The 45 minutes Nap – Every Mum Needs to Understand The Baby’s Sleep Cycle
Once your baby is about 4 months and they’ve gone through the 4 month regression (progression) their sleep cycles are now in 5 stages:
Stage 1 (0-10 minutes)
Your little one is starting to fall asleep. They can be easily roused, here you need to be quiet and try not to peep and this will wake them easily.
Stage 2 (10-20 minutes)
Your little one begins to fall asleep and maybe is asleep. They are in light sleep but they are starting to transition from light sleep towards more deep sleep.
Stage 3 (20-30 minutes)
The little one enters into a deep phase of sleep (Non-REM). You will notice less movement and they look still and very peaceful. Between 20-30minutes, during this high restorative sleep phase, a baby’s breathing is deep and regulated.
Stage 4 (30-40 minutes)
Your little one is coming out of deep sleep and is in REM sleep approaching the end of a full cycle of sleep. If the little one is overtired or undertired, can fully awake at this point.
Stage 5 (40-45 minutes)
A baby’s sleep cycle is finishing. At the end of a sleep cycle your little one will either fully wake or they will begin another sleep cycle.
We all sleep in this way and at night we cycle through these stages many times. Often the partial awakening ( partial arousal) is so short that we don’t even know about it. Other times we wake fully, we check in with our environment to make sure it’s the way we like it before we work on putting ourselves back to sleep. This is all the same process for our LO’s, however, the difference is sometimes our LO’s don’t know how to get back to sleep after a sleep cycle because they either haven’t learn the skill to do it or something about their sleep foundations aren’t fit into the age appropriate sleep expectations.
When I talk about “linking sleep cycles” this is what I mean. If your LO knows how to fall asleep independently awake, you will see less of the FULL wake ups at the end of those cycles and more of the restorative and longer stretches of sleep (day and night). We get fascinated about the topic of how sleep actually works, but put the sleep science aside – linking cycles helps your LO to get more restorative quality of sleep.
Here are the 5 simple tips to teach baby to resettle after a sleep cycle:
Welcome to contact me if you have any issues with your baby’s cat napping.