All the parenting books say the first year with a baby is spent in a haze of sleep deprivation caused by night feedings, teething, ear infections, etc. All the moms you know look also exhausted or not tired at all and sometimes you feel you are doing something wrong… But, what is normal for baby sleep?
It is important to say that every baby is TOTALLY DIFFERENT! Don’t be scare if your baby sleeps more that that or even less…
Some important rules for baby sleep.
IT IS SUPER OK TO CHECK YOUR BABY WHEN HE / SHE IS CRYING. It is not only ok but healthy for your baby (and possibly for you). As you will see in this post an adult sleeping cycle is completely different of a baby sleeping cycle. They will learn how to sleep, but letting a baby cry could be dangerous for the future self-esteem, mental health and even to have a good sleep.
New Born – 2 months: sleeping?
- Newborns have a totally different sleep cycle than adults. Basically they don’t know how to soothe themselves to sleep, they need help, that’s why you can use breastfeeding, rocking, swaddling, cuddling or using a pacifier to help them.
- They sleep in 2- to 4-hour intervals during day and night, waking up to eat.
- Babies this age tend to stir and look restless during sleep. Because of reflexes they can’t control, it’s common to see them twitch their arms and legs, smile and make sucking noises.
2-6 Month Sleep Tips: stretches at night? Not yet!
- Babies at this age they begin to feel different between day and night, and to help them to have a good sleep routine make sure during the day they are expose to sunlight and change the mood at night with much less light and soft games and avoiding over-stimulatin.
- Babies this age may sleep for six-hour stretches at night, and settle into more of a set nap schedule now
- It is a good moment to start a sleep routine, but don’t feel frustrated if you baby doesn’t seem to understand it!
4-6 Month Sleep Tips: not yet!
- The sleep cycle is still really different than an adult sleep cycle. They can start sleeping through the night, but it doesn’t mean 12 hours, but anywhere from 6 to 12 hours stretches.
- Usually all babies wake up during the night, some of them have learn to sleep again getting closer to an adult sleep.
- Some babies stop sleeping through the night now because of separation anxiety. Your baby knows you’re around even when she/she can’t see you, that’s why co-sleeping can be a good idea.
- It’s OK to go in and check on your crying baby, but keep visits short and try (as hard as it is) not to pick her up or feed her. Try rubbing her back, singing a soothing lullaby and ducking out after a few minutes.
1-2 Year Sleep Tips
- Active toddlers can have trouble relaxing and winding down at night — causing bedtime battles. Try to keep things as calm as possible in the evenings, sticking to soothing activities like bath and story time.
- Probably you won’t have stretches nights everyday, but it will start soon!