Sleep is essential for babies as it plays a vital role in their growth and development. However, when babies fall sick, parents may notice a change in their sleeping pattern. As a parent, you may notice a change in your baby’s sleeping pattern when they fall sick. It’s natural to wonder if babies sleep more when sick. Let’s dive deeper and explore this question.
Normal Sleeping Pattern of Babies
Babies require a lot of sleep, and their sleeping pattern varies as they grow. Newborns usually sleep for 14 to 17 hours a day, while six-month-old babies sleep for about 12 to 16 hours a day. By the time babies reach one year, they sleep for about 12 to 14 hours a day.
What Happens When Babies Fall Sick?
When babies fall sick, their body is fighting off an illness. This means their body requires more energy to heal and repair itself. This increased energy usage can affect their sleeping pattern. When babies fall sick, their body is under stress as it tries to fight off the illness. This stress can cause babies to feel tired and sleepy, leading to an increase in their sleep time.
Fever is another common symptom of illnesses in babies. When babies have a fever, their body temperature rises, which can cause fatigue and drowsiness, leading to increased sleep. Certain medications that babies take to treat illnesses can also cause drowsiness and sleepiness as a side effect.
As a parent, you can help your sick baby sleep better by creating a comfortable sleeping environment. This can include using a humidifier to ease congestion, keeping the room at a comfortable temperature, and using soft bedding. Ensuring that your baby is adequately hydrated and well-fed can also help them sleep better and recover faster.
Do Babies Sleep More When Sick?
Research studies have shown that babies tend to sleep more when sick. For instance, a study published in the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine found that babies with a cold or flu slept an average of 1.25 to 1.5 hours more than when they were not sick.
Reasons behind Increased Sleep during Illness
Several reasons can explain why babies sleep more when sick:
• Immune System Response
When babies fall sick, their immune system kicks into gear to fight off the infection. This process requires a lot of energy, which can make babies feel tired and sleepy.
• Brain Functioning
During sleep, the brain gets a chance to repair and rejuvenate itself. When babies fall sick, their brain requires more time to heal and recover, which means they may sleep more.
Fever is a common symptom of many illnesses in babies. When the body temperature rises, it can cause fatigue and drowsiness, leading to increased sleep.
• Medication Side Effects
Some medications that babies take to treat illnesses can cause drowsiness and sleepiness.
Tips for Parents to Help Their Sick Baby Sleep Better
As a parent, you can help your baby sleep better during illness by:
- Comfortable Sleeping Environment
Ensure that your baby’s sleeping environment is comfortable and conducive to sleep. This can include using a humidifier to ease congestion, keeping the room at a comfortable temperature, and using soft bedding.
- Adequate Hydration and Nutrition
Ensure that your baby is adequately hydrated and well-fed. This can help them sleep better and recover faster.
- Regular Medical Check-ups
Ensure that you take your baby for regular medical check-ups to monitor their condition and ensure that they receive the necessary treatment. One important thing to keep in mind is that while increased sleep is a common symptom of illness in babies, it’s not the only symptom. Other signs that your baby may be sick can include fever, coughing, congestion, vomiting, diarrhea, irritability, and a decrease in appetite.
It’s also important to note that not all illnesses will cause babies to sleep more. Some illnesses, such as ear infections or teething, can actually make it harder for babies to sleep. In these cases, your baby may be more restless or fussy than usual, making it challenging to get them to settle down and rest.
It’s important to pay attention to your baby’s individual sleeping patterns and adjust accordingly. If you’re concerned about your baby’s sleeping habits while they’re sick, it’s always a good idea to check in with your pediatrician..
In conclusion, while increased sleep is a common symptom of illness in babies, it’s important to remember that every baby is different. Some illnesses may cause babies to sleep more, while others may disrupt their sleep patterns. As a parent, it’s essential to pay attention to your baby’s individual sleeping habits and to seek medical advice if you have concerns about their health or sleep.