Even people without babies know a newborn’s sleep is disorganized: they seem to sleep all the time but somehow wake often, too.
As a parent and a sleep expert– I'm here to answer some of the most common questions about a 1-month-old’s sleep, including: How much does a 1-month-old sleep? How much should a 1-month-old sleep? and the most common question: Can a 1-month-old sleep through the night? Spoiler alert: no.
How Many Hours Should a 1-Month-Old Sleep Each Day?
A 1-month-old typically sleeps about 14-17 hours over a 24-hour period. This sleep is spread out over many different sleep sessions, each lasting from 10-20 minutes up to 2-hours. These sleep durations will become longer and more distinctly like naps as your baby grows. Right now, however, really anything goes, a short nap or a longer nap, and wake periods between sleeps could be anything from 30-90 minutes.
How Long Do 1-Month-Old’s Sleep?
It varies: a 1-month old’s sleep session may be as little as 10-20 minutes or as long as 2-hours.
Note: 1-month-olds tend to be awake longer in the afternoons between naps.
How Many Naps Should a 1-Month-Old Take?
I use the term “nap” loosely here because 1-month-olds don’t take naps like older babies and children. But generally, there will be about 6-7 “naps” throughout the day, usually spaced 30-90 minutes apart. More distinct naps will begin around 2.5-3 months
How Much Should My 1-Month-Old Sleep at Night?
1-month olds are still waking to feed through the night every 2-3 hours, but roughly speaking they will sleep approximately 9-12 hours overnight – depending on when you classify bedtime is.
Sample Sleep Schedule for 1-Month-Olds
Here is a sample sleep schedule for 1-month-olds. Remember, this is just a sample: your baby has their own unique sleep patterns right now, so focus less on the clock and more on their sleepy cues.
A 1-Month-Old Sample Sleep Schedule
Can 1-Month-Old Babies Sleep Through the Night?
Put simply, a 1-month-old cannot sleep through the night. They are still very small and need to eat regularly round the clock.
Why don’t 1-Month-Old Babies Sleep Through the Night?
A one-month-old's sleep is very disorganized: they don’t have specific bed or naptimes, firstly because 1-month-olds are developing very quickly and growing super-fast. With such small tummies, they need to re-fuel often – eating every 2-3 hours or so, round the clock.
It’s also important to remember that 1-month-olds – or newborns –aren’t able to sleep through the night because their circadian rhythms haven’t matured yet. This doesn’t happen until around 4-months of age when overnight sleep will start to consolidate and daytime awake periods will lengthen.
Right now, your baby is just where they need to be, sleeping in short bursts (20min naps are perfectly normal), waking frequently to eat, growing and developing rapidly!
That’s why sleep coaching is usually recommended around the 4-month mark, but even if your baby is still too young to sleep train, it’s a good idea to establish healthy sleep habits early on – to set yourself up for future sleep success. Consider things like black out shades and white noise machines in your baby’s sleep space.
Should I Room Share with My 1-Month-Old?
Sharing a room with your 1-month-old is advised for two reasons:
- It makes night feedings and changings so much easier (not to mention it keeps your baby close – which can be a comfort for both of you)
- Most importantly: studies show that room-sharing can help prevent Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), a rare but mysterious phenomenon in which a newborn dies in their sleep. Room-sharing can reduce SIDS risk 50% and the AAP recommend room sharin until your baby is 12-months of age.
How Do I Know my 1-Month-Old is Tired?
Even though their sleep is disorganized, 1-month-olds still exhibit sleepy cues – signs they’re tired -, including rubbing their eyes and looking away from you. If you notice these cues, try to encourage them to take a sleep.
How Do I Survive Sleep Deprivation with a 1-Month-Old?
I hear this question often “How can I sleep when I have a newborn?” While, I can’t guarantee you’ll get much sleep in these first few months, here are some tips to help you thrive through sleep deprivation with a newborn:
Prepare Ahead of Bed: Your baby will wake often at night. This is a given. You can save yourself time, hassle, and avoid waking up too fully if you have everything you need ready to go. Whether it’s diapers, a bottle, a burp blanket – whatever you need, have it by your baby’s bed so you can do what you need to do and get back to bed without thinking too much.
Nap When They Nap: Your 1-month-old may only be sleeping in short bursts but try to sleep a bit when they sleep – this will at least give your mind a bit of rest, however briefly. I do appreciate there is a laundry list of other thing you need to do while they sleep – but you are no use to anyone when you’re exhausted. So like they say on the airplane – ‘Fit your own oxygen mask first’ and make sure you get some rest!
Split the Duties: If you have a partner, alternate nights or times of nights. While one sleeps, the other tends the baby, and then vice versa. This means at least one of you will be well-rested for what the next day ahead.
Accept Help: Did a friend or relative offer to “babysit anytime”? Well, now is the time – having someone trusted watch the baby during the day while you nap, shower, or just enjoy “me time” is a great way to be a great parent without losing yourself.
Order In: Sometimes ordering food is just the way to go – no muss, no fuss, no dishes!
Crying is A-Okay: You’re a new parent. This is hard. If you’re frustrated and need to have a good cry, go for it. In fact, studies show that crying is emotionally and physically beneficial .
How Do I Support My 1-Month-Old’s Development?
While your 1-month-old sleeps a lot, you can make the most of their awake time by supporting their mental and physical development.
Here are 4 simple ways to support your 1-month-old’s development:
- Skin-to-Skin Contact: Cuddling your naked baby to your bare chest is more than a warm bonding moment: Skin-to-Skin contact can also help regulate your baby’s breathing and heart rates and can reduce the risk of SIDS.
- Tummy Time: Babies spend a lot of time on their backs – that’s how they should sleep: flat on their backs – but babies also need about 10-15 minutes of supervised tummy time each day. Tummy time is simply when you gently place your baby on their belly for a short period. This strengthens their neck, back, and other muscles they’ll need to hold up their heads, sit, and – yes – even walk!
- “Tracking” Toys, Like Rattles: A 1-month-old’s babies are more focused now and able to track moving items. Help improve your baby’s their vision and eye coordination by moving a simple toy, like a rattle, slowly in front of them.
- Let Them Sleep: Letting your 1-month-old sleep when they’re tired is one of the best ways to help them develop – both now, and in the long run: sleep provides a lot of long-term health benefits .
“Newborn Sleep: Patterns, Interventions, and Outcomes,” Pediatric Annals.
“Infant Sleep and Its Relation with Cognition and Growth: A Narrative Review,” Nature and Science of Sleep.
“Crying, feeding and sleeping patterns in 1 to 12-month-old infants,” Child: Care, Health and Development.
How We Wrote This Article
The information in this article is based on the expert advice found in trusted medical and government sources, such as the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. You can find a full list of sources used for this article below. The content on this page should not replace professional medical advice. Always consult medical professionals for full diagnosis and treatment.