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Now that he’s older and his tummy is bigger night time sleep shouldn’t be broken by the need to feed.  However as his imagination and social development continue, this can lead to sleep problems and nightmare and night time fears are not uncommon.
Growing social development and desire for independence mean that he wants to be with you so that he doesn’t feel he’s missing anything or if he feels anxious about being separated from you. If you’re keeping him up or doing away with nap time hoping he will be sleepier at bed time you may find that he’s over tired.  A child who is over tired will find it more difficult to go to sleep.
Are bedtime rituals more complicated than they need to be?  This can make them more mentally stimulating which will make his mind buzz. Is your child teething?  This can be uncomfortable but is a temporary problem so if he’s been a good sleeper before this pattern should return when the teeth are through the gums.
Is he awake just because he’s awake?  Many of us wake for a short time in the night but as adults we just turn over and go back to sleep.
If separation-anxiety is the problem there’s a fine balance between reassuring your child and making the problem worse so that he’s dependent on your presence.  Sleeping with the door open and with a night light on so that he can hear you can help. Promote his independence by spending time apart from him during the day – an hour or 2 with a friend or grandparent perhaps, with lots of happy cuddles when you see each other again.  Increase the time you spend apart as his confidence without you grows. If teething is keeping him (and you) awake, talk to your nurse or doctor.  Paediatric formula paracetamol and ibuprofen will help with the discomfort so give some before bed. Is he waking in the night for no apparent reason?  If you hear that he is awake or even crying on the baby monitor, wait before going in to see your child.  This encourages him to become a self-soother and to fall asleep again independently. Parents of children with sleep problems are usually having sleep problems themselves!  This can make the whole family cranky and affects all aspects of your lives. Be consistent with the verbal messages you give your child about night time and sleep time, and your behaviour.  If he doesn’t want to nap during the day (most children grow out of this by the time they reach 5 years) then he needs to learn to rest or play quietly on his own so that you have time to yourself. Look carefully at your child’s sleeping environment.  Is the child’s bedroom the right temperature at night?  Is there a TV in the bedroom (if there is take it out as this can be a waking distraction and make his mind to active at bedtime)?  Is it dark enough?  Is there a night light? This entry was posted in Babies, Children and Sleep and tagged 1 year old sleep, 1 year old sleep problems, 1 year old sleep schedule, 1 year old wont sleep, 10 month old sleep, 18 month old sleep problems. About risk factors:A RISK FACTOR is anything that increases your chance of developing a disease. Having risk factors doesn’t mean that you will get the disease and not having risk factors doesn’t mean that you won’t get it.
DISCLAIMERThe information in this site is not intended to replace medical opinion from your healthcare provider. Always seek a 1 to 1 consultation with a qualified medical professional if you have health concerns. Please note that the authors and editors are not responsible for the content of external sites - ie: sponsors and affiliates.
Your baby is used to hearing the comforting sounds of your heartbeat, the gurgling of your stomach, and the soft tones of your voice.
By the seventh month of pregnancy your baby will start to dream as their brain is now developed enough to partake in REM (rapid eye movement) sleep (Murkoff 2009).
During REM sleep, muscular impulses in the foetus are not blocked as completely as they are in children and adults, so the foetus has some ability to practice actual body movements.
At this point, the gestational age of your child would determine the sleep patterns or lack thereof.
If your baby was born early he will probably sleep his way through the days until he comes to his due date, when he may suddenly wake up and you wonder what happened. Sleep is very erratic at this age and doesn't follow a pattern because basically the newborn's brain is still maturing. If you watch your newborn while she is sleeping you will notice that there are times when, under her eyelids, her eyes flick frantically from side to side and she may frown, flutter suck, or wriggle her fingers and toes. Your baby will spend half of their sleeping time in REM sleep, whereas you (as an adult) spend only a quarter of your sleeping time in REM (Friedman and Saunders 2007).
Your newborn sleeps in cycles of around 50 or 60 minutes of REM (dream) and non-REM (deep) sleep.
Towards the morning the proportions of non-REM and REM reverse, so that much of your baby’s early-morning sleep is REM (Sears 2009).
