Can You Make a Baby Sleep With Sugar Water?

Nearly all parents of newborns find themselves at one point or another frustrated by their infant’s sleep patterns. For the first few months of life, babies sleep only three or four hours at a time before waking for a feeding or diaper change. Sometimes complications such as colic, gas or pain can cause a baby’s sleep to be even more erratic and fragmented. Sugar water has the ability to relieve your baby's pain, according to the February 2012 issue of " Cochrane Neonatal Reviews," which may be what is needed to help your baby get to sleep.

Observe your baby’s sleep pattern to help determine what is preventing her from sleeping. Make her environment conducive to sleep by dimming lights, keeping a comfortable temperature and reducing background noise.

Put an ounce of warm water into a bottle.

Add a small amount of sugar to the water. Add only enough to slightly sweeten the water.

Mix the sugar and water thoroughly and allow time for the sugar to fully dissolve. Undissolved sugar could block the nipple of the bottle and prevent your baby from drinking.

Test the temperature of the water on the inside of your wrist before giving it to your baby. If the water is still too warm, allow it to cool.

Feed the bottle to your infant slowly. Do not give her extra sugar water unless advised to do so by your pediatrician.


Remember that infants typically do not sleep through the night until they are 6 to 9 months old. Having realistic expectations about how often your baby will sleep can ease parents’ frustrations.

Consider other options to aid sleep before using sugar water. These can include gripe water, infant massage or a change in sleep environment.


Note if and when your child appears to be uncomfortable or in pain. Grimacing, clenched fists and back arching are all signs that your infant may be in pain.

You should give your baby sugar water only after consulting a pediatrician about its use. Excess amounts of water or sugar can be unhealthy for babies.

If your baby appears to be in pain and you can not discern a source of the pain, consult your pediatrician.