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Do you want more sleep?   Yes! I need more sleep.

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  1. Alicia Kwan says

    Hi, this has been a great guide. Thank you for sharing.
    My son is a week shy of 5 months old. I’ve been breastfeeding every 3 hours, he does 4 x 45min naps but I’m trying to transition him to every 4 hours, to drop one nap & get 2 longer naps, but often mid morning and afternoon naps end up being 45mins.
    When he wakes I currently stretch him out and leave him awake until skd feed time. Then I count awake time from your guide from when I feed. Is that correct?
    Or should I feed him when he wakes up no matter how long or short his nap is?? Then use your formula from the true awake time
    Thanks for your help

    • Debbye @ The Baby Sleep Site says

      Hi @Alicia – Thank you for writing to us! Since it sounds like you would like work on his schedule a little, using more of a “by the clock” schedule may be a better fit for you and for your son at this age. Here is a link to use as a guide:
      https://www.babysleepsite.com/schedules/5-month-old-baby-schedule/
      Hope it helps! Good luck!

      • Alicia Kwan says

        Thanks Debbye for your response. I guess I’m starting to question if a ridged skd is the best thing. We are travelling soon, so skd will be hard and I want to read him better which is why I want to under stand the awake time.
        Eg. When he wakes up he doesn’t often want a feed straight away, he’d be happy to be awake for 30mins before a feed.
        So if he is awake for 30mins then I feed, when do I count the optimal awake time from? From the feed? Or when he woke up?

      • Janelle Reid says

        Hi @Alicia Kwan, thanks for getting back to us! I’d start the wake time from when your baby actually wakes up, not from the time you feed him. If he doesn’t want to eat right away that’s ok, just like lots of adults need to wake up a bit before we eat breakfast each morning. But starting the clock from when he wakes will be best to make sure he doesn’t get overtired and this can certainly be a more flexible approach rather than “naptime starts at 1 o’clock” (for example) while you are travelling. I hope that answers your question but please let me know if it’s unclear!

  2. Sarah says

    Thank you! This is so helpful as others have said. My son is just six months and has had two nights of 11+ hours of straight sleep and is now back to waking at least two to three times a night. He is on two naps and most of the time they are over an hour or even two hours, but other times they are 30 minutes on the dot. I never know if a really early bedtime is appropriate and I’m worried about creating really early wake times. If he gets up at 6:30 ama then is a nap 8:30 am? If he has a bad nap day his bedtime could be 5 pm, which we have never tried. I don’t want to try to make him fall back asleep at 6:30 am to ruin his bio rhythms since he doesn’t really seem tired. Just feel inconsistent and pretty exhausted. Any help is deeply appreciated.

    • Debbye @ The Baby Sleep Site says

      Hi @Sarah – Thanks for writing to us! We are glad to hear that our information has been helpful! : ) Have you checked out our free sample schedules for 6 month olds? It should be very helpful to use as a guide, along with watching the awake time: https://www.babysleepsite.com/schedules/6-month-old-baby-schedule/
      At 6 months, he may be more able to follow a “by the clock” schedule, and yes, an 8:30am nap when waking at 6:30 would be perfect! I hope that the schedule helps too! Good luck!

  3. Leah says

    So helpful! Can you confirm one question for me though? Our little guy is just over four months old, lately his naps have dropped to between 35 and 55 minutes. Should his awake time be shortened to 35 mins then (or 55?)? We’ve been successfully following awake times of one hour and 15 minutes Until recently! Thank you!!

    • Leah says

      And one follow up question.. while I typed my last question my guy slept for 2 hours, waking at 530 pm. I’m aiming for a 7pm bedtime (to be asleep by 7pm… 1 hour, 30 mins
      After this wake)- am I putting him into his crib at 7 or at 645, for a 7pm “asleep by”? THANK YOU!

      • Debbye @ The Baby Sleep Site says

        Hi @Leah – Thank you for writing to us! Even with those short naps, it is likely that at 4 months, he can stay awake longer than 35-55 min. As you were doing, 1hr15 min may be a better goal. Check out our 4 month schedule for more help/tips:
        https://www.babysleepsite.com/schedules/4-month-old-schedule/
        To address your follow up question, the goal would be asleep by 7pm, so you will want to start the routine before this, and put him in his crib at 6:45 if it takes a bit for him to unwind and fall asleep.
        For more help, you may want to consider our eBook: Mastering Naps and Schedules. This eBook includes over 45 sample daytime nap and feeding schedules, as well as tips on how to lengthen and extend short naps.
        You can read more about the ebook packages here:
        https://www.babysleepsite.com/mastering-naps
        Good luck Leah!

