Causes of baby sleep regression explained
What is sleep regression and why is it causing your little one not to sleep, let us explain
Most new parents get to hear the term sleep regression bandied around, but just what is it and how can you be sure that is what is causing your little one’s disturbed sleep?
Common sleep regression occurs around 4 months old, then around 8 months old, 11-12 months, then again around 18 months and even 2 years.
But how can you distinguish a phase of sleep regression from other factors such as a growth spurt which can also cause sleep problems?
The truth is, you can’t always be 100% sure of what is causing your child to wake. If it is a sleep regression, the good news is that it’s usually temporary and your baby will start to sleep better again soon.
The first things to rule out are the obvious practical factors that may wake your baby so check the following:
Too hot/too cold?
All ruled out? Then your little one could well be in a stage of sleep regression and particularly if it falls in the common time frames listed above.
Sleep regressions are linked to development and can be a result of your child reaching a new stage. For example your baby may have learnt to roll over or pull themselves out which means they want to practice these new skills at any and every opportunity they get.
Likewise, becoming socially and emotionally aware of things like you leaving a room and developing separation anxiety is another common cause of interrupted sleep – especially because they wake and soon realise that you are not there and get upset.
With any phase of sleep regression (and there are a few!) it’s important to stay calm, reassure your little one and help them get as much rest as they can while remembering this is short lived and your baby will start to sleep more as they need it to grow and reach their next development milestones.