Newborn Baby Sleep: Myth vs Fact

You have spent countless hours adoring your baby belly, preparing the nursery and learning about the joys (and horrors) of birth.  Before you know it, you’re holding your precious bundle of joy.  Many emotions run over you; your a sappy mess (thank hormones!).  Then you have a frightful realization; you forgot to learn about some important topics regarding your babe after they arrived – eat, poop and sleep!  You take a deep breathe and realize those aren’t rocket science topics, you can do this…and YOU CAN DO THIS!  But if there is one topic that will get you in a tizzy, it’s sleep.  Research shows it’s the #1 topic discussed at pediatrician offices…not to mention between moms.  Well, I am here to help you sort through some of those crazy myths about sleep, especially those of the newborn days.

I consider a newborn baby to be from birth until the day before they turn 4 months old.

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Myth:  If I keep my baby up during the day, they will sleep better at night.

Fact:  This is the most common myth I hear and as logical as it seems, it is false.  Extremely false!  Sleep begets sleep.  The more sleep a baby gets during the day, the better and longer sleep they will have during the night.  Keep those zzz’s going all day long.

Myth:  My baby never seems tired, they can stay awake for 3+ hours.

Fact:  Immediately after your baby is born you will experience what “sleeping like a baby” means.  Yet, a few days to a week after your baby’s birth, your baby will have increased wakefulness (“sleeping like a baby” is over – boo!).  Don’t mistake this that they can handle these long periods of awareness.  Respect your babies need to sleep by making sure they have short awake periods.  After being awake for 45 minutes – 2 hours, they will get drowsy and want to go to sleep.  Assist them back to sleep.  Short awake periods are the key to a better sleeper.  *Note: the awake time includes feeding and changing. 

Myth:  I am spoiling my baby by holding them to sleep or sleeping in the swing, etc.

Fact:  Sleep is one of the main goals for your baby in their first few months of life.  If they sleep best in your arms or another safe location, it is okay.  Due to the lack of cognitive development, your baby isn’t making connections.  Safe sleep is most important, followed by a lot of sleep.  Having trouble getting them to sleep, the The Calming Cure for Newborns is just the trick!

Myth:  My baby sleeps long stretches as a newborn, this must mean they will be awesome sleepers forever.

Fact:  If your little one is easily snoozing the nights awake, jump for joy and live it up!  But don’t be surprised if you experience the Four Month Regression.  Why?  Sleep is a learned skill.  Some babies easily sleep during the newborn days (dare I say it’s luck?!), but if you don’t establish healthy sleep habits to go along with that awesome sleep, it may end.  Around four months of age children have a large cognitive development (they can now make those connections with their surroundings) and they need a solid sleeping foundation to keep that amazing sleep up.  More questions about this, contact me!

Enjoy those sweet snuggles with your little one!  The days are long, but the newborn stage is especially short.  HUGS!

Valerie Birch

Certified Infant & Child Sleep Consultant at Amazing Little Sleeper
Valerie Birch is a Pediatric Sleep Expert for exhausted families who have tried evvvvverything to get their child to sleep.

Through her informative and supportive blog posts and one-on-one help, she’s here to guide your child into restorative naps and peaceful nights - while making you wonder why you didn’t contact her sooner.

When she’s not consulting?You’ll find her hanging with her 2 children, getting her sweat on at the gym or baking and indulging in warm ooey-googey chocolate-chip cookies….hobbies that balance each other out!

Meet Valerie + prepare yourself for Amazing Sleep ahead…amazinglittlesleeper.com

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