Excessive Yawning in Babies – Is It a Concern?
- Video : Excessive Yawning in Babies – Should You Be Worried?
- Is Yawning Common Among Infants?
- Why Do Babies Yawn?
- What Is the Normal Frequency of Yawning in Babies?
- Is Yawning Contagious?
- What Causes Excessive Yawning in Babies?
- Is Excessive Yawning a Sign of Some Serious Problem?
- How to Control Excessive Yawning in Infants?
Yawning is a natural reflex in babies that persists even into adulthood. When you see your little one yawn, you will feel that he is the cutest child in the world. But if a baby yawns a lot, you will obviously get worried. Yawning is an involuntary action, and if your baby is drowsy or fatigued, he will yawn more than often, and it is normal. But if you notice him yawning excessively even when he had had a good night’s sleep, it can be a cause for concern. Let’s learn more about excessive yawning in babies with the help of this article given below and also know about some ways to control it.
Video : Excessive Yawning in Babies – Should You Be Worried?
Is Yawning Common Among Infants?
Yawning is a natural process. Everyone yawns several times through the day. And as far as infants are concerned, it is common for them to yawn. If your baby yawns, it’s a sign that he is healthy and is developing normally.
Why Do Babies Yawn?
The actual cause of yawning is not clear. Some research suggests that babies yawn when they are tired. And some studies show that yawning is triggered when the brain is in need of oxygen. So there is no exact cause for the same. Furthermore, babies can also yawn because of lack of sleep, excessive sleep, hunger, fatigue, or even boredom.
What Is the Normal Frequency of Yawning in Babies?
On an average, a human baby yawns anywhere between 30 and 50 times a day, as opposed to an adult human’s count of 20 yawns a day. Babies yawn more after waking up – it’s completely natural and there is nothing wrong with that. It is believed that we yawn after a good sleep because it is our bodies’ attempt to send in more oxygen to the brain and cool our bodies. You may see your infant yawning more frequently when he is not fully awake. In most cases, babies yawn when they are sleepy or after getting good sleep. So, yawning yawning after nap and while sleeping is also not uncommon.
Is Yawning Contagious?
It is believed that yawning is contagious. This is an indication of a phenomenon known as echo phenomena, the imitation of another person’s word or actions. It is commonly known as contagious yawning. However, not everyone is affected by this phenomenon. And your little one may not always yawn, if he notices you yawning.
What Causes Excessive Yawning in Babies?
If your baby yawns frequently or excessively, it could be a sign that he is sleepy, tired, or bored. And if he yawns after waking up, it is his body’s way of sending in more oxygen to the brain. However, if there is an unusual increase in your baby’s yawning, then it could be because of some other reasons as well such as a sign of prenatal drug withdrawal. Babies also yawn when they are overheated, both externally and internally. If it gets too warm for your baby, remove the extra layers and make sure he is not uncomfortable. As far as internal heat is concerned, make sure your baby is well hydrated. Here are possible reasons why your baby may be yawning a lot.
Drowsiness may seem like a trivial issue, but you can’t always take it lightly, especially if your baby is always drowsy. You will have to consult your baby’s doctor if this is the case.
Excessive yawning can be an indication that your baby is tired or lacking energy. You must make sure that your baby is getting a well-balanced diet and is getting all the nutrients he needs for proper growth and development. Also, make sure your baby is active enough by engaging him or her in activities like playing with toys.
3. Heart Ailments
Sometimes, excessive yawning can be an indication of an underlying threat like heart ailments. When the pumping of blood and oxygen is dysfunctional, the body induces yawns, so more air and oxygen is taken in. If your baby is yawning extensively, consult the doctor at the earliest.
4. Excessive Weight
If your baby weighs more than his optimal weight, it could be a problem as it could be a sign of a health issue. Sometimes excessive weight and obesity can cause your baby to yawn more than usual as well.
If a newborn baby yawns excessively, it could be an indicator of an underlying disorder like epilepsy. If your little one yawns way too much and it continues for a period of time, you must consult a doctor and rule out the possibility of any complication.
Is Excessive Yawning a Sign of Some Serious Problem?
While more often than not, yawning in babies doesn’t necessarily indicate a serious illness, but it is always wise to be vigilant. Yawning is a natural behaviour and can occur for a variety of reasons in babies, just as it does in adults. It’s often seen as a way for the body to regulate oxygen levels and maintain alertness.
However, if baby yawning all the time is accompanied by other concerning symptoms such as lethargy, difficulty feeding, fever, irritability, or difficulty breathing, it could potentially indicate an underlying issue that requires medical attention. In such cases, it’s advisable to consult a paediatrician to rule out any potential health problems and ensure the well-being of the baby.
How to Control Excessive Yawning in Infants?
You can control excessive yawning in infants only when you try to figure out the root cause of the problem. If your baby yawns excessively because of lack of sleep, make sure he gets proper rest. Feed your baby healthy foods to ensure he gets all the required nutrients. And make sure that your baby stays active. Provide exclusive breastfeeding for the initial six months. Be cautious not to stimulate them before their bedtime excessively. Create and adhere to a consistent bedtime routine.
1. Can Yawning Be a Sign of Over Stimulation in Babies?
Indeed, yawning can potentially be a sign that your baby is overstimulated due to excessive exposure to or participation in activities.
2. Do Autistic Infants Yawn?
Yes, autistic babies can display yawning behaviour, and they might also possess the ability to imitate yawning, demonstrating contagious yawning behaviour. However, additional research might be necessary to validate the assertion regarding contagious yawning in autistic infants.
So, you have your answer to “My baby yawns a lot”. Yawning, in general, is not a cause of concern, but if you notice a rise in the number of yawns each day in your baby and he doesn’t sleep well, you must consult a doctor.
1. INFANT BEHAVIOR CUES; childrensmn.org; https://www.childrensmn.org/educationmaterials/childrensmn/article/15276/infant-behavior-cues/
2. Yawning: Why & What Could It Mean?; muschealth.org; https://muschealth.org/medical-services/geriatrics-and-aging/healthy-aging/yawning
3. Two forms of yawning modulation in three months old infants during the Face to Face Still Face paradigm; journals.plos.org; https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0263510
4. Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS); marchofdimes.org; https://www.marchofdimes.org/find-support/topics/planning-baby/neonatal-abstinence-syndrome-nas
5. Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS); nationwidechildrens.org; https://www.nationwidechildrens.org/conditions/neonatal-abstinence-syndrome