Why Doesn’t My Baby Sleep?


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In most cases newborn babies can sleep for up to eighteen hours a day, with some needing only about ten. However, it is important not to panic should your baby not be getting this amount of sleep. If you are finding that their sleep patterns are rather disturbed and irregular, you may need to try (as hard as this may seem) and establish a sleeping pattern.

If they nap for a long time during the day but then do not sleep well at night, it may be a good idea to try and reduce the daytime napping, as this will hopefully mean they will sleep for longer at night. Try to keep your baby active during the day, and allow for small naps, but not for long ones that are going to disrupt the sleep later on at night.

It is important that your baby learns to sleep on their own, as this is vital for their future sleep patterns. If they start to cry and Mum and Dad are there immediately, they will associate going to sleep with Mum and Dad being there. Equally, if your baby is tired, and about to go to sleep, go and put them to bed before they asleep so they get used to the idea of sleeping on their own. Try not to respond immediately in the night either, and after you have, leave them to go back to sleep on their own.

If your baby appears hyperactive during the night, it is advised to make sure that you still maintain the nighttime feeling. For example, whisper, have few lights on and do not give in to their desire to play. Your baby needs to learn that nighttime is for sleeping, and if you begin to play, and be excitable with them during the night, this will distort their perception of what nighttime is for.

Read more in the Sleep Disorders & Sleep Problems Information Guide


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