Why a newborn baby sleeps very poorly during the day: the doctor answers

They say that babies sleep most of the day. But in practice it turns out that this is not always true. Our reader Inna asked if it was worth worrying if the newborn was awake during the day.

«I read that newborn babies sleep for 18-20 hours a day. My son is three weeks old, he is very ill and sleeps little during the day: he worries all the time, shudders, whimpers. Why is that? The visiting nurse just shrugs it off — they say, sometimes everyone sleeps badly. Maybe it’s time to see a doctor?».

A lot of factors affect the baby’s sleep.

Babies are particularly sensitive to the duration of daylight hours: in spring and summer they wake up earlier than in autumn and winter.

Due to the immaturity of the vascular and nervous systems, children respond vividly to solar and lunar eclipses, full moons and new moons, sudden changes in atmospheric pressure.

Any pungent odors (including from new furniture in the nursery, clothes, bed linen or diapers) and loud sounds can prevent babies from falling asleep: from music or TV to the chirping of birds outside the window.

The environmental situation also affects sleep. For example, it has been proven that in large cities, due to general gas pollution and lack of oxygen, children sleep worse than their peers whose parents live outside the city.

The air temperature in the house is also important. In the heat, the baby will not have a good sleep. The optimal temperature for children’s sleep is about 22 degrees.

Humidity also matters: both too dry and very humid air affect the quality and quantity of sleep. Try to maintain a humidity of about 60 percent at home — modern humidifiers quite allow you to do this..

Wet diapers or a full diaper can also cause poor sleep. Moreover, if a sweat or rash appears from this, they will prevent the baby from falling asleep calmly and further.

And, of course, the habits of the mother affect the sleep and wakefulness of the baby. If she goes to bed late and gets up early, the baby adapts to this rhythm, although it is not physiological. By the way, the child reads mom’s emotions perfectly even at two weeks. And if she is very excited about something or too emotional, the child will feel the same, which means that there will be no healthy sleep. Therefore, mom’s calmness is the main guarantee of a good baby’s sleep.

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