Express Sleep Plan

4 Times You Should Wake Your Baby From Sleep

4 Times You Should Wake Your Baby

The Baby Sleep Site® is dedicated to helping your baby sleep better, of course, but there are a few times it is a good strategy to wake your baby. I know it might feel crazy to wake your baby when you are working so hard on helping him sleep better, but in some cases, not waking your baby can actually lead to other sleep problems. There are probably several times you should wake your baby such as going on vacation and you have an early flight, but here are 4 times waking your baby can help with other sleep problems:

1. Naps are too long

Now that you’ve learned to avoid common baby nap mistakes and mastered your baby’s naps and schedule, believe it or not, naps can get too long. Many people who frequent this site may not have this issue (most are trying to lengthen naps), but sometimes this does come up in consultations. Except for newborns, your baby or toddler’s napping should not surpass 3 hours total for a day, on average. Of course, there will be exceptions, but many times if naps get too long during the day, it will impact night sleep, since the amount of total sleep in a day will remain relatively constant. If you feel bad waking your baby because she is sleeping horribly at night, but let her make up a lot of lost sleep during the day, it could reinforce the very sleep problems you are trying to resolve at night. It can become a chicken and egg problem. Instead, you should solve the night sleep problem and keep naps properly balanced. After all, night sleep is more restorative.

2. Sorting out day / night confusion

When your baby is a newborn, he may come out being confused about day and night. Since most people say “Never wake a sleeping baby.” many new parents will let their newborn sleep 8 hours straight during the day, if they want to, but then wonder why he is up all night, sleeping on and off one hour here and there. Although I do agree with the adage to never wake a sleeping baby, there are exceptions to that rule, and this is one of them. In order to help your newborn sort out day and night, he needs to be awake during the day for his internal clock, or circadian rhythms, to adjust to life outside the womb. Therefore, it is best to limit any one nap to two hours and keep your baby up for at least 30 minutes to an hour to help “reset” his clock.

3. Long waking at night

If you have a toddler schedule that is being thrown off with a long night-waking, or insomnia, in the middle of the night, the worst thing you can do is let her sleep in the next morning. Now, I don’t mean one off day here or there. Of course, then, you’d let her sleep in. What I mean is if your toddler is staying awake for long periods night after night, you need to be proactive and help her sort out her schedule. Although there are a few exceptions, long waking at night is usually caused by a schedule problem, especially if she is sleeping enough, but in multiple fragments. When you let her sleep in, this only exacerbates the schedule problem.

4. To manage naps before a nap transition

Along the same lines of naps getting too long, sometimes right before a nap transition, it is necessary to manage your baby or toddlers naps by waking him from one of his naps in order for there to be time for subsequent naps or to stop bedtime from being “too late.” Nap transitions can be tricky and difficult in that babies or toddlers who are over-tired at bedtime tend to have more difficulty falling asleep at bedtime and staying asleep all night. Most of the time, bedtimes should be between 6 and 8 p.m. for most babies older than 3-4 months old and young toddlers. There are exceptions and all families need to find what works for their specific dynamics, but most babies have a biological need/rhythm to go to sleep early and wake early (before 8 a.m.). Quite often, a baby waking too early is due to bedtime being too late.

Waking your baby from sleep should not need to be a long-term strategy, but more of a temporary one to fix a specific problem. There have been a few rare cases I’ve had a family who needed to wake their baby from their morning nap, long-term, in order to have time for a second at a young age, but it is not the norm. If you are finding you are waking your baby longer than a week, maybe two, to fix a specific sleep problem, there may be something else at work. On the other hand, if your baby or toddler has only had this specific sleep problem for a short time (less than 1-2 weeks), then it might be a phase and you should see if she self-corrects her schedule before you start taking action and waking her.

Get Personalized Help For Your Baby or Toddler’s Night AND Nap Sleep

Between night wakings and short little non-naps, baby and toddler sleep challenges can be tough! Our consultants at The Baby Sleep Site® specialize in creating Personalized Sleep Plans™ that are customized to your own parenting philosophy, and that will NEVER make you feel guilty or pressured. Even better, once you have your Personalized Sleep Plan™, your consultant will walk you through each step of implementing it at home.
Browse our list of consultation package options here.

