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Sleeping Baby Better sleeping makes baby smiling

Reviewed by
Dr. Pradip Chauhan

Nothing can ever truly prepare you for the way that sleep (or lack of it!) takes over your life during the first few weeks and months with your new baby. Whether it's getting your baby to learn the difference between day and night, trying to establish a bedtime routine that works for all the family or worrying about what's 'normal' and if your baby's getting enough sleep - the big 'S' looms large in the life of every parent.

How it go through this?

Two months and beyond

  • From around eight weeks your baby's biological clock starts to develop and she may naturally start to stay awake for longer periods during the day (and hopefully less at night!).
  • From 3 months, because her tummy can hold more food, she'll start to sleep for longer stretches. Some babies manage up to six hours a night and some may even start to sleep through - if you're lucky!
  • From 6 months experts say your baby shouldn't need feeding during the night and should be able to sleep for up to eleven hours.

Why do they need sleep?

Babies don't just need sleep to rest, it's also crucial for their physical and mental development as well as their wellbeing. While your baby is snoozing her brain is organizing everything she's learned and making new connections at an amazing rate. Her growth hormones are also coming into action building muscle and body tissue and her body is busily creating white blood cells which her immune system needs to fight off any infections she is exposed to. So all in all she can't do without her sleep any more than you can!

Managing your baby's naps

Managing your baby's naps can be key to good sleeping habits. If your baby has a nap late in the day it is well recognized by parents and professionals alike that this can detrimental to the following night's sleep: for everyone! This is probably because much of your baby's dream "filing" of the day's stimulation is completed during nap time. This means that her "filing basket" for dreaming is a little empty for the night's sleep. It is therefore wise to keep her main naps in the early part of the morning and afternoon and, as she gets older, to have her main nap shortly after lunch with a substantial gap before bedtime. This way she'll have time to build up a new stock of experiences to file away.

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