3 Month Old Baby Sleep Schedules With Feedings: For Breastfeeding and Formula-Feeding Infants

3 Month Old Baby Sleep Schedules3 month old babies need an average of 11 to 12 hours of sleep at night and 3 to 4 hours of sleep during the day. Therefore, 3-month-old babies sleep a total of 14 to 16 hours of sleep a day, on average. Most babies this age take 4 naps a day. With over 15+ years of experience, this article will provide you with sample 3-month-old baby sleep schedules, including milk feedings for breastfeeding and formula-feeding babies, solids, naps, and nighttime sleep. As a sleep consultant for over 15+ years, I will also share typical sleep habits and tips to get your baby to sleep through the night. Or you can simply skip to the schedule.

3 Month Old Baby’s Sleep Habits, Development, and Expectations

At 3 months old, your baby is past the newborn stage – quite a milestone! Your baby has been doing a lot of growing and developing in the last 12 weeks, so they, no doubt, look and behave quite differently now than when they were a newborn.

Your baby’s sleep at 3 months old may have started to regulate itself somewhat. For instance, you might notice that your baby is starting to sleep longer stretches at night, and having longer wake windows during the day. This is a great sign, though if that’s not happening, you might not have to worry…yet. Some babies are still waking up quite a bit at this age and can’t stay awake very long between naps. If your baby is waking more frequently than every 3 hours, however, be sure to read below.

Best Bedtime and Total Sleep

Most 3-month-olds need 11-12 hours at night and 3-4 hours of sleep during the day. A typical bedtime at this age is around 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. Consequently, 7:00 p.m. is a standard bedtime for babies this age. However, you will want to start your bedtime routine approximately 20 to 30 minutes before you expect your baby to be asleep. A baby falls asleep easiest when they are NOT overtired so keep that in mind.

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Night Feedings at 3 Months Old

Many 3-month-olds are still eating 1-2 times a night and can do one 4-5-hour stretch of sleep without eating. However, breastfeeding babies may still be nursing every 3 hours at night at this age but that will likely change very soon. On the other hand, there are a few formula-feeding babies who eat just once a night or even night-wean this early! All babies are different but 1-2 feedings at night are the average around this age.

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How Many Naps for a 3 Month Old?

Most 3-month-old babies take 4 naps each day totaling 3-4 hours. This is primarily because babies this age can’t stay awake longer than 1-2 hours at a time without getting overtired. Pay attention to their sleepy cues and start soothing them down to sleep just as soon as you start to see them. For example, sleepy cues include yawning, staring off into space, and less activity. If your baby is fussy or crying, they are already overtired!

For many 3-month-olds, some naps are just 30 minutes. This is all normal development at this age as it’s highly unusual for babies to take four 1-hour naps. Typically, a baby will take one longer nap at this age and shorter catnaps for the remainder of the day. As your baby grows and matures, he or she will consolidate sleep and transition to just 3 naps by 5-6 months old.

Keep in mind that 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. It’s likely that your 3 month old’s 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 old.

When Sleep Gets Worse at 3 Months

If your baby has recently started sleeping worse, you may want to read more about this 2 to 3 month time period in a baby’s life.

While teething could be to blame, keep in mind that one of the biggest sleep challenges families face around 3 to 4 months old is the 3 month sleep regression or the 4-month sleep regression. During this sleep regression, your baby’s sleep has changed permanently and your baby must learn to get through their sleep cycles. Of course, this is great news that your baby is developing appropriately, and maybe even a bit earlier than expected, but it’s not always good for your baby’s sleep habits!

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3 Month Old Baby Feeding

Your baby will likely also start to consolidate feedings by 3 months old. Your baby’s stomach capacity is considerably larger now than it was in the early days and weeks after birth, so your 3-month-old baby will likely be able to go for longer stretches between feedings. Therefore, you may also find that your baby feeds more frequently during the day and is beginning to drop night feedings (although again, if this isn’t the case for you – don’t worry. That’s normal, too!). Do remember, though, that if you are breastfeeding, you’ll want to continue to breastfeed at least every few hours during the day, and your baby will most likely continue to need night feedings at this age too.

