Why Won’t Babe Sleep Through the Night?

Don’t we all want to know. The typical picture is this: your baby wakes up regularly throughout the night, they begin to fuss, and they rely on you to soothe them back to sleep. Everyone is now up all throughout the night and just exhausted, including babe.

Almost 90% of the time, there is a single cause for babe or your toddler not being able to sleep through the night. First though, we must rule out the two essentials.

  1. Hunger.

If babe is under the age of 6 months, hunger may be the reason for the waking. Usually, babes younger than 6 months require a night feed, with the caveat that some drop this sooner. After 6 months, we can expect babe to sleep the solid 11-12 hours through the night.

  1. Discomfort

We always want to make sure that babe is not uncomfortable before expecting them to sleep through the night. Common causes for discomfort include acid reflux/indigestion, being too hot or cold, or simply being in an uncomfortable position.

After ruling out these two causes, we’re left with the simple fact that babe just does not know how to sleep through the night!

Babies were not born with the skill to connect their sleep cycles. In between each cycle after “deep sleep,” we briefly wake. We as adults have had years of practice falling asleep at bedtime and back to sleep in between these cycles.

Babes, on the other hand, have not had any practice and often need help. This help can be in the form of rocking, feedings, bouncing, shushing, cuddling, and any motion in a car or stroller. So when babe wakes between cycles, they expect that same help to fall back asleep.

So yes, babies don’t always sleep through the night and it’s natural for them to wake several times. However, we can teach them the skills to sleep through the night comfortably.

Categories: Sleep Tips