can a baby sleep too much

Sleep Norms: 0 to 6 months


The first six months are the most responsible for the parents and the most important for the child.

can a baby sleep too much
Can baby sleep too much?

0 to 3 months

Typical dream at this age

At this age, the newborn sleeps quite a lot – from about 17 to 18 hours a day for the first few weeks and 15 hours a day for three months.

Children almost never sleep more than three to four hours in a row, neither day nor night. This means that you too will not be able to sleep for many hours in a row. At night you will have to get up to feed and swaddle your baby; during the day you will play with him. While some children sleep all night at the age of 8 weeks, many babies do not reach this indicator until they are 5 or 6 months old. You will help your child achieve this result more quickly by instilling in him good sleep skills.

How to instill healthy sleep skills?

Here’s what you can do at this age to help your child get the right sleep skills:

Learn signs of child fatigue

For the first six to eight weeks, your child will not be able to stay awake for more than two hours in a row. If you do not put him to sleep longer than this time, he will be overworked and will not be able to sleep well. Observe until you notice that the child is becoming sleepy. He rubs his eyes, tugs at his ear, faint dark circles appear under his eyes? If you observe these or any other signs of drowsiness, send him directly to the crib. Soon you will learn your child’s daily rhythms and behavior so that you will develop a sixth sense and you will instinctively know when he is ready to sleep.

Start explaining the difference between day and night.

Some babies are owls (some hints you may have already noticed during pregnancy). And while you want to turn off the light, the child can still remain very active. In the first few days, you can not do anything about it. But as soon as the child is about 2 weeks old, you can begin to teach him to distinguish night from day to day.

When the child is alert and active during the day, play with him, turn on the lights in the house and in his room, do not try to reduce the usual daytime noise (sounds of the phone, TV or dishwasher). If he falls asleep while feeding, wake him. Do not play with your child at night. When you enter his room for feeding, dim the light and noise, do not talk with him too long. Not much time will pass, and your baby will begin to understand that nighttime is for sleeping.

Give him a chance to fall asleep on his own

When your child is 6 to 8 weeks old, start giving him a chance to fall asleep on his own. How? Put him in the crib when he is sleepy but still awake, experts advise. They dissuade from motion sickness or feeding the child before bedtime. “Parents think that if they start to teach a child too early, it will not have an effect,” they say, “But that’s not so. Infants acquire sleeping habits. If you rock your baby before bed every night for the first eight weeks, why should he expect something else later? ”

What difficulties may arise?

By the time your child reaches 2 or 3 months old, he can already wake up at night more often than necessary, and also develop negative associations associated with sleep.

Newborns must wake up at night to eat, but some may accidentally wake themselves up before they really need to be fed. To avoid this, try swaddling your baby (wrap it comfortably in a blanket) before putting it to bed for the night.

Avoid unnecessary associations associated with sleep – your child should not depend on motion sickness, feeding in order to fall asleep. Put your child in bed before he falls asleep and let him fall asleep on his own.

3 to 6 months

Typical dream at this age

Congratulations! Now all your nightly rises every two or three hours are behind (we hope). By 3 or 4 months, most babies sleep 15 hours a day, 10 of them at night, and the rest of the time is divided between three daytime dreams (their number will decrease to two when your child reaches 6 months).

At the beginning of this period, you can still get up once or twice a night for feeding, but by 6 months your baby will be able to sleep all night. But it will depend on whether you develop healthy sleeping skills with him.

How to instill healthy sleep skills?

Set a clear night and daytime sleep pattern and stick to it.

While your baby was a newborn, you could decide when to lay it during the night, watching for signs of drowsiness (rubs your eyes, tugs on your ear, and so on). Now that he is a little older, you must set a specific time for him to sleep at night and in the afternoon.

In the evening, a good time for a child is between 19.00 and 20.30. Later, he is likely to be too tired and hard to fall asleep. Your child may not look tired late at night – on the contrary, he may seem very energetic. But believe me, this is a sure sign that it’s time for the child to sleep.

In the same way, you can set the time of daytime sleep – plan it at the same time every day, or go to the touch, laying the baby to sleep when you see that he is tired and needs to rest. Any approach is acceptable if the baby sleeps enough.

Begin to establish the ritual of going to bed

If you haven’t done it yet, then it’s time at the age of 3-6 months. The ritual of a child going to bed may include the following: make him a bath, play quiet games with him, read one or two bedtime stories, and sing a lullaby. Kiss him and say good night.

No matter what your family’s ritual includes, you must perform it in the same order, at the same time every night. Children need consistency, and sleep is no exception.

Wake up your baby in the morning

If your child often sleeps for more than 10 hours at night, it is advisable to wake him in the morning. Thus, you will help him restore the regime. Keeping a night’s sleep schedule may not seem difficult, but remember that your child should sleep according to the regimen and throughout the day. Awakening at the same time every morning will help.

What difficulties may arise?

Two problems – night awakenings and the development of negative associations associated with sleep (when your child gets used to depend on motion sickness or feeding, as prerequisites for falling asleep), concern both newborns and older children. But by about 3-6 months, another problem may arise – difficulty falling asleep.

If it is difficult for your child to fall asleep in the evening, first make sure that he does not go to bed too late (as we mentioned, an overworked child has difficulty falling asleep). If this is not the case, then he may have developed one or more associations associated with sleep. Now is the time to get rid of them. The child must learn to fall asleep by himself, and not calm down, thanks to your hands, chest, or dummy.

What tactics of getting rid of associations to choose are up to you. The easiest option is to wait until the child “cries out and falls asleep”, not for everyone.

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