Why Isn’t Baby Sleeping?

If you’re a new parent, it can be extremely frustrating trying to get your baby to fall asleep. Sometimes it seems that, no matter how hard you try or what you do, your baby just doesn’t want to get any rest. Not only does a sleepless baby become a fussy baby, it can also lead to a fussy mom or dad.

Figuring out why your baby won’t sleep is the first step in getting a little shut-eye for both of you. Below you will find some of the most common reasons a baby won’t sleep. While some of these are obvious, they are worth listing. After all, when it’s 3 AM and you haven’t slept more than two hours at a time all week, sometimes the obvious answer eludes you.

Here, then, are some common reasons your baby won’t sleep:

  1. She’s uncomfortable. An uncomfortable baby is an awake baby. There are a number of things that can make your baby uncomfortable. For example, she could have a wet diaper. She could be too warm, or she could be too cold. As far as that goes, the mattress in her crib might even be a bit lumpy. Check for signs of physical discomfort to see if that’s what’s keeping your baby awake.
  2. He’s hungry. Your baby won’t sleep if his belly is rumbling. That’s usually the reason that  a baby wakes up in the middle of the night, of course: to feed. Be watchful here. Sometimes a baby will unintentionally refuse a bottle or breast at first, so it’s often worth trying a second time.
  3. She’s ill. If your baby’s tummy is a little bit sour, or if she has an ear infection, chances are she’s not going to sleep all that well. Check her temperature, and watch for signs like her pulling on her ear. If she’s ill, you need to start trying to figure out what the problem is and whether or not she needs to see a doctor.
  4. He’s overstimulated. If your little one has had a busy day, he may just be working things out. He may need to cry a bit in order to deal with all of the flurry of sensory input. If your baby won’t sleep, it may just be that he’s very awake from all the activity and needs some time to wind down.
  5. She’s colicky. If your baby cries persistently, it can be a sign of colic. Often, a colicky baby won’t sleep. Talk to your health care provider, and look into treatments for colic.