There are many reasons why your baby maybe waking, a milestone, a growth spurt, teething are all causes, but usually very temporary ones. When your baby is up all night for weeks or even months on end, there is usually a culprit. So let’s talk about the most common reasons your baby is waking.
Baby doesn’t know how to “self-soothe”
A baby that falls asleep by rocking, feeding, bouncing or any other “prop” may expect the exact same when they wake in between sleep cycles. Since babies have short sleep cycles, this results in frequent night wakings. The use of sleep props preventing your baby from “self soothing” is the number 1 culprit of night wakings and sleep troubles. Some babies are born self-soothers, other aren’t. It’s totally okay to give your baby a couple of minutes to fall back asleep on their own when they wake up in the middle of the night. If we jump up each time they wake up and immediately pick them up or rock them, it can actually have a negative affect and cause them to wake up instead of falling back asleep.
Baby is hungry
I don’t know about you, but I just can’t fall asleep if I am experiencing those hunger pains deep in my belly while I try to go to sleep. Chances are your baby might be feeling the same. Newborns need more frequent feeds than older infants and may even need a top up during the night. But once a baby is eating solids, with 3 well-balanced meals throughout the day, along with additional snacks, plenty of milk and hydration, this will significantly improve your baby’s ability to sleep well throughout the night. Most experts agree that babies can typically sleep through the night between the age of 3 and 6 months. If your baby is waking for that one feeding a little longer than that, that should be fine too. Often encouraging a “tank up” before your baby goes to sleep or around dinner is good for babies of all ages.
Baby is overtired
Not being able to sleep because your baby is overtired, is often the case with adults too. Have you ever felt like you just can’t make it through until the night because you’re so tired, only to find that you suddenly have a surge of energy right before you go to sleep making it impossible for you to settle? Well, babies suffer from the same thing. This is caused by a chemical response of adrenaline and cortisol to the system making it hard to settle and relax.
Baby is in pain or suffering discomfort
Teething, an upset stomach, earaches, or infections, can all be a cause of why your baby isn’t sleeping. They may even be waking up because they’re too hot or possibly too cold. Or you may have just changed their diaper only to find them unable to go to sleep because they made a last minute poop and are uncomfortable sitting it in!
Baby is too excited to sleep
Overstimulation before bed is often a problem of why baby won’t go to sleep. Getting them tired out with fun play does help to an extent, however getting an already tired baby overexcited can lead to them to being overtired. Exposure to television or electronic devices can also cause overstimulation. Encouraging a “winding down” period before bed is very helpful. You can do this by giving your baby a relaxing bath, playing calming music, diffusing a sleep-promoting essential oil in baby’s room, or by enjoying a few warm cuddles with your little one.
The “Secret Sauce to Sweet Slumber”
You may have found yourself reading this article as you’re currently suffering from sleep deprivation and in a desperate attempt to find a solution to your problem. You’ve woken up this morning feeling even more exhausted than when you went to bed in the first place, and you know action needs to be taken.
Is there any magic in getting a baby to sleep, you ask?
We completely understand how you feel and we’re happy to say that you’re in good hands.
Take a look at how Sleep, Baby, Sleep® can help your baby sleep through the night