lengthening naps - there isn't any way, is there?(7 Posts)
DS3 is made of different material to previous ones, and now won't nap for more than 45 mins.
Is there any advice other than wait it out and have faith that This Too Shall Pass?
(He's 5 months, btw, and I think needs more daytime sleep than he's getting - gets miserable...)
Have you tried the thing where you sneak in just before the 45 mins are up so that when he stirs, you can just rest a hand on him and try to get him back to sleep, as soon as he shows any signs of waking? I seem to remember doing that with mine and that it had some success ... the idea is that, after doing this a few times, they will then just sleep past the 45 mins. Worth a try, anyway!
I've just cut out ds's afternoon nap as it was affecting his night sleeping. It seems to have done the trick of lengthening his morning one (now 10-12.30) and giving him a solid 13 hours at night.
He's 20 months. I've no idea how it corresponds with other people's experiences but it works for us and he's a happy little sunbeam.
You have my sympathy. Ds was 6 months before he started taking longer day naps. It happened overnight whole we were on holiday. Dh and I were completely floored.
Similar to RooTwo's suggestion, if you put him down in his pram then start pushing him around or rocking him about five minutes before he's due to wake up, this might keep him asleep through his transition into the second, deeper sleep cycle - you need to keep pushing/rocking for 5-10 minutes for it to be effective. I managed to extend my DS's usual half hour naps to almost an hour each today by doing this. It'll probably never work again, like, but worth a try!
45 min naps can be a developmental thing & are unfortunately very common between 3-6 months. Something to do with how the brain develops & establishes regular sleeping patterns. Weissbluth explains it in Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child.
That said, 45min naps can also be a sign that your LO is ready to stay awake a little bit longer before their nap. Because they are used to going down at a certain time, they fall asleep easily, but aren't tired enough to sleep for very long. You may find that keeping him awake an extra 5 or 10 mins before his first nap helps, and he may go past that magic 45min mark.
Once he has had a 45min (or less) nap, it can often be an idea to pull the next nap a little earlier, so that he doesn't become overtired as the day wears on. In doing so you may find his next nap is longer. 30min or less naps were a clear indicator of OT in our house when DS was little.
I agree with Omama. I found the book she recommends really helpful as it explains the reasons for babies sleeping patterns at different ages (but I didn't necessarily agree with his sleep training habits). His theory is that naps lengthen naturally as sleep patterns mature as baby gets older.
You could try keeping him up longer before a nap, but watch for overtiredness. I wouldn't stress about this. I tried to fiddle with DD's naps for ages; it didn't help.
You probably just need to wait it out. DD suddenly (of her own accord) started taking a long lunchtime nap around 5 months, after months of 45m/30m naps. It was bliss!
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