  4. Cristina says

    Hi there,
    My baby is 2 months old and I am trying to determine how long her naps during the day should be(minimum to maximum nap time) I am hoping you would be able to help me with this.

    Thank you so much!

    • Debbye @ The Baby Sleep Site says

      Hi @Christina – Thank you for writing and congrats on your new arrival! Here is another great resource to help with your baby’s schedule:
      https://www.babysleepsite.com/schedules/newborn-sleep-feeding-schedule/
      For more helpful info, if you haven’t yet, you can sign up to receive our free guide written just for families with young babies, “15 Baby Sleep Facts New Parents Need to Know” here:
      https://www.babysleepsite.com//15-free-baby-sleep-facts-new-parents-must-know/
      We do offer a few more in-depth solutions for parents who need more help too. Our e-book, Essential Keys to Your Newborn’s Sleep, may be a good option for you. In it, we give you a complete toolkit to help your baby establish healthy sleep habits today and throughout the first year.
      In addition, our highly trained sleep consultants can help families of newborns manage soothing issues, crying, schedules, sleep associations, and coordinating sleep and feeding times. Our sleep consultation packages are perfect for helping you feel confident in your newborn’s sleep, and we’ll work with you to provide a path forward too.
      You can read more about our wonderful newborn options here:
      https://www.babysleepsite.com//essential-keys-to-your-newborns-sleep/
      I hope this information helps, but please do contact us if you have any other questions!

  5. Emily says

    Hi! This article has seriously been like our sleep Bible since my son was 1 month old and it has been super helpful.
    He’s about to turn 1, and we are having trouble for the first time in a long time. He usually wakes around 7:30 and gets tired around 2 hours so I’ll put him back down around 9:30 or 10. He then usually wakes anywhere between 11 and 1. He is not taking his second nap. He goes to bed at 6:30 every night and wakes only to eat and goes right back to sleep. So sometimes he ends up being awake for like 7 hours and is definitely fussy, but a bedtime earlier than 6:30 seems a bit excessive. What should we do?

    • Danielle says

      Hi Emily,
      Thank you so much for your comment and for using The Baby Sleep Site as a resource! I’m so glad to hear we’ve been able to help you and your family get better sleep. I’m sorry to hear that you’ve hit a road bump – depending on how long the nap refusal has been ongoing, you may be dealing with the 12 month sleep regression. We have an article about that here that I hope will help: https://www.babysleepsite.com/baby-naps-2/12-month-olds-one-nap-transition/
      Most babies will pick up the second nap again after the regression is done, if you can just hang in.
      I hope this helps, but please let us know if you have further questions!

  6. Beca says

    My 10 week old will not take more than 30-40 min naps- 5 times a day- – that means since she only sleeps 30 min she should sleep every 30 min? That seems like I would have to nurse and put her down to sleep again… perhaps I didn’t understand the article

    • Debbye @ The Baby Sleep Site says

      Hi @Beca – Thank you for writing to us! While you may want to shorten the time between naps since they are short and she is only taking 5 per day, and perhaps add one extra nap, we understand what you’re saying about trying again for another nap in 30 minutes! As it shows in the article, pushing the time to about 60 minutes of awake time is fine too, and please do you feel free to make these suggestions your own in a way that works best for you and your family! If you haven’t yet, you can sign up to receive our free guide written just for families with young babies, “15 Baby Sleep Facts New Parents Need to Know” here: https://www.babysleepsite.com/15-free-baby-sleep-facts-new-parents-must-know/
      I think that this will be very helpful!
      We do offer a few more in-depth solutions for parents who need more help. Our e-book, Essential Keys to Your Newborn’s Sleep, may be a perfect option for you. In it, we give you a complete toolkit to help your baby establish healthy sleep habits today and throughout the first year.
      You can read more about our wonderful newborn options here:
      https://www.babysleepsite.com/essential-keys-to-your-newborns-sleep/
      Good luck and please contact us if you have any questions!

