When can my baby sleep through night without feeding

How long should a baby sleep at night without eating?

Photo credit: iStock.com / AleksandarNakic

Most babies are able to sleep through the night – or sleep for at least six hours without waking up to eat – sometime between 3 to 6 months of age. Healthy babies who are born full-term are generally able to sleep through the night without a feeding starting at 3 months of age or when they weigh 12 to 13 pounds. However, babies' sleep cycles only become consistent and predictable around the time they're 6 months old.

Just because babies are technically able to go through the night without a feeding, however, doesn't mean they will. Night wakings can happen for many other reasons, including separation anxiety, an inability to self-soothe back to sleep, sleep regressions, teething, and bed-sharing.

If your baby doesn't start sleeping through the night without a feeding between 4 to 6 months of age, you can try night weaning. There are lots of different sleep training methods, from the cry-it-out method to the fading method. Learn about your options (BabyCenter's virtual course, Baby Sleep 101, can help) and choose one that feels right for you and your baby.

How long should a newborn sleep at night without eating?

Newborns generally sleep for two to three hours before waking to eat, day and night. As they get older, babies are usually able to sleep for increasingly longer stretches of time at night without waking to eat.

Between the age of 2 to 3 months old, healthy babies are often able to sleep for six hours without feeding. Research suggests that about half of babies are able to sleep at least six hours without a nighttime feed by 3 months of age. That rate rises to 62 percent by 6 months of age and 72 percent by 12 months of age, according to the National Sleep Foundation.

So how can you prepare your baby to sleep longer periods at night without eating? Start healthy sleep habits early. Help your newborn learn to fall asleep on their own by following a bedtime routine, putting them to bed when they're sleepy but still awake, and waiting for a few minutes to respond to their fussing when they do wake at night. Although your baby may still need to be fed during the night for some time, these tactics help them learn to nod back off without the help of your breast, arms, or a bottle.

If your baby was premature or has other health considerations such as digestive problems or failure to gain weight, be sure to discuss their feeding schedule with their doctor before making changes.

Should you wake a sleeping baby to feed?

For the first one to two weeks of life – or until your newborn regains the weight they lost after birth – it's important that they wake up to eat about every two to three hours. Newborns usually do this on their own, but occasionally will sleep for longer. If your baby does sleep for a stretch of more than four hours during this period, wake them to eat.

After the first couple of weeks, when babies surpass their birth weight, most healthy babies don't need to be woken to eat as long as they're growing and feeding well. That means they're gaining weight as expected and producing at least four wet diapers and three poopy diapers per day. Talk to your doctor if you're concerned about your baby's growth or feeding habits.

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What if my baby won't wake up to eat?

If your baby is healthy, has passed their birth weight, and is feeding and growing steadily, you usually don't need to wake them to feed. Unless their doctor tells you otherwise, let your baby sleep – they'll let you know when they need to eat!

If, however, your baby hasn't yet surpassed their birth weight, or if they were premature or aren't growing as expected, you do need to rouse them to eat anytime they sleep for more than four hours straight.

Know that newborns sometimes have a hard time waking up to eat for the first few days, especially if:

  • they're small
  • they have jaundice
  • you had a difficult labor
  • you had an epidural or other pain reliever during birth

If your baby is lethargic and uninterested in eating, these tips can help a groggy baby wake to feed:

  • Look for signs that they're in a light sleep cycle, which include flutters under closed eyelids, arm and leg movements, and sucking movements.
  • Be sure the room is cool (around 18 C or 65 F) and your baby isn't overdressed, since being too warm makes babies sleepier.
  • Try skin-to-skin contact and/or a laid-back breastfeeding position, which can encourage feeding.

Premature babies have unique nutritional needs and may not show hunger signs like crying.

If your baby is premature, or if you're concerned about your baby's weight gain or feeding patterns, talk to their doctor about how to ensure your baby is getting enough to eat.

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Colleen de Bellefonds

Colleen de Bellefonds is a freelance health and lifestyle journalist. She's raising her toddler daughter and newborn son with her French husband in Paris.

When do babies sleep through the night?

Sleepless nights are common in new parenthood, but they do not last forever. Most babies will begin to sleep for longer periods at night from the age of 6 months old.

