Baby Sleep: Part 1

In the next 2 episodes, we will be addressing baby sleep from when they are first born until they're becoming a toddler.

New Born

New Born babies usually sleep between 12 to 20 hours out of every 24 hours depending on their biological pattern. They have no understanding of day and night so during the first weeks of life they will sleep and wake at random. However, whatever pattern a baby takes or adopts, it will get them the amount of sleep needed. From the very beginning you should make the hour before bed quiet and relaxing.


Average Sleep Pattern
From birth to three months, a baby is supposed to sleep for 17 hours in 24 hours in a day. As your baby has no concept of night and day they will not always be asleep when you want them to be! You'll find your baby's sleeping pattern isn't constant, he will nap and wake up rather than sleep for long periods. This will improve as he gets older.


Keeping Baby Comfortable
A baby should be encouraged to sleep while there is background noise going on. In this way, they won’t expect silence at bedtime. During the first week your baby may feel and sleep better if swaddled in a cot sheet or light blanket, depending on the weather as this can prevent tiny limbs from jerking and twitching. Wrapping your baby can also make them feel secured. A good night sleep should be accompanied by bathing, feeding or wearing of a quality cotton diaper as this can also help a baby sleep well. Some babies will naturally not sleep in dark or very bright rooms so a dim or night light should be used.


2-5 Months

As your baby grows and develops, her sleeping pattern will gradually improve. From 2 months old she will be sleeping for around 17 hours a day but by 5 months you'll find she's sleeping for 11 hours at night and taking 3-4 naps a day. She is still at the stage of waking up during the night though, so expect to have to get up a few times.


Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)

This is a condition that is characterized by the death of a baby during her sleep. It most commonly occurs in babies under 6 months old. The definitive cause of SIDS is still unknown so there is no way you can prevent it from happening but there are some steps that can be taken to reduce the risks.

  • During sleep, a baby should not be covered with a lot of blanket or a cot sheet. This will prevent them from wriggling down the sheets and becoming over heated.
  • Allow your baby to bring out any wind after feeding by stroking their back gently before putting to sleeping.
  • Make sure your baby sleeps on his back - it is the safest position


Read Baby Sleep: Part 2 for more information on how your baby sleeps as he gets older.

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  1. Trudy says:

    Thanks so much cussons for this education. Keep the good work up.

  2. Victoria Kpabitey says:

    pls my baby is now 21 weeks nd he is experiencing a kind of rashes on his skin like boil,it hard nd whenever u touch it he crystal…..pls what could have the cause of that…Tnx

    • Cussons Baby says:

      Hi Victoria, It could be an infection of the skin. Camel baby disinfectant in bath water may help while you see a dermatologist for further treatment.

  3. Amma says:

    Thankx cussons for educating mothers and guardians