Age Appropriate Wake Times
There are many ways to help improve baby sleep habits. I am sure you have read countless articles on how to keep your baby from waking up at night, and how to get them to nap longer. I was there. I read a lot of information on the internet due to the number of challenges I faced as a first time mom. Majority of the information was straightforward, but for some reason my baby was still waking up every 3 hours at night and he required me to rock him back to sleep each and every time he woke up.
I would like to emphasize that there are MANY variables to creating good sleep habits for your baby, BUT if you have read my previous blog posts you know that I love to offer tips that can help you steer in the right direction in improving your baby’s sleep.
I want to talk about “Wake Times”.
Wake times are an essential part of improving babies sleep. What does this mean? It is the amount of time your baby spends awake between naps and bedtime. You may notice that if your baby is up for too long prior to naptime or bedtime, they are overtired and cranky and may fight sleep. However, the same goes if your baby is not awake long enough.
Determining what the right wake time for your baby is can be challenging, but you will see the benefits when you get the timing right. A schedule will start to form and sleep will improve, but you will need to be consistent with wake times to start seeing a difference.
Babies 1-3 months will need a wake time between 1 hour and 1.5 hours. Babies 4-7 months will need a wake time any where between 2 hours and 2.75 hours. Babies 8-10 months will need a wake time between 3 and 3.5 hours. Babies between 11-18 months will need a wake time between 4-5 hours, especially if they are on two naps. Babies 12-18 months on one nap, will need a wake time between 4.5-6 hours and babies 18 months and older will need a wake time of 5-7 hours. Children closer to 2-3 years old may still have one nap, but naps often disappear around this time.
I have seen a tremendous improvement in babies sleep when wake times are implemented appropriately. When you keep consistent with your baby’s sleep schedule, their internal clock helps them go to sleep easier, but also keeps them staying asleep.
If you have any questions regarding baby wake times, do not hesitate to contact me.
Certified Pediatric Sleep Consultant
Oct 1, 2018