Newborn babies need to feed every few hours until the age of 3 months. After this, it is normal for infants to feed once or twice during the night.

Most infants can sleep for 6–8 hours without a feed by the age of 6 months. Once they are 9 months old, most infants can sleep for 11–12 hours without a feed.

It can be helpful to start to create a routine for bedtime and feeds early. Remember that every infant is different, so be as flexible as possible.

This article will discuss when babies start to sleep through the night and the sleep duration that is normal at each age.

Newborn babies tend to sleep for 1–4 hours at a time. They will sleep and wake during the day and at night. Most newborns need around 17 hours of sleep in a 24-hour period.

After establishing feedings, a newborn will wake up when hungry and need regular feeds. This spaces out the calories they need and helps them gain weight and grow.

Most infants will begin to develop more regular sleep patterns by the age of 6–8 weeks. They will connect short sleeps into a longer period of sleep.

It takes time for an infant to learn the difference between night and day. By the time they are 4 months old, however, most infants will sleep for twice as long at night as they do during the day.

Sleeping through the night usually means sleeping for 6 hours or more overnight. An infant may wake briefly for a feed and go back to sleep afterward, but this still counts as sleeping through.

It is common for an infant to begin sleeping through the night and then stop. This may be because they are adjusting to new growth or development.

Until they are around 4–6 months old, most infants will need at least one nighttime feed, but they are usually able to go back to sleep afterward. By 9 months, an infant may be able to sleep for up to 11–12 hours without a feed.

Every infant is different, and many things can prevent them from sleeping through the night.

Every infant will need a slightly different amount of sleep, which will change as they grow and develop. Guidelines can help predict how much a newborn or infant may sleep.

For example, the National Sleep Foundation give the following recommendations:

AgeRecommended hours of sleep
0–3 months14–17 hours
4–12 months12–15 hours
1–2 years11–14 hours

These figures are for a 24-hour period. Most infants and young children will need naps during the day as well as sleep at night.

Every infant is different, and they may not fit neatly into one of these categories. Differences in weight, development, and personality are common, and all of these factors can affect an infant’s sleep.

Most newborn babies cannot go a whole night without feeding. Until they are 3 months old, they may wake often during the night. This may not be at regular intervals, and the pattern is likely to change as an infant grows and develops.

Formula-fed infants often sleep for longer stretches of time and may wake less often at night. This may be because formula takes longer to digest. Overall, however, breastfed and formula-fed infants will sleep for the same amount of time during a 24-hour period.

An infant aged 3 months or older will usually need at least one feed during the night until around 6 months of age. At this point, they may still be settling into the routine of day and night.

Infants aged 3–6 months may associate a feed with sleep. Feeding an infant to sleep can make it harder for them to fall asleep on their own. In time, they may only be able to go to sleep if they have a feed. This can prevent them from sleeping through the night.

Immediate problems that can prevent an infant from sleeping include:

  • being too hot or too cold
  • illness
  • adjustments during growth, such as hunger or sleep requirements

Most of these issues should not last longer than a few days, however.

It is common for infants to start sleeping through the night and then begin to wake again. This is sometimes known as sleep regression.

Sleep regression can occur when development speeds up. It can also occur when the infant’s sleep needs change.

Sleep regression can last for days or weeks, but parents and caregivers can usually address the causes of this.

When an infant reaches 3–4 months of age, they may sleep less during the day and longer at night.

An infant should sleep in the same room as a parent or caregiver until they are at least 6 months old. They should sleep on their back and be able to move freely.

The following tips can help an infant learn to sleep through the night:

  • Prevent the infant from becoming overtired: Look for signs that the infant is getting sleepy. Signs can include drooping eyelids, slow movements, yawning, and rubbing the eyes. Taking naps during the day can help stop an infant from becoming overtired by bedtime.
  • Keep a distinction between night and day: This helps the infant learn that nighttime is for sleeping. In the evening, dim the lights, use blackout curtains, keep noise to a minimum, and speak softly.
  • Keep a consistent bedtime: This can help create a routine.
  • Create a simple, relaxing bedtime routine: This could include a bath, a short massage, a story, or gentle music. Most infants will learn to link a bedtime routine to sleep.
  • Connect a bed with sleeping: If the infant always falls asleep being held or fed, they may link this to sleep and not be able to fall asleep in bed.


