It is a special and joyous moment for every parent to hear the first cry of their newborn baby. But this happy time brings with it great responsibility to understand the baby. Taking care of newborn may not be exhaustive for the elated parents, but it certainly taxes them physically as the sleep pattern of newborn is not certain. Generally newborn babies sleep more, for almost 16 to 17 hours in 24 hours. This means babies have lot of sleep and rest, but for parents it is too tiring schedule. Parents may often have to wake up at night for feeding or to change clothes etc.
Sleep pattern of newborn is unpredictable. Baby may sleep more during daytime and often wake up many times at night. Babies do not sleep like adults. They sleep for a short while and they have REM sleep. It is necessary for the development of their brain. Secondly the circadian rhythm in them is not well developed. They frequently become hungry because of their tiny tummy. They need frequent feedings, at least 4 feedings at night during the first few weeks after birth. This may lead to disruption in parents sleep.
At least for few weeks parents have to undergo this stage of parenthood.After 4 months many babies sleep during night for 7 to 8 hours. Some babies sleep even longer while some babies wake up even when they become 1 or 2 years old. There is no fix formula and the sleep pattern of each baby may differ. However, there are ways where you can start teaching good sleeping habits in a newborn.
How To Manage Newborn To Sleep Well In The Night?
Here are some ways that may help the baby to sleep well.
- During the first 2 months after birth, the newborn baby is not able to stay awake more than 2 hours. He often falls asleep within two hours after waking up. You have to avoid keeping the baby awake more than 2 hours, as the baby may become overtired and may find trouble falling asleep.
- Often babies stay awake during the night when it is right time for you to sleep. As said earlier, babies in their first few weeks or months do not have a fixed sleep pattern. However, you can try some ways that may make the baby realize the difference between night and day. It may not be possible for first few weeks but after a month you can start teaching the baby the difference between night and day. Play with the baby when he is awake during day. Interact more during daytime. Keep the room bright with lights. Let the baby get familiar with noises around him. Do not try to reduce its volume. On the other side, avoid playing and talking with him at night. Keep his room dark or dim lighted. Avoid noises or reduce volumes of television, telephone and other gadgets. Let the surrounding become silent. Within few weeks baby begins to realize that nighttime is sleeping time.
- Follow a regular routine during night. For example sing a lullaby or change the bed sheet and clothes. This simple bed time routine procedure before sleeping will make him realize that it’s time for him to sleep.
- When the baby has difficult time to fall asleep at night, try a pacifier. Often pacifier soothes and calms down the baby. While sucking a pacifier many babies fall asleep.