Babies: 0 - 3 Months

Myth? Days and Nights Confused after birth?

So my co-worker keeps telling me that babies days and nights are switched right after they are born.  What does he mean- sleeps all day and up all night?  I just assume they sleep when they are tired and are up when they are not because... they can... eventually they find their way into a schedule that is somewhat normal. 

What is the story?  

Re: Myth? Days and Nights Confused after birth?

  • My little one never did this. I had heard the same thing, but Lucy slept a ton at first and had her interactive time in the day with us :) good luck!
  • from the way I understand it, you're right... newborns are born without any real circadian rhythms like we are. They just eat, sleep & poop. And they'll do that whenever they feel like it. Sometimes they naturally fall into a day=awake, night=sleep cycle, but usually parents have to guide them into that somehow.
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  • This happened with me. It was more like she slept most of the day and then there was a 2-3 hour stretch from about 2am - 5am ish that she was wide awake and just would not go to sleep no matter what. It only lasted about a week though.
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  • image misskel22:
    This happened with me. It was more like she slept most of the day and then there was a 2-3 hour stretch from about 2am - 5am ish that she was wide awake and just would not go to sleep no matter what. It only lasted about a week though.

    This happened with my DD. She had her longer sleep during the day, and shorter sleep during the night. It also only lasted about a week, maybe a tad longer, for us. We keep the windows open and lights on during all that we did during the day, and anytime she's up at night we leave all of the lights off and try not to talk, it's really helped. 

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  • Mine never had his days and nights mixed up - i think we got lucky. But most newborns sleep most of the day/night anyways...at least the first few days. They're pretty much up to eat and then back to sleep soon afterwards.


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  • Yeah, I don't get that phrasing. I get that inside my LO would be active at night when I was in bed because he wasn't rocked to sleep inside at that time of day by my movements. But, that isn't days and nights mixed up in terms of dealing with light vs. dark or the clock.  I think what people mean is that baby wants to be up sometimes when mom and dad want to sleep. But, babies just do what they want, LOL!  And yes, babies do sleep a TON. I think it only matters if a) you are trying to schedule a baby or--the one that I can sympathize with even though I still don't care for the "days and nights mixed up" phrasing--b) your sanity is being affected by lack of sleep in which case the adage of "sleep when the baby sleeps" comes into play (albeit MUCH easier said than done!) 
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