Probably an odd thing to worry about, but another question I am often asked is Why is my baby sleeping more than usual? Usually parents joke that extra sleep should not be cause for complaint, but at the root of the question is always concern. When our babies suddenly do something that is out of the norm for them, we are instantly curious as to why. And there is always a reason! Today’s post explores some of the reasons why your baby might be sleeping a little more than usual.
Just as suspected, your baby could be sleeping more because she is unwell. This is the one that parents worry most about, and with very good reason. It’s horrible seeing your child ill, and when they are babies it is all the more worrying as they cannot effectively tell you how they are feeling or what is wrong. Use your instincts here and consult your doctor if you are concerned. Remember that the human body uses sleep as it chance to recover and fight off illnesses, so don’t be surprised if baby wants to sleep and sleep and sleep when she ill.
For more advice, see this post on coping with baby’s sleep during illness.
I know that this theory can be over used, and too many of us put new behaviours (including interrupted sleep) down to a growth spurt, but it genuinely can be a reason why your baby is suddenly sleeping more than usual. Growth spurts are usually the first thing we can look at in this case. Have you noticed that your baby is taking longer naps? Sleeping later in the mornings? Wanting to go to bed a lot earlier than usual? If the answer is yes, then a growth spurt is probably the reason.
In this case, I would advise going with the flow. Be led by your baby, and adjust your schedule to accommodate the extra sleep. As outlined in this post on developmental leaps, the extra sleep is important and won’t hurt one bit. Make the most of the extra time to yourself and have a nap too!
You probably already knew that this one would make the top three reasons why your baby is sleeping more than usual! Yep, teething really does have a lot to answer for. While most babies suffer interrupted sleep during teething, some can actually sleep a little more instead. So why does teething mean more sleep for some? Well, it depends on how badly your baby is teething.
Sometimes, the symptoms that accompany a tooth coming through are very like the symptoms experienced when you have a cold. So think lots of mucus and low grade fevers. Not nice. But these symptoms are often combated by the body requiring more sleep than usual, which is why you may find that your baby is napping longer and waking later. Keep an eye on the temperature and seek medical advice if you are at all concerned.
See this post for more advice on getting your baby’s sleep back on track after teething.