8 Month Old Wake Windows: Ideal Length and Better Baby Sleep

8 Month Old Wake Windows

8 month old wake windows should be the right length so your baby will nap longer and sleep through the night. While awake times vary by baby, most 8 month olds are napping every 2 to 3 hours throughout the day and sometimes awake for 3 to 4 hours before bedtime. Learn all about your baby’s schedule and awake times based on my 15 years as a sleep consultant!

8 Month Old Wake Window: Morning

The wake window first thing in the morning for an 8 month old is usually 2 to 2 1/2 hours. It is counter-intuitive, but even though they’ve just slept a lot the night before, the first wake window is usually the shortest.

Keep in mind that you want to have them asleep by this time so plan the time you start your sleep routine accordingly!

Second Wake Window

The wake window at 8 months before the second nap should be another 2 1/2 to 3 hours, maximum. Most babies this age can’t stay awake longer than three hours without getting overtired. Overtired babies tend to take short naps and struggle to fall asleep in the first place. They often cry harder, too. Keep in mind that if your baby has transitioned from three naps to two naps, you will want this wake window to be 3 hours, if possible.

Late Afternoon Wake Windows (Before Third Nap)

8 months old is a very common age to start transitioning from three naps to two naps. If your 8-month-old baby is still taking three naps, this wake window will be another 2 1/2 to 3 hours long. The third nap is often just a 20-45-minute catnap as a “bridge” to bedtime. In some cases, this nap interferes with bedtime. So, if this nap is after 5:00 or 5:30 p.m. (unless you have an intentionally late schedule), you may need to start dropping it.

Wake Window Before Bedtime at 8 Months

The wake window before bedtime at 8 months old is usually 2 1/2 to 3 hours if your baby is still taking three naps. If your baby is taking two naps a day, this wake window will be 3 to 4 hours long. All babies are different but your baby will usually sleep better at night if their last wake window is on the shorter side.

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8 Month Old Wake Windows - 3 nap schedule versus 2 nap schedule

How Many Naps for an 8 Month Old?

Most 8 month old babies nap 3 times a day until 8 1/2 to 9 months old. This is a very common month to drop the third nap.

There is a small percentage of babies who will transition to two naps at 6-7 months old but this is not as common in my experience of 15 years as a sleep consultant.

Since most babies this age can only stay awake for about 2 1/2 to 3 hours at a time, most are still taking three naps at the beginning of their 8th month. The first two naps should be an hour or longer. The third nap will be a catnap of 20-45 minutes. By the end of this month, however, most babies are taking just two naps a day.

If you aren’t sure how many naps your baby should take, be sure to read our article about when to drop to two naps.

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How To Help Your 8 Month Old Sleep Through the Night

The right schedule means using the right wake windows for your 8 month old. If your baby is well-rested, they are more likely to sleep through the night! If you’re struggling, be sure to download a copy of our free e-Book, 5 Ways to Help Your Child Sleep Through the Night.

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