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To the mum who feels like her baby is the only one not sleeping through

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Emma Gawne
Paediatric sleep coach

You're not alone, I promise. I mean, for starters, what does sleeping through the night actually mean?

If you look up the definition, it varies hugely. Some people say sleeping through is from 12 to 5am. Some say it means eight hours of uninterrupted sleep.

One study asked the parents of 55,000 babies to record night wakings and 70% of the cohort were waking up between one and three times a night between six and 18 months.⁠

It's demoralising when you hear all your mum friends chatting about how long their babies sleep for. But you are not comparing apples with apples. Each baby is unique and has their own sleep needs.

There are so many factors that can play into sleep that it is not fair to point fingers. It's definitely not the fault of the parent.⁠

Don't get me wrong, if a baby is waking hourly and tossing and turning, then that must be taken into consideration and looked into, as there might be an underlying issue. But if a baby is waking twice a night at eight months old and they feed and go straight back to sleep easily, then that's not a pathological sleep disorder, that's a baby.