Importance of sleep for newborn babies

Research shows the importance of sleep for newborn babies.

Adequate sleep is necessary for the health and well-being of any individual. So it goes without saying that it is absolutely crucial for babies, who are going through several important developmental stages. In fact, it is important for newborn babies to get at least 14 to 16 hours of sleep. Adequate sleep or lack thereof can affect your baby in a variety of ways.

  • Adequate sleep can protect your baby from illness. Sleep helps babies and adults produce proteins called cytokines, that fight illness and infection. Babies, being especially prone to infections, need adequate sleep to fight off infection and illnesses not only during childhood but also in their later years. This is why children who get less sleep are more prone to colds and illnesses. So, ensure your baby’s immunity with adequate sleep.
  • Sleep affects weight gain. It is commonly known fact that babies grow rapidly during their first few months. Adequate rest and nutrition are crucial so that their growth remains on track. Additionally, studies have shown that lack of sleep in infancy is linked to obesity in later life. Lack of sleep interferes with the production of leptin in babies that cause them to overfeed, possibly leading to obesity when they grow older. So, to make sure that your babies grow and remain at a healthy weight, see to it that they aren’t tired or sleep deprived.
  • Sleep affects children’s attention span. Studies have shown that the development of diseases such as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is linked to the amount of sleep children got as infants. This is because the amount of sleep a child gets before the age of 3 is directly linked to their attention spans when they get older. Not only does your baby need about 16 hours of sleep as an infant, but making sure that they get over 10 hours of sleep until the age of 3 can ensure that they have increased control over their moods and impulses.
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