If your baby is still waking frequently at 3 months old, you may start to feel like you need to introduce solid food, in order to help your baby sleep. However, keep in mind that starting solids doesn’t usually improve sleep, and 3 months old is still considered too young to begin solid food. Consequently, it’s best to stick exclusively with breastmilk or formula unless your healthcare provider indicates you should do otherwise.

Breast milk or formula should be the primary nutrition for the first year and solids come secondary. Average amounts per day:

• At least 5-7 breastfeeding sessions per day or 2 1/2 ounces of formula for each pound of weight (approx. 20-30 ounces)
• Water is unnecessary (breast milk and formula have plenty of water in them).

For information on starting your baby on solid food, we have a series of blog posts dedicated to the subject. We include recommendations about how and when to start solids, as well as helpful information on food allergies, recommended products, baby-friendly recipes, and more.

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Sample 3 Month Old Sleep Schedules

At 3 months old, keep in mind that a baby can typically stay awake just 1-2 hours TOPS before needing to sleep, again. Most importantly, overtired babies tend to wake more frequently at night and take short naps. Here are two different types of schedules to try:

3 Month Old Baby Sample Sleep Schedule: Play-Eat-Sleep (Good for breastfeeding babies, babies with reflux, babies with smaller stomachs, etc.)

Time Activity Notes
7:00 AM Wake and Feed *Fixed Point
8:30 AM Feed and Nap *Fixed Point; 1 1/2 hour Wake Window; ~1-2 hours long
11:30 AM Feed and Nap 1 1/2 hour Wake Window; ~30-90 minutes long
2:30 PM Feed and Nap 1 1/2 to 2-hour Wake Window; ~30-60 minutes long
5:30 PM Feed and Catnap 1 1/2 to 2-hour Wake Window; ~30 minutes long
6:30 PM Possible Feed (tank up)
7:30 PM Start your bedtime routine
8:00 PM Feed and Bedtime *Fixed Point; Max 2-hour Wake Window, ideally
11:00 PM Dream Feed** Optional: Done at caretaker’s bedtime so you synch of longest stretch of sleep with yours

+ 1-3 night feedings

* Consider adding fixed points to your baby’s schedule if you prefer a more predictable schedule. You can read more about this in our article on fixed points in a baby schedule.

** What Is a Dream Feed? Age and How to Do It.

PLEASE NOTE: Breastfed babies often need to eat more often than formula-fed babies so I set these feedings accordingly to maximize nap lengths. If your baby can go 3 hours apart between feedings, you can probably use the sample schedule below instead. You know your baby best!

3 Month Old Baby Sample Sleep Schedule: Eat-Play-Sleep

Time Activity Notes
7:00 AM Wake and Feed *Fixed Point
8:30 AM Nap *Fixed Point; 1 1/2-hour Wake Window; 1-2 hours long
10:00 AM Feed
12:00 PM Nap 1 1/2-hour Wake Window; 1+ hour long
1:00 PM Feed
3:00 PM Nap 1 1/2 to 2-hour Wake Window; ~30-60 minutes long
4:00 PM Feed
5:30 PM Catnap 1 1/2 to 2-hour Wake Window; ~30 minutes long
7:00 PM Small Feed
7:30 PM Start your bedtime routine
8:00 PM Feed and Bedtime *Fixed Point; Max 2-hour Wake Window, ideally
11:00 PM Dream Feed Optional: Done at caretaker’s bedtime so you synch of longest stretch of sleep with yours

+ 1 or possibly 2 night feedings

* Consider adding fixed points to your baby’s schedule if you prefer a more predictable schedule. You can read more about this in our article on fixed points in a baby schedule.

** What Is a Dream Feed? Age and How to Do It.

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.


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169 thoughts on “3 Month Old Baby Sleep Schedules With Feedings: For Breastfeeding and Formula-Feeding Infants”

  1. Okay so my 11 week old is slowly coming out of severe colic (yes we’ve done everything to try and help him, and yes we’re very connected with pediatrician about it). He’s a major catnapper. It’s making it SO HARD to get him on any semblance of a schedule since all his naps are 20 min long. He JUST started consolidating his morning nap and will often sleep 2-3 hours for it. But the rest of the day and into the night is a nightmare. He can only stay awake an hour before he gets tired cranky (and yes, I look at sleep cues and have played extensively with awake times from 45 min – 75 min)…it’s clear that at an hour he begins to turn into a pumpkin….but he fights his naps like CRAZY and then only sleeps 20 min. We do this every day til midnight when he finally goes down for the night. I do a bedtime routine every night (I’ve played around with times), but he wakes up 20 min after going down every time….it’s driving us batty that he won’t go down before midnight! He fights it so much! What do we do??!

