How to Get Baby to Sleep Through the Night
For more tips on bedtimes and sleep, listen to our podcast episode Smoother Bedtimes & Better Sleep.
One of the first question parents start asking shortly after bringing home their newborn baby is “when will this baby start to sleep through the night?” or “How do I get baby to sleep through the night?!”
This lack of sleep quickly becomes a struggle for most parents. When your infant is 0-3 months old, is what is known as the “4th trimester.” This is when your baby is trying to transition from womb to world. She came from a warm cozy place with constant feeding and warmth, no diaper changes needed, very little light and certainly no “day” and “night”, and the ability to wake and sleep as needed without (for the most part) impacting anyone else. The world is bright and stimulating. Getting onto a schedule for eating and sleep takes some getting used to. So during these first 3 months your baby will sleep 16-18 hours a day but sleep is very scattered throughout.
Around 8 weeks of age, your baby will begin to develop those diurnal-nocturnal sleep patterns, he will begin to differentiate day sleep from night sleep, slowly stretching out night sleep and sleeping a little less during the day.
Once your baby is at least 12 weeks and 12 pounds and you have the blessing from your pediatrician, you can start to implement a sleep training method of your choice. There are many methods available and no, they don’t all require your baby to cry. We have another blog post coming soon about 3 different methods and the pros and cons of each. We also cover all of these methods in detail in our class on Infant Sleep so parents can choose which one feels best to them.
If you want to know how to get baby to sleep through the night, the first thing you will want to do is set up solid sleep associations and bedtime routines. We have a great blog post that covers what these are and how to do these effectively.