Menu

5 important reasons your baby wakes up in the middle of the night to breastfeed

2. Breastmilk produced at night actually promotes better long-term sleep for your baby. ?

5 important reasons your baby wakes up in the middle of the night to breastfeed

Wouldn’t parenting be a ton easier if babies didn’t wake up to breastfeed in the middle of the night? ?


Well, there are a few reasons why these cute beings wake up when they do. And understanding why it happens can help bring some peace of mind—and make those nighttime wakings a little easier to take.

1. It helps you make more milk

Babies are smart! At night and particularly in the wee hours, the milk making hormone Prolactin spikes up and leads to more breastmilk. Babies quickly figure this out and realize that waking at this time benefits them. In addition, breastmilk is higher in fat during this time, which is great for your little one’s developing brain.

2. They become a better sleeper

This one may be a tough one to believe, especially if you’re nursing an older baby who you feel should be sleeping longer stretches by now. However, breastmilk produced at night actually promotes better long-term sleep! Who knew?

Since babies don’t produce melatonin—the sleep inducing hormone—for most of their early life, falling and staying asleep doesn’t come easy to them. But what does contain lots of melatonin? You got it—breastmilk.

The great thing is that melatonin in nighttime breastmilk can help regulate a baby’s circadian cycle (the body’s clock which regulates sleep-wake cycles) and allows them to eventually learn to sleep longer stretches at night ?.

3. Give me a T for Tryptophan

In addition to melatonin in nighttime breastmilk, tryptophan, a sleep-inducing amino acid, is also included in human milk. During infancy, ingesting tryptophan leads to more serotonin receptor sites in the brain. Plus we know that serotonin makes the brain work better, keeps one in a good mood, and helps with sleep-wake cycles.

4. Extends breastfeeding duration

Mothers who breastfeed at night are more likely to breastfeed for longer because production remains more steady. This goes back to the basic breastfeeding principle of supply and demand. The more number of times the breasts are emptied in 24 hours, the more milk a mother will produce, and the longer she can maintain her supply after it has been established.

5. It helps you get more sleep, mama

No typos here… you read correctly. Mothers who breastfeed get more sleep at night because oxytocin, known as the love hormone and the one that helps moms feel relaxed while nursing, contributes to better sleep. Any extra sleep not only helps mothers feel better but also decreases the chances of experiencing postpartum depression.

Keep these in mind the next time you’re up during a late-night feeding session. You’re doing something great for your baby and yourself. ?

Create a school-ready capsule wardrobe for your kids

Dress for success whether virtual learning or in the classroom!

Tina Meeks

Going "back to school" this year may be less of a literal statement than in years past—but there is just as much reason for your kids to celebrate moving on to new grades. Just like in every new school year, a big part of the fun is refreshing your kids' wardrobe with clothes that allow them to express themselves.

Even if finding back to school clothes this year doesn't include a trip to the mall, you can still make an event of it by shopping H&M's kids collection from your computer. Pull up another chair for your shopping buddy and get the cart started with these fave capsule wardrobe options we've already scouted.

Here are our favorite picks:

A t-shirt made for play

H&M t-shirt

Call them essentials, not basics. A graphic t-shirt aces the test when it comes to being perfect for school. And because your little student will probably want to wear something that expresses their personal style as often as possible, it's great to know the shirts can stand up to school time, playtime, downtime and everything in between!

$4.99

Dressed-up casual shorts for total comfort

H&M boy shorts

Whether pulling up a chair for a virtual meeting with the class or heading back to the school for in-person learning, some comfortable, yet stylish, shorts will help your kid focus on the real tasks at hand: learning—and having fun while doing it!

$19.99

Layers for when seasons change

H&M sweatshirt

When it comes to feeling comfortable at school, layers are the MVPs. Whether the AC is blasting or the day started off cool and is warming up quickly, having a unique sweatshirt to shed or add will help your kid look cool while staying warm.

$9.99

A bit of flair with distressed denim

H&M distressed jeans

A school staple for generations, denim is both classic and continually fashionable with updates like distressing and new wash colors. If you're shopping online for jeans this year, take note of H&M's generous return policy—your kids can try on the orders at home and return anything that doesn't fit without a trip to the store.

$24.99

A fashion statement piece

H&M girls skirt

What's better than expressing yourself through a stylish outfit when school is back in session? Still feeling perfectly comfortable and ready to tackle anything the day holds while looking so good. With so many fashion-forward looks available at budget-friendly prices, H&M's children's collection means every kid can find an outfit that speaks to them.

$14.99

Some comfy kicks

H&M boys shoes

A sure way to put a little pep in your child's step this year, cool and cozy shoes are a staple on all back-to-school shopping lists for good reason. (Plus, it's fun to compare them to last year's shoes to see how much your kid has grown!)

$19.99

Anything-but-basic blouses

H&M girls blouse

Whether in the classroom or showing up for a video call with the class, a styling blouse or button-down shirt is a great way for your student to comfortably dress up the day. Better yet? Style doesn't have to come at the expense of comfort with so many made-to-move tops designed just for kids.

$14.99

A shirt ready to go whatever the day holds

H&M boys shirt

With "going to school" meaning anything from showing up in the classroom to doing a virtual session, it's important to have clothes that are perfect for anything the day holds. A classic, cotton shirt with a fashion-forward design is a great way to keep your student feeling ready to start the year with an A+ attitude.

$9.99

This article was sponsored by H&M. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

Our Partners

This oil completely changed my skin this summer

And I'm never going back to lotion.

For all the sweating and swimming I do in the summer, it seems illogical for my skin to be as parched as ever. But your mid-thirties (and 2020 in general) don't really seem to follow any rule book, so here we are.

A couple of months ago, I was on the lookout for a moisturizer that would not only keep my legs from looking like an ashy mess, but also truly nourish and benefit my skin. I've developed a deep interest in skin care for my face over the past few years and decided it's high time to extend that degree of consideration to the rest of my body. (After all, there's more of it, right?)

It's not that I'm too concerned with aging, but let's be real. If there's something that can be done to slow the Wrinkle Express, I'm going to give it a go. I also wanted to find something natural that wouldn't turn into a goopy mess the second I started sweating.

Enter: Esker's Firming Body Oil.

Keep reading Show less
popular

20 baby names to set your child up for success

What do Jacqueline, Morgan, Madison and Parker all have in common?

They say picking a baby name is an art, not a science. But when it comes to figuring out which baby names have been linked to successful futures, there has actually been some scientific work on the subject.

Keep reading Show less
News