What Are The Sleep Patterns Of A Newborn
The average newborn sleeps much of the day and night, waking only for feedings every few hours. It’s often hard for new parents to know how long and how often a newborn should sleep. Unfortunately, there is no set schedule at first, and many newborns have their days and nights confused. They think they are supposed to be awake at night and sleep during the day.
Generally, newborns sleep a total of about 8 to 9 hours in the daytime and a total of about 8 hours at night. But because they have a small stomach, they must wake every few hours to eat. Most babies dont start sleeping through the night until at least 3 months of age. But this can vary a lot. Some babies dont sleep through the night until closer to 1 year. In most cases, your baby will wake up and be ready to eat at least every 3 hours. How often your baby will eat depends on what he or she is being fed and his or her age. Make sure you talk with your healthcare provider to figure out if you need to wake your baby for feedings.
Watch for changes in your baby’s sleep pattern. If your baby has been sleeping consistently, and suddenly is waking more often, there may be a problem. Or your baby may be going through a growth spurt and need to eat more often. Some sleep disturbances are simply due to changes in development or because of overstimulation.
How Does A Schedule Help Sleep
Routines and schedules help our children learn what to expect. Like Ive said before, the world is a very chaotic place for children, and routines provide a sense of safety and security overtime. They also help your child feel confident and comfortable, knowing what comes next in a day to day routine. Routines also help cue children for sleep.
After a certain series of events a child will learn to expect sleep shortly thereafter if it is done similarly everyday. In addition, if your child goes to sleep for naps and bedtime at approximately the same time everyday, he will likely be tired around the same time everyday.
Chapters Covered In Rhythms Routines & Schedules Include:
Section One: Sample Schedules
- 6 Weeks to 3 Months Old
- 3-6 Months Old
Section Two: Tips and Tricks
- Tips for Managing the Day With Multiple Children
- Daily Rhythms for an Only Child Ages 1-4 Years Old
- Daily Rhythms for Multiple Small Children Ages 0-5
- Sample Bedtime, Mealtime, and Playtime Routines
- Tips for Keeping Kids Busy Throughout the Day
For more sample routines, mom tested and approved schedules for babies ages 6 weeks and up, check out Rhythms, Routines & Schedules right now.
Cluster Feeding FAQ
Cluster feeding typically will happen until around 4 or 5 months of age. Once baby is around 5 months and they are eating solids, there isnt as much of a need for cluster feeding.
If your supply is low and baby is frequently feeding, this will increase your supply. Milk supply and quality is typically lower in the late afternoon early evening and cluster feeding can help fill baby.
Babies need to eat when they are hungry. Too much snacking can mean that baby is getting a lot of the foremilk which is less nutrient dense and will contribute to more feeding. Solution? Full feeds with hindmilk for baby.
Yes and no. Babies can tend to feed every hour all day long if they arent getting enough milk or they are snacking. If baby is feeding every hour all day long theyre not actually getting much food, they are using your breast as a snack bar. If youre okay with this, then youre good to go. And if not, focus on full feeds.
You May Like: How Can A Newborn Sleep At Night
Newborn Sleeping Feeding And Play: Letting Your Baby Lead The Routine
With newborn sleeping and feeding, the key is being flexible and following your babys lead. Your baby will let you know whether they want to sleep, feed or interact with you its OK to go with whatever feels right at the time.
Its also OK to try to do things in a similar order if that feels right for you and your baby. For example, you could trya simple routine of feed, play, sleep. Heres what this might look like:
If you try this kind of routine, its still important to watch your babys cues and respond.
For example, your baby might show tired signs soon after a feed. This means that its time for your baby to sleep, even if you and baby havent had much time to play.
Or your baby might show signs of being hungry after a play. In this situation, just give your baby another feed before settling baby for sleep. Your baby will sleep better with a full tummy.
Or your baby might have an extra-long sleep every now and then. Thats OK too. Unless your doctor or child and family health nurse has told you otherwise, theres no need to wake your baby for feeds.
And at night, a good option might be settling your baby straight back to sleep after feeds, rather than trying to play.
