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Question 15

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Question 15 - Is is normal for a 10 week old to sleep 20-22 hours a day?

From: AM

Dear Sandman,

My 10 week old sleeps about 20-22 hours a day. Everyone I speak to says I should just be grateful, but is this considered on the outer bell curve of normal or should I be concerned?

She was born at 3.7 kg, natural birth, at 10 weeks she is 5.5 kg and ~60 cm long so she's growing well. Total breastfeeding (no formula, no vitamin supplements), good output. I eat a pretty normal, healthy diet, taking pre/post-natal vitamins (no drugs, I don't drink caffeine or alcohol even when not pg/bfg).

When awake she smiles, talks to us and swats at her toys. No jaundice as far as I can tell. My husband jokingly calls her narcoleptic because she will literally fall asleep in the middle of crying (eg when complaining about being put in her car seat).

Everything I've looked up about sleep and babies is about how to get your baby to sleep more. Please write back with your thoughts, or let me know if you need more information.

Many thanks and best regards,

Answer Provided by Sandman
April 29, 2008

The norm for full term infant sleep varies from 9-19 hours. After 3 months it should start decreasing. If she seems to be sleeping like a baby, silent, no effort, not much movement, then, in my opinion, I think it is ok.

Narcolepsy can but usually doesn't show up at this age. However, if she continues to sleep this much after 12 months or has any symptoms of non-normal sleep, noise-movement-arousals etc., you should see a pediatric sleep specialist in your area. Also you may want to read the infant sleep info page. http://www.sleepnet.com/infant.html

If you sense any problem with her sleep you should video her sleep and take it to a pediatric sleep specialist who may be able to make a diagnosis just from watching the video.

Best wishes and Sweet dreams,


Disclaimer, I am not an MD and my opinions should not be taken as medical advice. If you feel that you need assistance with medications and/or diagnosis, you should seek medical advice from a qualified physician.

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