Once you make your choice and purchase, you will immediately receive an e-mail with your Helpdesk login information. You’ll be able to login and start your Family Sleep History form right away – it’s that simple!

Want more information about how personalized help works? Check out our FAQ page here, and get answers. You can also take a tour of the Helpdesk.

Sleep Resources That WORK

bss_ebook_3stepsystem_leftFor those persistent nighttime struggles, check out The 3 Step System to Help Your Baby Sleep. Using the same unique approach and practical tools for success, this e-book helps you and your baby sleep through the night.
bss_ebook_masteringnaps_leftIf you’re looking for ways to get your baby or toddler into a healthy sleeping routine during the day, I encourage you to explore Mastering Naps and Schedules, a comprehensive guide to napping routines, nap transitions, and all the other important “how-tos” of good baby sleep. With over 45 sample sleep schedules and planning worksheets, Mastering Naps and Schedules is a hands-on tool ideal for any parenting style.


bss_email_featprod_memberspic-CROPPEDOr, join our Members Area packed with exclusive content and resources: e-Books, assessments, detailed case studies, expert advice, peer support, and more. It actually costs less to join than buying products separately! As a member, you’ll also enjoy a weekly chat with an expert sleep consultant. And the best part – members receive 20% off all sleep consultation services!

Do/Would you ever wake your baby?


  1. Susie says

    I have to wake my 6 month old from every nap (3 naps), almost every day. He loves naps and is a great napper, but can’t stay awake long enough to only take two. I hate waking from naps and cannot wait until we can transition to 2 naps. I am starting to worry that having to wake him so much is going to encourage shorter naps once we do make the transition. Without waking he would nap 1.5-2 hours.

  2. Melissa says

    On the weekends, my almost 7 month old tends to “sleep in”. On weekdays, he usually wakes up at 6:30-6:45, but on the weekends, I always wake him by 7:15 to remain somewhat on schedule. I do have a question though- we’ve done sleep training, and it was relatively successful. He would still have night wakings from time to time, but usually would only cry about 15 minutes at the most and then drift back to sleep. Lately, he’s been waking and crying for 40-60 minutes. We do go in and check on him, but he just doesn’t want to go back to sleep. Is this normal? Nothing about his schedule has changed. He’s still on 3 naps per day, because some naps are still short. But, he’s awake by 5pm from his last nap and in bed by 8. Some nights. he sleeps straight through. About every other night, we have these long night wakings. He’s fine all day, so I don’t think there is any pain or sickness. And, he hasn’t fed at night since about 3 months old. Do you have any thoughts on this? Thanks!

  3. maryam says

    this site helps alot thanks

  4. Beverley says

    The only time I think I have waken my now 10 mth old is if by chance her naps are off and her afternoon one starts later so I end up waking her if 5 pm rolls around so I do not make going to bed at 8 such a challenge. I have done this with my oldest many times. even now at age 3 I try to only let her nap 45min cause otherwise she will fall asleep untill 9 or 10 pm. She is in bed the whole time but certainly not sleeping. My 10 mth old wil never have any issues sleeping in, she still wakes anywhere between 5 and 6 am. Nothing I have done or tried in the last 6 months or so has helped her to sleep longer than 9 hours at night…NOTHING. Even with the time change back in march did not help, she reverted back to waking between the same time even though she was being put down now at 8. Gave up on trying and just dealing with it and hoping she ventually will be like her sister and move the morning wake up to 6:30 ot 7 someday, till then I will remain tired and cranky and holding on to her silly laugh and wonderful smile to get me through.

  5. Angela says

    Beverley, I feel your pain. My now 15 month old has developed a 5:30am wake up for the last month and we have tried many things to get her to sleep longer. We started sleep training about 2 1/2 months ago and it has been going well but now that she has not been getting up as much during the night her mornings have gotten earlier, gone are the days of 6:30am wake up.
    Melissa, it is ironic that I read your post today as my daughter was up for 1 1/2 hours last night and could not seem to settle herselfback down which is very unusual, she usually just makes a bit of a fuss for maybe 1 to 2 minutes and then goes right back to sleep. So I am interested in seeing what Nicole may tell you, I hope this does not become habit for her. I think it may just be teething or her ear infection may have returned, I am taking her for a check up today so I am going to have her checked. Good luck to all and I hope better nights sleep.