Week 6 Of Newborn Sleep Schedule
Morning wake times.
This is one of the most important habits you can start with your 6 week old baby. Why decide a morning wake time?
Well its simple.
If you feed them at a consistent time each morning, thats the time they learn to sleep until.
So, if you feed your baby at 5:30 am and then start the day their metabolisms and body clocks will get used to waking up for good at 5:30 am.
You probably want to avoid this.
You May Like: How To Soothe Newborn Constipation
Helping Newborn Puppies Poop
When the mother is present, the mother always helps the newborn pup urinate and defecate during the first few weeksbecause they cant go on their own without help. As the puppys adoptive parent, you should assist your puppy in defecating. Puppies need help with excreting and urinating the first two weeks of their lives.
The female dog helps their baby stimulate waste release by licking their genitals. However, humans do not share similar sentiments, and luckily, damp clothing, and hands are perfectly enough for the job. Since defecation is a vital part of their lives, you can ask your vet for help to encourage your newborn pups. A vet can teach you better tricks to helping them pee and poop. They begin excreting on their own at about three weeks.
To 4 Month Baby Sleep Schedule
Total sleep: 13-14 hours of snooze.
The day starts… a little earlier now. Most babies this age wake around 6am.
Napping: Your baby will settle into 2-3 daily naps, totaling 4-8 hours of sleep.
Nighttime sleep…shifts a bit earlier, with your baby going down around 9pm. Theyll also sleep longer, still waking for a feeding or two. Longest unbroken sleep is usually around 5-8 hours .
Heads up: Look out for the 3-month sleep regression! It can suddenly appear, with your baby starting to wake up like a newbornevery few hoursand want to play or cuddlebut refusing to sleep alone.
Also, at 2 to 3 months of age when swaddling is stopped, your baby may start to startle more, roll more and wake many times a night.
You May Like: What Color Should My Newborn’s Poop Be
Best Breast Pump For Pumping At Work
In case you are also curious about what the best pumping set up is for pumping at work, I have a couple recommendations to help make pumping at work a lot less of a hassle and even more productive!
I really lovethis portable breast pump for pumping at work because it is compact, quiet and very light weight making it perfect for storing in your desk and toting it to and from work.
Or, keep this pump at work and leave your larger personal breast pump at home.
Determining Your Schedule’s Effectiveness
You’ll know that your schedule is working when there’s minimal conflict with the other parent and your baby isn’t showing signs of stress.
Here are some signs that your shared custody schedule needs adjusting:
- There’s frequent miscommunication about pickup and drop-off times.
- Neither parent has a clear understanding of the schedule.
- You or the other parent miss key caretaking opportunities with your newborn, such as bathing or feeding.
- You or the other parent constantly rearrange your visitation times.
- Your newborn’s naps or feedings are often delayed to accommodate the schedule.
- Your newborn seems stressed, with excessive crying and flexing.
The custody schedule should put your newborn’s needs first. When you and the other parent make adjustments, discuss ways you can reduce your baby’s stress level and provide the care he or she needs to thrive.
How To Support Your Babys Development
Here are some things you could try this month:
Cuddle time. Cuddle your baby as much as possible â it’s a great way for you and your baby to bond! Experts say the more quickly and consistently you comfort your baby when sheâs upset in the first six months, the less demanding she may be when sheâs older.
Visual stimulation. At this stage, your baby might prefer to look at objects that have straight lines on them, such as stripes or checkerboard patterns. Choose a mobile or toys with bright, contrasting colors and patterns â she wonât be able to take her eyes off this visual feast!
Tactile toys. Your baby is getting to know the world through touch, too. Give her toys with different textures, shapes, and sizes.
Talking with your baby. Have a conversation with your baby by letting her âtalkâ using her coos, gurgles, and smiles, and talk back to her using words, sounds, and facial expressions. In time, your baby will learn to imitate you, so these early âconversationsâ are great for her development.
Getting physical. Gently stretch your babyâs arms in front of her to form a âclapâ move your babyâs legs as if she were cycling and continue to practice tummy time. All of these help develop her muscles and movement.
