You can help adjust your baby's body clock toward sleeping at night by avoiding stimulation during nighttime feedings and diaper changes. Try to keep the lights low and resist the urge to play or talk with your baby. This will reinforce the message that nighttime is for sleeping.
Overly tired infants often have more trouble sleeping than those who've had an appropriate amount of sleep during the day. So, keeping your baby up in hopes that he or she will sleep better at night will not necessarily work.
Consider establishing some sort of bedtime routine (bathing, reading, singing) to help get your baby to relax in the coming months. Even though your newborn may be too young to get the signals yet, setting up the bedtime drill now can keep you on the right track later.
What if your baby is fussy? It's OK to rock, cuddle, and sing as your baby is settling down. For the first months of your baby's life, "spoiling" is definitely not a problem. In fact, studies have shown that babies who are carried around during the day have less colic and fussiness.
The first months of a baby's life can be the hardest for the parents because you are potentially getting up every few hours to tend to the baby. Each baby is different in terms of when he or she will sleep through the night, and parents differ regarding when they're comfortable with encouraging their newborn to do so.
By 2 months most babies are sleeping 6 to 8 hours through the night. If your baby isn't sleeping through the night by 4 months, talk with your doctor about how you can help this to happen.