Why Do Babies Sleep With Their Bum in the Air? (Like A Chicken?!)

Have you ever walked in on your baby who looked like a rotisserie chicken while sleeping? Freaking adorable right! 

My kid has never done that but I would be taking a gazillion pics if she did!

It really is quite a curiosity as to why do babies sleep with their bum in the air.

Why do they do it? Is it safe? Can it lead to SIDS? Is it comfortable for them? When do they stop sticking their butt in the air? 

And did someone say if a baby sleeps like that, that means you’re gonna have another one?!

Keep scrolling to find out.

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Why Do Babies Sleep With Their Bum in the Air? (Like A Chicken?!)

Reminds Them of the Womb

When babies were snugly nestled in the womb, they were naturally curled up. This fetal position is incredibly comforting and familiar to them. 

So, when you see a sleeping baby with their bum in the air, they are likely trying to recreate that cozy, womb-like feeling.

It Feels Comfortable

Sleeping with their bum in the air may simply be more comfortable for babies. 

It allows for better air circulation around their diaper area, keeping them cool and preventing excessive sweating. 

It also keeps them comfortably warm as the said position helps maintain heat while they sleep.

Relieves Gas, Stomach, or Stress

Sometimes, a baby might stick their bum in the air because they’re experiencing discomfort, like gas or an upset tummy. 

The butt-in-the-air position allows for gentle pressure to be applied to their tummies, which can provide relief. 

The said position can also be a response to stress or overstimulation, as assuming said position helps them feel protected and secure.

Helps Them Self Soothe

Babies love being cuddled and held by their caregivers. 

The bum-in-the-air position might mimic the sensation of being embraced, providing a sense of security and comfort. 

It’s their way of self-soothing, especially if they wake up briefly during sleep.

Ready and Learning To Crawl

As babies grow and develop, they start to become curious about their surroundings. 

The bum-in-the-air position can be a way for them to practice their crawling skills. 

By lifting their bottoms, they engage their core muscles and prepare for the exciting milestone of crawling.

Is It OK for Babies to Sleep With Their Bum in the Air?

Yes, it is ok for babies to sleep with their bum in the air. 

It’s a common and natural sleeping position, and many babies find it comforting. 

As long as your baby is placed on their back to sleep on a firm mattress, there’s no need to worry about this cute sleeping style.

When Do Babies Stop Sleeping With Their Bum in the Air?

As babies grow and reach different developmental milestones, they might naturally transition to other sleeping positions. 

Some babies might continue to sleep with their bum in the air as toddlers, while others may adopt different positions as they become more mobile.

That’s why 1 or 2-year-old or even older kids still sleep in the butt-in-the-air position.

Can Baby’s Butt-in-the-Air Sleeping Position Cause SIDS?

No, the bum-in-the-air sleeping position itself does not cause SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome)

SIDS risk is mainly associated with factors like sleeping on the stomach, soft bedding, and an unsafe sleep environment. 

To reduce the risk of SIDS, always place your baby on their back to sleep on a firm and flat surface.

Baby Sticking Bum in Air Myth

Over the years, various myths and old wives’ tales have emerged to explain why babies sleep in this position. Let’s debunk some of them:

  • Scared Baby

Some people believe that when a baby sleeps with their bum in the air, it means they’re scared or anxious.

In reality, the bum-in-the-air position is more likely a response to comfort and familiarity, not fear.

  • Expecting a Sibling

Some parents think that if their baby is doing this, that means their little one wants or is expecting a sibling!

It’s fun to think about it, but again this is just an old wives’ tale.

  • Bow-Legged Baby

Some worry that sleeping with their bum in the air might cause their baby’s legs to become bow-legged. 

Rest assured, this is just a myth! The bum-in-the-air position has no impact on leg development.

FAQ on Why Babies Sleep With Their Butt in The Air

Why Do Babies Stick Their Bum in the Air When Sleeping?

Babies stick their bum in the air when sleeping for various reasons, including comfort, self-soothing, and mimicking the fetal position.

