3 Steps To A Better 6 Month Old Baby Schedule

3 Steps To A Better 6 Month Old Baby Schedule

6 months – the magical age! This tends to be the point at which parents decide that they are more than ready to sleep again, and that it is high time they helped their babies get on a decent sleep schedule (and maybe even start sleeping through the night!)

As always, The Baby Sleep Site® is here to help! This article tackles common 6 month old sleeping challenges. We’ll also share 3 easy steps you can use to help your 6 month old baby establish a predictable, healthy sleep and feeding schedule.

6 Month Old Baby Sleep Challenges

If your baby is still struggling with sleep at 6 months old, that’s okay (and understandable). However, take comfort in the fact that by this age, babies truly can start to follow a more predictable, by-the-clock schedule.

That said, if you are still struggling with your 6 month old baby’s sleep, the following factors may be making things even more challenging:

  • Your 6 month old baby may have started eating solid food. By 6 months old, many babies have started solid food. (In addition to taking in plenty of breastmilk or formula. That’s still the main source of nutrition for the first year!) While some babies transition to solids with no issues whatsoever, other babies react to starting solids. They show signs of food allergies, they develop tummy issues, etc. All of those can interfere in a big way with sleep!
  • Your 6 month old baby’s sleep associations are getting even stronger. By now, your baby has had 6 full months to develop strong habits associated with sleep. That means that if he has become used to being rocked to sleep, or fed to sleep, or held until he falls asleep, that is now a fixed habit. Same with using a pacifier to fall asleep, or being swaddled in sleep. That’s not to say that these sleep associations can’t be overcome – they certainly can! But a 6 month old baby will no doubt show a little more resistance to learning a new way to sleep than a 5 month old baby will.

6 Month Old Baby Sleep Developments

What’s happening with your 6 month old baby’s sleep? Several new developments, actually:

  • Your 6 month old baby’s naps should begin to consolidate. Note the ‘should’ – not all 6 month old babies will show signs of naturally establishing a nap schedule, and some will continue to take many short naps during the day. But most will. You will probably notice that the unpredictable naps you’ve been working with over the past 6 months slowly begin to merge into three semi-predictable naps.
  • Your 6 month old baby will likely be able to drop down to 1 night feeding. It’s still normal for a 6 month old baby to need 1-2 night feedings, but most 6 month old babies are able to get by with just 1 feeding at night. (Most – not all! Don’t feel bad if your 6 month old still needs to feed twice during the night). If your baby is nursing more than once or twice per night, however, work to gradually decrease those night feeds.

6 Month Old Baby Schedule: 3 Steps To A Better One

If you haven’t yet adjusted your baby to a somewhat clock-based schedule, it can be a daunting process to start. We understand that! That’s why we are outlining 3 steps to help you establish a healthy 6 month old baby schedule:

  1. 6 month old baby bedtime – To begin, establish a consistent bedtime for your 6 month old baby. Develop a bedtime routine, too – that’s key for signaling to your baby that it’s time for sleep! This doesn’t have to be exactly the same time each night – aim for having your baby down for bed within the same half-hour window each night.
  2. 6 month old baby wake-up time – Next, try to establish a consistent wake-up time for your 6 month old baby. This will be a bit tougher than the bedtime, because your baby may wake too early or too late, and what do you do in those circumstances? Well, if your baby wakes too early, treat it as a night waking – interact with your baby (whether you are feeding or simply offering comfort) and then put your baby back to bed until it’s wake-up time. If your baby sleeps past wake-up time, try to wake your baby within about a half hour of the established wake-up time.
  3. 6 month old baby first nap time – Once you have a pretty firm bedtime and wake-up time established, work to make sure that the first nap of the day happens at about the same time each morning. Again, this doesn’t have to be exact, but aim for putting your baby down for the morning nap within the same half-hour window each morning.

6 Month Old Baby Schedule: Suggested Feeding Amounts and Nap Times

Need help in knowing when (and how much) to feed your 6 month old baby? Want to see several sample 6 month old baby schedules that will help you create the best possible schedule for your 6 month old baby?