When an infant reaches 3 months of age, aim to create a feeding schedule. Try to stick to this schedule, so that the infant adapts and learns to fall asleep without a feed.

It is also a good idea to feed the infant, then put them to bed — sleepy but awake — soon after. Feeding the infant close to bedtime can help prevent them from getting hungry and waking soon after going to sleep.

Slowly reduce nighttime feeds to help the infant sleep for longer periods at night. A parent or caregiver can do this by:

  • gradually leaving longer between feeds
  • feeding for a shorter period
  • calming the infant in their bed when they wake, instead of automatically feeding them

Try to have them not fall asleep while feeding. If they wake in the night, it is less disruptive if they can go back to sleep without a feed.

If an infant is not regularly sleeping through the night by the time they are 6 months old, it may be best to seek a doctor’s advice. Although it is unlikely that anything is wrong, the doctor will check the infant’s health and be able to offer support.

Lack of sleep can be very challenging for parents and caregivers. Try to set good habits early, but be flexible and make changes to routines if needed. Try to rest or nap during the day if possible.

Most infants will be able to sleep through the night with one or two feeds by the time they are 6 months old.

However, every infant is different and will have their own pattern of sleeping. These sleeping habits will change as they grow and develop.

Creating a bedtime routine and feeding schedule can help. Expect some changes to this routine as they learn new skills and start teething.

When will my child start sleeping at night without waking up?

Interest in the world beyond the crib

When the baby starts sleeping at night without waking up is a very individual question. By responding to the needs of the child, parents can help promote healthy sleep for the child.

Starting at about 6 months old, children no longer need nighttime feedings, as at this age the rhythm of hunger and satiety in a healthy child stops at daytime. Brief awakenings at night are quite normal. Ideally, babies fall asleep quickly and on their own again.

Awakenings can have many causes

Note that waking up or crying at night can have many causes. Along with hunger, thirst, and a wet diaper, there are occasional periods (teething, infections, or an eventful day) when the baby changes his habits: wakes up, babbles, or again asks for a breast or a bottle. Some babies cry when they need attention and care, or when they need to relieve some stress. Unfortunately, there are no guarantees for an uninterrupted night's sleep for your baby. It also happens that the baby, who until now slept well and did not wake up at night, suddenly starts waking up again at night. Basically, it's just a temporary thing.

A regular daily routine is very important

A regular daily routine is important with regular meals, sleep duration and other activities such as walking. Repetitive rituals such as bathing, feeding, evening fairy tale, lullaby, as well as a calm atomosphere always have a calming effect.

Patience Needed

Don't lose patience if your child doesn't find his sleep rhythm right away. Miracles do not happen! You cannot control your child's sleep. However, you can help your child develop a regular rhythm by ensuring healthy sleep. Do not be discouraged if other children have allegedly been sleeping at night for a long time without waking up. This concept is relative, because, as for infants, we can talk about continuous night sleep even if they sleep from midnight to 5-6 in the morning. Parents of young children, as a rule, should tune in to the fact that in the first 3-4 years of a baby's life, their nights will be restless.

Learn more: Tips

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What to do if the child does not sleep at night? Top consultant recommendations



Most parents are looking forward to when they can put the baby to sleep at night and he will sleep until the morning without waking up. Pediatricians and sleep consultants say that this is possible as early as 8-12 months. But why, even after a year, a child often still wakes up in the middle of the night and cannot fall asleep?

Let's see why this happens and what can be done at every age!

