Your baby can make a wide range of different noises when he is sleeping and most of the time there is nothing to worry about as long as the breathing is at a steady rhythm. Knowing the difference between normal sleeping habits and medical emergencies or illnesses is important, and some of the more common sleeping habits are described below.
Snoring and snorting
Snoring and snorting are common for healthy babies, but if your baby is snorting more than usual he might be sick or have a stuffy nose. You can try using a humidifier to help making breathing easier for your baby, or if you are concerned you should visit your pediatrician for a checkup. Also, be aware that snoring may be a sign of another problem that may need to be diagnosed by your doctor, so always bring it up at your checkups along with any other sleeping habits that may seem out of the ordinary.
For instance your baby may have a syndrome called obstructive sleep apnea due to an obstruction from the tonsils, or there may be allergies that need to be addressed and treated. Obstructive apnea can be treated by your physician and allergies can be dealt with by using an air filter and moving your baby to an allergen free room, along with any medications as prescribed by your pediatrician.
Babies are soothed by rhythmic motions and will often rock themselves naturally back and forth when they are sitting up. This behavior usually starts at around the age of 6 months along with head banging. There’s almost never a concern with this behavior, even though it can be common at nighttime, although it can create some noise. Don’t try to stop your baby from rocking, but you can take steps like moving the crib away from the wall to reduce banging noises. Also make sure that the bolts for the crib are tightened and there is no risk of the crib breaking apart.
Sweating is a sign that the room temperature is too hot, and if this is the case you should double check that the room is at the recommended 20-22C. If this temperature is too hot it can be reduced from 18-20C. Some babies wake up sweating in the middle of the night regardless of what the room temperature is, because they spend more time than adults in the deepest stage of the sleep cycle which involves heavy brain activity.
Some sweating is common but if you notice that your baby excessively sweats while sleeping there may be a sign of another issue, especially if accompanied by a fever. If you notice your baby sweats excessively go to your pediatrician for a visit who may be able to diagnose an issue such as sleep apnea, a congenital heart problem, or an infection.