Newborn Sleep: Why It’s So Important (and How to Get More of It)

As a new parent, you might be surprised at how little sleep you’re actually getting. And while it’s true that newborns don’t sleep through the night, there are things you can do to help encourage more and better sleep.

How Much Sleep Does a Newborn Need?

On average, newborns sleep 16-17 hours per day. But that doesn’t mean they’ll be sleeping through the night—in fact, it’s normal for newborns to wake up every few hours to eat. over the first few weeks, your baby will start to sleep for longer stretches at a time, but it will be awhile before they’re sleeping through the night.

Why is sleep so important for newborns?

Getting enough sleep is important for everyone, but it’s especially important for newborns. That’s because sleep is when babies grow and develop. During REM (rapid eye movement) sleep, babies’ brains are actively developing connections between neurons. This is when they form memories and learn new skills. So if your baby isn’t getting enough sleep, they could miss out on important developmental milestones. It also gives their brains a chance to rest and recover from all the new stimulation they’re experiencing. But for various reasons, sleep doesn’t always come easily.

How can I help my newborn sleep better?

There are a few things you can do to help your newborn sleep better:

  1. Establish a bedtime routine. A calming bedtime routine will help signal to your baby that it’s time to sleep. This could include a bath, some quiet time reading together, or a lullaby.
  2. Put your baby to bed drowsy but awake. This will help them to learn how to self-soothe and fall asleep on their own.
  3. Keep the lights low in the evening and at bedtime. A dark room will cue your baby’s body that it’s time to sleep.
  4. Limit stimulation before bedtime. Avoiding too much TV, stimulation from friends or siblings, or other potential sources of excitement before bedtime will help your baby wind down and prepare for sleep.
  5. Create a comfortable sleeping environment. Make sure the room is not too hot or cold, and that there’s no noise or other distractions that could keep your baby awake.

Be patient. It takes time for babies (and parents!) to adjust to a new sleeping schedule. Give yourself and your baby time to adjust, and eventually everyone will be getting the much-needed rest they need!

Following these tips, you can help your newborn sleep better and get the important rest they need to sleep through the night, there are things you can do to help your baby—and yourself—get more rest. Here’s what you need to know about newborn sleep, why it’s so important, and some tips on how to get more of it.

Newborn sleep is important for both babies and parents! Getting enough rest is critical for babies as it helps with their development and growth. For parents, getting more sleep can be a challenge but there are things you can do to help your baby (and yourself) get more shut-eye including establishing a bedtime routine and keeping the environment dark and quiet at night. Thanks for reading and sweet dreams!

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