This article outlines the average 4 month old baby schedule, including feedings, solids, naps and night sleep.
4 month old baby’s sleep
Pediatricians disagree high and low about when a baby is capable of sleeping through the night and only a handful of parents who reach this page will have a 4 month old that sleeps all night without even a single feeding (those that do are LUCKY!).
At this age, if you are not lucky enough to have a baby who sleeps through the night, many 4 month olds are still waking 1-3 times to eat at night and many will continue to eat 1-2 times until 9 months old. Anything more and likely you have a sleep association problem. If your baby has recently started sleeping worse, you may want to read my article about 4 month old baby sleep. If you’re having trouble with naps, you might be interested in helping your baby nap.
Obviously, all babies vary, but here are some sample (loose) schedules you can use to make your own for your unique baby. Most babies, at this age, can’t be on a strict schedule because many babies are still taking shorter naps while their brain matures and they simply can not stay up very long to get to the next scheduled nap-time, so at this age, it’s likely naps are still on the short side, but come frequently and every day will still likely be different. Don’t worry, that will change! Most babies can get down to just 3 naps around 6 months or 7 months.
I should warn you that I am in the camp that breast milk or formula should be the primary nutrition for the first year and solids come secondary. I did not start my boys on solids until close to 6 months old. If you have or want to start solids at 4 months (some pediatricians do recommend or agree with this), below are the amounts recommended from Super Baby Food, the book I use for reference (as a guide, not as the end-all-be-all because I don’t give my kids nuts before a year or follow other things in the book, but it’s a good reference guide). Another useful reference is Wholesome Baby Food. Although I work full time, I did make most of my baby food (I’d make 1 or 2 big batches of something each weekend in 1-2 hours), but even if you don’t, the website is useful as a guide when to introduce what food and other meal ideas.
Amounts per day:
• At least 5-6 breastfeeding sessions per day or 2 1/2 ounces formula for each pound of weight (approx. 20-30 ounces) (decrease solids if your baby is not taking in at least this much)
• Water is unnecessary (breast milk and formula have plenty of water in them). If your baby has any constipation issues, focus on fiber foods (pears, prunes, etc.)
• 1-2 servings baby cereal (1 serving = 1-2 Tablespoons dry)
• 1-2 servings fruit (1 serving = 1-2 Tablespoons)
• 1-2 servings vegetable (1 serving = 1-2 Tablespoons)
Note: Don’t worry about feeding this much right away! You will start with just 1 teaspoon of dry cereal (before mixing w/ breast milk or formula) and work your way up. Don’t forget to wait at least 3-4 days before introducing a new food for food allergy reasons.
“Thank you for your articles, they’ve shown me that my 4 month old baby is perfectly normal and I’m doing the right things in relation to his sleep. This is such a relief! So many sources just don’t seem to give realistic information about baby sleep – not for myself or for any other mum I know.
Great care has obviously been taken by The Baby Sleep Site in reflecting a realistic and true picture of what a ‘normal’ baby is. Thank you.”
This schedule assumes baby can stay up 1 hour 15 minutes before needing to sleep again. At this age, wake-time should be 1-2 hours TOPS, to avoid baby getting overtired.
6:30 – Wake and Breast milk or Formula
7:15 – Breakfast
7:45 – Nap
8:15-8:45 – Breast milk or Formula
9:45 – 10:00 – Nap
10:45 – 11:15 – Breast milk or Formula
11:45 – 12:00 – Nap
1:15 – 1:45 – Breast milk or Formula
2:00 – Nap
3:45 – 4:15 – Breast milk or Formula
4:45 – Nap
5:45 – Begin bedtime routine
6:00 – Breast milk or Formula
6:15 – Bedtime (Goal to be asleep at this time)
+Plus probably 1-3 nighttime feedings
Note: This schedule follows the eat-play-sleep routine, however, it is sometimes hard to do at this age when the amount of time between naps is not long enough and your baby wakes too early from his nap because of a feeding.
If 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 40 sample sleep schedules and planning worksheets, Mastering Naps and Schedules is a hands-on tool ideal for any parenting style. For 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. Or, join our Members Area packed with premium content and resources: e-Books, assessments, detailed case studies, peer support, and more. It actually costs less to join than buying products separately! For those looking for a more customized solution for your unique situation with support along the way, please consider one-on-one baby and toddler sleep consultations.