You did it! You finally got your little one to sleep through the night. You are beginning to feel well rested again and are getting used to sleeping through the night. Then out of what feels like nowhere, your solid sleeper starts waking up in the middle of the night. It is normal to think something is wrong but in reality, there are a few common reasons for sleep regression.
If your little one has months of solid independent sleep under their belt, there could be a valid reason for them to wake up. Start by checking their basic needs. They may need a diaper change, have a fever coming on, or may be too cold.
Consider An Ear Infection
If your little one wakes up in the middle of the night and seems distressed and in pain, it could be an ear infection. If your baby has recently had a cold or is teething, they may have developed an ear infection which can increase in pain during the night while laying down. Babies with ear infections tend to cover or pull at their ears, the only way to know for sure would be to take your child to their doctor.
Evaluate The Sleep Environment
As children develop, they become more aware of their surroundings. This means that while they may have been able to sleep with some light coming in the windows or without a sound machine, they may become too stimulated by light and noises. To eliminate these distractions, you can limit the light and sounds they are exposed to by black out curtains and white noise machines.
Milestone And Their Impact On Sleep
While your baby is hard at work learning new skills and developing mentally and physically, their sleep can be affected. Their body and brain might decide that they want to work on a new skill that they are learning in the middle of the night. Make sure that your baby is getting plenty of time during the day to work on these new skills so that they are content with their progress and tuckered out for the evening.
Adjust Your Schedule
You will continuously need to adjust your little one’s sleep schedule depending on their age and natural sleep patterns. Pay attention to their cues and age appropriate sleep schedules if you feel like your current schedule might be the issue. There will be times when you need to drop a nap or shift a naptime or bedtime. This is a normal part of having a growing baby.
Look At Your Bedtime Routine
Oftentimes, parents fall into a bedtime routine that has the baby almost asleep before they get into their crib. The goal should be to lay your little one down when they are wide awake so that they can learn how to self soothe to fall asleep. Learning the skill of self soothing sets your little one up for being able to fall back asleep in the middle of the night without the assistance of an adult.
Once you’ve ruled out wet diapers, sickness and environmental disruptions, you can work towards a routine that is appropriate for your little one. If you think you have found the issue, remember that consistency is key and change won’t happen in one night. Give your adjustments time and if you feel like progress isn’t being made, know that you can always reach out to us for additional help and support.
If you need assistance or additional guidance, please consider scheduling a free consultation with us. We’re here to be your ally in your efforts to help you and your family get back to peaceful, restful sleep.