You may already know that things like teething, illness, and sleep regressions can affect your baby’s sleeping and feeding schedule. But did you know that your baby will go through a series of growth spurts in the first year of life and that these can cause big disruptions in sleep and feeding?
Baby Growth Spurts: When They Happen
The exact timing of growth spurts will vary from baby to baby, and not all babies will experience all the growth spurts listed below. But the following is a list of when many healthcare experts (not to mention tired parents!) notice growth spurts:
- 7-10 days
- 2 weeks
- 4 weeks
- 8 weeks
- 12 weeks
- 4 months
- 6 months
- 8.5 months
- 10.5 months
- 12.5 months
Growth spurts usually last 2-3 days, although they can last as long as a week.
Baby Growth Spurts: How They Affect Sleep and Feeding
During growth spurts, your baby will probably eat and sleep more than usual; this, of course, means that the sleep and feeding schedule you normally use may not work during a growth spurt. This is okay; let your baby take extra naps or go to bed earlier/wake up later. After a few days, your schedule should return to normal.
Same goes for feeding; if your baby seems extra hungry, go ahead and offer more food. If you are breastfeeding, it is especially important that you nurse more often; as your baby nurses more, your milk supply will increase, which in turn will ensure that you have enough milk to satisfy your growing baby.
Especially during the newborn stage, it may feel like all your baby does during a growth spurt is eat and sleep. For a few days (up to a week), this is perfectly normal. However, if your baby continues to only eat and sleep, and isn’t awake as often as you think he should be, you may want to take him to see a healthcare provider, to make sure nothing is wrong. It is possible for a baby to sleep too much (although this is rarely a problem.)
Need Baby or Toddler Sleep Help? You Came To The Right Place!
Are growth spurts wrecking your little one’s sleep? We can help with that! Our caring, compassionate consultants are standing by, ready to create a Personalized Sleep Plan™ that will help your baby learn to create positive sleep associations and start waking less often.
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Are you struggling through a growth spurt? Share your questions and story with us! Have tips? Share them with your fellow parents!
For those persistent nighttime struggles, check out The 3 Step System to Help Your Baby Sleep. Using the same unique approach and practical tools for success, this e-book helps you and your baby sleep through the night.
If you’re looking for ways to get your baby or toddler into a healthy sleeping routine during the day, I encourage you to explore Mastering Naps and Schedules, a comprehensive guide to napping routines, nap transitions, and all the other important “how-tos” of good baby sleep. With over 45 sample sleep schedules and planning worksheets, Mastering Naps and Schedules is a hands-on tool ideal for any parenting style.
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