Real Stories from Real Parents

Sleepy Babies


You’ve likely heard the advice, “Never wake a sleeping baby,” but it’s best to ignore this old adage during baby’s first couple weeks of life. Breast-fed babies need to feed at least every 2-3 hours, and formula-fed babies need to eat at least every 3-4 hours. While older babies usually don’t miss meals, infants can be very sleepy and difficult to wake for feeds. These tips can help you gently wake your newborn:

  • Undress him to his diaper and place him skin to skin
  • Gently stroke his back or rub his feet and hands
  • Dim the lights so he can open his eyes
  • Hold him upright and softly talk to him

If he still doesn’t wake, try again in a half hour or so, as newborns move in and out of sleep states rather quickly. This sleepy stage is usually short-lived, but it’s important to keep an eye on your little one’s output to ensure he is having adequate wet and dirty diapers and is gaining weight.