You can barely believe your good fortune when your infant finally falls asleep for a long period of time. However, while nocturnal setbacks are typical, here’s what you should know about the 6-month sleep regression and how to deal with it in general.
For new moms, keeping track of their baby’s sleep progress appears to be a full-time job. Will she add another hour this week (yay!) or will she continue to wake up at odd hours, as she did last month?
However, your child may wake up because she’s going through a 6-month sleep regression, a slight — but common — hiccup in her daily pattern. More about sleep regression, including why it occurs and how to deal with it, maybe found here.
Is there a sleep regression after six months?
A 6-month sleep regression is possible, but it’s more frequent for babies to have a 4-month sleep regression. Sleep regressions are most common at 8 months and then again around 12 months, however, they can happen at any age. However, because your baby’s world is rapidly expanding, a 6-month sleep regression is probable.
The first year is marked by remarkable growth, and at 6 months, she’s acquiring new motor skills and beginning to talk, so this barrage of new experiences may just motivate her to stay awake (maybe to practice?) rather than drift off as she has in the past.
6 months old sleep regression
A 6-month sleep regression occurs when your baby’s normal sleeping pattern is disrupted. She might tuck in beautifully after her typical nightly routine (bath, nursing or a bottle, a book, or song), but then start fussing for no apparent reason a few hours later.
You might be perplexed as to why your tot is starting to howl, given that she has been feeding regularly throughout the day and has just had a diaper change before bed.
Most babies can sleep for close to eight hours at night by the time they reach six months, especially if you’ve established a solid bedtime routine. And waking to feed shouldn’t be necessary because infants this age don’t usually require a snack in the early hours of the morning (though she may still crave that quiet closeness with you).
Keep in mind that it’s common for 6-month-old babies to wake up during the night and then fall back asleep quickly.
How long does a baby’s 6-month sleep regression last?
Fortunately, like many other stages in your child’s life, a 6-month sleep regression should be brief. The sleep regression is a short-term phase that will pass in a matter of weeks (usually two or more, although this might vary) after your baby gets adjusted to her new skills and recognizes that nighttime isn’t the best time to practice them.
You may be trying to sleep train your baby, and the 5- to 6-month mark is a good time to start, so you can be assured that letting her cry it out for a while is fine for now — and maybe the best way to address sleep regression at first.
The reasons for a 6-month-sleep old’s regression
– Rolling over. Between the ages of 5 and 6 months, most newborns can roll from one side to the other, and yours may do so multiple times. She might even find up stuck in the crib and start whining about it.
– Babbling. That ba-ba-ba Your baby’s newly acquired ability to babble and coo may be keeping her occupied in her cot.
– Crawling and creeping During playtime and tummy time, your child may begin to move around, and this new development may leave her wanting more at night.
– The baby is starting to sit down. Some babies can push themselves to a sitting posture between the ages of 6 and 7, which may startle your child – and bring on the tears.
– Anxiety about being separated. Social changes can also disrupt a baby’s sleep, such as separation anxiety, which can begin around the 6-month mark for some babies.
– The eruption of a tooth. Between the ages of 6 and 12 months, most infant teeth begin to appear, and the pain that comes with it may interfere with your baby’s sleep.
Signs that your kid is having a 6-month sleep regression
You might notice the following signs if your infant is going through a 6-month sleep regression:
– Sleeping in fits and starts. Because of sleep regression or more night wakings than usual, she may not get enough zzz’s at night, which can interrupt the sleep she does get.
– Extra prudence. You may draw a direct line between your baby’s lack of overnight sleep to a severe case of crazies and wiping her eyes during the day.
– Naps that are longer. If your child isn’t getting enough sleep at night, she may try to compensate by sleeping longer during the day. Infants under the age of one year require between 12 and 16 hours of sleep every day, including two or three naps.
Tips for dealing with your baby’s 6-month sleep relapse Here are a few fast techniques to deal with a sleep regression and get your baby back to sleep:
– She must be untangled. If your baby gets stuck in a ball in the corner of her crib or at the slats’ edge and can’t get out, gently guide her back to the center.
– Allow her to talk — or fuss a little. It’s fine to let her talk to herself or cry it out for a time once you’ve confirmed she’s safe in her crib (cautiously check into her room), especially if you’re in the middle of sleep training.
– Assuage her fears. If she hasn’t settled down after crying for several minutes during her sleep regression, go into her room and gently rub her head, arm, or stomach. You’re reminding her that it’s bedtime, that you love her, and that she can go back to sleep on her own by doing so.
– Maintain your timetable. Allowing a 6-month sleep regression to become a major disruption in your typical tuck-in routine is not a good idea. Maintain your healthy bedtime routine so you can both count on the lineup you’ve grown to like.
During the 6-month sleep regression, you won’t need to speak with your baby’s doctor, but it’s something you can bring up at her next well-baby check.
Keep in mind that some newborn crying bouts, even those lasting up to an hour, have no rhyme or reason.
Take a break from baby duty during a sleep regression and let your partner, caregiver, or other loved one take over for a while. If you’re at a loss and can’t figure out what’s causing your baby to cry, a quick call to your doctor for reassurance is totally acceptable.
Of course, it’s easier said (or read) than done, but if you’re dealing with a 6-month sleep regression, keep in mind that the reasons for it are all positive. Your baby is learning new abilities and moving her body, which makes her restless and enthusiastic. But, once she’s become used to these new tricks, she’ll relax – and so will you.