Is My Baby Sleeping Too Much?

Is my baby sleeping too much? Babies need to sleep for over 13 hours per day, as simple as that. It is in the nature of humans to sleep for the purpose of resting and feeling refreshed. This need is greater in babies, and a lot of sleep is a must for them. Even adults will have impaired judgement and other faculties if they are sleep-deprived.

close-up portrait of a beautiful sleeping baby on white


Newborns spend most of their time sleeping, from 14 to 18 hours daily, in different intervals. Some might even sleep 20 hours a day, as has been pointed out by Scott Cohen, the author of Eat Sleep Poop: A Common Sense Guide to Your Baby’s First Year; this is not necessarily a reason to be alarmed, as it is in the individual nature of some babies to sleep so much.

Good sleeping habits are essential for both the physical and emotional health of babies, mentions a study published in the journal, Paediatrics & Child Health.

The cycles of sleep of babies, however, differ from those of adults. For instance, they will spend a considerable amount of time in rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. This is needed to a greater extent than for adults because REM sleep is associated with brain development. Their overall development, including growth, relies on sleep. For instance, the pituitary gland will release growth hormones at a more rapid rate during sleep. It is to be mentioned that babies undergo a considerably rapid rate of growth in their first months. Their body weight might even have doubled at five months old.

Another factor is that babies have to adapt themselves to their new worldly environment, and this will involve them sleeping much.

As babies make the transition from being newborns to around 8 weeks of age, their sleeping patterns will shift to longer ones during the night, and their REM sleep will last for shorter periods of time while non-REM sleep will be longer.

Furthermore, what is to be taken into consideration is that each baby is an entity, an individual. This means that his sleeping patterns will also be individual to him. He will have his own internal biological clock, and mostly this does not align itself with what adults normally know.

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