Baby sleep essentials from Birth to 3 months of age
As is common knowledge, newborn babies sleep a lot — normally around 16 to 17 hours per day. However, most babies won’t stay asleep for more than two to four hours at a time, especially during the first few weeks of life.
Consequently, as parent, the irregularity of your baby’s sleep patterns are unpredictable. So the first realization that we must come to is that newborns sleep patterns are often unpredictable.
Why is this?
Babies often have much shorter sleep cycles than adults because babies spend more time in REM sleep, which is thought to be necessary for development happening in the brain.
When will my baby start to sleep longer?
Your baby will most likely not begin to sleep for longer periods at night until 6 to 8 weeks of age. This will mean that most of their REM sleep will occur at night and less during the day.
How can I get my baby to establish good sleeping habits?
- Allow your baby to nap frequently
- Help to teach your baby the difference between day and night by interacting and playing with them during the day but not at night
- Look for signs that your baby is tired
- Create a nightime-bedtime routine for your baby such as changing your baby for bed, singing a lullaby, and giving your baby a kiss goodnight
It may seem stressful at first to have your baby up during random hours of the night but do not fret, this will not be permanent. Rather, a babies irregular sleep schedule during the first 6 weeks after birth is an important part of your babies development.