Why Do Babies Fight Sleep? Find Out the Reasons and the Solutions
When I brought my newborn home for the first time, I felt excited and terrified. I was excited to have someone to love and care for and to keep me busy. But I was also scared of failing in my responsibility to accommodate his whim.
Taking care of my baby was a 24/7 hands-on work. So, I understand sleep-deprived moms and dads who struggle to put their babies to sleep. But you might ask, “Why do babies fight sleep?” Read on to know the reasons so you can better enjoy parenthood.
8 Reasons Why Babies Fight Sleep and What You Can Do to Avoid Them
One of the most perceived characteristics among babies is their love for learning. Babies are observant, and they constantly watch what is going on around them. Some babies are so eager to learn that they fight sleep since sleeping hampers them from doing what they love.
Are you the kind of mom or dad who tickles your baby’s tummy before bedtime? When you do this, the baby will not want the fun to end too soon. So, he will fight sleep to ensure that the tickling session continues.
To remedy this situation, reduce the stimulants by putting restrictions on what your little one hears, touches, and sees. On the other hand, sustained stimulation, such as steady motion and white noise, may aid in calming babies who fight sleep.
Babies and adults differ in their sleep cycles, with babies’ sleep cycles far shorter compared to adults. Moreover, babies are likely to exhibit rapid eye movement during sleep. For most experts, REM is essential to the child’s brain development. The unpredictability in the baby’s sleeping patterns may produce sleep-deprived parents.
During the first few weeks, the baby will not have any fix sleep schedule. Most of the time, your baby will be asleep and waking him up can be quite challenging. At other times, babies are awake every 40 to 45 minutes and you, on the other hand, will lack sleep.
There is nothing you can do to alter your child’s sleep patterns during the first weeks. Nonetheless, you can expect for a more regular sleeping time when your baby reaches seven weeks.
Separation anxiety begins when babies start to gain an understanding of people’s existence. At some point, most babies experience separation anxiety and become completely devastated when they are separated from their parents.
When babies reach six months of age, it is when they start to develop their emotions and create a strong emotional connection to their care provider. When this happens, the baby feels anxious and fights sleep because they perceive sleeping as separation from their parents or caregiver.
Meanwhile, here is a video that will help you learn more about separation anxiety.
Are you familiar with your baby’s “sleep window”? One of the most common reasons why babies fight sleep is overtiredness. Overtiredness among babies happens when his “sleep window” is missed.
What is a “sleep window”? It is the time when your child is drowsy enough to get to sleep quickly, but not too tired that he starts to cry. Some parents would usually allow their baby to stay awake until he gets tired.
However, this usually has an opposite outcome. Babies who are overstimulated or overtired will have shorter sleep time and will often stay awake. When you know your child’s sleeping window, you will get to gauge the time for your baby’s sleep.
Whenever big changes happen in a child’s routine, the baby’s body usually reacts to those changes by releasing chemicals responsible for stimulating the brain. The rate at which babies process the chemicals vary.
Some babies can process the chemicals faster compared to other babies. Other babies have difficulty remaining calm after they experience excitement; thus, they fight sleep.
Internal Body Clock
Just like adults, babies have their so-called internal body clock or circadian rhythm, which tells them when it is time to sleep or when it is time to wake up. However, their internal body clock starts to function only when they reach four months old.
It is the internal body clock that plays a significant role in the baby's sleep patterns, hunger, activity, and fluctuations in hormones and body temperature. Having a routine helps babies to adjust their body clock and make them less prone to fight sleep.
Babies are known for oversleeping. When they nap all day and are put down to have a full night sleep, babies become dazed, restless, troublesome, and whiny. To avoid this, adhere to your child’s sleep chart. Trace the patterns of your baby’s sleep and consult your pediatrician to rule out any underlying medical concerns.
When you were still carrying your baby in your womb, your baby has gotten used to an enclosed tight space and some muffled noises. If you put your baby on a big bed with a very quiet surrounding, he will likely fight sleep. To avoid this, try to put your baby in a crib and play some music.
There are various answers to the question: “Why do babies fight sleep?” Simply put, the best solution to prevent babies from fighting sleep is to know their sleep patterns and ensure that the surrounding is conducive for your baby’s sleep time.
Know the reason why your baby fights sleep. Some reasons are regular occurrences among babies and can be remedied by implementing some changes while other reasons can be a cause of underlying problems.
For instance, oversleeping can be a symptom of celiac disease. In this case, you need to seek your pediatrician’s opinion or advice to ensure your baby’s health. In your case, why does your baby fight sleep? It would surely be interesting to know.
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