How Can I Get My 6 Week Old to Sleep Longer Overnight?
We're so glad your baby is doing better since we helped answer where your 3 week old should sleep during naps, but it looks like you have another question:
Our little one is going down to sleep much better (faster and little to no crying) for naps and at night. But he is continuing to wake up every 2-3 hours to eat overnight. We’ve had 2 instances where he slept for 5 hours, so I feel like he’s capable. Plus he’s 6 weeks old and over 11lbs. We’re following everything from Babywise: sleeping in the crib, 11pm feeding, full and frequent feedings during the day, etc. Any suggestions on what else we can do to lengthen his overnight sleeping?
Well, it sounds like you’re moving in the right direction, so that’s great!
Make sure your “full and frequent” feedings aren’t too frequent; if he can move to a 3/3.5 hour routine during the day, it might mean he can go longer at night.
But 6 weeks is still little. If he’s formula fed, there’s a chance he could go 4-5 hours at night, but if you’re nursing, he might not be quite ready to go that long.
Firm up your daytime schedule as much as possible. Keep the first/last feedings super consistent. If you begin to feel desperate, you could do a strict 3 hour schedule, setting your alarm for midnight and 3am and starting your day at 6am. When that’s set in place, you can begin to back up the 3am to 2:30, 2am, etc.
When you reach 1am, you could then change all your feedings to 3.5 hours so it might look something like 6, 9:30, 1, 4:30, 8, and 11:30 or midnight. Then you could see if he’d make it 6 hours, thinking that this process would take some time and he’d be older.
These are just a few thoughts. For even more insights, read "What to Expect with Newborn Sleep". Make sure to update us in the comments below or via the contact form to let us know how you're doing!