How many hours does a newborn sleep?

Newborns spend most of their time (drum roll…) sleeping! On average, newborns sleep between 16 and 18 hours per day, with some sleeping even up to 20 hours a day. During their waking hours, they are most alert and active for a few hours after feedings. They also wake up several times throughout the day and night to eat.

newborn sleeping

Newborns needs

Understanding how much sleep newborns need can be difficult. Remember that all babies are different and will have different sleeping needs. There are some general guidelines that can help you determine how many hours your baby should be sleeping.

Newborns should generally sleep anywhere from 16 to 18 hours in a 24 hour period. You should break this up into several naps throughout the day and one long sleep period at night. It is important to note that newborns cannot sleep for one long stretch of 8 hours; instead, they will wake up for feedings.

In terms of naps, newborns should be taking multiple naps throughout the day, totaling about three to four hours. The exact timing of these naps will vary from baby to baby; however, it is important to create a consistent schedule for your baby so that they can develop good sleeping habits.

It is important to remember that babies will sometimes wake up during the night and need to be fed. If your baby is still hungry after a feeding, it is important to give them a few minutes to fall back asleep on their own. However, if your baby still seems restless after a few minutes, it may be necessary to give them another feeding. All babies are different and will have different sleeping needs. It is important to create a consistent sleep schedule for your baby in order to help them develop good sleeping habits.

Creating a sleep schedule

Here are the steps to creating a good sleep schedule for your infant:

  1. Establish a pattern: create a consistent routine for your baby, setting a regular time for naps and bedtime each day.
  2. Track sleep: monitor how much sleep your baby is getting and adjust the schedule as needed.
  3. Set a bedtime: choose a specific time for your baby to go to bed each night and stick to it.
  4. Avoid over-stimulation: try to avoid activities that are highly stimulating before bedtime, as this can make it more difficult for your baby to settle.
  5. Create a sleep-friendly environment: make sure your baby’s bedroom is dark, quiet, and comfortable to promote healthy sleeping habits.


Newborns sleep around 16-18 hours a day, with some variation depending on the individual baby. We can break this down into several shorter naps throughout the day, as well as a longer stretch at night. Although it may seem like a lot of sleep, it is important for babies to get adequate rest in order to grow and develop.