  7. Ashleigh says

    I’ve always followed my baby’s sleep cues – yawning and eye rubs. But those still come after 1.5 hrs of awake time, even though he is just about to be 7 months old. He stays awake for over 2.5 hours before bedtime just fine. Should I stretch his naps out longer, even though is giving those sleep cues? He sleeps 11 hours at night without any wakings, and used to nap really well, but now is taking shorter naps (45 mins) and still taking 4 naps a day! Any advice here?

    • Neosha says

      @Ashleigh – Thank you for reading and for sharing with us! Scheduling a 7-month old’s sleep can be a tricky thing, for sure, but we don’t have enough details to give you a firm suggestion. Tweaking his scheduling and feeds may help his naps, but you should consider connecting with one of our expert sleep consultants for more specific, personalized advice. You can read more about our lovely ladies here:https://www.babysleepsite.com/about And if you haven’t yet signed up for our free common nap mistakes e-guide, check it out here: https://www.babysleepsite.com/free-baby-nap-guide/ Hang in there, Ashleigh!

  8. Marissa says

    So if my 4 month old is taking 30 minute naps he should only be awake for 30 minutes before the next nap? I do think overtiredness is an issue but this would mean he would be taking like 10 naps that day!

    • Janelle Reid says

      Hi @Marissa, thanks for reading! Overtiredness is a wild ride, I feel for you and am sorry you’re struggling!! 4 months is on the cusp of being able to get into a more predictable schedule so you may have more flexibility with wake time. On the other hand, it may be just what he needs to get him on track and you may see the naps lengthen out. If you want more tips on nap help, be sure to download our free guide with additional help here: https://www.babysleepsite.com/free-baby-nap-guide/
      We also have an ebook that goes all into naps if you need more information as well: https://www.babysleepsite.com/mastering-naps/
      I hope this helps and your little guy gets into a rhythm soon! Hang in there!

  9. Kelsey says

    My 4 month old sleeps great at night, 11-12 hours. But we’re struggling with naps. We’ve tried shorter waketimes, longer wake times. Nothing seems to work. She used to put herself to sleep without any issues. Now she just won’t sleep and once the first nap of the day is missed, we spend the rest of the day trying to make up for it and she just never sleeps more than 30 minutes. So if she’s in her crib for a nap and not crying but also not sleeping, do I just leave her in there until it’s time to eat again (she breast feeds every 3 hours)? I know she’s tired because she’s given me her cues (rubbing eyes, etc.) I’ve tried doing more awake time and then restarting naptime routine but then she just gets upset and cries once she’s back in the crib.

    • Danielle says

      Hi Kelsey,
      Thank you for using the Baby Sleep Site as a resource! I’m sorry to hear you’re having so much trouble with naptime. Unfortunately, especially at 4 months-old, there’s a lot that could be causing nap trouble, including a sleep or feeding scheduling issue and the 4 month sleep regression. Many babies who sleep well at night have trouble with naps until closer to 6 months-old. We have an article about naps this age that I hope will help here: https://www.babysleepsite.com/baby-naps-2/short-baby-naps-explained/
      If you continue to have trouble, especially as she enters the 4 month sleep regression, you might consider whether a consultation package would be a good fit – then a sleep consultant could look at your entire schedule and the naptime routine to help you narrow down exactly what’s going on, and develop a plan to address it. I hope this helps – hang in there!

  10. Danielle says

    When you say, “don’t let a five month old exceed one hour and 45 min of waketime” what do you do when they will not fall asleep at the min, middle, or max of that waketime? My five month old will not take her first nap until after her second feeding which ends up being 4 hrs after she wakes up. Obviously too long, but she will not fall asleep earlier. Any suggestions?

    • Janelle Reid says

      Hi @Danielle, thanks for visiting the Baby Sleep Site! It can be tricky, so just do your best to offer the nap within that window. We can’t force them to sleep but can certainly help set the right tone and environment for it. Here is a link to a free guide with tips for naps that may help: https://www.babysleepsite.com/free-baby-nap-guide/
      I hope this helps! If you need more specific advise, let us know and we would love to work with you. Feel free to contact us directly anytime here: https://www.babysleepsite.com/contact