Why my newborn baby does not sleep at night

Why doesn’t my baby sleep at night? Well, this is the most frequently asked question raised by all new moms and dads. If you are a new parent I am sure you too would be asking the same question. Don’t worry. You and your baby are not alone. This is a universal issue and there are millions like you. Do you want to know the reasons why your baby is not sleeping at night? Let's dig in.

Reasons why your baby doesn’t sleep at night

  • The reason starts right from the pregnancy stage when the baby is safe in its cocoon. As a mom, you would have noticed that your baby starts to kick vigorously the moment you lie down to sleep. Why is it so? This is because when you are busy at home doing your chores you keep moving about. This creates a rocking effect. When you relax in bed rocking stops. So, the baby is wide awake in your womb and starts to move. This continues even after birth. Sleeping during the daytime and keeping wide awake at night is a newborn’s pattern and it may take a few months for the pattern to change. 
  • The next is circadian rhythm. What is it? It refers to the 24-hour internal clock that keeps on running inside your body to make sure all essential bodily processes and functions are running properly. This rhythm is very important for the sleep-wake cycle. All humans have a circadian rhythm. Little babies are no exception to this but the problem is the clock takes some time to get programmed. The external 24-hour clock should sync with the internal 24-hour clock. Until the clock gets synchronized your baby will not sleep restfully at night. 
  • The next reason is low levels of melatonin. What is melatonin and how does it affect your sleep? Melatonin is the hormone responsible for regulating and onsetting sleep. It is also referred to as the darkness hormone because it is secreted by the pineal gland when it becomes dark. Melatonin is passed from the mother to the little one through breast milk. Moreover, the baby’s pineal gland also secretes melatonin but melatonin produced is very low in babies and it increases gradually as the baby grows. The low levels of melatonin are an important culprit that keeps your baby awake at night. 
  • Apart from these reasons, there are other reasons like the temperature of the room being too hot and too cold, hunger, exhaustion, and illness, etc. Colic is one of the main problems that will make your baby feel uncomfortable.  

Ok, we know the reasons. Now we know what your next question will be. How can I help my baby sleep? Yes, you can make your baby sleep at night if you follow a few easy tips.

How to make your baby sleep at night? 

  • First you must help your baby to differentiate between night and day. How to do it? Expose your baby to natural light in the daytime. Involve your baby in the hustles of morning life. When it becomes dark, make sure your baby is not exposed to artificial lights. Let your baby get used to the fact that nights are for sleeping. 
  • You can also use white noise. A study  showed that babies fall asleep faster and sleep better under the influence of white noise. 80% of babies in the study slept within 5 minutes of playing the white noise.
  • Avoid bright lights in the evening. This will help in increasing the production of melatonin.  
  • To avoid colic, make your baby burp after feeding and give a warm bath followed by a massage before sleep.  

Here is some good news for the new parents. The Sleep Helper kit from Nasobuddy is designed to help newborn babies sleep. It has threeproducts. Ababy shusher, a colic swaddle belt and a baby lavender balm. The white noise mimics the sounds heard in the womb. The colic saddle belt relieves gas, soothes the colic pain and also provides a safeswaddling effect. The Baby lavender balm ayurvedic massage helps relieve the uncomfortable symptom of colic and helps baby sleep better.Find more about the sleep helper kit here


White noise and sleep induction.

J A Spencer, D J Moran, A Lee, D Talbert

Arch Dis Child. 1990 Jan; 65(1): 135–137. Doi: 10.1136/adc.65.1.135

PMCID: PMC1792397

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