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Talk to me about the 90 mins awake then nap thing

(6 Posts)
anametouse Tue 14-Mar-17 10:24:27

How long should naps be lasting? (He's nearly 4 months old)

Aliveinwanderland Tue 14-Mar-17 10:26:18

My 4 month old always did 45 mins in a morning, 2 hours at lunch and 30-45 mins in the afternoon.

However last few days he is doing 2 hours in the morning and it's making him really cranky in the afternoons as he won't have a decent nap for the rest of the day.

Today he got up at 7, back in bed for 8:30 and he is still asleep now!

intheairthatnightfernando Tue 14-Mar-17 10:35:06

Oh this worked for me so well with my second dc! It changed the whole structure of my day after reading about it on here. He was never overtired and never grumpy as I facilitated sleep whenever he had been awake for 90 minutes and it worked BRILLIANTLY. I think about four months sounds just the right age.

It's just exactly what it sounds like, look at the clock when they wake up, do all you like to do with ds/dd over the next 90 mins then put them into a nap position ready for sleep; I found he wasn't overtired so didn't fight sleep, just drifted off happily. It was like a magic spell after the nap stress of my first dc!

Good luck, hope it works for you.

intheairthatnightfernando Tue 14-Mar-17 10:36:05

Sorry, just read your actual question! I don't know, about an hour? Making it up as can't remember, youngest is now 6 years old!

FATEdestiny Tue 14-Mar-17 12:47:00

You are basing your question from the wrong angle. It is not a case of 90 minutes awake time, how long naps will that give me? You start from how long naps are, and use that to inform awake time. Not the other way around.

You are also assuming it is age related, it isn't. You can get a 4 month old having 2h+ naps. You can have a 4 month old having naps never longer than 30 minutes. Both are normal. Both will have very different awake times.

If naps are under an hour (usually) then I would say 90 minutes is the maximum awake time. But 20 minutes awake time would also be perfectly fine, if baby is exhausted.

If naps are usually less than 30 minutes, then I would imagine baby to be tired within 45 minutes of being awake. There is no specific scientific formula (if only!), it is baby-specific. These are just approximations.

It would be much better to understand your baby's series of tired signs and use those to inform the awake time that suits your child best. Mine would be:

- baby happy to roll around on floor without much input from me = happy, awake, not tired

- baby happy to roll around on the floor but starting to need your attention to stay happy = now tired. Not massively so, but tired and ready for a sleep.

- baby needing to be held. Happy while entertained, grumpy when not = very tired and/or hungry

- baby needing to be constantly entertained. Will cry as soon as not distracted by ever changing distractions = now over tired and/or very hungry

- baby unhappy no matter what you do = chronically over tired and exhausted.

So to work out your own, baby-led suggested nap length and awake time, follow baby's cues. Try getting baby to sleep as soon as baby starts needing attention. Give that attention towards getting to sleep, rather than keeping baby awake. See if you notice how long that awake time usually is.

You may well start noticing patterns with your child and be able to predict, based on what previous naps have been like that day, when baby is going to need a sleep.

Doboopedoo Tue 14-Mar-17 21:28:10

As per Fate's comment above, my DD could generally only do 30 minute naps until 8/9 months old. But would only last a max of 90 minute awake - you could set a clock by when she would start crying to be asleep again.
It sorted itself out gradually, but it was super frustrating at the time to be doing 4-5 naps a day - especially when they would only happen on me/in pram/in car!
Felt like forever to sort out but now she naps reliably twice a day for up to two hours, still at 19 months!

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