  6. Michelle says

    My son (who will be 5 months this week — where did the time go!?!) is a great napper, but after reading this article I think I may be letting him nap too long. He naps about 2 hours in the morning, another 1-2 hours in the afternoon and then another maybe 45 minutes in the early evening. If he wakes too early, which he often does, his day requires one more short power nap before he goes down for the night.

    I’ve noticed with him that his wakeful periods between naps rarely last longer than 1.5 hours before he starts getting cranky and as soon as he shows the signs I have him in his crib and he’s pretty much out within 10 minutes. I don’t think I can purposely keep him up longer to delay naps, but I may try to wake him so he’s not napping too long during the day.

    We do not have a night waking issue really, but he is an early riser (up by 5am sometimes) and I’ve been trying to figure out a way to correct that…which feels selfish because he’s in bed by 6:30 or 7pm every night and sleeping 10-11 hours!

    This might be the answer I’ve been looking for! Fingers crossed. :)

  7. says

    Angela and Beverley, my situation is similar to yours. My son who is 15 months old wakes up between 4am-5am most days lately. We recently night weaned him which was a lot easier than I though so he sleeps a solid 8-10 hours per night now. No matter what we try though he gets up early. To make matters a little more complicated, he is transitioning to one nap. So some days he has a really early nap at 8am or so and then an afternoon nap. I usually have to wake him during his morning nap. On one nap days he barely makes it to 11am and sleeps for 2 hours. The result is a baby that is overtired on one nap days and a baby thats not sleepy enough on on 2 nap days. He goes to bed a bit later (like 1/2-1 hour or so)on 2 nap days but still gets up at the same time. I just can’t seem to get off this ride! This has been going on for about 2 months, so I am concerned about what this all could mean.

  8. Lainie says

    I know I’ve mentioned this before, but I’ll throw it out there again: My (almost) 3 year old takes a 2-hour nap from 12:30-2:30. And no matter how I adjust her nap/night schedule, so takes 90 minutes to fall asleep at night.

    The only exception is when she skips the nap altogether. Then she falls asleep instantly.

    She falls asleep right away at nap time, so I know she’s tired. But she is simply a night sleep fighter. It’s getting out of hand. She doesn’t fall asleep until 9 or 9:30pm, and later if I lay her down later!

    So, I ask: Do I end her nap? I hate to do it, but that is an inappropriate bedtime, and I’m a sleep nazi, so having my child go to bed that late kills me!

  9. Lori says

    My 10-month-old is an inconsistent napper. He sleeps anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours and 15 minutes. I tried waking him at 1 1/2 hours if he wasn’t already awake, but it always backfired on me. He was always tired and cranky until his next nap, and his next nap was short. Therefore, I let him sleep as long as he wants to sleep. If he’s still sleeping at 5pm, though (which rarely if ever happens anymore), I will wake him, do his quick bedtime routine, and he goes back down. He usually sleeps until 6am or 6:30. His night sleep is usually good with one night feed, but he has been waking earlier than usual lately. I just recently moved his bedtime back to 5:30 to try to fix this. Hope it works.

  10. Dedra says

    My son (13 months) has been a good night sleeper since we night trained him at 6 months. He consistently sleeps through the night, We put him to bed at 9 p.m. and he is up between 7 and 8 in the morning. His naps during the day seems to be changing though… He will sometimes nap straight for 2 to 3 hours and other days, which is occurring more frequently, he will take a nap for an hour and then another one early in the evening for an hour or so… I usually just go with the flow and stick to the schedule he sets… But on the days where we have errands, work and such, his schedule doesn’t quite work out.

  11. Shannon says

    Hello, my almost 12 month old daughter has just started fighting her second nap. She sleeps from 9pm-7am and then has a long nap from 10-1pm. Up until this week she would take another nap from 4-6pm then bed at 9pm. I am wondering if I give up the second nap and make her bed time earlier or if I should wake her from her first nap to make her second nap earlier? In the morning she is really tired and ready for her nap but in the afternoon it’s becoming difficult to know if she’s tired or not. She has missed one afternoon nap this week and was miserable until bed time (we put her down at 8pm). Help! Lainie – I would get rid of your daughter’s nap if she’s up so late…my son gave up naps at 3 and would often do 13 hours at night to compensate which worked really well once he got over a few weeks of afternoon crankiness. Michelle – your 5 month old’s schedule sounds perfect…it does get a lot easier around 6 months when they cut back to two naps. Is this nap confusion ever ending?!

