Babies develop patterns quite naturally as they grow, but their internal regulation system is not fully developed, so regular patterns are impossible for them early in life. This makes a routine very difficult for a baby, and can cause a lot of stress for parents and babies alike.
Sometimes babies may have regular and predictable feeding and sleeping patterns for the first few weeks of life, but that naturally changes as they grow and irregular patterns develop. This can be a rude shock at a time when you're feeling like you have a handle on the situation.
In terms of development of self regulation, babies are really very immature at birth, and it's completely natural for them to have irregular feeding, waking and sleep patterns.
Please don't rush your baby into a strict pattern because it will be awfully stressful for you and baby. If you expect the first 3 months to be filled with changes and a lack of predictability, then there will be no surprises or disappointments.
Don't push your baby into something that isn't natural, especially in the first 3 months.
Got more questions? Book an appointment to speak with one of our baby specialists.
Author: Helen Stevens. RN. RM. MCHN. Manager of Clinical Services, Education and Research. Parent Infant Consultants. 0411880720.