Article content:

  • How many hours of sleep does a child need at night at each age
    • 0-3 months
    • 3-6 months
    • 6-12 months
    • 1-2 years
    • 2-4 years
  • What threatens frequent night awakenings
  • Why is it important to improve night sleep
  • Causes of poor sleep
    • Why the newborn does not sleep
    • Why the baby does not sleep 3-6 months
    • 6-12 months
    • 1-2 years
    • 2-4 years
  • Frequent crying at night
    • 0-3 months
    • 4 months-2 years
  • How to get a good night's sleep
    • What to do if the child does not sleep at any age
    • 0-3 months
    • 3-6 months
    • 6-12 months
    • 1-2 years
    • 2-4 years
  • How to make laying easier
  • Common mistakes of parents
  • When to ask for help
  • Tips for getting enough sleep for mom

Sleep periods at night in a child up to four years: normal mode

0-3 months

Infants from 0 to 3 months sleep 30-50 minutes at night, passing through the stage of light and deep sleep. At this age, superficial sleep prevails over deep sleep. The baby wakes up after the end of one sleep cycle and often needs help to fall back asleep.

3-6 months

By 3 months, the beginnings of a pattern of sleep and wakefulness appear. Children sleep up to 3-4 hours in a row at night. This reduces the number of awakenings.

6-12 months

By 6 months, the baby is already sleeping the longest stretches of sleep without waking up at night. Bedding for the night falls on the time from 18:00 to 20:00. It takes less than 30 minutes for a baby to fall asleep. Provided that there are no problems with sleep and the child is not overtired. At night, the child can sleep up to 6 hours. Sometimes more.

Almost two-thirds of children wake up only once at night to feed. But there are also babies who still wake up about 3-4 times.

1-2 years

After a year, children can already sleep peacefully all night and do not need additional feedings if the diet is adjusted and there is no food-sleep association.

2-4 years

At this age, night sleep is already stable.

In the first hours after bedtime, children sleep in a deep sleep phase. Therefore, it is difficult to wake them up. In the second half of the night, babies sleep more superficially and shallow sleep. At this time, the child is easier to wake up, night awakenings occur more often during this period.

But if the baby has problems with sleep, then even in the first half of the night he may wake up often.

The sleep cycle lengthens as the child grows. By the age of 3, it reaches 60 minutes. By the age of 5, the sleep cycle in children is the same as in adults - 90 minutes.

Frequent nighttime awakenings - is this normal?

As can be seen from the description of sleep patterns at night, frequent awakenings may be normal in the first year of life. Therefore, here it is worth talking about the number and causes of awakenings and looking at the age of the child in order to understand whether it is necessary to wait out or whether it is worth working on sleep. If the baby wakes up too often for his age, sleep is fragmented, its quality worsens, the deep sleep phase is reduced.

Why is this important? Superficial sleep is responsible for the development of the brain. Deep - for physical recovery, restoration of tissues, muscles and the nervous system.

If a child sleeps short dreams and does not sleep at night, this affects his health and development:

  • his mood worsens;
  • activity decreases during wakefulness;
  • there is a tremor of the limbs;
  • muscles weaken;
  • growth slows down;
  • there are problems with nutrition.

How much sleep should a child sleep at night?

Check the Sleep & Wake Chart to see if your baby is getting enough sleep.

Benefits of a night's sleep for a child

Along with nutrition, sleep plays an important role in a child's development.

During sleep, a number of processes occur in the body

  1. The child's brain matures and information is consolidated. Several studies have shown that children who sleep well and longer at night are better at learning and remembering information.
  2. Toddlers who sleep longer at night are less moody during the day, easier to negotiate with and better able to adapt to changing events while awake. Such children more easily survive separation from their mother and are more willing to stay with a nanny or grandmother at home without her.
  3. Lack of sleep negatively affects growth hormone. Since this hormone is produced during rest, a child who sleeps poorly grows more slowly. Also, lack of sleep affects the weight of the child if there is a malfunction of the hormone leptin, which is responsible for the feeling of satiety. The baby will eat, even after saturation.
  4. When children lack sleep, coordination is disturbed, which leads to numerous injuries - the child falls more often, stumbles on level ground.

Why does the child sleep badly at night?

Children's sleep at night is affected by 3 main factors: physical, physiological-emotional and sleep habits.

