Calmosine Sleep: Validating the Results of our 58 Child Study
The sleep of our toddlers is often disturbed... Parents worry about this and if left unresolved, such disturbances can result in the whole family suffering. In order to find natural solutions to improve everyone's daily life, a survey developed by the Parents Magazine team was conducted amongst their readers.
Do you have to wake a baby up at night to feed them?
When waking your baby up at night, there is only a little chance that they will want to suckle! However, during the first few weeks post birth, the breast should be offered on awakening; that is each time your baby wakes up calmly, without waiting for them to cry. It is for this reason that most experts recommend putting a baby to sleep in their parents’ room for the first 6 months. This will make it easier for you to be woken up by the little noises they make during the short periods of wakefulness that intersect with their sleep cycles, so that you can breastfeed them, even if they have not cried.
It obviously depends on the age of your baby, but the fact that they have long periods of sleep during the night should not be alarming. They should also be alert and smiling when awake and that their intake weight is normal. When the following 3 elements are present, it would suggest that breastfeeding is not optimal, and you should consider continuing to night feed:
- no breastfeeding at night
- little sleep during the day
- insufficient weight gain
In the first month post birth, during what is sometimes referred to as the “calibration phase”, the mother’s body calibrates milk production according to the needs of the baby. The more frequently the baby suckles, the more milk the mother’s breast produces. And it is precisely at night, when the level of prolactin (hormone responsible for producing milk) is higher, that the baby will have plenty of milk. If your baby is a heavy sleeper and his weight curve changes normally, his mother may need to express milk overnight, to drain the breast preventing any risk of engorgement, and to maintain milk production.
There is no need or good time to phase out night feedings until you are ready. Do what works best for you and your baby.
Until what age should my baby breastfeed at night?
“Sleeping”, according to the expression commonly used, requires brain maturation and the differentiation of day and night thanks to what are called time donors: daylight, night time silence, activity, care, feeding, etc. This takes place on average around 4 months of age, but some babies will “sleep” earlier and others later.
Misconceptions die hard because we often hear that we need to give more food to the baby in the evening so that it is “sated for the night”. It is important to remember that the quality of sleep does not depend on the amount of milk ingested, and the opposite effect can be obtained by causing discomfort and digestive disorders.
Weaning a baby at night is a choice that depends on many factors in the mother-child relationship, and in practice will often take place between 4 and 6 months.
Can some babies want the breast at night without being hungry?
It is too often thought that if the baby cries, it is because they are hungry. Do not forget their other needs: cuddling, carrying, sleep, nappy changes… We should think that the child wakes up because their sleep cycle is over and in those first few months, take advantage of this awakening to feed them. Physiologically, at 6 months, a baby no longer needs to be fed at night. But breastfeeding can be such a pleasure for them, and they have acquired this habit since birth so a strategy might be needed to help them wean!
How to wean a baby from night feedings?
If your baby still feeds for over 5 minutes, you can start to reduce this time over a few nights. 30 seconds less per night for example. When they get to less than 5 minutes, you can stop the feed at night altogether. Have some other soothing methods/techniques to hand to be able to get them back to sleep. Some babies will resettle themselves if left for a little while and not offered the breast. They are often more capable than we give them credit for!
When waking up at night, if you decide to pop your head in, go see them while being careful not to turn on the light, to speak little and very softly, just to remind them that it is night time and also help them go back to sleep by cuddling, cradling them, and other techniques that may work for you.
It is completely normal for your baby to cry to express themselves, and they need to be supported when learning these new habits! Get Dad to go to see them if they wake at night. This can help because the baby will not smell their mother’s milk and you’ll get to relax in bed whilst they help settle them. If they are demanding, keep calm and explain to them that you understand that it is difficult for them and that you are there to help them get back to sleep.
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This article was written and published in French by Laudavie in France on the 22nd March 2019 and has been translated and adapted for an English speaking audience.
Designed and produced in France, Calmosine Breastfeeding contains organic ingredients and was developed alongside Midwives in France. Containing Fenugreek to help boost milk supply, passiflora and dog rose hip to help with stress and anxiety, magnesium for energy levels and biotin for skin, hair and nails. Calmosine Breastfeeding is proven to help improve mood, tiredness and increase milk supply.
Calmosine Breastfeeding contains organic plant extracts from plants grown and harvested by farmers committed to using sustainable and environmentally friendly growing methods.
See the results of the 2019 Calmosine Breastfeeding Trial