When do babies sleep through the night?

For new parents, there is probably nothing better to look into the eyes of the newborn and recognize the joy. It is at least as good a feeling when your own baby sleeps and comes to rest. Very few parents get enough sleep.

The baby wants to be cared for during the night and does not yet have a regular day-night rhythm. It craves milk and sometimes it just feels uncomfortable and wants to be hugged.

Over time, this will test even the most patient parent. If the stress is to be dealt with and a restful night to take place, this is only possible if the baby sleeps through the night itself. But from what age can the baby be expected to sleep all night and how can parents contribute to this sleep behavior?

As a parent, having your baby overslept most of the day can be worrying at times . But this sleep behavior is completely normal in itself and no cause for concern. In the first few weeks, the newborn actually only wakes up to eat. Then you will continue to sleep and rest.

Babies sleep through the day

Newborns sleep up to 18 hours a day. They do not yet have a regular day-night rhythm and wake up more often at night to be breastfed.

The high need for sleep is not without reason. Because in the first few weeks in particular, the development is progressing rapidly. The baby grows and slowly learns to interact with the environment. Everything looks new and all the impressions have to be processed. For the still small body this is a lot of effort and sleep [1] is an important phase of regeneration.

Babies also do not yet have a pronounced day-night rhythm. They sleep when they feel tired and crave a meal when they are hungry. This can happen at completely different times and lead to the shouting being great even during the night .


Although the newborn hardly has its own internal clock, parents can contribute to a certain rhythm. In order for the baby to sleep through the night, a constant daily routine must be maintained. The baby uses this as a guide and instinctively knows when to go to sleep. Then it becomes quieter and less demanding for the parents’ attention during this period.

Part of the regular daily routine is that the parents always carry out the activities at approximately the same time. This starts in the morning with waking up and the first meal and continues through the walk and the bath.

The fixed daily routine

With a fixed daily routine, you give your baby a structure and it gets used to the day-night rhythm.

In the evening, bedtime rituals help to signal that it is now time to go to sleep . In the beginning the baby can hardly do anything with it, but it will soon understand how the bedtime ritual [2] is to be interpreted.

It is important that this rhythm is maintained over the weekend . The times to get up should not deviate and the other activities should be approximately in the usual time window.

If the baby wakes up during the night, it is important to keep calm. Parents should use a low voice to calm the baby down and under no circumstances should they start playing or doing other “exciting” things. This makes it even more difficult for the newborn to prepare for sleep again.


As a parent, it is possible to have a positive effect on the baby’s sleep behavior. However, miracles are not to be expected and normal developments must be taken into account.

According to this, the experience has been that babies from the 6th month slowly begin to develop a day-night rhythm. Only then will you learn the difference between day and night, and behavior will change accordingly.

However, this does not mean that babies will sleep soundly every night [3]. Although they become less active and sleep more generally, it is perfectly normal if they wake up several times.

Reasons for this are, for example, your own feeling of hunger , because the diaper has to be changed or the closeness to the parents is sought. Parents should by no means ignore these needs , but rather take care of them.

From the age of 3

Most toddlers only sleep through the night from the age of 3. At a younger age you wake up more often to be fed or because you are afraid of spending the night alone in the nursery.

From around the age of 3 , the toddler can now be expected to sleep through the night. The need for sleep is still around 12 hours [4], whereby this could be spread over the afternoon nap.

As a parent, it is to be expected that your own sleep will hardly go smoothly in the first few years. Babies require attention and although they sleep most of the day, the night is interrupted several times.


The following tips provide a good basis for your baby to feel comfortable during the night and not wake up every few hours. Then not only the newborn’s sleep benefits, but also the parents.


The daily routine is largely based on the times at which meals are taken. The day starts with breakfast and ends with the last meal. Maintaining this rhythm is not only important for the baby’s internal clock. Meals are also an important guide for adults and are helpful for surviving jet lag, for example.


For a good night’s sleep, the baby should be comfortable. However, it is not advisable to sleep in a place that is crammed full of cuddly toys. These reduce air circulation and are suspected to be partly responsible for sudden infant death syndrome [5] to be.

Pleasant sleeping environment

Create a safe and comfortable sleeping environment for your baby. Then it feels good and is more likely to sleep through the night.

Movement is useful for the baby to rest . In a hanging cradle or a rocking bed , the slow movements are transferred to the baby so that it feels comfortable. It is not without reason that some babies love to sleep in the car and only really come to rest with these vibrations.

baby nest also helps so that the newborn feels secure It helps to equalize the temperature and gives you a feeling of closeness. This makes babies feel less scared and less craving for their parents.


To ring in the night’s sleep, it is advisable to introduce certain rituals. This could be singing or humming a nursery rhyme. Also, the reading turns out to be nice ritual to spend time with the baby. Even if they don’t understand the stories yet, they will enjoy their time together and improve their language skills by listening.

However, excited gaming should be avoided. A few hours before going to bed, the focus is on relaxation and the baby getting ready for the night.


If the baby cries at night, parents should keep calm. Is there a feeling of hunger [6]or is the diaper wet? Then those needs should be met.

However, it is not always necessary to lift the baby directly from the cradle . Often it is enough to speak in a soft voice and signal that the baby is safe. If the baby is picked up every time he screams, it could get used to it and just fall asleep in the arm .

Also, use a friendly night light for kids so they don’t have to turn on full lights. The room should be darkened during the night so as not to disturb sleep.


Sleep will be in short supply for parents during the night in the first few months. It has to get used to the fact that the baby cries out several times during the night and wants to be fed or the diaper needs to be changed.

It is only from the 6th month of life that the nocturnal disturbances can be expected to decrease. As a parent, it is advisable to maintain a fixed daily and night rhythm. This makes it much easier for the baby to develop an internal clock and to follow it.

From the age of 3, the toddler can sometimes sleep completely through the night and parents can find more sleep again. By applying the tips presented here, the nights will be more comfortable for both babies and parents.

Jamie Clark

Hello, I’m Jamie Clark, 32 years old, and I have been living in the USA for a few years.
Since I was a child, I have suffered from a house dust allergy, severely affecting me. I felt the effects both while exercising and while sleeping. Constant sneezing after getting up and difficult breathing were the consequences. The allergy has also developed into asthma, which is still a sporting restriction today.

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