Why the newborn does not sleep

  • Until 2-3 months old, many newborns can sleep in any conditions. But there are more sensitive children who react sharply to the atmosphere around. In this case, the child's sleep can be affected by temperature, humidity, extraneous sounds around and lighting during falling asleep and sleeping.
  • Overwork is the most common reason why a newborn does not sleep well. Up to 3 months, the baby is able to stay awake for no more than 45-75 minutes. The younger the baby, the less he spends time actively. Now even an extra 5 minutes can lead to excessive fatigue, which will complicate bedding and make sleep more sensitive.
  • Strong overexcitation. Babies are born with an immature nervous system and they need time to adapt to the new world. Therefore, a newborn is easily overexcited with excessive noise, long hours of being awake, and new people around. It is difficult for the baby to process all the new information and he needs quiet time to calm down and relax.
  • Confusion of day and night. During pregnancy, the rhythms of the baby's sleep are closely related to the movements of the mother. When she is awake and moving, her movements lull the baby to sleep. And when she goes to bed, the baby often wakes up and is ready to play. Babies also rely on maternal hormones, especially melatonin, to help them sleep. After birth, the baby has to adapt and rely on its own internal clock, which "tells" him when to sleep and when to be awake. But the circadian rhythms of the newborn are not yet formed. Therefore, the baby can sleep more during the day than at night.
  • Health problems: colic, allergies, dermatitis, colds.

Why the baby does not sleep (3-6 months)

  1. Sleep regression in 4 months. This is the most significant regression. The child develops circadian rhythms and begins to sleep according to the adult scenario. During regression, the baby often wakes up at night and cannot fall asleep again.
    Sleep regression can begin at 3. 5 months or, conversely, a little later than 4 months. It lasts from two to four weeks.
  2. Nutrition. Does hunger cause frequent nighttime rises?
    By 4 months, the baby may form a habit of eating and sleeping, if before that the mother gave a breast or a bottle every time so that he fell asleep, and fed until he fell asleep completely.
    And if you form a habit in a child to eat often at night, it really wakes him up to eat. However, this does not mean that the baby is hungry at night. He doesn't know how to sleep differently.
  3. Inappropriate mode, which causes the accumulation of overwork. For example, with too short daytime naps, not enough daytime naps, staying awake for too long, and leaving late at night. With chronic overindulgence, the level of the stress hormone cortisol inevitably rises in a child, which has a cumulative effect. Due to the action of cortisol and its partner adrenaline, the sleep cycle is reduced, the child begins to sleep mostly in superficial sleep. Gradually, if the mother does not work with overwork, the child enters the phase of superficial sleep and wakes up without going into deep sleep. Over time, the baby sleeps only superficially. And a dream of 20 minutes, no more, which is also gradually reduced. As a result, the child stops sleeping at night, often wakes up and sleeps only on the chest, during motion sickness or with a pacifier in his mouth.
  4. Teething. The baby has its first teeth. In the acute period in the first 2-3 days, when the pain is especially severe. In this case, there will be other symptoms - the baby will pull everything into his mouth, you will see increased salivation.
  5. External factors. After 3 months, sleep conditions greatly affect the baby's sleep, especially if the baby is sensitive.

6-12 months

  • Mode problems. By 6 months, a predictable routine should already appear with 3 daytime sleeps, getting up at 7:00-7:30 in the morning and leaving at night until 20:00. But if the baby does not sleep well during the day and leaves late at night, then due to the accumulated overwork, he will not sleep well at night and wake up often.
  • Undergrowth. This factor less often affects nighttime awakenings. But it happens that a mother, afraid of overworking a child, puts her to bed too early. A tireless baby falls asleep for a long time and "walks" at night. It also happens if the child sleeps too much during the day.
  • Inability to fall asleep independently.
    At 6-12 months, most children, if they are not overworked and have no sleep associations, are able to fall asleep on their own. Mom's help, as in the first months of life, they no longer need.
    But often the child has a habit of falling asleep during feeding, motion sickness, with a pacifier in his mouth, with his mother nearby. At night, waking up between sleep cycles, the child will ask for help too, to fall asleep.
  • Growth spurt period, learning a new skill. This is not the main reason for frequent nighttime awakenings. Not a single developmental leap can seriously affect a child's sleep. Only for a few days. If you see that after mastering a new skill, the child stopped sleeping, it is worth checking other factors.
  • Sleep conditions are now especially important for quality rest. The child actively explores the world around him, is easily distracted. Therefore, if the room is too light, it will be distracted by objects around. High or too low temperatures will make it difficult to fall asleep, as will too dry air, which makes it difficult to breathe.
  • Physical discomfort. A child may wake up because of an overfilled diaper, uncomfortable sleepwear, or if he sleeps under the covers, keeps throwing it off and wakes up from the cold in the morning.