  12. Beverley says

    Lainie, my 3 year old daughter is the same way, daycare still gives her a nap which I have asked to either skip every other day or when she does nap to keep it to 45 min. She has not compliled which is upsetting right now. However I think theideal thing to do is let hernap every 3rd day or so until she adjusts. Maybe lenghten the amount of days between naps over a few weeks and finally get rid of it all together. I would rather her go to sleep when put to bed than nap and be up till 9:30 or later also. Sometime even just doing quient time helps them get through it. Where they just play quietlyin their room or watch a movie, however sometiems watching a movie makes them fall asleep.

  13. Sonia says

    I have a baby boy who is 13 months old, since he has born, has problem sleeping. in fact he doesn’t want to sleep, when he gets sleepy and very tired he fights and struggle not to sleep, and he sleeps late at night around 11:00 or 11:30 and wakes up at 6:40am to 7:00 besides he wakes up 3 times during night to feed, and he takes normally 2 naps a day which doesn’t exceed 3 hours
    so can you advice how can I make to sleep when he is sleepy instead of struggling

  14. Beverley says

    Sonia, sorry you are having so much trouble thught I had it badbut after reading your post I think I should not complain. Are you one to let your little one cry it out. I know some do notwant to do this method but I did with both my girls, easier with my first than my second but in time worked and even now she sometimes just need an extra cuddle with mom to settle her down. It still takes my 10 mth old anywhere from 2 min to 15min to cry herself to sleep. Some nights are worse, for example last night it took her 45 min. Not sure what was wrong but I ened up going and sitting with her and she finally settled down and passed out. She still screamswhen I put her diaper and pj on which is strange to me sicne my oldest would just laugh at me and giggle when I get her ready for bed. The older they get the longer a cry it out may take. I was always told give it 1-2 weeks to see if it is improving. Hard yes but well worth it in the end. My only suggestion try this method al while slowly moving his bed time earlier. 15 every few night till at least getting to 8 pm bedtime. Then you get your nights back. Remember their wil always be bad nights even when they are finally sleeping well. I just remind myself that something maybe bothering them and cannot tell us so all they know what to do it cry and untill what is bothering them goes away it wil take time to fall asleep. I assumed last night that either my daughter might have had a belly ache or maybe her molars are starting to come in. Hope something helps and you can all get some sleep.

  15. luisa says

    hello ma’am. thank you so much for sending me your article.its really a big help for as a 1st time mother.

    yes before i have a hard time getting my child to sleep and its true that like my child she is confuse of the clock day and night.

    Now she is 2years old and i am very happy of her sleeping habit and patters.

    i would to share my story haw i discover and able to keep my baby sleep at night with out any trouble of getting her to sleep.

    before i use to little bit force my child to take a nap by putting her to a swing. we called it duyan. it was a blessing to me because after awhile she is well sleep at even having a comfortable nap for 3 hrs or more. yet by evening comes then comes to start my problem.

    when we transfer to other room for some reason i didn’t get the chance to put a swing for her. so at first some lullaby and dance in my arms just to keep her to sleep. at first i was worried because she only sleep an hour or some times 45minutes.yet by the evening after a bottle of milk by around 8 or 9 pm she is already a sleep with out struggle for me.

    pardon me for a long story but my point is although my child no longer ask for a swing to sleep my bonus is she sleep earlier with out difficulty.

    thank you so much for every thing.
    i hope you will continue to share me your helping article.


  16. says

    @Susie That’s great he’s such a good napper! It shouldn’t be too much longer than he’ll transition to two naps. It will be here before you know it. They grow up way too fast! :)

    @Melissa Is your son working on any new developmental milestone? Around 8 months they start going through a sleep regression (but some can be early and often it’s not until 9 or 10 months, too). I have a link about it, here: It should not last too long. Other than that, he does sound like a good sleeper, so if he is getting more mobile, you might make sure he’s not ready to go to sleep a *tad* earlier as more mobility often means more tired and if he is over-tired, that generally leads to more night-wakings. Hang in there!!