A baby sleeping bag is a safer alternative to traditional sheets as your baby cannot wriggle under them; however, during these early newborn weeks it can be effective to use a sheet and blanket, as this helps your baby feel more secure when he is tucked in snugly. Though your newborn’s alert periods are initially very brief, they will gradually lengthen. During these early weeks your baby shouldn’t go for more than six hours between feeds at night and three hours between feeds during the day (La Leche League 2006), so wake her up if she has slept for this long. Your newborn sleeps an equal amount of time during the daytime (8 hours total) and nighttime (8 hours total). If your baby is premature or has special needs, he is now likely to start waking more often at night. By now, feeding will have become established, and hunger is likely to drive your baby’s sleep-wake cycles.
Around now, you will notice there is a particular time of day (or night) when your baby is almost always awake. After the growth spurt you are likely to find that your baby has a period where she sleeps longer (Lampl 2011). You may be tempted to introduce formula in the hope that it will help your baby to sleep through the night.
Another thing that may be keeping your baby awake is colic, which begins in some babies around now. If your baby is not gaining weight well by the end of the second week of life, she should be awakened every two to three hours and encouraged to feed more frequently. Your baby will need time to adjust to life outside the womb, and some crying and wakefulness in these early weeks is simply a result of feeling strange and confused. At this stage, most mothers survive on an average of three and a half hours’ sleep a night (McLaughlin 2009).
Your baby will now be more aware of her surroundings and won’t sleep quite as effortlessly as he did when he was newborn. The average number of hours of sleep your baby currently needs in the daytime is 7 and in the nighttime is 9 (Hames 1998).
Nonetheless, your baby will sleep for longer periods than she did before, so that instead of one or two hours, she may be able to sleep for three or four.
Some believe that the earliest your baby will be physically capable of sleeping through the night without a feed is around now (Laurent 2009). Your baby’s second growth spurt will occur around this time prompting more night wakings. After the growth spurt you are likely to find that your baby sleeps longer for a day or two (Lampl 2011).
It’s a myth that you need to get your baby on a strict schedule from the get go, and doing so may be dangerous because his body is not developmentally ready to wait several hours between feeds or sleep periods.
You might notice your baby starts to have three or four roughly consistent times of the day when she’ll reliably crash out. Towards the end of this month, at around twelve weeks, the morning nap should start to fall into place, lasting about one to one and a half hours and occurring around the same time each day (West 2010). For the majority of babies, one or more night wakings will still be a feature in this second month (Smith 2007). There are no bad habits at this age; your baby legitimately needs your help, so feel free to rock, feed, bounce, or walk her to sleep.
The average time for a 2 month old to be put to bed for the night is 9:51pm (National Sleep Foundation 2004).
After the growth spurt you are likely to find that your baby has a period where he sleeps longer. Your baby will need about 14 to 15 hours of sleep per 24 hours but now much more of this is night sleeping (about 11 hours), with about three and a half hours of daytime naps. Production of melatonin, a hormone that promotes sleep by relaxing our muscles and making us drowsy, begins around now (West 2010).
Up until now your baby has experienced a phase of REM sleep at the beginning of each sleep cycle. Some researchers believe at this age your baby should be confident sleeping without your nighttime assistance for more than just an hour or two (Smith 2009). Your baby’s naps are becoming a little bit longer and there are blocks of time around the clock where sleep happens regularly. Between now and 6 months, most babies will begin to sleep through the night (defined as five consecutive hours) (Friedman and Saunders 2007; Pantley 2009). Your baby’s risk of SIDS reaches a peak at this age, so it is more important than ever to continue following good practice guidelines (found here). Despite what you may hear from well-meaning friends that you should get your child into a sleep schedule, follow your child’s lead, and allow him to sleep when he wants to sleep and feed when he wants to feed. At three months of age, 46% of babies are still waking their parents regularly through the night (Scher 1991).
By now, most babies will sleep 12-14 hours out of 24 and for twice as long at night (8-10 hours) as during the day, although this will not be unbroken if your baby is still waking for feeds (Laurent 2009; Welford 1990). Your baby will have a relatively peaceful block at the beginning of the night, but from the early hours onwards, sleep becomes much lighter and more fragile overall (Grace 2010).
Some studies suggest that the longest stretch of unbroken sleep your baby is capable of at this age is 6.8 hours (Huang et al 2009).
By 4 months, your baby has entered a significant cognitive milestone; her brain is going through an enormous growth spurt, which accounts for all of the increased alertness and distractibility.


Your baby is in the process of learning to roll over and will temporarily start waking up at night to practice this new skill.
When your baby was a newborn, deciding when to put her down for the night was as easy as watching for the signs of sleepiness she gave such as crying, yawning or rubbing her eyes. Your baby needs to sleep 3-4 hours during the day usually in three naps: a morning nap, an early afternoon nap, and a short nap before dinner (Friedman and Saunders 2007).
