Understanding the psychology of a baby is one of the toughest jobs when it comes to new parents. It is a lot like talking to an alien. You don’t understand what they are trying to say, and vice versa. From their eating habits and their thought process to their sleeping habits – everything seems like a big puzzle to parents. While food is not that big of a problem when it comes to smaller babies, sleep is. Babies tend to wake up at the most odd hours of the day, and making them fall back to sleep is no less than a nightmare. However, if your baby wakes up every hour while sleeping, it becomes exhausting for both the infant and the mother.  

We get it; motherhood is a gift, but a howling baby in the middle of the night certainly is not. Mothers, too, need enough rest after the rush of giving birth. Getting enough rest is necessary for the baby to be fed healthily.  

In this article, we shall unwrap some of the reasons why your baby wakes up every hour and try to find out if there is a way out of it.  

What Is Causing Your Baby To Wake Up Every Hour?  

What Is Causing Your Baby To Wake Up Every Hour

There are a number of things that could disrupt the sleeping pattern of your baby. From teething to loud noise to just a behavioral pattern, anything could be the reason behind the baby waking up frequently. The reasons behind a baby’s frequent wake-ups are not yet determined. They could just be awake because they learned how to crawl, and they just want to practice – at 3:00 am in the morning. Or maybe it is your neighbor’s dog that barks all night. The reason could go from something as minor as a change in the temperature to something serious like a stomach ache.  

Despite the unknown reasons, there are some ways in which you can ensure that your child gets enough sleep at night so that you can get ample rest, too.  

Newborn Baby Wakes Up Every Hour  

The sleep cycle that your newborn baby experiences is still pretty immature, considering their age. They tend to drift more between sleep cycles during the day. This means you can usually get some nice long naps, too.  

Newborn Baby Wakes Up Every Hour 

By the time they turn six weeks old, your baby will start combining their sleep pattern into more visible nap and awake periods in the day, and they might as well start taking longer sleeping streaks at night, too. Their sleep cycle at night might stretch from four to six hours, and they just wake up once or twice for a feed.  

However, if that is not the case with your baby and they tend to wake up every hour at night, the following could be the reasons behind it:  

  • Over exhaustion or tiredness  
  • Hunger  
  • Trapped wind  
  • Their startle reflex wakes them up  
  • Problems with the sleep environment  
  • Reflux  

3 To 4 Month Old Baby Wakes Up Every Hour 

3 To 4 Month Old Baby Wakes Up Every Hour

Your baby’s sleep neurology starts to mature once they hit the age of three to four months. It is also commonly known as four-month sleep regression, as it causes a pretty huge regression in the daytime napping of your baby and their night-time routine, too. It may be particularly devastating once you get used to their long sleep stretches as a new both.  

4 To 6 Month Old Baby Wakes Up Every Hour  

4 To 6 Month Old Baby Wakes Up Every Hour

Between the ages of four and six months, if your baby has already started self-settling, you might experience a pretty noisy resettle every two hours. This is the time when they will likely get up, cry a bit, and then soothe themselves back to sleep. If you see your baby resettling by themselves without making too much of a fuss, it is just fine if you leave them be.  

However, things might be a bit more serious if they wake up completely at night and need your help to fall back to sleep again.   

How To Prevent Babies From Waking Up Frequently At Night?  

How To Prevent Babies From Waking Up Frequently At Night

There are many strategies that parents can easily try out to make sure that their kid is getting enough sleep at night. However, you need to keep in mind that they are just strategies. So, there is a good chance that they might fail too. But, for the sake of sleep, it is always worth a shot, right?  

Implement The 5 S’s 

Beyond good food and care, the key to helping a baby sleep well is within the 5S’s to soothe babies.  

  1. Swaddle the baby every time they are to sleep. Continue doing this till they are able to roll on their own.  
  1. Play some white noise (Shush) at the time of their bed routine and throughout the whole night.  
  1. Swing the baby.  
  1. Hold your little one in their Stomach or Slide position when you wish to calm them.  
  1. Finally, give them a pacifier to continue Sucking onto something while sleeping.  

All of these things help activate the innate calming reflex of the baby. It is basically a natural “off switch” for crying and an “on switch” for sleeping. 

Establish A Soothing Bedtime Routine 

Establish A Soothing Bedtime Routine

Most babies are quite receptive to bedtime routines at around six to eight weeks old. Starting a calming bedtime routine around 20 to 30 minutes before they actually sleep will calm your baby down and ease them into a good night’s sleep.  

Allow Your Baby To Soothe Themselves  

Unless you see your baby weeping, give them a little bit of time to soothe themselves. Trust me, if it turns into a habit, they will calm themselves down and fall back to sleep. Babies typically have a very short sleeping cycle. The frequent wake-ups are nothing but an apparent transition to a new sleep cycle. If you see your baby randomly waking up in the night, do not tend to them. This gives them an opportunity to calm themselves down and fall back to sleep again. This is a very prominent practice in foreign countries. Constant attention makes babies get used to it – something you need to avoid under all circumstances.  