    @Maryam Thank you!! I’m glad the site helps!

    @Beverley Oh I know how tiring it is to wake up so early every day! I’m sure it will change once your daughter transitions to one nap. So, even if she goes to bed at 7 p.m. she’ll wake at 4 a.m. or is it always 5 a.m. and she’s just an early bird, now?

    @Angela Is your 15 month old taking one or two naps? Long night-waking or waking too early in the morning can often be a sign it’s time to transition to one nap. If she is already napping just once, sometimes it’s a case that bedtime is too early (yes, I said early! LOL). Over-tiredness is the #1 reason for waking too early in the morning though, so if she is becoming more active, let’s say, and she is napping just once and bedtime is more than 5 hours from waking from her nap, then you might actually try an earlier bedtime. Toddler schedules can be tricky, so I’d need more details to tell you my specific opinion on your situation. :) 15 months and 7 months is very different!

    @Michelle Your son sounds like a very normal 5 month old. He waking at 5 a.m. is likely due to so much daytime sleep, but he obviously needs a lot of sleep. Rather than shorten his naps, I’d simply try to nudge everything forward a pinch. At this age, he may need a lot of sleep during the day to process everything he’s taking in. It is possible to try to shorten it, but we don’t want him overly exhausted, either, because then you might end up with a 6 p.m. bedtime and you’re right back to a 5 a.m. wake-up, ya know? Hang in there!

    @Biljana Oh I feel your pain! Transitioning to one nap can be a bumpy (and long) ride!! I would definitely urge you NOT to start the day at 4 a.m. just like you wouldn’t at 1 a.m. Did he start doing this right after the night-weaning? He could be hungry, so I’d make sure he’s eating a snack before bed, especially if you have an early dinner. I remember when my son was a toddler he’d wake up 12 hours after DINNER no matter what time bedtime was. I introduced a pre-bedtime snack and voila, he stopped the early rising. Good luck!

    @Lainie I feel your pain as my 3 year old needs to stop napping, too!! On weekends, we skip the nap as much as we can and he goes to sleep by 7:30 p.m. (or so). When he goes to school, though, he naps well. We had them start waking him after an hour but now any nap makes bedtime past 9 or 10 p.m. If it were me, I’d lose the nap like my eldest at 2 1/2, but that’s because 9 p.m. or later is just too late for us. Some people like it, but since most kids lose the nap between 3 and 4, I, personally would drop the nap, but I think it’s a personal decision. Some toddlers do get cranky, but it’s typically just a transition period. Good luck!

    @Lori It sounds like you have a great little sleeper there! I will not be surprised if he transitions to one nap earlier than others (though see my article about that here, if you didn’t see it already: Good luck!

    @Dedra It sounds like you have a great routine, too! Some 13 month olds still have two naps, so it probably just means some days he’s extra tired that day. It sounds like following his lead here is working, so keep it up! :)

    @Shannon Oh boy this is a tricky one because of such a great “morning” nap that is reaching into the afternoon. She could be working on transitioning to one nap in which case, since she’s such a great napper, I’d probably try to nudge her nap forward in 15-minute increments until it’s at 11 a.m. and she’s waking at 2 p.m. She should then be able to make it to her bedtime. However, I would recommend a much earlier bedtime than 8 p.m. during the transition or on days she only has naps. Usually bedtime would be 5 hours after waking. Good luck!

    @Sonia It sounds like your son needs to learn how to fall asleep and needs an earlier bedtime. It sounds like he is fighting sleep until he exhausts himself. He is also not getting enough sleep. :( I would recommend focusing on he learning how to fall asleep independently at bedtime, to start. You might want to check out my toddler book or let me help you, personally, in consultations. I love helping families such as yours! You can find out more here: and

    @Luisa Thank you so much for sharing your story and letting us know what worked for you! And, thank you for my many blessings. I never get tired of hearing so much appreciation from parents like you! Thank you so much!

  17. ldoo says

    Thanks, Nicole. That’s what I’ve been thinking, but my mom watches the girls during the day and is resistant. I’m using you as my bible: proof to my mom that this might be what we need to do. Ha!

