All future parents are prepared during pregnancy for the fact that restful nights will soon be over. Newborns don’t yet have a regular sleep schedule and need to wake up frequently to breastfeed and change. But when do babies start sleeping through the night and is it actually beneficial for little ones? We’ll show you what a sleep expert advises and what tips and products will help you sleep through the night.
When do babies sleep through the night?
Adults can easily sleep 8 hours straight without waking up once. It takes a long time for children to develop this. In the first 3 months of a newborn, there can be no question of sleeping through the night. Although toddlers sleep an average of 16-18 hours a day, they usually only sleep 3-4 hours at a time. It is only after about 6 months that a sleeping rhythm slowly sets in, based on the rhythm of day and night. But even at this young age, babies cannot sleep for 8 hours straight like adults.
At the earliest you should from the first year of life Suppose your child can sleep 6-8 hours. Until the age of 3, it is completely normal, even in this important phase of development, for children to wake up at night, go to bed with their parents, have a drink or go to the bathroom. If we also consider that babies and young children generally go to bed fairly early, around 6-8 p.m., parents should therefore expect to be woken up between midnight and 3 a.m. at the latest for the first few months.
Should babies be left to sleep through the night?
The idea of putting the baby to bed and waking up together after a restful night is unfortunately quite unrealistic and undesirable. Under no circumstances should babies be older than 4 hours in the first 4 months sleep Midwives recommend breastfeeding babies about every 3 hours during this time. Most of the time, the little ones must also be swaddled. Babies who don’t wake up on their own unfortunately need to be woken up for them to gain weight through regular or bottle feeding.
Parents should also lower their expectations after the first 4-6 months and not get impatient. It’s only natural that a baby can’t sleep through the night so quickly. As sleep counselor Sibylle Lüpold explains on the kleinstadt.ch blog:
The idea of sleeping in is relatively young. Human sleep is fragmented. The hunter-gatherer wasn’t sleeping just eight hours straight, that would have been far too dangerous. It was only with industrialization and meritocracy that this pressure of having to sleep at night to be productive again in the morning came.
Sibylle Lüpold on kleinstadt.ch
What are the disadvantages of sleeping through the night for babies?
According to the expert, parents should also note that the many new impressions, such as moving from the parent’s bed to their own bed, adjusting to daycare or other changes have to be dealt with – this is not exactly the best starting point to get used to. at a fixed sleep pattern. In addition, waking up several times during the night also has advantages: if the mother is breastfeeding, the flow of milk is stimulated by regular nighttime meals. Moreover, it prevents sudden infant death syndromebecause the baby protects himself from the risky phases of deep sleep.
How do I get my baby to sleep through the night?
With a lot of empathy and patience, you can try after 6 months to slowly train your baby at a more steady pace. Although he won’t sleep overnight, you can encourage his slow development:
- routines: Fixed routines during the day and in the evening give children security and therefore the basis for falling asleep more easily. Here are more tips for putting your baby to sleep.
- Fixed bed: Do not alternate between the cot and the parent’s bed to get the child used to his sleeping place.
- Do not play in bed: Just as adults shouldn’t watch TV or work on a computer in their bed, babies should only come to know their crib as a place to sleep.
- Do not sleep 4 hours before nocturnal sleep: Babies also need to sleep during the day. However, there should be at least 4 hours between daytime and nighttime sleep.
- Breastfeed or feed in peace: Make as little effort as possible to nurse or feed your baby when he wakes up during the night. Keep light sources dim and don’t distract him with games and noises.
- Milk meal before bedtime: Satisfied babies are better able to sleep through the night.
- Lay baby tired but awake: In this way, the baby learns to fall asleep on his own.
All of these tips can, but don’t have to, help you. Experience with siblings shows that sleep needs are different individually. Additionally, babies who cry have a harder time developing sleep routines quickly. In this case, it is best to talk to a midwife or your pediatrician.
There are different methods to train the sleep rhythm of babies:
The best baby products for sleeping
Even if your baby doesn’t sleep through the night until they’re one year old, it helps to ensure that the sleeping environment is as comfortable as possible from an early age. While adults should afford good bedding, babies need a good sleeping bag. It should be warm but still breathable and allow some freedom of movement. With HALO’s best-selling sleeping bag in the United States, you certainly won’t go wrong. Thanks to the zipped opening, you can quickly change your baby’s diaper at night, ensuring that sleep interruptions are as short as possible. The sleeveless construction also prevents overheating. You can get the sleeping bag in three sizes for babies between 0 and 36 months:
In addition, children should have aids that they can use independently to calm themselves down. It can be pacifiers, but also soft toys. Stuffed animals that can also make soothing noises work particularly well. SNOO Bear even reacts to crying babies with white noise – pretty awesome! You can get the happiest baby SNOO bear for 54.95 euros:
In addition to soothing noises, rocking motions also have a calming effect on babies. This is the experience of many parents whose children sleep much better in the car or in the stroller than in their own bed. Therefore, baby cots with automatic weighing function can also be a real bargain. The SNOO Sleeper also reacts to baby’s crying with gentle movements. In this way, the little ones get used to their own bed more quickly as a place where they can feel safe. When the baby has outgrown the bed, he will also be able to move more quickly to his bed in his own room. Plus, you can use the companion app to see your baby’s sleep patterns so you can meet their long-term needs. You can get the SNOO Sleeper for 1,295 euros at the happiest baby:
The first child is a difficult learning process for every mother. We can’t get rid of them completely, but these tips can make your life a little easier:
Image credit: Getty Images/monkeybusinessimages
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