Some sources suggest that for a five-month-old baby, staying awake for 3-4 hours before going to sleep through the night is ideal (Skula 2012).
At this age your baby will begin having shorter REM periods of sleep and longer non-REM (Sears 2009). By now, your baby’s world is an endless source of fascination, and she will be wide awake and alert during play periods. According to some sources, your baby is now physically capable of sleeping for up to 12 hours at night uninterrupted and without milk (Cave and Fertleman 2012). The average 6 month old still wakes two times a night (Cooke 2009) for an average of 23 minutes each time (Teng et al 2012). Your baby will usually nap two to three times a day and then sleep for 10 to 12 hours at night, though not always continuously. If your baby is only napping twice, the lunchtime nap will be longer, between 2 and 3 hours long (Cave and Fertleman 2012). The risk of SIDS is reduced significantly by 6 months, likely related in part to a baby’s ability to roll herself over and lift her head effectively and also to the fact that she is more neurologically mature.
The Foundation for the Study of Infant Deaths recommends that your baby shares your bedroom for the first six months, so she can now be moved to her own bedroom if you wish. Your baby now has a growing sense of being an individual, and may wake up and miss you in the night.
When introducing new foods, it is best to offer them in the middle of the day so that you can see whether she tolerates that particular type of food. Any significant change to your baby’s daily routine may lead to a period of increased waking during the night. Your baby is in the process of learning to sit up unaided and will temporarily start waking up at night to practice this new skill.
Some sources maintain that at this age, a *short* period of crying prior to falling asleep is normal and not harmful (Friedman and Saunders 2007). Some connection between sleeping and eating remains, but the link is not as strong as it was.
Don’t be alarmed if you see your baby start to adopt strange sleeping positions, even curled up on his stomach with butt in the air and head to one side.
February 25, 2012 by getbabytosleep 13 Comments At eight months, one of my twins suddenly started waking up in the middle of the night. You’ll need to have some basic elements of baby sleep in place already to have a shot at this. Good burping. Especially with milk and formula, but even with solid foods, you have to get the gas out. These may seem like small things individually, but together they’re the full package of what your baby needs before bedtime. If your baby wakes up in the middle of the night, you’re going to respond differently. After three days, you’ll cut the bottle in half again (in my example, from 2 ounces to 1). The final night may be the hardest, because the rule is: the baby does not eat in the middle of the night.
On this last night, if it’s usually mom who goes in to settle the baby, dad goes instead. If the baby won’t settle down, dad can offer him a bottle with a little bit of water (1-2 ounces at most).
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If you like this article, you might want to subscribe by e-mail or RSS so that you’re notified when new content is posted. Baby sleep problems takes you through the most common sleep issues and how to address them. The periodic table of baby sleep has all the essential elements for healthy baby sleep habits. Visit our sleep training section for strategies and tips for teaching your baby to sleep through the night. Baby Sleep Training 101 is our definitive guide to establishing healthy baby sleep habits and teaching your baby to sleep through the night. Cute Baby Pajamas for SleepingA good, comfy set of pajamas is one easy trick for helping your baby fall asleep and stay asleep through the night. If your little one can’t yet talk he won’t be able to tell you about the dream but will wake in a very distressed state.  This is heart breaking for a parent but your aim is to soothe the child without making him dependent on you being there. It’s dark, warm, quiet, and when you walk or move about, your baby is rocked to sleep.
Also, he never experiences hunger due to being permanently hooked up to a steady stream of nutrition.
The kicking and poking sensations that you can feel are often movements made during sleep (Pantley 2009).
In REM sleep, the higher centres of the brain receive stimulation from deeper, more primitive areas.
He is most active during the night time as there is more room to move, and less soothing rocking motions to pacify him.
If your child was born early, use the EDD (expected date of delivery) as the true age to find out where your child might be within this timeline.
After each cycle your baby has a partial awakening – this brief moment of semi-awakeness may startle your baby and make him wake up even more (Holland 2004). Then from 6-8 weeks you can change to using a sleeping bag as your baby develops more mobility. However, some babies, especially those who had a difficult or traumatic birth, or preterm babies, may continue to be sleepy most of the time for longer than the first two or three days (Fredregill 2004).
He will sleep for 2 to 4 hours, wake with a cry, feed, then be awake for 1 to 2 hours, and settle back to sleep (Friedman and Saunders 2007).