  18. Shannon says

    Thanks Nicole! You gave me the confidence to push ahead with that plan. My husband and I were wondering if that was the solution :-) That said, little one had to be woken after sleeping two hours this afternoon….hmm…just when I thought I had it all figured out!

  19. Michelle says

    Nicole, thank you! I’ve been trying to keep him up another 10 minutes and have been able to shave some time off of his day time sleep because of it. He’s been going to bed around 7pm and getting up between 6 and 6:30am with no night waking at all! Such a good boy.

    Now, if I could only stop MY night waking problem. haha. Thanks so much! :)

  20. Melissa says

    Nicole, thank you for your reply. I guess he could be on the cusp of crawling, but he doesn’t seem to be practicing at all in his sleep. Last night, he was up from 3:30-5:15! I finally broke a cardinal rule and ended up rocking him to sleep. I just didn’t want him to miss out on this much needed sleep. I sure hope you are right and things get better. I am just not sure what to do at this point. I’d like to move bedtime earlier, but even when I put him down at 7:45, he tends to cry for 15 minutes until 8:00 or so. We are in such an odd nap time too. First nap is generally 75-90 minutes long. Then his second and third naps are only 30 minutes. I feel like we should transition to 2 naps, but how do you do so when he’s only sleeping such short time? Super confused!!

  21. says

    Hi Nicole,
    Thanks for suggestion. He currently has a cold and is teething so eating is not on his list of things to do right now. As soon as he gets his appetite back I will give him a snack before bed. I often kept track of sleep patterns and never ended up doing anything with it, so I stopped :) Now that I think of it though-this last cycle of waking early probably did coincide with night weaning. I still have one e-mail with you and I keep thinking I should save it for when I really need it-but that might happen sooner rather than later
    Thanks again.

  22. Goitseone Kenosi says

    Hi Nicole
    Thank you very much for your wonderful advice. I am a 1st time mother and your articles are really helping me deal with my 5 months old son and help him sleep better. I hope to learn more from your office as he grows.

    May God Bless you

  23. Carrie Dodd says

    I wake my son alllll the time. He’s 19 months and some day (actually most) it seems like he’s ready to drop his one and only nap! I think he’s too young but looking at one of your responses now I’m not sure. He goes to bed about 7:45 but it takes him an hour to get to sleep. Then I wake him at 7:30 (sometimes he’ll wake himself around 7ish) He naps 60-90 minutes between 12:30-2:30 (sometimes takes up to an hour to nap!) I wake him by 2:30 or bedtime gets later. On days he misses his nap he’ll go down at 7:15 ish and right to sleep until 7:30 the next day. He might show some tired signs but never gets grumpy and not usually a fight to keep him up either. Being due anyday now I’d really like to preserve this nap!

  24. says

    Dear Nicole,
    Words cannot express how grateful I am to God for stumbling into the Baby Sleep Website(Precisely February 2011),I cannot measure the impact of your Invaluable advice and encouragements, whenever I make the effort of putting everything I have learnt from your Website into real practise.
    I am a mother of a 13th month old boy (Dammie), he was such a cranky, sensitive sleep-on-and -off baby, in the early days of his growing up. He wakes up every night and cannot do without his Nocturnal feeding, which most times left me devastated after doing all I could to calm him down, but all to no avail. My Husband and I decided to separate him from our room, thinking that will hlep matters, but this only create more fears in me than the comfort and rest I ever craved for.
    The whole story changed, when I read the various practical advice and testimonies of other Parents, on your newsletter, which I subscribed for FREELY. I was determined to take conscious steps, in practising all these teachings and put them to use, both on my Son,myself and my Husband.
    Sincerely, it all worked like Wonders, and today I am a happy Mother, a fulfiled Wife and a restful Woman. I enjoy and share the various things I have learnt from your Websites with other Women in My Community, who are passing through the same Challenges I have been through with my Baby. Dammie(Now 13 months), is growing so fast and enjoying regular Naps and Sleeps, Day and Night, with NO difficulties in switching and adapting to the various growing stages he is passing through. Nicole, I will ever remain grateful to The Baby Sleep Website and it’s team, for a good Job well done.
    God bless You all.
    Bukky Tella
    Lagos, Nigeria.

