Updated: Jun 19, 2019
There must be a written code of conducts or secret society that sends letters to all expectant mothers on sleeping and your new baby. Do not be afraid as this too shall pass and all babies will eventually sleep 12 hours straight through the night and everyone will wake with gleam and shimmer from their rested eyes each morning. I don’t know who is in charge of the letters, but they forget one important fact, all babies are not the same and ALL babies will not magically hop on the sleeping express train and eventually sleep 12 hours straight at night.
Is it true that many babies will figure out the rough path to sleeping through the night, sure but at the same time there is a large percentage that will be tough cookies and require hard work to get them to sleep through the night and some babies truly will never sleep 12 full hours straight. Let me let you in on a little secret to magical 12 hour sleepers. Just as no two children will excel at the same rate in school, or make the same number of friends in the neighborhood or leap to the top of their class in athletics, no two babies sleeping behaviors will ever be the same. It is a misconception and quite frankly a false statement that all are lead to believe that every child will eventually sleep 12 hours without a worry. Various factors play a roll into how much and how long your baby should be sleeping. Their age, demeanor, sleep environment and wake time schedule are just a few items on the list. Just as every child requires a different feeding schedule the same applies to their sleep. Many forget to take into consideration one of the most important factors is their overall sleep required in a 24- hour period, naps plus night time sleep for their age category.
My five-year-old son has always been a high needs sleeper. He can still rock out a 2-3-hour nap and sleep 10-12 hours at night. As soon as his head hits the pillow he won't make a peep or movement until the next morning. The sky could fall out and a meteor shower erupt and nothing will interfere with his beauty rest.
Now, let’s move on to my 18-month old daughter, she has been a tornado, wreaking havoc in the sleep department since before she entered this world. She borders on the line of recommended daily sleep requirements throughout her entire life. She can sleep the minimal 10-10.5 hours of sleep and wake refreshed each day. Depending on the day it may be two stellar naps or one decent nap, but she still fits into the category of hitting her overall sleep needs for each day. She may never hit the consistent 12-hour straight sleeper, but I know I have instilled healthy and safe sleeping techniques and she meets her overall daily recommendations for sleep. She hit every regression like she wanted to be champion and put other babies to shame. She has tested even my patience and skills at time, but in the end she is a healthy and happy baby who meets the requirements, yet who will not be your average 12 hour straight consistent little sleeper each day.
Evaluate your situation and reach out for the needed help if you feel your baby is not meeting their healthy sleep environments and daily requirements. It can be a struggle to figure out the best plan for your baby or child as they have their own uinque ways. Do not be tempted to put your child into a category with all babies, as their individual needs will be different from even a sibling, best friend or best bud at day care. I enjoy helping families develop peaceful sleepers and implementing healthy sleep education in their family dynamics. Email me firstname.lastname@example.org or visit my website and sign up for your five free tips to avoid bedtime battles www.serenitysleepers.com