That’s because newborns have yet to develop a functioning body clock so they have no concept of a difference between day and night (Smith 2010). That means she goes into a state that looks like sleep but is actually just a way of shutting everything out.
His sleep patterns will settle in time, but they will take longer than other babies (Johnson 2005; Pantley 2009). About 20% of babies get colic, which can last for three months or longer (McLaughlin 2009).
If you wait longer than that to put your baby down, she may be overtired and have trouble falling asleep. Each day may be completely different from the previous one, and imposing a rigid sleeping pattern on your new baby will not work.
Also bear in mind that the ability of your baby to produce cortisol in response to stress is greatest during these first few months of life, thus sleep traing would keep them awake even longer (Larson 1998). If you follow her lead and give her the chance to nap uninterrupted at these times, this should eventually turn into a couple of decent and consistent naps (roughly a couple of hours each). These are caused by loose mucus in the nose and throat (common in young babies) and may be accompanied by a rattling in her chest, which you may be able to feel with your hand. If you’re BFing, take comfort in the knowledge that nursing triggers hormones that will help you and your baby resume sleep after each feed. He will tend to need a quiet and familiar environment without a lot of light, noise, and distractions. The usual scenario is that they drop a feed between 12am and dawn so they sleep through from an hour or so before midnight to six or so in the morning. At this age, your baby’s biological and neurological systems are still too underdeveloped to embrace a schedule.
Consequently, she may start waking at night or taking short naps – even if she was previously a great sleeper. However she might be weary of the large openness of his cot, which must seem huge compared to the moses basket. Unfortunately there will be a period before she learns how to roll back again, meaning that you may be summoned several times a night to reposition her when she has got stuck in an awkward position. However some sources suggest that your baby is unlikely to need more than one night feed at 4 months (although she may want them), unless she was born prematurely and your doctor advises it (Laurent 2009). Although it can be a wonderful tool for helping babies to sleep up until this age, it ceases to work well as babies become increasingly mobile. While your baby may still do these things (and you should still respond to them), you don’t need to wait for these signs before you put her to bed. Each nap will be around an hour in length, and their timing will be more predictable than before. If you wish, it is now possible for you to transfer your nighttime feeds to daytime feeds (not eliminate them) through a gradual process.
Once the spurt has passed you may find that your baby drops one of her night feeds altogether.


If you’ve kept your baby in your room with you for the recommended six months and have decided to move her into her own room, allow her whatever time she needs to get used to this arrangement before starting any kind of sleep training.
If your baby has started eating solid food, she should have this meal at least an hour or two before going to sleep at night.
At seven months, your little one still needs 12 to 14 hours of sleep per 24 hours to aid the maturing of his growing brain and body, so a couple of daytime sleeps are still necessary to make up the full quota.
You will find that your baby begins to shorten one of his three naps, in preparation for giving it up altogether. This awakening is likely to be a sleep arousal, an event that occurs every 60 minutes or so during sleep. He may suddenly become difficult to settle and get upset when you leave him to go to sleep.
Remember that healthy sleep habits will pay dividends, not just tomorrow, but every day after you get them established. This is especially true before bedtime, since digestive discomfort can wake your baby up at any time in the night. Make your infant as comfortable as possible while ensuring that he won’t get chilly overnight. Assuming we have these bases covered, let’s start on our one week to better baby sleep habits. Everything else is the same – 15 minutes before you go in, offering just the one bottle, etc. This was an important change we made, because we figured that when mommy goes into the room in the middle of the night, the baby expects her to feed him. After 4-6 months by the baby sleep charts most babies are capable of sleeping through the night. We’ve collected our favorite cute pajamas for baby girls and sleeper sets for baby boys here.
Routine is important here and being firm about the attention you give him when he should be sleeping so that he learns to self-soothe.
As a consequence of these factors, your baby seldom has difficulty falling to sleep (Holland 2004).
Impulses come up the same sensory pathways that are used for sight and sound, and perhaps touch, smell and taste. Yet if respiratory movements were never practiced, your child would be born with no experience at all in using these muscles that are so necessary to survival.
Wakefulness in the first few hours after birth, followed by a long stretch, often up to 24 hours, of intermittent sleep, is the normal newborn pattern. So for example, if your baby was born 3 weeks early then at 1 month your baby would be 1 week old. Unlike adults and older babies, newborns fall directly into REM sleep, a pattern that continues until they are around three months old. It sometimes occurs for no apparent reason, although often it is a response to a loud noise or a sudden jolt.
