Baby Sleep Tips

As your baby gets older, you’ll find that their sleeping patterns are forever changing. To help both you and baby adjust to this, we’ve got a few hints and tips for newborns through to toddlers for a good night’s sleep.

Newborns – 0-3 months

Whilst it might feel like your newborn never sleeps, newborn babies actually sleep between 16-18 hours a day, just broken up into smaller chunks – perhaps 2-4 hours at a time. The first few months in a babies life are all about adjustment, so prepare yourself for baby to wake up at any time of the night (and day) – baby needs to establish sleep structures and by responding quickly when your newborn wakes up, you can help set these in place. Try and help your baby understand night and day, when it’s time for a nap in the daytime, keep the lights on. You’ll soon find that baby will tend to sleep more at night, because the environment is much better to catch up on all those zzz’s.

Infants – 4-8 months

As you’ve spent the first 3 months of baby’s life establishing sleep patterns, routines and times of day, you’ll find that your baby will tend to sleep for longer stretches at a time, hopefully at night. Which means, more sleep for you too. At this stage, you’ll want baby to try and understand how to get themselves to sleep, instead of having you rush to them every time. Pay attention to signs that baby is sleepy – like rubbing eyes, pulling their ears, and take this as a sign that it’s time to put them in their crib. When baby gets drowsy, they will learn to soothe themselves to sleep – it’s important to develop this skill, so they can fall back asleep independently in the middle of the night if they wake up.

Baby – 8-12 months

By now, your baby might have reached the point where they can sleep through the night. At this age, your baby will need between 13-15 hours of sleep a day, to give them all the energy they need for crawling and playing. You’ll find that some babies need more sleep, and some need less, but it’s important not to cut back on naps as this can cause over-tiredness. Just be wary not to let baby nap too close to bedtime, or you might be in for a restless night.

Toddler – 12-24 months

If your little one has just started pre-school, you may find that their naptime needs to change slightly to match that of their group. So make sure your toddler is getting enough sleep at night, to help them adjust to this change on their own. Keep the routine at night exactly the same to avoid too many changes, as this might cause setbacks in their sleeping pattern – your toddler will feel much more calmer and relaxed knowing what’s coming next – so stick to the same bedtime, the same pattern of a bath, and reading a book or whatever else you have in place. This will make any other adjustments in their little lives much easier.