possible give you a glimpse of what a baby’s sleep pattern would naturally look like from newborn to about 12 months old. The key thing to remember here is that as your baby grows a little bit older, they will need or tend to sleep less and eventually get to a point where it will be easier to make them sleep at night as you do, so it’s less tiring.
But until then, experts agree that the most challenging phase would be when your baby is less than 2 months old. So from the time they were born to about a couple of months, it would be close to impossible to control their sleeping patterns or schedule.
Newborns will sleep for about 14 hours to 19 hours a day and will wake up every couple of hours for them to feed. They will feed often and part of that is due to breastmilk being easily digested but those who are bottle-fed will feed less often.
Take note that babies who tend to sleep longer should be woken up every 3 to 4 hours so they can feed up until they gain their weight after a couple of weeks. It should be fine to let your baby sleep on longer stretches at nighttime.
At about 2 to 3 months they should develop a sense of night and day and there’s a possibility that they will sleep more at night which is good. At 3 to 6 months old, babies will sleep less at around 12 to 15 hours a day and will have longer sleep cycles.
Within 6 to 12 months old, babies will soon know how to keep themselves awake, will sleep much longer during nighttime, and will only have naps during the day of about 2 to 3 hours.
Here Are Some Tips To Help Babies Sleep Better
Remember, all babies are different, and don’t get too anxious right away if they don’t sleep the same way as what you’ve read. Know when to contact your doctor about it.
Learn The Signs
The first thing that you got to do to get your baby to sleep well is to know the signs that it’s time for them to doze off. Did you know that an overly tired baby will have a hard time staying asleep?
Yep, read the signs, when they are yawning, rubbing their eyes, and fussing, then it’s time to put them to bed.
Help Them Set Their Day-Night Cycle
As parents or guardians, we need to be their guide. After they’ve gained their weight, it’s time to help them set their sleeping patterns. Try to stimulate them or keep them active during the day (but not too much of course) and as much as possible make nighttime conducive for sleeping for them.
Feeding Is Not For Sleeping
One of the biggest mistakes new parents do is that they tend to associate feeding with their child’s sleeping at the same time. While that may sound natural, it will hurt in the long run.
You cannot allow your child to associate feeding time with sleeping time as they will have problems sleeping on their own later on. Once again, stimulate them appropriately when it’s not yet time to sleep.
Instead, try some other methods to serve as their signal for sleeping. Bathe them, sing to them, or any other activity that could be a part of their sleeping ritual.
This is how to help them get to sleep on a regular pattern or schedule. In turn, this will also help you as an adult get some sleep time yourself.
When Is The Right Time To Start A Sleep Schedule For Your Baby?
After your baby turns about 2 months old, they will also develop a body clock, you will have a sense of both your routines, and they will recognize day from night (almost), so this is the perfect time to start some sort of a sleeping schedule not just for them but also for you.
Should We Be Concerned About Our Babies’ Sleeping Patterns?
If you’re too concerned that your baby is not getting the sleep that they need or they are steering away from what is normal then try to track it down so you’ll have peace of mind.
Try to keep a journal, as challenging as that may be due to your other responsibilities but, it should help you know the progress of your baby’s sleep patterns.
Does A Baby’s Sleeping Pattern Affect Us Grownups?
Most definitely it does. While we sleep for different reasons as compared to our baby, as adults we need a good amount of it too. We sleep so our bodies may recover from the wear and tear of daily life.
With an insufficient amount of sleep for long periods, our mood will be affected, our cognitive functions will be affected, and so our productivity will definitely be affected too.
We need to take care of ourselves as much as we take care of our babies. That’s why it’s a task for two persons, being parents, and if you need help, go get some. You shouldn’t carry on this task alone. It’s rewarding but you will need some help.