Bonding. Establishing security and trust with your baby allows her to reach her full potential. Find out more about bonding with your newbornin those everyday moments.
Q: When Do I Have To Worry About Sleep Regressions
Your babys development and growth will lead to nap transitions and the maturation of sleep cycles which often impact sleep around 3 – 4 months old. The resulting change in sleep habits is often referred to as the 4 month sleep regression.
Newborn sleep guidance
Easy-to-follow steps that really work from pediatric sleep experts with your sleep goals in mind, even for the youngest kiddos. Sign up for Huckleberry Premium to get your newborn started off with a great sleep foundation.
Getting The Eat/wake/sleep Cycle Down
The eat/wake/sleep cycle is a great way to help your baby transition to a great schedule. First, the baby wakes from sleep and EATS a full feeding. Second, the baby is AWAKE to play for an approximate designated period of time. Lastly, the baby goes back to SLEEP for a nap or bedtime after showing a sleepy cue .
This cycle repeats itself throughout the day, and during the night the cycle is simply EAT/SLEEP. The baby would eat and then go back down to sleep until he needed another feeding.
For more on figuring out how long your baby should be awake , check out my post How to Lay your Baby Down Awake, but Drowsy where I elaborate on finding your babys sleep window in step number 1.
Cluster Feeding Newborns: Dos & Donts
Want stress free daily routines for your family? Get our daily routine cards for littles here!
Are you busy with a cluster feeding newborn? This will help you know what to do so youre not up all night feeding a baby every hour.
Newborns are perfectly snuggly and sweet and warm and wonderful.
But it can be hard to survive.
If they wont sleep well, dont seem to be eating well, and are irritable due to gas pain, overtiredness, or even baby teething then you can feel like youre slowly starting to lose your mind from lack of sleep and complete world upheaval.
A common phenomenon with little ones cluster feeding.
Reasons Tanking Up Is Beneficial And Why Babies Do It:
- Your baby gets lots of nourishment in a shorter period of time which is beneficial during the late afternoon/early evening hours when, depending on your personal stress levels, milk quality may be lower.
- Baby can sleep longer stretches after cluster feeding periods.
- Mom can sleep longer stretches because baby is sleeping longer stretches.
- Milk supply can be kept up with regular feeding.
- Cluster feeds help babies get through growth spurts by maintaining adequate milk supply.
Watch my video on an important cluster feeding issue.
Year Old Schedule Daily
7:30-8am morning wake
8:30-11am play time! Someday I hope to have more structure to this time, but since I am pregnant again and dealing with nausea and very low energy, for now this is very unstructured play time for Ellie.
11am lunch time
12-2:30/3pm nap time!
2:30pm wake and snack
2:30-5:30pm more play time!
6-7pm more play time
Unless shes sick Ellie usually sleeps from 7-7:30pm straight through to 7:30-8am on her one nap schedule. Ellie did hit a terrible toddler phase where she was waking multiple times overnight just wanting to play and drink milk. This went on until we realized that we needed to deny her the milk since we were filling her with too many quickly digested calories that were leading her to not stay as full and therefore wake from hunger.
We cut her milk back to only 18 oz. per day and offered her a few Cheerios and water overnight if she woke hungry. Within a day or two she was eating more solid food throughout the day and stopped waking for the milk at night. I believe some of the night waking was a testing of her will, but some of it seemed to also be hunger from drinking too many milk calories that went through her system faster than solids. After a few days of not giving in to her will and cutting back the milk, her night wakings stopped.
The Overnight Newborn Sleep Schedule
Once shes down for the evening, dont wake her unless its been longer than 3-4 hours. At this young age, you dont want her to sleep through the night. Its not healthy for her.
When she starts stirring for a meal, probably around 1 am , feed her in near darkness with little sound or movement.
Unless shes got a poopy diaper, has leaked, or has a bad diaper rash, lay her back down to sleeping without a diaper change. Theres nothing like cold air on a cute bum to overstimulate and ruin your sleeping chances!