Your sleeping baby

Newborn baby sleep patterns explained plus useful information on understanding sleeping and why your new baby is likely to have a different sleep routine to you.
Newborn babies generally like to sleep a lot, around 16 hours a day on average, however this won't necessarily be at night or in large chunks and may be punctuated with a fair amount of crying. There really are no hard and fast rules on this, your baby will sleep as long as he needs to.

Our own bodies are set to run on a 24-hour clock (the technical name is circadian rhythm), with a long period of sleep at night. However babies are not born with this and it can take several weeks for them to develop it. By four to six weeks, babies start to develop a more distinct circadian rhythm. Sleep starts to occur in fewer and longer episodes as the baby grows, until the total time spent asleep falls from around 16 hours to about 12 hours by age one.

By six months, most babies are sleeping from 12 to 14 hours a night, mostly in one long block at night with at least one nap taken during the day. It is estimated that most new parents lose at least two hours of sleep for the first four or five months and one hour a night after that. This may not sound much, but it adds up to several hundred lost hours of sleep over the first year of your baby's life. It is no wonder parents feel tired!

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How come my 5 month old daughter will sleep on someone but when it comes to going in the cot she wont go ? x
by Lilly2010 13th Dec 2010, 8:46am
try to keep a good routine starting straight away. at 7.30 i bath my baby, then do baby massage every night so she knows this is time to relax. we keep the lights low and the curtains closed and keep everything quiet. i dont talk much either. then she has a warm bottle and a cuddle and as soon as she is fast asleep i put her in the moses basket. dont ever break the routine and she will eventually start to click on to daughter is so chilled by her routine she only wakes twice for a feed and goes down straight away. plus, keeping really calm helps and only changing nappy if dirty or really wet.
by loutom 12th Aug 2010, 10:48am
My little girl Isabella is just over a week old, we have real problems getting her to sleep especially at night. My wife has had less than 4 hours for the last week. Has any one got any ideas on how to possibly get her into a routine. We tried everything she absolutely fine during the day.
by Paul5268 27th Jan 2010, 9:42am
my 6months old son is in no rotein when it comes to bed time.He falls asleep in my arms every night as soon as i put him down he wakes up he sleeps with me but still wakes up through the night for a drink. i really dont no what to do as my partner has to be up every morning at half 5 and needs his sleep too. help.
by kelly2010 27th Jan 2010, 9:35am
after been praying for seven years i cant wait to be blessed with this cant wait to get my rocking chair lord jsesus christ and jehovah god thanks
by jehovahownjesus 11th Jan 2010, 4:15pm
my baby girl off 9 months has never sleep all nite she gets up every half an hour for an other or 2,i have tryd all baby books idels and internet help but nuthing is working she will sleep for 2 hours in the morning in her pram and 2 hours in the afternoon still in her pram.any ideas would be great thanks
by jenbaby3 5th Jan 2010, 3:53pm
my daughter is 11 months old, and weve always had the same rutine bath then bed, but now shes being a rite naughty girl n im having loads of trouble getting her to go to sleep she just screams and crys, for like an hour n half before she finally gives in wot shuld i do?
by gemmz 24th Nov 2009, 10:42am
Cradlebabe- My son was put to sleep on his front in the hospital by the nurses. When I brought him home he was used to sleeping on his front and refused to sleep on his back. There were no problems with him sleeping on his front and it avoided flat head. I am not sure why babies are supposed to sleep on their backs but mine refused to.
by lornaross 14th Apr 2009, 12:44pm
im a new mum to be, and i have to be honest i have seen a lot of babies with a flat patch on the back of their it right that when putting your baby to sleep on its back, it gets a flat head? is it safe to put your baby on its front to sleep? to avoid getting a flat head? any ideas on whats the best position for your baby to sleep in?
by cradlebabe 5th Jan 2009, 9:19am
My son is now 17wks old and is now sleeping from 7pm till 7am which is fantastic, I have recently put him on "Aptimil Hungerer Baby" formula milk for his night time feed and its really working as before this he was waking between 2-4 for a feed of about 6oz. He now has 80z of this new milk before bedtime and he sleeps 12hrs! He is also in a routine which helps loads too, has a nice warm deep bath with Bedtime bath bubbles, comes down stairs for his last bottle then is put in his cot awake with his nightime music thingy and he drops off within 10mins. I did read somewhere that if baby falls asleep on your breast and wakes up and isnt there he will panic, so its best to put baby in his cot awake. I do sympathise with mums that are getting up every 3 hours as myself and my hsuband went through this every night until the last 2-3weeks.
by bmwbaby 8th Dec 2008, 8:34am
My 10 month daughter does not have any day time nap since day one. If she sleep during the day it will be for 10 to 15 minutes. She also waking up at night time and early morning and will only go back to sleep if I hold her in my arms. Sometimes it takes 1 or 2 hours for her to sleep. I also tried to leave her fall a sleep on her own but she usually cries for hours and I worried that she will wake up my 5 years old son as well as some of our neighbour. I therefore give up !!! I have tried to follow a routine by giving her a bath and a bottle before bedtime to make sure that she will not wake up at night feeling hungry but that do not seem to work. I'm working full time and find It very difficult and tiring. I will welcome any advise. Thank you!
by chrissy37 21st Nov 2008, 9:09am
my baby sleeps almost 5hours straight in the morning , and wakes up for 2 hours, then sleeps again in the afternoon. is it okay to wake her up? so that she will sleep straight at night?
by chek 10th Nov 2008, 9:48am
My baby has always been fab at going to sleep, you basically put him to bed and he sleeps ! We are very lucky (long may it continue !) He is just over 6 months old now and can roll from his back to his front, but has not found out how to get back. As a result of this he has started to roll over onto his side then onto his belly when in his cot and then gets in a real state as he can't flip back. We have placed a rolled up towel either side of him to prevent this and are hoping that he masters the art of flipping back over soonish, Any other tips or advise on this would be welcome.
by TraceyLW 23rd Jun 2008, 8:28am
my son sleeps continously for 5 hours after bathing him and gets up/cries if he is hungry......he normally has a sound sleep and does not get disturbed by routine noises ......and also snores a lot in sleep it normal...he is now 2.5 months old
by Maitri 15th Feb 2008, 9:22am
so what bout our sleepin in the same room as your baby what do you do then?
by lauraloo2 15th Jan 2008, 2:41pm
my 5month old sleeps 8 to 7at night. ive been having troubles getting him to sleep during the day ive tried controled crying but he screams for 2hrs. he has all the tired signs. does any one have any advice or thoughts. im desperate
by rocketfuel 24th Sep 2007, 8:46am
i have experience on the baby sleeping not throught out night, he wakes several times which cause difficulty for me to go to work. 3 times since he was born, now 4 times. one he wakes up, i nurse him to stop him from crying and continue to sleep. i now looking for way to solve this problem
by Doudou 18th Jun 2007, 10:39am