  25. says

    Hello Nicole,
    A big big hug to your baby, who inspired you in creating this Website.
    Gob Bless Your home.
    Bukky Tella
    Lagos, Nigeria.

  26. Debbye says

    @ Idoo- Yes, now you’ve got proof! Good luck getting Mom on board!

    @ Shannon- Count on toddlers to be inconsistent! Keep up the work on getting to one later nap (and an earlier bedtime). And it is very common for little ones to go back and forth between one and two naps for a while. Go with it as it will help her not get too overtired. Good luck!

    @ Michelle- Wow! Great news about his sleep! 6ish is much better than 5ish! And by the way, I have the same night waking problem myself! Apparently we need some mom sleep training!

    @ Melissa- I am sorry thing continue to be hard! I would keep the 3 naps, as the last two are so short, I think he will just get too tired to make it to bedtime on only 2 naps. Try an earlier bedtime consistently for 1-2 weeks and see if things improve.I too hope things go back to better sleeping very soon, though you may want to consider sleep consultation services if things do not smooth out soon ( And try to watch out for introducing new sleep associations! As you do not want to make waking and calling for you “worth it.”
    Best wishes, let us know if things improve!

    @ Biljana- Perhaps things will smooth out after he is over the hump with teething and his cold. It is always so hard when they are not feeling well… A before bed snack helped my son sleep longer in the morning too. I hope it helps curb your little ones early morning appetite! Make it a healthy snack with complex carbs and protein…Things that take longer to digest… Good luck!

    @ Goitseone Kenosi- Thank you for your kind words! We will always be here with new articles and advice!
    Best wishes!

    @ Carrie Dodd- Congratulations on your almost here new baby! And yes, I too think you should try and preserve that nap as long as you can! Have you tried a bit of an earlier nap? It is common for toddlers to really fight sleep when they are getting overtired, so you could try a 11:30 or 12 noon nap and an earlier bedtime.
    Good luck!

    @ Bukky Tella- Tears of joy came to my eyes as I read your lovely story! Thank yo so much for sharing, and I am so happy that Dammie, you and your husband are all doing so well! I too share your gratefulness to the Baby Sleep Site, as my sleep story, I am sure, is one of the parent testimonials that you read during your journey.
    Thank you again for your story and for being a loyal reader!

  27. Shannon says

    I couldn’t agree more debbye! Since this is baby number two I let her do her thing somewhat…some days she’s doing two sleeps and occasionally just one big one. I used to have my son on a clockwork routine with his sleep and he was brilliant. She is too but it’s just not worth me waking her with pre-school runs etc. She’s 12.5 months now so I know the next few months wil be quite transitional.

  28. Debbye says

    I hope all the transitions go smoothly!!!

  29. Jan says

    Hi I am a regular on this website and this has help a lot, thanks for the info and sharing.

    My daughther now just turned 2yo. She has been sleep trained from 3mo old and is on schedule and was doing very well. She has a good sleep habit. Bed/sleep at 8pm sleep through the night wakes up 7am nap around 12:30pm nap for average 2-2.5hr…….UNTIL! we took a 6-week-long holiday to visit families overseas, there was a 5hour diff on time zone. And when we’re back from the holiday she was sick but now she well. It’s now about 1.5months since we came back home and I have trouble getting her to her normal sleep. She now waking up once for 1-2hours in the middle of the night (every single night) and upset when left on her room byherself (she normally ok to sleep on her own before but during our holiday we were co-sleeping), she wakes up late in the morning maybe trying to catch up the hours lost, then that makes nap time later and longer, then pushes the bedtime a bit later.

    I have read this article and got me thinking #3 seem relates to me. My question is when should I wake my little girl then? In the morning or from her nap?

    Thank you again. ? Hoping to get to our old routine which worked very well with us.


  30. Debbye says

    Hi Jan,
    I hope you get back to your old schedule soon too! To help with the long middle of the night wakings, I would wake her earlier in the morning. This should, in time, make the whole day better in that the nap and bedtime will be earlier too. Here is a link to some sample toddler schedule to use as a reference:
    Good luck, and thank yo for being a loyal reader! :)