1-2 years

  1. One nap too early. At 10-12 months, children have a period when they refuse the second daytime sleep. Mom does not insist and transfers to one dream. But physically, the child's body is not yet ready for a long time of wakefulness. By evening, overwork accumulates, the child falls asleep for a long time and wakes up at night.
  2. Daytime nap ends too late.
    The child's brain regards sleep after 17:00 as nighttime. And if you decide to put the baby to the second daytime sleep late, for example, at 17:00-18:00 for an hour or two, he will wake up with tears and then go to bed very late at night. If your baby consistently naps after 4 pm, it's hard for him to sleep 12 hours straight at night.
  3. Something or someone wakes up a child at night. After a year, if the child can fall asleep on his own, he can sleep in a separate room. Perhaps he reacts to extraneous noise and will sleep better alone in a room. It is worth transferring a child to another room only after consulting with a pediatrician.
  4. Teething, ear infection, digestive problems, stuffy nose cause frequent awakenings.
  5. Transfer to crib without sides too early. Until 2.5-3 years old, the child is not yet able to control his emotions in order to stay in bed without physical boundaries. If you are transferred to an "adult" crib too early, you may encounter nightly "festivities", trips of the child to the parents' room.

2-4 years

  • Overwork and nervous overexcitation. At this age, children begin to go to developmental classes and kindergarten. As a rule, there are problems with daytime sleep - the baby refuses to sleep or falls asleep too late during the day. New impressions, knowledge overexcite the child's nervous system and, with a lack of rest during the day, lead to a light sleep at night.
  • Fears, separation anxiety, stress. These factors appear if the baby is going through a difficult period in life: the arrival of a second child in the family, potty training, a new nanny, or the start of kindergarten can cause separation anxiety during the day and restless sleep at night. Nightmares may also appear during this period.
  • Inability to fall asleep independently. This is your case if after the end of the GW the child did not sleep better, or if he wakes up at night to drink compote, cannot fall asleep without you.
  • Checking the boundaries of what is permitted. The child actively manifests his "I" and tests the boundaries of what is permitted. Often when it comes to sleep. Another fairy tale, another trip to the pot, the second yogurt. Bedtime is delayed, and at night there are awakenings to check if mom is nearby.
  • Active development of speech. Like the previous skills that the baby has mastered, mastering speaking also affects sleep. The baby's brain is actively working and literally wakes him up to practice a new skill.

Why does the child not sleep at all at night and cries?

0-3 months

  • The baby is going through the so-called period " purple crying " . The apogee of crying falls on the 6-8th week of a child's life. Crying is sudden and unpredictable, like a baby crying in pain. Tears last for hours, especially in the evening and at night. As a result, the baby does not sleep at night.
  • Colic, allergy, dermatitis.
  • Excessive fatigue.

4 months-2 years

  • New skills. The child is actively trying to work out a new skill. During light sleep, the baby thinks about a new skill and starts trying it: crawling, getting up, etc. As a result, he wakes up. It `s naturally. If the baby does not know how to fall asleep on its own, you will need to put it down again.
  • The child is cold or hot, he slept in an uncomfortable position.
    The baby is experiencing physical discomfort (cold/hot, rested his arm/leg during sleep. He can eliminate it himself if he can move, or mom if the baby does not yet have motor skills.
  • Frequent awakenings at night among sleep and crying are a sign of accumulated overwork in the baby. The child may also shake his head and tremble.
  • Asking for help if the child is unable to fall asleep on their own. Most often, the baby forms the association of feeding / rocking / nipple / mother next to sleep. His brain thinks that it is impossible to fall asleep in any other way, and indeed it is impossible. As a result, a tired child cries for help.
  • Nightmares. Usually nightmares can be closer to 2 years. Until this age, the child does not know what he needs to be afraid of. All fears are formed in children under 2 years of age in response to the mother's reaction.

What should I do if my child has trouble sleeping at night?

