You’re visiting the Birmingham branch of Little Dreams. Click here to view the main site.

How to Navigate Night Wake-ups

Mum and Dad leaning over cot

Share This Post

Sleep is a precious commodity for both parents and babies. Getting your little one to sleep through the night can feel like a monumental task. Understanding your baby’s sleep patterns and how to navigate the night wake ups is essential for a well-rested household. In this blog, we’ll explore the various wake-up times your baby might experience and offer strategies to improve their sleep routine.

1. Early Evening Wake-Ups

Your baby waking up within an hour of bedtime can be a common challenge. It’s often a sign that they were either overstimulated or overtired when they went to bed. The solution? Check the awake windows are right for the age of your little one and that they are getting enough daytime sleep. If they are experiencing short naps or ‘cat naps’ regularly then it may be that they are reliant on something to get to sleep which is making it difficult for them to link their sleep cycles together. Also, consider shifting bedtime to an earlier hour for a few days. The goal is to ensure your baby starts the night well-rested, with 6 p.m. being the earliest recommended bedtime.

2. Wake-Ups Between 9 PM and 11 PM:

These wake-ups are typically part of your baby’s natural sleep cycle transition from deep sleep to lighter stages. To promote longer stretches of sleep, aim to keep the first 2-3 hours of sleep uninterrupted. Avoid feeding during this time, helping your baby learn to connect these sleep cycles for better sleep continuity.

3. Midnight to 4 AM Wake-Ups:

Waking up between midnight and early morning hours could be related to hunger if they aren’t established on solids. Remember that your baby’s sleep cycles usually last about 45 minutes, and they might have brief awakenings between cycles that aren’t always related to hunger. Pay attention to your baby’s cues, and if they’re hungry, offer a feed. However, not all awakenings during this time are due to hunger and if you are noticing hourly wake-ups at this time of the night, it may be because they have a reliance on something to get back to sleep between their sleep cycles as opposed to being hungry each time.

4. Early Morning Wake-Ups (4 AM – 6 AM):

In the early morning hours, babies enter a phase of very light sleep, and the sleep hormone melatonin begins to decrease. To help your baby get back to sleep, create a dark and quiet sleep environment, encouraging them to transition back into deeper sleep for a more extended rest.

5. 6 AM – 7:30 AM Wake-Ups:

Avoid starting your baby’s day before 6 AM. Any waking before this time should be treated as a nighttime wake-up. This approach helps lengthen nighttime sleep and ensures that your baby’s daytime naps are evenly spaced throughout the day, promoting a well-structured sleep routine.

Understanding your baby’s sleep patterns and how to address various wake-up times is key to achieving a peaceful night for both you and your little one. Keep in mind that every baby is unique, and it may take some time to fine-tune a sleep routine that works best for your family. With patience and consistency, you can help your baby develop a healthy sleep routine, providing the rest they need and the peaceful nights you crave. Sweet dreams!

If you need help with night wakes, or if they’re struggling with any aspect of their sleep – please do get in touch, I’d love to help.

You may also like

toddler crying in a cot

How to Manage a Tricky Nap Day

Understanding Tricky Nap Days First and foremost, it’s important to acknowledge that everyone experiences bad nap days. We’ve all been there, we’ve had our fair

Read More »