Safe and Healthy Sleep

Understanding Your Baby's Sleep Needs: A Guide for New Parents

15 May, 2023

The Importance of Sleep for Babies
Sleep plays a vital role in the growth and development of infants. It supports brain development, promotes physical growth, aids in the formation of memory, and enhances learning abilities. Additionally, a well-rested baby tends to be happier, more alert, and better able to regulate emotions.

Factors Affecting Sleep Patterns
Several factors influence your baby's sleep patterns, and it's important to consider them when understanding their sleep needs:

Age: The amount of sleep a baby needs varies significantly depending on their age. Newborns have a very different sleep pattern compared to older children.

Individual Differences: Just like adults, babies have their own unique sleep needs and patterns. Some babies may sleep more, while others require less sleep.

Growth Spurts: During growth spurts, babies may experience changes in their sleep patterns. They might need more sleep to support their rapid physical and cognitive development.

Environment: The sleep environment, including temperature, noise, and lighting, can affect your baby's sleep. Creating a calm and soothing sleep environment can help promote better sleep and ensuring they are wearing the correct baby sleeping bag and Tog to regulate body temperature.

Sleep Guidelines for Babies
While every baby is different, here is a general guideline for the amount of sleep your baby may need at different stages of their early life:

Newborns (0-3 months): Newborns sleep for approximately 14-17 hours a day, but it's often in short spurts of 2-4 hours. They may have irregular sleep-wake cycles due to feeding and nappy changes.

Infants (4-11 months): Infants require around 12-15 hours of sleep each day. At this stage, babies tend to sleep for longer stretches at night, with a few daytime naps.

Toddlers (1-2 years): Toddlers need about 11-14 hours of sleep per day. They often transition to one nap during the day, lasting 1-3 hours, and sleep for 9-10 hours at night.

Preschoolers (3-5 years): Preschoolers typically sleep for 10-13 hours a day. Most children of this age stop napping, but some may still benefit from a short nap during the day.

Tips to Promote Healthy Sleep Habits
To help your baby develop healthy sleep habits, consider the following tips:

Establish a Consistent Bedtime Routine: Create a calming bedtime routine that signals to your baby that it's time to wind down and prepare for sleep. This can include activities such as a warm bath, reading a book, or gentle lullabies.

Set a Comfortable Sleep Environment: Ensure that your baby's sleep environment is quiet, dark, and at a comfortable temperature. Use a firm and safe crib or bassinet with a fitted sheet and remove any potential hazards. Choose the right baby sleeping bag and the right Tog (check our Tog Guide)

Encourage Daytime Exposure to Natural Light: Exposure to natural light during the day helps regulate your baby's internal body clock. Spend time outdoors or open curtains during daytime naps.

Watch for Sleep Cues: Learn to recognise your baby's sleepy cues, such as yawning, rubbing eyes, or becoming fussy. Putting your baby to bed when they show signs of tiredness can help them fall.


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