6 month old catnapper(8 Posts)
My baby does 30 min catnaps since 2 months old, could literally use him as an alarm it's so consistent. At 39 mins his head shoots up and he starts thrashing his arms and legs about wide awake.
He sleeps through the night with a dream feed at 11pm sleeping 7-6 so he can self settle, he just doesn't in the daytime!!
He is fed to sleep with a bottle in a dark room with white noise, then when sleepy I put in dummy and put him in his cot sleepy but not fully asleep. This is what I do at night too and he doesn't wake up after!
He is currently having 5 x 30mins naps a day! It makes doing anything really difficult as he's only awake for 1h15 mind before I have to feed and put down for a nap again!
Anyone experienced similar?! What age do babies start doing longer naps? Anything I can do to encourage longer naps?
That's one sleep cycle. Learning to link sleep cycles in daytime naps is developmental. Like learning to walk, there are things you can do to encourage and help baby learn, it's it's not possible for baby to manage it until they reach that stage of development.
As you are doing, keep naps frequent in order to stop baby getting over tired.
I then kept naps in something that moves (bouncer, pushchair) so that I could use movement to move baby into a second sleep cycle. The idea is to catch baby just at as he comes out of the deep sleep phase into the light sleep phase, but before waking up. My DD used to do a face-scrunch at this point so I would start bouncing the bouncer and put dummy back in.
The hope then that you take baby from light sleeping back to a deep sleep and second feel cycle. Baby then gets used to longer naps so when they reach the developmental state of linking daytime sleep cycles themself, you're no longer needed to resettle and at that point I move naps into the cot.
Given you already have daytime naps in the cot, you may not want to change that. Resettling is more difficult when static but you could try 'Wake To Sleep'.
This means going to baby just before he's due to wake (so great that naps are so consistant you could set your watch to them). You rouse baby slightly, to bring him out of the deep sleep. But then immediately resettle to hopefully send him into a second sleep cycle.
You will need to do this every time, to be consistant. Then as he learns, he'll stop needing to be woken and will link the sleep cycles himself.
I have to say I used to embrace any nap routine that meant I got a full nights sleep! My children have both only had longer daytime naps once they have started to crawl around as I think they are more tired. I'm very much a 'go with the flow' person though. Your child won't still be having short naps in a years time
I've tried to lengthen via pram naps but he still wakes after 30 mins! Sounds like I just have to wait for him to grow out of it and just count my blessings that he sleeps at night!
I could have written your post 2 years ago - my son was exactly the same and it drove me nuts, I can sympathise! I used to do as the previous poster suggests- go in just before the 40 minute waking point and try to resettle him by rubbing his tummy, putting his lullaby toy back on etc. Sometimes it worked, sometimes not! But by about 9 months or so I think he just started to grow out of it and would reliably nap for an hour or more. He's 2.5 now and a really good napper still, so there is hope, believe me!
My son did this until about 10 months. Again awake times were very short. Naps didn't lengthen until he dropped to two a day but a short nap for him now is anything less than an hour. Finally . In the meantime if he will settle in pram/sling/car as well at least you can get out and about?
Both of my children are/were 5 x 30 minute nappers. With my first I drove myself crazy trying to get her to sleep for longer as the books said she should. With my second I've just accepted it! There really isn't much you can do. DD2 will sleep for 1.5 hours in the sling but only for one nap in the morning.
DD1 suddenly slept for longer at 8 months when she started crawling. She's just turned two now and has a 2-3hour post lunch nap. Shame the 5 month old is awake! I would love it if we could all sleep in the afternoon!
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