Ease your baby’s discomfort by making his evening environment, dark, quiet and comfortable. It’s a form of self-soothing that infants use until about six to eight weeks, when they begin to develop other ways with coping with stimulation (West 2010). Sleeping patterns vary from baby to baby, and the evidence on sleeping through the night shows no difference between breastfed and formula-fed babies (Rosen 2008; Quillin and Glenn 2006). She may well stir after ten minutes, and again after twenty to thirty minutes, predictable times for a partial awakening from a nap at this age (West 2010). Over the fourth and fifth months, melatonin secretion rises and non-REM sleep increases, meaning your baby sleeps more deeply than she did as a newborn.
Hint: for the first few nights, put her in the moses basket inside the cot until she gets used to being in the cot.
In addition, babies 4 months and older tend to burst out of the swaddle in the middle of the night, which means it also becomes a safety hazard. You can now take more control of bedtimes, by putting her down at roughly the same time every night, with a similar routine.
Naps less than 1 hour are not considered restorative and do not significantly lower levels of cortisol.
When doing this, you may notice that he nurses more frequently through the day or nurses for a bit longer at each feed. This is because her sleep-wake cycles are becoming less dependent on hunger: as her stomach capacity grows, she can go longer without needing to feed.
However whilst teething can interfere with sleep, it does so far less than many parents anticipate or believe.
Bear in mind that most sleep therapists recommend that you wait until your baby is 12 months old before you attempt any sleep training which involves leaving your baby to cry (Hames 1999). Allow your baby the opportunity to put himself back to sleep before going in to check on him. Bedtime and night-time awaking may suddenly become complicated by problems that up till now hadn’t bothered him.
Are you still taking all of the necessary steps to give your baby the best chance possible of sleeping through the night? I prefer long-sleeve pajamas and a sleeveless fleece sleep sack, but find what seems to make your baby the most cozy. We’re going to assume that your baby is at least 4 months old and still wakes up once (or twice) in the middle of the night to feed. You’re going to start the bedtime routine at the first signs of drowsiness in your infant, no more than an hour after dinner. This may mean that you need to sound-proof or put a fan in the rooms of your other children, so that the crying doesn’t wake them up. With luck, your baby, after having been weaned down over the past six days, will settle back down if he wakes up at all.
This state may allow the unborn baby's developing brain to receive sensory input - to 'see' and to 'hear' - even before birth! You will still need to wake your baby for feeds every 3-4 hours whether breast or formula feeding.
It may seem worrying to you, but the reflex is actually a reassuring sign that your baby’s neurological system is functioning well. At night, she may be sleeping for longer stretches, typically up to four hours at a time, sometimes longer towards the end of the second month (Grace 2010; West 2010). Some babies have more of a throat gurgle, usually the result of having a sort and flexible airway.
The first sleep through is often a big surprise to parents, especially the breastfeeding mother who will have exploding melons. She will probably respond well to routine at this stage, and enjoy the rituals of preparing for her night-time sleep. To ascertain how much sleep disruption stems from your baby’s teeth, compare day with night behaviour. You could try moving his lunch forward a little so that he has his afternoon sleep a bit earlier. He may also be uncharacteristically frightened by loud noises or changes to routine, and he may start to wake at night and cry for you.
Finally, we figured out some of the contributing factors, and (with the help of our pediatrician) came up with a one week plan to get back on track. If you’re on solid foods already, feed your baby a filling, nourishing meal at dinner time.
I know that it seems counter-intuitive, but babies often sleep longer when put to bed early.
Second, when you do go in, first try reinserting the pacifier, tucking the blanket, and leaving. This timeline, collated through years of research, will outline these typical sleep patterns. This resolves itself within a year or two as the rings of cartilage in the airway become more rigid. If she’s her usual self all day but extra cranky or difficult at night, it is probably not teething causing it. It’s also a good idea to establish a quiet period around the time he used to nap, maybe reading a story to him or listening to music. It will explain what sleep behaviour you can reasonably expect of your little one at each stage of their development. These snoring sounds do not usually interfere with your baby’s breathing and will disappear over the next few weeks.
Always have any breathing irregularities, snores, gurgles or pauses in your baby’s breathing checked by your doctor. Right before bed, offer that last bottle of perfectly-warm milk or formula, to give him that warm and comfy feeling in his belly that puts even adults to sleep.



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