Add A Dream Feed To The Routine  

Without a hint of doubt, one of the most prominent reasons behind babies waking up in the middle of the night is hunger. To help your baby out with this, give them a dream feed right before you go to bed, somewhere between 10 pm and midnight. This can actually help reduce the late night wake ups and let the baby sleep for longer hours.  

Tune Into Wake Windows  

Very simply, over-exhausted babies do not sleep as well as rested babies. Over-exhaustion triggers the fight-or-flight response of the baby, unleashing cortisol – a hormone keeping your baby awake and alert at night. To make sure that your baby is not getting overtired, it is important to look for your baby’s wake windows and learn how to put them down for a nap or night’s sleep before they get to the level of exhaustion. The wake window is the amount of time your baby stays awake from one sleep cycle to the other.  

Increase Their Daytime Feeds  

If your baby is waking up every hour, it is time that you increase their daytime feeds. Think of it like this – inside the womb, the baby was getting food every single second. So, it is not surprising that they need very frequent feeds to help their fast-paced growth. In fact, in some cultures, mothers feed their babies around fifty times in a day. You do not need to do that, but make sure that your baby is getting fed substantially all throughout the day.  

Consider Moving The Baby’s Bedtime  

When your baby wakes up every hour throughout the night, that might be a signal that their bedtime is a little too early. Other signs that your baby’s bedtime is a bit too early are sleeping for only 30 to 60 minutes or showing zero signs of fatigue. If you think that your baby’s bedtime is a bit too early, try pushing it a little further by 15 minutes or so.  

Be Boring  

Be Boring

When you are making your baby’s final diaper change before sleeping, or feeding them, make sure to keep it quiet and dim. Make it as boring as you possibly can. Try not to make the night wake-ups entertaining or something that your baby would look forward to.  

Give Them A Calm Environment  

The environment where your baby sleeps plays a major role in determining how well they are going to sleep. Make sure you give them the calmest possible environment to help them sleep soundly. A dimly lit, quiet, and moderate room is what works best when you are trying to make sure that your baby sleeps peacefully. If you realize that their nursery is getting more noisy than usual due to some external factors, try to change their room or make it noise-proof for your kid.  

The Bottom Line  

Babies have the weirdest sleep patterns. The actual reason why they love to wake up suddenly is still unknown. But most of the time, the reason is food. In other cases, the baby might just be feeling too uncomfortable to fall back to sleep. In most cases, it is only because of their habit.  

All new parents complain that their baby wakes up every hour. This is more common than you think. While the actual reason behind it is still not known, there are certain measures that can help you sort it out to some extent.  

However, everything present on the internet is only a strategy, meaning there is a high chance of them failing. But you can always take the chance, right?

Frequently Asked Questions  

1. Why Is My Baby Waking Up Every Hour At Night?

While the exact reason why your baby is waking up every hour at night is still unknown, the most common reason why it might happen is because of hunger. Small babies, especially the ones that are just born, get up at night mostly because they need food. While in the womb, they were habituated to getting fed every single moment. So, it is quite natural for them to ask for a feed every now and then after being born.

2. How Do I Stop My Baby From Waking Every 40 Minutes?

Controlling your baby’s sleep is not in your hands. It is totally up to them whether they wish to sleep or stay awake. But, there are some measures that you can take to try and make them sleep for longer hours at a stretch. For beginners, start with a calm and dimly lit room. Make sure there are no bright lights, or loud noise coming in the room. Other ways include feeding them, not making them too tired, and so on.

3. How Do You Tell If The Baby Is Waking From Hunger Or Habit? 

You can tell this by keeping an eye on their sleep pattern. If you see your baby sleeping more than five hours at a stretch and now waking up every two hours, it is likely not because of hunger. In that case, feeding will not help them get back to sleep. Try out other techniques for soothing them.  

4. At What Age Do Babies Stop Waking Themselves Up? 

This depends from one child to the other. But, in general, babies stop waking themselves up at the age of 2 to 4 months. By the time they turn six months old, this habit will fade away completely.  

5. How Do We Know If The Baby Is Actually Hungry At Night? 

If your baby is waking up every night due to hunger, there is no way that they will go back to sleep till you’ve fed them. If this happens more often, try to give them a dream feed every night before you finally go to bed.  

6. Should I Feed My Baby Every Time He Wakes Up At Night? 

While most newborn babies get up or feed at night, feeding them every time is not a need. It is only feasible to feed them every two to three hours. So, if they wake up around your calculated time, you can go ahead with the feed. Otherwise, soothe them in other ways to make sure they fall asleep easily.  


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  1. Thank you I have just been searching for information approximately this topic for a while and yours is the best I have found out so far…

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