What you need to know about baby’s sleeping needs by age
Are you worried that your infant isn’t sleeping enough? …Or maybe that they’re sleeping too much? In other words, how much sleep does baby really need? Of course every child is different, but here are some basic guidelines by age that you can use as a benchmark.
For the first few months, your baby needs around 14-17 hours of sleep in a 24-hour window. They are likely to sleep in 2-4 hour intervals and wake up hungry. Also, at this young age, your little one doesn’t know how to soothe themselves yet—so they’ll look to you for comfort. Speaking of comfort, Finn + Emma blankets are superbly soft and made of organic cotton—all the better to snuggle with!
By around 4 months, your child will start to need slightly less shut-eye—about 12-15 hours. However…they may very well experience sleep regressions around the 4- and 8-month marks. What this means is that for a few weeks at a time they may be very distractible and will wake up more often than you’d like. Certified Child Sleep Specialist Laura Olson reminds parents that, “’sleep begets sleep’”- meaning the more your child sleeps during the day, the better they will sleep at night.” She advises erring on the side of too much napping if your child is going through a regression. The good news, however, is that baby is slowly but surely learning to sleep through the night and to fall back asleep if they wake up. Is your little one teething? Try our fair-trade wooden teethers that are naturally soothing and available in an array of whimsical shapes and styles!
By now, baby needs only about 11-14 hours of sleep. That said, active toddlers might have trouble relaxing when it is, in fact, time for bed. Try to keep things on the calm side the hour or so before you want them to lay down at night—with bathtime, storytime, and no screen time. (And yes, you may encounter a few more regressions during this age window.)
If you’re worried about your child’s sleeping habits or any problems they’re encountering, it’s best to speak with your pediatrician who can assess possible sleep disorders or other issues.
For more information, check out this article from the National Sleep Foundation: How Much Sleep do Babies and Kids Need?