Is this "normal" for a six week old? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 6 Old 08-19-2011, 10:27 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hello, I'm just wondering if a six week old should have more of a regular pattern of sleep at this point.  My DS, who is six weeks tomorrow, seems to have absolutely no schedule at all- no naps at the same time every day or for the same length, no real patterns to when he wakes at night or when he has a good night or wakeful night- and while I'm fine with this (though it would be nice to be getting a bit more sleep!), I'm just wondering if it's normal.  

 

For instance, he has slept pretty much all day today.  He was up at six, alert till 9ish, and then has been sleeping ever since (it's just after 7pm now) aside from waking to nurse every two hours or so.  And yesterday he was awake all day long- probably only napped a total of an hour and a half the whole day.  And his sleeping has been like that from birth: totally unpredictable!  In general he is awake more during the day than during the night, but I feel like at this point my daughter was on more of schedule.  So, I guess I'm asking if this is normal and when it should change.  Thanks!!

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#2 of 6 Old 08-20-2011, 04:05 AM
 
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The first four months are sometimes called "the fourth trimester" because their needs are still so great. I don't know what percentage of babies have no pattern at this age, but I am thinking it's probably a lot. One of mine had no pattern until 3 or 4 months, and the other fell into a pattern almost right from birth, but the second one is an unusually easy baby and child. My guess is most babies haven't fallen into a routine at that point. They're still adjusting to life outside the womb and it can take a while. It sounds like you're handling it great, though - you have a great attitude about it. It can take them a while to adjust to the difference between night and day. I personally think wearing the baby in a sling helps them make that adjustment, because then during the day they might sleep but they're constantly moving around with you as you're awake doing things, and then at night you are also lying down and restful, so I feel like they kind of fall into the way you live if you keep them with you.
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#3 of 6 Old 08-20-2011, 06:56 AM
 
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Totally normal for a 6 week old. A pattern very gradually emerges, when? Depends on the kid. Mine are all over the place for the first year. 


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#4 of 6 Old 08-20-2011, 12:20 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the responses.  Yeah, I kind of figured this is normal, but it's just different than my daughter was.  I was suddenly afraid that maybe he had some circadian rhythm problem, or something like that, and that he would never fall into a sleep pattern.  I'm also beginning to suspect, unfortunately, that like my daughter he just doesn't need as much sleep as the average baby.  Anyway, thanks again....


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#5 of 6 Old 08-20-2011, 01:09 PM
 
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It was between four and six months that regular naptimes emerged, for my kids. Until then, I aimed for no more than an hour and a half awake at any time, except for one longer (two hours or even three) period of awake in the evenings. I found that the longer they stayed awake, during the day, the harder it was for them to settle to sleep when they got tired. So when about an hour of awake time had passed, I'd start the process of changing and nursing and getting baby to sleep.

A lot depends on baby, though.

Some kids seem to handle go-with-the-flow nicely. With my oldest DD, it didn't seem to matter so much. If she was tired, she'd sleep, regardless. So I could just let her be, and she'd find her own way. But with my DS, if he stayed awake more than two hours, it was meltdown city, and he needed a very specific set of circumstances in order to fall asleep, so if we were out-and-about, he'd go to pieces if I didn't stop and help him sleep on time.

If it's working for now, and baby isn't having huge meltdowns, and baby is nursing often enough (eight to twelve times at minimum, in a 24 hour period, is a safe bet for this age), then I wouldn't worry at all. But if baby seems overtired, or is crying a lot in the evenings, you might try aiming for more of a routine.

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#6 of 6 Old 08-27-2011, 10:10 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Llyra View Post

If it's working for now, and baby isn't having huge meltdowns, and baby is nursing often enough (eight to twelve times at minimum, in a 24 hour period, is a safe bet for this age), then I wouldn't worry at all. But if baby seems overtired, or is crying a lot in the evenings, you might try aiming for more of a routine.

This. We were totally go with the flow until my son got FUSSY and then we realized he was staying up too long and fighting sleep. I started a gentle schedule at 8 weeks and it really helped him settle but if your babe is go with the flow and content that's great.
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