To much napping?(14 Posts)
Ok, this is very annoying because not that long ago I had the opposite problem but now I’m worried my 7 month old is napping too much!
He wakes early (this morning 5am) and I am trying to get into a routine of making the first nap of the day at a certain time (not too early) but it’s like a switch has flipped and he’s suddenly started self settling for naps easily and all 3 naps are long between 1-2 hours each so he’s getting more than 4 hour total nap time.
Now I’m thinking is this affecting his early wake up as this is what I’m trying desperately to change. Or could he just be catching up on night sleep?
It feels so wrong waking him up from a nap when for months I’ve been praying for him to not wake up!
My 14 month old has at least 3 hours for naps (1.5 hrs morning and 1.5 hrs afternoon). Goes to bed about 6.30 pm and I have to wake her at 7am. She self settles too. I am very very lucky!!
So what's probably happened is baby was over tired, so had very little daytime sleep. Now baby us well rested so us settling to sleep easily and linking sleep cycles.
The perfect example of
Good sleep breeds better sleep
And that poor sleep spirals into an overtired downward cycle.
The problem now is that journey have a well rested baby (nothing wrong in 4h daytime sleep at all!) but the timings are out. That's what us promoting your early morning.
Wait to start your first nap at 9am and try horse 2 nap days. An approximation for awake time is 234 (hours awake between naps). So if you're having an 11h night that us assuming 4h daytime sleep (either as 1h and 3h or two 2h naps). Or if you're having 12h nights then 3h daytime sleep (usually 1h and 2h or 30m and 2h30m).
My preference would be:
(2h awake time)
8pm asleep for the night.
But that's just my preference, there are loads that suit different families. If you'd prefer a 7pm-7am night, don't be afraid to wake baby up after 1h nap in the morning and after 2h nap in the afternoon. If you have busy mornings with lots of baby groups, maybe do a 9-9.30am half hour power nap in the morning and a longer nap in the afternoon.
Could you delay his first nap an hour meaning he 'combines' the first two naps? Does that make sense?
Thanks for all your advice. I will look into the 2/3/4 but I don’t really get it. I need a well rested baby for him to get a good nights sleep so surely keeping him up for 4 hours before bedtime is too much? Won’t he be overtired leading to night wakings/early rise?
Also pushing first nap back to 9am, would I have to be consistent with this until his wake time matches up to 6-7am? At the moment that would mean 4 hour awake time in the morning too!
Now I think about it, it’s since I’ve pushed his first nap backwards that he has been settling well for naps. Before this, I was putting him down an hour and a half after waking so sometimes half 6/7am as he was tired already!
7 months old is about the right age to start dropping the 3rd nap, so yes it will happen that baby has longer awake. It's natural progression as she grows.
What don't you get? You currently have:
- 2232 hours of awake time (total 9h)
- 10h night sleep and 5h daytime sleep over 3 naps (total 15h sleep in 24)
The 234 routine suggests:
- 9h awake time (same as you currently have)
- 11h night sleep and 4h daytime sleep over 2 naps or 12h night sleep and 3h daytime sleep over 2 naps (15h total for either, same as you currently have)
It's not reducing baby's overall sleep. It's just changing the timings to minimise the morning wake up and sence of routine.
Yeah, I get what you have said but isn’t it awake times between naps a cause of overtiredness if it’s too long. My DS still seems to get tired after 2 hours of awake time so just thinking 4 hour awake time is too long for him causing him to be overtired at bedtime.
I’ve basically been planning naps around (approx. 2 hour) awake times up to now. So if I ignore his tired signs as just go by the 2/3/4 rule, won’t I miss the ‘tired window’ and he will start going into that overtired spiral again?
The theory is that you go with a fixed awake time until the baby is ready to switch to 2 naps and then move to a "ladder type" routine. The window between the second nap and the bedtime can be longer than awake times during the day. If the baby is ready for a 2 nap routine, they should not get overtired (at least, in theory).
I was also a bit reluctant to drop the third nap but at 7 months my DD started fighting her sleep at bedtime (which she never did previously) so I realised the third nap has to go. I switched to a version of 2-3-4 schedule (2.5-2.5-4). It took DD a few days to adjust to it but she slept better after she had settled onto the new routine. Now, at nearly 11 months, she is slowly getting ready to move to a single nap but that is a different story.
The two common signs indicating that an existing routine might need some tweaks are (1) early morning waking and/or (2) baby taking longer than usual to settle at bed time.
Sleep needs change and develop as baby grows. It just so happens that your baby is getting to the stage where 2 nap days start. It might not be a straight swap to 2-nap days. I would take a month or two to transition so that by about 9 months 2-naps are established.
Both awake time and overall sleep matters. It's about balancing both and managing the changes as baby's sleep develops with age.
For example, I'd suggest around 15 hours sleep in 24 hours for the whole of the first 2 years. So a 6 month old having the same amount of sleep as a 12 month old and an 18 month old and a 24 month old. That does not mean a baby's sleep at 6m, 12m, 18m and 24m is identical.
Routine changes as baby develops, but it's awake time that changes, not sleep needs until much older. As baby grows, they can cope with longer awake, but this doesn't mean they need less sleep. Just fewer naps. For example:
4 month old:
45m sleep in every 2h between 7am-9am
Then about 9h out of 10h overnight sleep.
So about 16h sleep, 7 daytime naps.
6 months old:
About 10h (interupted) night sleep between 8pm-7am.
So about 15h sleep, 3 daytime naps
12 month old:
11h uninterputed night sleep between 8pm-7am.
So about 15h sleep, 2 daytime naps
18 month old:
11.5h uninterputed night sleep between 7.30pm-7am.
So about 15h sleep, 2 daytime naps
24 month old:
12h uninterputed night sleep between 7.30pm-7am.
So about 15h sleep, 1 daytime naps
Thanks for explaining. He actually slept a lot better last night and only woke once and Up at 6am woohoo. I might make his morning nap at 8:30 today and see what happens to his awake time tomorrow.
Join the discussion
Please login first.