White Noise For Babies – Is it Safe, Pros and Cons

5 min read

Written by Tarasha Chandra

Tarasha Chandra

White Noise For Babies

After the birth of a newborn, sleep is questionable. Some babies are great sleepers and some are not. This is the reason why parents always try to find something to put their babies to sleep. Yet what might work for one, might not for the other but white noise for babies is an exception. It can soothe the baby with calming sounds, and help them fall asleep.

Like a low and soothing humming, white noise’s soft sound works the same in putting a baby to sleep. It blocks all other noises in the house and helps the baby to sleep well. It has a few limitations of its own, but it can be a great add-on for babies who can’t fall and stay asleep easily.

In This Article

What is White Noise?

White noise is a mix of audible frequencies similar to white light which is a mix of all seven colors. In simple words, it is the noise that masks all other background noise and helps the baby hear soothing sounds that allow them to sleep. White noise comes with different soothing sounds which can help the baby sleep devoid of the environment they are in. If you are sleep training your baby, white noise can help you establish a sleep routine for your baby and train them to fall asleep on their own as well.

What Level of White Noise is Safe For Babies?

If the white noise meets the specified criteria, it is a good and safe option to put babies to sleep. However, the sound should be lower than 50 decibels. Few studies show that if the baby’s exposure to white noise is for a longer span may result in hearing delays or disorders. Hence, it is always better to use white noise within limits.

Why is White Noise Used For Babies?

whit noise lullaby for babies

White noise is a soothing means used to put a baby to sleep. It blocks all other noise in the surroundings, thus making the environment suitable for the baby to fall asleep.

For example, it can block the noises coming off of

  • Traffic
  • Washing machines
  • Loud fans and other household appliances
  • Sibling noise

At What Age Should You Stop Using White Noise?

There is no set age to stop white noise, but an ideal time is between 1- 3 years, depending on the baby. However, it is vital to ensure that the baby is not fully dependent on the white noise. Ideally, you should use a white noise machine for not more than six months at a stretch. Prolonged usage can get your baby addicted and they will find it difficult to sleep in the absence of white noise.

You can use the time you are using the white noise to provide sleep training for your baby and get them used to a healthy sleep routine. This will come in extremely handy for your baby later in life as they grow.

Ways of Using White Noise For Babies

White noise machine


Here are a few ways you can follow while using white noise for your baby.

  • Using CDs or white noise applications is a great way to put the baby to sleep, but it should not be more than 50 decibels.
  • Noise from the ceiling or table fan also works as ideal white noise to make the baby sleep.
  • Playing of radio on static to generate white noise helps the baby to sleep well.

White noise is quite similar to what the baby has already experienced in the womb. When the baby is in the womb, it hears the rhythmic beating of the heart and the sound of rushing blood in the veins. You can set the white noise in the same way to make a baby sleep.

Advantages of White Noise For Babies

pros of white noise for babies

Since olden times, nannies and caregivers have been using the sounds of different things to put babies to sleep. They sang lullabies and made a variety of sounds. White noise does the same, helping your baby calm down and fall asleep.

Here are some benefits of using white noise

1. Helps in Better Sleep

White noise is effective as it lets the baby sleep well alongside their favorite toy, dark room, pacifier, etc. It helps in putting them back to sleep if they get up in between.

2. Babies Cry Less

The “Shhh” sound used by parents to put babies to sleep is similar to that of the blood flowing in the areas around the womb. It ends up soothing them and allows them to sleep well.

3. Helps in Weaning Off

By the time babies turn one, they are not too fussy for sleeping as they are more active and tired and can be easily weaned off.

Disadvantages of White Noise For Infants

White noise undoubtedly is suitable for all babies who have difficulty sleeping well, yet it has its limitations.

Here are a few disadvantages of using white noise for babies

  • If the white noise exceeds more than 50 decibels, it can lead to speech, hearing problems, and developmental issues.
  • When babies are too dependent on white noise for sleeping, it becomes difficult to get rid of it in later years. It leads to disturbed sleep, which leaves them agitated.

A good sleep environment is necessary for babies to sleep. White noise machine, used for short periods, is an ideal means to put the baby to sleep, keeping it at a safe distance will not harm the baby. Ensure to use it carefully, and don’t make your little one dependent on it.


1. Does White Noise Affect Brain Development?

As per studies, babies must not have long exposure to white noise as it may lead to speech and hearing disorders.

2. Can White Noise Cause Hearing Loss in Babies?

Babies can have a hearing disorder if they get exposed to white noise at high volume and for a longer time.

3. Can I Leave White Noise on all Night For My Baby?

It is not recommended to leave the white noise on all night as it can lead to dependency. If your baby is very fussy and not sleeping well, or if you have a change in place, use white noise and switch it off once the baby is asleep.

4. How Long Should You Use White Noise For Baby?

You can use white noise for your baby for 6 months at a stretch. This is the maximum allowed period. Using white noise machines for your baby beyond this time period can cause addiction issues and babies may not fall asleep in the absence of white noise. You should quit using them by the time your baby turns two years old

5. When Should I Start Using White Noise For Baby?

You can start using white noise for your baby at any age, there is no minimum age limit. These machines are especially helpful during phases such as sleep regression or sicknesses when your baby finds it difficult to fall and stay asleep.

Read Also: How To Teach Your Baby To Self-Soothe?

Tarasha Chandra,PGDPM

She loves to dance, listen to music, cook, and read in her free time. She is transparent, intuitive, quick-witted, and loves to spend time with her near and dear ones. She believes in taking each day as it comes.Read more.

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