Adjusted age: How your preemie’s corrected age affects sleep

Mar 8, 2021 | Key Sleep Tips, Naps

If your baby was not premature, you may have never heard the terms “Adjusted Age” or “Corrected Age.” But, if your baby was born early (earlier than 37 weeks), calculating baby’s adjusted age can be very helpful for sleep!⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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Adjusted age is your baby’s age based on her due date, rather than birth date. We take your baby’s chronological age (how old she is from the day she was born) and subtract how many weeks before her estimated due date she arrived.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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E.g. if a baby is 12 weeks old, but was born 8 weeks early, her Adjusted Age is actually 4 weeks.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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(Of note, early term is considered 37 weeks, so generally we only consider Adjusted Age if baby was born prior to this.)⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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We usually consider baby’s Adjusted Age, rather than actual age, when we are considering awake times.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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Most babies do best with the awake time of their corrected age, rather than trying to push them all the way to the awake time of their actual age. So, if a baby is 7 months, but 5 months Adjusted, we would use the awake times of a 5 month old rather than a 7 month old, to ensure we are not causing baby to be overtired.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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Certainly there are some instances where baby may do best with the awake times of their actual age, or perhaps even “splitting the difference” and doing awake times somewhere in between the two ages but, in general, using Adjusted Age awake times is best. Check out the December 22nd episode of Sleep Cues: The Everything Baby Sleep Podcast for more on wake windows!

Erin Junker is a Professional Infant & Toddler Sleep Consultant, and owner of The Happy Sleep Company, working closely with tired parents to help them help their little ones get the healthy, restful sleep they need. Follow The Happy Sleep Company on Instagram and Facebook – let’s get your family the healthy, happy sleep you deserve!

Disclaimer: I only provide reviews and recommendations for products when I feel they are of great quality. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. I am a member of several affiliate marketing programs and, as such, I do receive a commission for purchases made through some product links on this website.

The advice provided by The Happy Sleep Company is not a substitute for medical advice. The advice on this website is provided solely for informational purposes in connection with common early childhood sleep issues that are wholly unrelated to medical conditions. Always seek the advice of your doctor or another qualified health practitioner with questions regarding medical conditions or the health or welfare of your child. 

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