Is It Normal for Toddlers to Sleep With Their Bum in the Air?

Yes, it’s normal for toddlers to sleep with their bums in the air too! They might continue this habit as they find it comforting.

Why Do Babies Lift Their Bum?

Babies lift their bum as a way for them to explore and practice their motor skills, preparing for milestones like crawling.

How Do I Know If My Baby Is Cold at Night?

You can know if your baby is cold at night by feeling their chest, back, or back of their neck. 

Is It Okay If My 1-Year-Old Sleeps With Bum in the Air?

Yes, it’s okay if your 1-Year-Old sleeps with bum in the air – there’s no need to worry.

Is It Okay If My 2-Year-Old Sleeps With Bum in the Air?

Yes, it’s okay if your 2-Year-Old sleeps with their butt in the air. As toddlers, they might have their unique sleeping preferences.

Should I Keep Flipping My Baby Onto Their Back?

No, you shouldn’t keep flipping your baby onto their back once they can roll over independently. There’s no need to do it. Let them choose their sleeping position as long as it’s safe.

Is It Dangerous for Babies to Sleep With Their Bum in the Air?

No, it’s not dangerous for babies to sleep with their bum in the air. It’s a safe sleeping position, provided they are placed on their back to sleep and there’s no suffocation hazard in their crib or bassinet.

At What Age Can Babies Sleep on Their Stomach?

Once babies can roll over independently, they may choose to sleep on their stomachs. Always place them on their back, and they can decide how to sleep.

Safe Sleep Practices for Babies

To ensure a safe sleep environment for your baby, follow these guidelines:

Use a Safe Crib or Bassinet: Make sure your baby’s crib or bassinet meets safety standards and is JPMA-certified, Greenguard Gold-certified, etc.

Keep the Crib Empty: The crib should be free from any soft bedding, stuffed animals, pillows, and blankets. These items can increase the risk of suffocation or SIDS. 

Use Firm Mattress: Use a firm, thin mattress with a fitted sheet specifically designed for the bassinet or crib.

Share a Room, Not a Bed: The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends room-sharing without bed-sharing for at least the first six months. 

Avoid Overheating: Overheating can increase the risk of SIDS. Keep the room comfortably cool, and avoid using heavy blankets or quilts. Related Article: What Should Baby Wear Under Swaddle or Sleep Sack

Practice Tummy Time During Awake Hours: Tummy time helps in developing their neck, shoulder, and upper body muscles. Which can lead to safer, better sleep, especially if your baby keeps moving around while sleeping!

Use Sleep Sacks or Swaddles: Instead of using loose blankets, consider using swaddles or sleep sacks to keep your baby warm while they sleep. These are safer alternatives as they eliminate the risk of suffocation. Related Article: How Many Swaddles Do I Need? (Types, Pros, Cons, and More)

Keep the Room Dark and Quiet: Creating a calm and sleep-friendly environment can help your baby sleep better. Use the best blackout curtains, white noise, etc., if necessary.

Check for Hazardous Items Around the Crib: Ensure that there are no cords, strings, or hazardous items within reach of your baby’s crib. These can pose a strangulation or choking hazard.

Follow the ABCs of Safe Sleep: Always remember the ABCs of safe sleep: Alone (babies should sleep alone), on their Backs (always place babies on their back to sleep), and in a Crib (use a safety-approved crib or bassinet).

The Bottom Line on Why Do Babies Sleep With Their Bum in the Air

Babies are adorable little beings with unique sleeping preferences. 

And while there are no official studies yet as to why babies sleep with their bum in the air, rest assured that they are comfortable and safe in that position.

Sleeping with their butt in the air is just one of the charming ways they relax, relieve any aches and settle into a more snug position.

It’s a normal and safe sleeping position, so let them be. As long as there’s no suffocation hazard in their crib, they will be fine. 

If you enjoyed this guide, check out our articles on Baby Sleeps Face Down In Mattress (Safe or Not?), How To Get Baby To Sleep Longer Stretches At Night, and Eat Play Sleep Baby Routine.