Do you know that there are 5 sleep regressions during your child’s first 2 years? So, what do each of these regressions look like, when will they appear, and how can you identify the symptoms? ✖ Each sleep regression can come at different stages for each individual baby, especially those associated with developmental milestones. There are 5 that occur between 4-24 months. ✖ The 4 month sleep regression is usually the most tricky regression, and sees parents begin to get in contact with us due to their 'perfect little sleeper' seeing a breakdown with their usual naps and sleep. If sleep breakdown at this point, and your baby becomes overtired, this ‘phase’ continues on and you can experience unsettled sleep for a longer period. ✖ It is the make or break time – some babies can ride through it easily, and after a week they are back to sleeping as they did previously. Dedicating some extra down time and helping your baby to achieve the sleep they need limits them becoming overtired and will reduce the risk of their sleep breakdown continuing on for longer than a couple of weeks. ✖ Others take a little more assistance and need guidance from their parents to transition to each sleep cycle, and ensure they do not become overtired, resulting further difficult settling & sleep. ✖Developmental milestones, increased social activity, dropping a nap, neurological development all can be the cause of sleep regressions. DEVELOPMENTAL MILESTONES: WHAT ABOUT THEIR SLEEP?! ✖ There is not better way to explain why your baby is swapping out their snooze time for a skills session apart for the simple reasons that THEY CAN! They don't discriminate between awake time or sleep time, and this is a 100% natural process when it comes to developing these skills, and progressing through sleep regressions or disturbances. ✖ It can mean more night wake ups, less daytime naps and a tireder, fussier baby. BUT, the news is good, as these milestones come and go, and as your baby masters their new found skills, they soon settle back down to sleepy land, and we can focus again towards napping and better sleep after 1-2 weeks. ✖ There are ways you can assist your child in ensuring they get enough sleep throughout this period is by teaching them the other side of the skill, so they have both the 'up & down' of it, and can easily get back to a sleeping positions after a good play! So, what do these regressions look like?
Common symptoms of a sleep regression include: ▫Frequently refusing or resisting a nap ▫Cat napping, or sleeping for periods of only 30-45 minutes at each nap ▫Frequently waking after they’ve been put down for sleep, or shortly after they have fallen asleep ▫Frequent night wakings with extended wake times between each ▫Commonly has unsettled periods in the early evening, or ‘witching hour’ ▫Fussy, frustrated or emotional tears from babies (and sometimes parents!) who aren’t actually ready for sleep
If you need more help understanding your baby’s sleep, and how you can achieve easier settling and sleep, contact us to chat today.