Brestfed Babies and Sleep Patterns
Babies that are breastfed tend to wake up more often during the night for
feedings than non-breastfed babies, but a recent study found that their sleep patterns stabilize later in infancy and are comparable to non-breastfed babies. Researchers say that this study may reassure parents that breastfeeding will not make their baby sleep worse.
The study, which was recently presented at the American Academy of Pediatrics National Conference and Exhibition, followed 89 mothers of babies that were exclusively breastfed and 54 mothers of babies that consumed only formula. The mothers completed the Brief Infant Sleep Questionnaire initially and then at four follow-up visits to track the patterns as the baby grew.
Initially, the breastfed babies took fewer naps, awoke more often during the night and had more instances of not sleeping in their own beds than formula-fed babies. These patterns lasted for three months, but after nine months, all differences between the two groups had disappeared.