    • Hi @Heather – Thanks for writing to us! It sounds like you’ve done a lot of reading and work on sleep with your (almost) 3 month old! Sorry that things are not going smoothly! Those short naps and short wake times can be so tough and I’m sure you feel that just about all of your day is consumed by putting him to sleep, and trying to get and keep him to sleep! It sounds to me like you need some specialist help here – to help you really fine tune that schedule! I’d recommend speaking and/or writing to one of our consultants, to get maximum results and maximum support! Please check out our consultation packages here, and contact us if you have any questions! Hang in there Heather!

  2. This site was amazing when I had my first son but now I’m on my second and I’m not sure how to create a schedule for him. He basically gets carted around all the time as I get my first to all his activities (poor little guy.) How do you balance 2 kids on very different schedules. My first little boy is 3 1/2 and starts half day preschool in the fall. He also has music class and swim lessons. My second is 3 months.

    • Hi @Heather – Thanks for writing, and we’re glad that our site has been helpful for your family! Congrats on baby number two! We know how tough it is to juggle schedules, and there is bound to be many naps on the go, or late naps when you’re taking your older child to his activities! Finding the best balance is the best that you can do, and we have an article that should be really great help:
      Good luck Heather!

  3. Hi,
    What should be the ideal or maximum gap between feeds for a formula fed 3mnths old during night times..

    • Hi @Sruthi – Thanks for writing to us about your 3 month old! Please feel free to use the recommended sleep and feeding schedule on this page, and as you can see, we’d expect 1-2 night feeds plus a fill up (or dream) feed at this age. Feel free to make this schedule your own, and we hope it’s helpful! Thanks again for visiting our sleepy little village!

  4. Hi my baby is 2.5month old formula fed. He sleeps right through the night and drinks abiut 150mls every 3 hours (sometimes more). His last feed at night is 9pm and as he doesnt wake up at 1am i skip this feed and then feed him at 4am instead. Is this ok? He doesn’t wake up at night and sleeps so peacefully. He’s had plenty of wet nappies too and still heavy. Im not sure if i should even be skipping one feed at this age. There was an instance where i slept through 9pm and 1am feed (i know)and he didnt make a fuss either.

    • Hi @Emma –
      Thanks for writing, and it sounds like you have a great little sleeper on your hands! Congrats! You may want to speak to your little guy’s doctor to make sure that he is growing well and ask about skipping any night feeds. The pediatrician will know best based on your son’s development/growth/history! Many people follow the “don’t wake a sleeping baby” rule, but partially waking a newborn for a feed is often done too! Again, I’d ask the pediatrician to weigh in on this! Good luck!

  5. Why is there a 1 hour gap between waking (7am) and feeding (8am) for a breast-fed 3 month old baby? My 11 week old daughter usually wants to eat as soon as she wakes. Is this ideal?

    • @Deborah – Thank you for reading and for your good eye! We’ve adjusted this schedule to more accurately reflect a sample guide. 🙂

  6. My baby goes to sleep at 9 pm and wakes at around 7 am. In between she wakes just twice for feeding (wakes drawsy and goes back to sleep right after Feeding) .
    I m worried if this 2 times a night feeding is enough for my 12 week baby…
    Please suggest

    Thank u

    • Hi Krinsu,
      Thank you for visiting The Baby Sleep Site! I’m sorry to hear you’re concerned about your 3 month-old’s feedings. If you have any concern about weight gain or overall health, we encourage you to check in with your pediatrician, just to make sure your daughter’s gaining well. However, it can be normal for a 3 month-old to feed just 2-3 times overnight, especially if she’s formula-fed. She may wake for more feedings occasionally during growth spurts, too. Please see our chart on night feeding by age for more info on how babies eat at night as they age: https://www.babysleepsite.com/sleep-training/baby-night-feedings-age-chart/
      I hope this helps!

