Why Do Babies Have Difficulty in Sleeping ?

Cheena M Gujral
0 to 1 years

Created by Cheena M Gujral
Updated on Feb 25, 2020

Why Do Babies Have Difficulty in Sleeping
Reviewed by Expert panel

Good sleep is like a healer. It energizes and replenishes the body. The right amount and quality of sleep are even more important in young children, especially infants from the age of up to 6 months. The biggest challenge a mother faces in the initial days of parenting is sleepless nights. So frequent wake-ups in the middle of a dark, are painful and it is more stressful to actually trace the reasons behind it.

A newborn child cannot differentiate between day and night. It is 4 months of age, after which a baby naturally prefers to sleep and adapts a pattern. Sleep nutrition depends upon babies age, weight, family and environmental routines. Researches say that here is the approximate time of sleep requirements which gradually settles with time. Like from initial 16-18 hrs of sleep in a day for a week old infant to 10 hrs sleep throughout the night in 6 months old baby. [Read - Food Allergy in Infants]

Common Sleep Problems in Infants

The milestone of sleeping throughout the night is achieved differently by every child. Few attain it from the beginning while others ask for a long testing time from mothers. Here are a few common sleeping issues or problems diagnosed in babies & infants. Read here.

  • Lack of proper sleep schedule: When the child sleeps through the day and is chattery in the night, it indicates that slumber is going wrong.
  • Sleeping only in rocking arms. Ask a mother who has to pass whole night keeping the baby in her arms. The moment she put her back on the bed, the little devil is up.
  • Sleeping outside the home: The most difficult is this when the baby falls asleep only after a long drive, turning the family into night goers.
  • Short naps:  When the child sleeps only for short naps and quickly wakes up.
  • Nap resistance: This comes when your infant is never ready to lay down and sleep. More you create the peace and more is her activeness to play.

How to Handle Sleep Problems in Your Infant?

Short naps and discontinued snooze, could be due to many reasons and are commonly faced by new parents. Handling these issues can be done easily.

  • Inducing Self sleep could help remarkably. If the child wakes up in the night and is seeking mothers arm, try to introduce a soft toy or pacifier to soothe. Help her fell asleep on her own.
  • Bedtime Music: This is an effective technique which not only soothes the child and spread sleep waves, it also suppresses the external unwanted noises in surroundings that could disturb infants sleep.
  • Following bedtime routines. A young infant is advised to sleep as early as 8 pm. So try your best to create a good night atmosphere at that time. If the angel resists to sleep and ask for playtime, calmly ignore her to enforce the itinerary.
  • Bedding essentials. Disrupted naps and 2 am rising, could be associated with uncomfortable bedding. If you are cosleeping your child, work on a good mattress and convenient spreads. A cozy cot or crib shall only be preferred.
  • Follow hints that restrict the night sleep. Like avoiding long day hour sleep, late waking up or any disturbing home conditions.
  • Sleeping only at home is one of the crucial solutions every parent shall stick to. Don't entertain napping in cars or rocking prams outside homes. Slowly bring your child to the normal ways. The cries and resistance will fade eventually.
  • Avoid frequent feeds. It's not that you keep your child hungry, though the number of feeds shall be reduced, restricting frequent waking up. Feed the little one well before laying down and feed once in between to have longer naps. [Also Read - How to Cure Mouth Ulcer In infants?]
  • Remove family /external obstructions. It takes the whole family to raise a healthy child. So all are advised to work on creating the right atmosphere. Late night habits shall be avoided for wise snoozing in infants. 

Reasons That Can Trigger Sleeping Problems

Here are the possible reasons that can be triggering sleep problems. Read here...

  • Feeling cold or warm
  • Hunger
  • Separation anxiety from mother
  • Overflowed diaper or wetness
  • Uncomfortable bedding
  • Unfavorable environment
  • Family activities or unhealthy routines
  • External environment /unwanted sounds


It will take weeks to months in achieving the ideal good night. So be patient when the child cries, don't panic to take her in arms or stroller just to settle the situation. The more calmly you follow the routine, sooner the adaptation will arrive.

Wishing all mums, best times with best of sleep.

This content has been checked & validated by Doctors and Experts of the parentune Expert panel. Our panel consists of Neonatologist, Gynecologist, Peadiatrician, Nutritionist, Child Counselor, Education & Learning Expert, Physiotherapist, Learning disability Expert and Developmental Pead.

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| Jan 13, 2020

Mine too

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| Nov 27, 2019

Dairo Ayotunde try and add variety. Make presentation attractive, involve him in plating, garnishing, serving etc.. praise him for his involvement. serve him meals with family members so that he learns by imitation. make mealtime funtime.

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| Nov 21, 2019

Pls my baby don't eat.

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| Nov 14, 2019

How many hourly sleep is considered good in infants?

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| Nov 12, 2019

Pls my baby do froce himself to poo nd wen he does,is green n colour

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| Nov 12, 2019

Please i also want to know

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| Oct 31, 2019

My babies sweat a lot while sleeping please what is the cause

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| Oct 06, 2019

aas kaa

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| Sep 19, 2019

About 6 months ago I was struggling to get my baby to sleep and after visits to the doctor, sleepless night countless hours spent on online looking for something to help my child nothing worked. I called and spoke to numerous daycare centres and child car place to see if anyone knew what could help my child. It was really hurting me watching my baby go through this night after night not being able to sleep feeling helpless and unable to help. It was by chance one day that I was ina chemist picking up some medication and I was speaking it the lady behind the counter and she told me about a product that her daughter had been using on her granddaughter and she told me to give her my number and she would message it to me. The product was a lifesaver, within a few days my child was back to normal and sleeping again it was cheaper than everything else I tried. Here is the product I am a huge advocate of this product and I have told all y friends and family about the product and some of my girlfriends have started using it and also swear by it. I honestly can't think this lady enough for what she had done for me and my child especially. I’m sharing this I the hope it also helps someone one day.

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| Aug 21, 2019

poop ll

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| Jul 24, 2018

good message.

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| Jul 24, 2018

I understand swathi, thats really a bothering problem. But just 2months old baby needs time to come to a routine, though you can surely. If the child cries you can try to sooth him with different toys or fav ourite music to distract from milk... lets not get weak when child cries. gradually you can control his feeding habit. wish you best

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| Jul 07, 2018


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| Jul 06, 2018


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| Jul 06, 2018

my 43 days old sons keeps crying till I feed him and vomits coz of excessive feed.... how do I stop him from crying.... he doesn't stop till he gets a hold of my milk

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