What to do if your baby is not sleeping at any age:

  • Make sure your baby is healthy. The pediatrician observing the baby will help you with this.
  • Create suitable sleep conditions:

    - The temperature should be no more than 18-21 degrees in winter and no more than 23-25 ​​degrees in summer. Avoid overheating the child. Dress your baby according to the temperature in the room.

    - Maintain optimum humidity of at least 50%.

    - Darken the room for all dreams with curtains that block out sunlight. It is important that there is no gap between the curtains and the window, and electronic devices should not burn in the room. If the baby sleeps in the stroller, also use a special curtain on it or cover the stroller with a diaper.

  • Spend 30-60 minutes before bed in quiet games. Finger games, puzzles, cutting, modeling, drawing are suitable here. Depending on the age of the child.
  • Transfer active activities to the first half of the day - trips to the doctor, massage, developmental activities.
  • Enter a sleep ritual that will help the baby tune in to sleep.
  • Be consistent in your actions. It will take time for your baby and you to get used to a new sleep routine or habit. Keep this in mind and keep going.

0-3 months

Organize a place to sleep that your baby will later associate with rest. It can be:

  • Adult co-sleeping bed.
  • Crib, which is attached to the parent's bed with one wall lowered.
  • Separate bed in the parents' room.
    In each case, the place to sleep must comply with safety regulations. Do not put the baby in the crib while awake to play. Also, it is necessary to put the child on his back, and not on his side or stomach. The American Association of Pediatricians recommends this position as the safest position for a baby to sleep.

Learn to recognize the signs of fatigue. This will help you prevent your baby from overworking. Common signs of fatigue in newborns:

  • yawning;
  • cam clenching;
  • thumb sucking;
  • distant look.

Start putting your baby to bed as soon as you see these signs.

Watch your wake time. Usually, in the first months, babies can be awake no more than the time of the previous sleep.

Use different laying methods and alternate them. For example, for one dream you rock, for the second you feed, for the third you put the baby in the stroller for sleep. Do a short ritual before bed.

Teach your baby to distinguish between day and night. While awake, open the curtains, take the baby out into the light, do not muffle the noise. In the evening, turn off the overhead light, reduce activity. This will help set your baby's internal clock so he sleeps longer at night.

Use white noise and swaddle your baby so that he does not wake himself up with arms and legs during sleep and does not wake up from extraneous sounds.

3-6 months

Reduce fatigue. From 3 months, shift the bedtime to earlier, so that by 4 months the baby will fall asleep between 18:00-20:00. Also try to gradually get up in the morning no later than 7:30. Switching to a physiological regimen at 4 months will allow you to avoid frequent nighttime awakenings in the future.

Don't skip naps, but don't let your child sleep too much during the day either. For guidance, use the recommended sleep rates at each age.

When awakening at night, try to use a minimum of lighting, do not talk to the child if it is not necessary. So he will understand that he still needs to sleep, and he will fall asleep faster after feeding.

Reduce the number of nighttime feeds as your child gets older to avoid developing the habit of waking up to eat. By 6 months, babies are ready to eat every 4-5 hours and are able to sleep for longer periods of time.

Around 4-6 months old, we will notice that the baby is trying to fall asleep on its own. Help the baby: put him to bed not yet fully asleep. At night, at the first rustle, wait a minute or two and only then come up to calm the child. However, if the baby already has a habit of waking up and asking for help to fall asleep, this may not work.

If the baby sleeps only on the chest, you rock him day and night, awakenings are too frequent, then it is worth teaching the child the skill of falling asleep on his own. They teach the skill from 4 months.

Not sure how to teach your baby to fall asleep on his own? Join an online CV course and your child will be sleeping through the night in less than a month. Find out the details on the website.

6-12 months

From this age, a fairly predictable 3-day nap routine should already be in place. Keep a regular daily routine so that your child's body knows when to sleep.

End your last nap before 5 pm and don't do it for more than 45 minutes on a three nap schedule. If the baby sleeps twice, both sleeps should be at least 1 hour each.

If your baby wakes up often in the morning for feeding and then does not fall asleep, try changing the feeding schedule. For example, if your baby falls asleep after feeding at 7:00 pm and wakes up to eat at 2 am, try waking him up at 11:00 pm. Then put the baby to sleep until feeding at 6 in the morning.