  7. Hi, my 4 month old baby always naps for 10 minutes or less and then wakes up. For night time i would try to make her sleep by 10pm however she would be awake by 11 or 12am and then she sleeps and wake up at 3am to drink milk and then she sleeps wake up at 5/6 am to drink milk again then she sleeps until 10am but sometimes after 5am she would wake up every hour. Im breastfeeding her.

    • Hi @Laikha, thank you for writing to us. I’m sorry to hear you’ve been experiencing such frequent wake ups and short naps from your 4 month old. This is the age where babies are really able to get into a rhythm and schedule with their sleep, but it may take a bit of work and planning to decide the best approach for your baby and family. One big suggestion I can give is to try your best to get her to sleep every 2 hours during the day – and to not let any wake times exceed that. We are often misled thinking if we keep our baby up for hours that they’ll be so tired they sleep a ton, when in reality it overstimulates them and then causes them to sleep worse. Here is a link to a free guide with tips on getting her sleeping longer stretches at night: https://www.babysleepsite.com/sleep-through-night-free-ebook/
      I do think that you would greatly benefit from working with one of our sleep consultants on this so if you’re interested in that feel free to contact us directly at [email protected] with more questions or check out our options here as well: https://www.babysleepsite.com/baby-toddler-sleep-consulting- services/
      Hang in there!

    • Idk when you posted this but in case it’s recent–your baby might have been going through sleep regression. Or maybe she just hasn’t gotten to the point of staying asleep just yet. My breastfed baby would have that exact same schedule you described. She found her own rhythm on her own time. I simply go with her flow but it’s easy for me since I stay at home.

  8. Hello, Thanks for this helpful schedule. Can I please confirm if my 3.5 month old baby is going to bed at roughly 9 and waking at 7 (10 hours sleep) but wakes for approx 2 hours during this period for feeding does that need to be compensated for elsewhere (eg I should count it as 8 hours sleep) or is that included in the total recommended night sleep.

    • Hi @Catriona, thanks for writing to us! When you say waking for 2 hours at night, if you mean she is just being changed and feeding, and going right back to bed, and so the 2 hours is spread out between multiple feedings, then it’s probably fine to count it as 10 or close to it since they are in such a drowsy state when feeding. If she’s alert then I wouldn’t count that time as nighttime sleep and would try to eliminate those longer wakings of being so alert and make sure to try to add in some additional sleep during the rest of the day as she transitions out of that. If you need any more help let us know, we are here!

  9. Good day

    I am following a routine with my little 3 month old boy(13weeks and 2days)(he feeds 3hourly during the day and I try 4hourly at night),he has his naps during the day(2 of these naps are 1,5 to 2hours longs and also some catnaps). At night he will go to sleep 6 30- 7 00 at nights and stretch 4,5-5hours the first time around,but from then one only 1 30-2hours. Why is this? This has been going one a week of so

    • Hi @Zandilee – Thanks for writing to us! Sorry that your 3 month old is waking every 1.5-2 hours after that initial stretch! This is common! The first stretch of sleep is often the longest stretch of sleep. Help him begin to work on learning how to fall back to sleep when he wakes with minimal help from you, so thathe can start to consolidate his sleep a bit more and sleep longer. He may also be starting to regress in his sleep which is common at this age too.
      Here’s a link to an article that may help:
      Good luck!

  10. Hi,

    I’m trying to follow the 3 month old sample schedule but my baby boy will only nap for 20 mins at a time when at home in his crib. I’ve timed it and he literally wakes after 20 mins like clockwork. He is able to sleep for a longer stretch if out in his pram.

    My question is, how should I adjust the schedule if he is only sleeping for 20 mins and secondly, how do I extend the 20 minute naps?


    • @Kate – Thank you for reading and for sharing with us. Managing a 3 month old’s nap schedule can be a little tricky, for sure. You don’t say how your little guy is falling asleep – if he’s helped to sleep by feeding to sleep, being rocked or held to sleep, etc. this could definitely interfere with him sleeping longer when he’s still (not in motion). Here’s an article that may help you manage his naps a bit better as it goes over many tips for better and longer naps – https://www.babysleepsite.com/sleep-training/25-baby-toddler-nap-time-tips/ Hope it helps, Kate. Hang in there!

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