Sleep – Early Wake-Ups

What’s The Deal With Early Wake-Ups?

Why do some kids get up super early? If your child has always been an early riser but overall sleeps well and is well rested then I’m sorry to say you just have one of those children. As a parent you can try to establish a “reasonable” wake time as a rule of the house and if that child tends to wake before that time they learn to stay quiet so others can still sleep. On the other hand if this is a sudden change or gradually the wake time has become earlier, you should be able to find the culprit. In the world of sleep science the phrase that always stands true is “sleep begets sleep”. So, when we start losing sleep from one end, eventually the other end starts to go as well. If your child is waking earlier for the day, you will need to investigate. Ask yourself these questions:

1. Is my child well rested during the day? If your child is still taking naps, have they become shorter and less restorative? If the naps are not restorative and not keeping your child rested until bedtime then that would be a cause for the earlier wake time.

2. Is my child going to bed too late? Has the bedtime been creeping later and later? sometimes a difference of a 1/2 an hour later can affect the wake time. Does this mean that your child will get up even earlier? No, it may not be logical, it’s biological. Understand that if you can answer yes to any of those questions, then chances are one is either starting to affect the other or has already snowballed into the other. It’s a balance that we keep. If day sleep is not restorative then we have to make up for it at bedtime. Keeping the balance means better overall sleep and none of those sudden or creeping early wake ups.

–Deborah Pedrick, Founder,, a consulting service and informational web site with a roster of experts (all moms) who consult with parents, face to face, over the phone and even via email. FamilSsleep’s philosophy reflects that of renowned sleep expert, Dr. Marc Weissbluth ,who was Pedrick’s son’s pediatrician over a decade ago, and is focused on helping parents become familiar with their child’s healthy sleep rhythm and incorporating it as best they can into their schedule. For more info: call 203-559-4674, or visit