Baby Naps and Sleep
and sleep patterns
If you baby is not napping well during her first few months of life,
you may want to try to cut back on the time she is awake by 15 minute increments. If she is getting overstimulated,
then she will fight sleep and be difficult to get to nap. The way to prevent this is to watch her "sleepy" cues to
make sure that you put her down when she is beginning to get sleepy. The more you understand about baby naps and
sleep, the easier will be to control her sleeping.
Some parents believe that letting their child cry will harm him or
her. Fifteen or twenty minutes of crying will not harm your child physically or mentally. Babies will learn to
self-soothe and fall asleep by themselves, but only if you let her. It is very important that babies learn to fall
asleep by themselves so that they can self-soothe if they awake in the middle of the night.
|Babies will cry when they're
tired, hot or cold, uncomfortable,
have a dirty diaper, or haven't had enough sleep.
Otherwise, you may have a child that will not sleep through the night
for years. It's important for babies to develop regular sleeping pattern from early on - will be good for babies
health and make parents job that easier.
Regular sleeping patterns are intermeshed with regular eating patterns, so
let us look at the stages of a baby’s life:
Baby naps and sleep patterns change as they grow.
Young babies start with morning and afternoon naps, while older babies tend to favour
afternoon naps. Learn your baby sleep pattern, so that you can control it for baby's
Your newborn will sleep anywhere from 16 to 20 hours a day, including the naps
that he takes between feedings. When your baby has been fed, let him stay awake for a short while and then put him
down before he becomes overstimulated.
At two months and older, your child should be allowed to try to self-soothe during
their naptimes and bedtime. Crying is normal when you put your baby down, but it is okay. If he cries for longer
than 10-15 minutes, then go in and check on him. Don’t get him up, but pat his bottom or lightly rub his back until
he calms down.
At around 3-6 months, your baby will stop taking one of his naps. Usually it is
the third nap or late afternoon nap that they do not need as much. He may be a little fussy and may want to take a
little nap, but you need to try to keep him up if you want him to go to bed at a decent time and sleep soundly
through the night.
When your child is between 16-20 months, they usually quit taking the morning nap
in favor of a longer nap in the afternoons. Babies this age usually sleep between 10-12 hours a night and take a
2-3 hour afternoon nap.
about Baby Naps and Sleep
You decide when the nap starts and ends, not the baby. Babies don't know
right from wrong - you do.
When your baby is older than 4 months old, she will wake up crying if she
hasn’t slept enough. She might have a dirty diaper, be in a position that is not comfortable, or
cold/hot. Fix the problem and encourage her to go back to sleep. Babies that have enough rest wake up
happy, talking, and in a good mood.
Learn more baby sleep secrets on the next page.