If there are too many feedings and the child wakes up not because of hunger, but out of habit, he cannot fall asleep on his own, it is worth teaching the baby the skill of falling asleep on his own using one of the methods.

Baby wakes up and tries to crawl, get up in bed and roll over? Practice actively a new skill while you are awake so that your baby quickly masters the new capabilities of his body.

Offer your child a sleep toy. It will become a positive association. Choose a medium-sized toy, without small parts.

1-2 years

Don't overwork your child. The baby still needs early bedtime and two naps until 15-18 months. Do not wait for the baby to show when he wants to sleep. At this age, daytime dreams should already be done by the hour. For example, if you get up at 7:00, they will start at 9:30/10:00 and 13:30/14:00. Avoid staying awake for too long before going out into the night.

Avoid watching cartoons and playing games on your phone in the afternoon.

Do not transfer your baby to a crib without sides. If he started to wake up at night and tries to get out:

  • lower the bottom of the bed as low as possible;
  • extend the sides of the crib;
  • change the mattress to a thinner one;
  • use a sleeping bag that will limit your baby's movements.

2-4 years

Keep your daily bedtime routine.

Have an afternoon nap and finish it before 4:00 pm. Stick to early bedtime. Night sleep should begin no later than 20:30.

If your baby is afraid of the dark, try using a lamp with a dim, warm light. But not a projector with stars.

When you wake up at night, calmly get up and put him back down with minimal communication.

Explain to your child the rules for sleeping at night:

  • everyone sleeps in their own beds
  • don't play at night
  • Read one book while going to bed, use the potty before going to bed

Basic rules for a good night's sleep

How to teach a baby to fall asleep in the evening without the help of parents?

  • Enter the ritual for falling asleep.
  • Make feeding, rocking, carrying on your hands part of the ritual, and not a way to fall asleep. To do this, use these actions in the middle.
  • Put your baby to sleep in bed so that he realizes where he falls asleep and tries to fall asleep on his own.
  • Gradually reduce sleep aid.
  • Use the self-sleep technique.

How to teach a child to fall asleep after waking up at night?

1. Wait a few minutes before approaching the child and comforting. Let him try to sleep on his own.

2. When awakening at night, be as quiet as possible, do not use lights if possible.

3. If the baby does not fall asleep on his own, pat him on the tummy, chuckle, but do not take out their cribs.

4. If the child is used to falling asleep during motion sickness, reduce their amplitude so that he gradually gets used to falling asleep in a static position.

5. Does the baby fall asleep only during feeding? Feed and put the sleepy one in the crib, soothing with strokes.

Mistakes that parents make when organizing a child's sleep at night

  • They wait until the baby wants to sleep and put him to bed too late.
  • They let the baby play to the last and then abruptly begin to move on to bed.
  • It is not always necessary to perform a ritual before going to bed.
  • The last hour before sleep is spent with the baby in active games.
  • Let your child watch cartoons before bed.
  • Do not create suitable sleeping conditions and hope that the child will sleep in the light and noise.

When do you need specialist help if your child has trouble sleeping at night?

Seeking symptoms

The baby does not sleep at all at night and sleeps during the day.

The baby refuses to eat during the day, hangs on his chest all night.

Laying down at night lasts an hour and a half and is accompanied by tears, protests and tantrums.

The child wakes up too often for his age, cries on waking and wakes up cranky in the morning.

Your baby has symptoms such as hyperactivity, tremors in the limbs, slow growth and development, constant drowsiness, sleep apnea, snoring, nightmares.

The child stopped sleeping after 4 months and the old ways of lying down do not help.

You notice that the baby does not get off his hands during the day, has lost interest in games.

A child older than 4 months sleeps no more than 20-30 minutes during the day in one dream, you cannot prolong dreams.

How can a mother sleep if the baby does not sleep all night?

Research says that in the first year after giving birth, new parents lose 109 minutes of sleep each night on average. So, dad and mom in total do not sleep every night for 218 minutes. As if you were back in the institute time during the session. But unlike the previous days, you will not be able to sleep during the first lectures, as your newborn needs attention and care from the very morning.

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