A baby doesn’t just bring in happiness and joy for new parents, it also brings in many challenges. Speaking of challenges, is your baby sleeping through the night now? Yes, no, what?
This is one problem that most parents have the greatest trouble dealing with. Because newborns have such small tummies, they need to wake every few hours to feed. But this only needs to happen in the beginning.
As the baby grows, this need for constant feeding goes away and the time for babies to sleep through the night comes.
But sometimes, things don’t go as planned and parents are left wondering why their toddlers are still waking up all through the night. Well, things can get complicated sometimes. Let’s see some of the biggest reasons why your baby doesn’t sleep through the night.
When babies don’t sleep through the night
No matter how great your baby’s bedding and how comfortable his clothes and blankets, sometimes that’s not enough. You might not like it, but babies are not supposed to sleep through the night.
Professor of infant health and developmental psychology at the University of Bristol, Peter Fleming says, “Human infants are not designed to sleep for long periods, it's not good for them, and there is absolutely no evidence whatsoever that there is any benefit to anybody from having a child that sleeps longer and consistently.”
That’s not a very fun revelation, is it? But for what it’s worth, it’s actually good news if your baby doesn’t sleep through the night. According to Fleming, babies who don’t sleep through the night show higher levels of intellectual and developmental achievement.
Babies have a shorter sleep cycle
As opposed to the adults who have a 90-minute sleep cycle, babies have a 60-minutes sleep cycle. And both babies and adults wake up during the night after a few sleep cycles.
The only difference is that adults finish two or three 90-minutes sleep cycles before going back to sleep while babies struggle to fall back asleep by themselves.
Another big reason why babies often wake up is that parents keep them away in their own cribs. That’s actually not supposed to happen. From an evolutionary perspective, babies always stayed in close touch with their mothers. That’s one of the biggest reasons why co-sleeping- sleeping on the same bed with your baby - is such a popular technique.
Baby sleeping through the night
Despite everything, it’s not impossible to get your baby to sleep through the night undisturbed. Here are some tricks and ways to do that:
Establish a bedtime routine
You can create some positive sleeping associations for your baby in a bedtime routine. This will prepare your baby to sleep whenever the nighttime sleeping routine is followed.
Teach self-soothing to your baby
Every time your baby cries at night, go check on them but don’t spend too long with them. Calm them down by touching them on their chest for a few moments and then leave the room.
This simple technique will help ease the separation anxiety and break your baby’s association with your lap for going back to sleep. This way, your baby learns to self-soothe and sleep peacefully.
Follow a schedule
Setting a sleep schedule might be the best way to ensure your baby gets just the right amount of sleep during both the daytime and nighttime.
Putting your baby to their bed at the same time and waking them up at the same time sets a routine for them which brings consistency.
A comfortable bed
Another mistake parents often make is that they either don’t cover their babies well, or they put too many clothes on them. You don’t want your baby to get cold while sleeping, but make sure they aren’t too hot.
Also, make sure you use baby dry sheets and mosquito nets if required. Make sure that physical discomfort is as less as possible so as not to become an added factor that disrupts your baby’s sleep through the night.
We hope that these tips will help your baby sleep through the night more than they did earlier and in turn, provide you with a full night’s sleep as well. Good luck!