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So does this curtailing daytime nap thing make dc sleep longer at night?

(8 Posts)
wildpoppy Sun 23-Sep-12 19:20:27

Dd goes to sleep about 7. Is too tired to last longer. Wakes up 5.30. Has 90 mins in middle of day. Would curtailing daytime sleep make her sleep longer at night or is 10.5 hours best we'll get (for which I am greatful). Dd is nearly 2.

omama Sun 23-Sep-12 19:58:07

what time does she usually take her nap? 12? 1?

I found with my ds if he naps before 1pm on a regular basis we get EW, regardless of how long he naps for. If your DD's nap is earlier than 1pm, I would suggest gradually pushing it later by 10-15mins at a time til it starts at 1 (which will be hard since she is waking early). If her nap already starts at 1pm then you could perhaps shave 15mins off her nap at a time.

I will admit I tried cutting my DS's nap to 1hr, because he wasn't falling asleep til post 8pm, but he got very very overtired, so we ended up having to reinstate his nap (usually 2-2.5hrs) & are now stuck with the later BT instead. Our nights are typically 10.5-11hrs.

wildpoppy Sun 23-Sep-12 20:06:32

Nap usually 11 or 12 but sometimes 1 or 2. Never thought about pushing it back because on 5.30am starts she's shattered by 11am but I will try that. Not noticed, but not looked for, pattern in terms of when nap is and length of sleep.

omama Sun 23-Sep-12 22:47:11

It is brutal, but by offering an early nap you will keep her waking early. At age 2, they can stay awake for a good 5.5-6.5hrs before napping, so if she naps at 11 or 12 it makes sense she wakes at 5.30am iyswim?

Don't do it all in one go or she'll be a wreck, but I would def nudge it forwards by 15mins every few days/week until nap is 12.30pm earliest, possibly 1pm. Set yourself up for a couple of horrible weeks where she will be tired & grumpy, knowing that it will be so worth it when she is sleeping in a bit later. Not just for you but for her too, because she will likely get more sleep at night.

I had to do exactly the same with my DS (he was a little younger at 16/17 months) but we pushed the nap from 11 to 12.30 & his wakeup went from a regular 5-5.30am to 7am.

wildpoppy Sun 23-Sep-12 23:21:30

Do you think it should be a shorter nap or just a later nap?

Fine in weeks but harder on weekends when we often drive places.

omama Mon 24-Sep-12 20:19:12

IIWY I would initially just push it later, without cutting. She will already be tired because of the EW, so if you cut the nap too, you will probably just make her overtired.

The reason the nap needs to go later is because early waking is strongly linked to an early nap. If you continue to offer an early nap but cut it short, she will likely get overtired from being up too long between naptime and bedtime. And she will carry on waking early because she can catch up on her night sleep with the early nap.

I would try slowly pushing it towards 12.30/1pm first (which may take a few weeks), then once its been there for a couple of weeks, you will be able to see if

a) her early waking has improved and
b) whether the later nap is having any impact on her bedtime (if she naps at 1pm for 1.5hrs+, she may not be ready for bed at 7pm anymore).

If the EW stops but her bedtime is affected, you can either accept a slightly later bedtime, or if you really don't want a later bedtime, try capping the nap a little.

That is what I tried doing with my DS, but unfortunately he just got really overtired so I had to accept he needs his nap, but this means a later bedtime. Even though I miss the hour of time to myself in the evening, I prefer this to him getting up at 5am.


wildpoppy Mon 24-Sep-12 22:19:32

Thank you. Today she was up at 6 but didn't nap until 1 then napped for 90 mins and only woke reluctantly. He was still tired by 7 and fast asleep by 7.20 so let's see what happens am.

wildpoppy Tue 25-Sep-12 11:10:03

Well she woke at 5, demanded bottle of milk, then went back to sleep in our bed until 7. So kind of worked.

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