Check our our sample 6 month old baby schedules here!

6 Month Old Baby Sleep Help

If you are struggling with your 6 month old baby’s sleep, remember that you don’t have to struggle alone! We are here to help you – it’s what we do! Sleep training can be tough, and hundreds of parents turn to us for sleep coaching help every month. We can help you, too. Take a look at our consultation packages, and see which one looks like a good fit for you.

Click here to see all our personalized consultation packages.

Once you purchase, you will immediately receive access to the Helpdesk, and you can set up your account, fill out your Family Sleep History form, submit it to a consultant, and get started on the journey to better sleep!

Want more information about how personalized help works? Check out our FAQ page here, and get answers.

What is your 6 month old baby’s schedule? Share your scheduling tips with the rest of us!

  • Feel like you can handle sleep coaching on your own? Why not take a look at our The 3-Step System To Help Your Baby Sleep? Available in three affordable packages, this book is designed to give you practical, hands-on tools you can use to help your baby learn to fall asleep on his own, and stay asleep (and stop fighting bedtime!). For toddlers, try The 5-Step System To Better Toddler Sleep. Best of all, both books is available to download instantly – you can put it to use as early as tonight!
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8 thoughts on “3 Steps To A Better 6 Month Old Baby Schedule”

  1. My little baby turns 6 months old today. We have been trying very hard to do everything right from the beginning, but he still has issues. He had major 4-month old sleep regression and we travelled at the same time, which threw everything we’ve done out of the window.

    Just recently we started the pick up put down method, and we are seeing slow and gradual improvement. He naps longer most of the time now and he doesn’t need much pick up put down to make him settle to sleep. On some occassions, we can see that he is really trying.

    However, the issue is, he still wakes up SO FREQUENT at night. I’d say maybe, every hour – 2 hours or so? It’s really taking a toll on us since we have to do pick up put down for so many times day and night.

    Since he wakes up so many times at night, we only succumb to feeding after 4 hours stretched, which means at around 10.30-11ish PM, 2-ishAM, and late 5-6AM.
    Other than those times, we will have to pick up and put him down again for a few times for him to go back to sleep. Sometimes it was easy, sometimes he would throw a fit, and once in a while he was only patted and he went back to sleep.

    He sleeps at around 6.40-7PM, naps 2-3 times. Awake for 2-3 hours stretched during the day. Started solids 2 weeks back (1-3 spoons per day).

    Room temperature is around 25-26C (based on our room thermometer) and he’s only wearing his long-sleeve romper and socks at night.

    Any idea how to stop frequent wakings at night? It’s been ongoing since his 4-month regression and I just have no idea what else to do.

    • Hi there,
      Thanks very much for reading The Baby Sleep Site! I’m sorry to hear you’re seeing so much night waking with your 6 month-old – I know it can be exhausting to be up so often. Unfortunately, there are so many reasons for a baby this age to be waking at night that it’s tough to figure out without more information. Our sleep consultants work with cases like this everyday and would be able to work with you and get you a plan to get your son sleeping consistently at night, once we have a full sleep history. If you’re interested, you can visit our services page here: https://www.babysleepsite.com/baby-toddler-sleep-consulting-services/
      Best of luck to you!

  2. my daughter is 5 month and she wake up at night more than 5 but she sleep morning 4 hrs sequential so that i asked why she does not sleep at night.

  3. My 6m son was sleeping 7-8 hrs at night until 3 weeks ago. Dr says it’s teething but I’m not so sure. He wakes up every 2-3 hours and most times nurses back to sleep. Is this regression? How do we work out of it?

  4. @ Camelia – I can’t really make specific schedule recommendations without knowing your situation more. I can, however, link you to these two sample schedules – one for 5 months (https://www.babysleepsite.com/schedules/5-month-old-baby-schedule/) and one for 6 months (https://www.babysleepsite.com/schedules/6-month-old-baby-schedule/). I would also point you to our free napping guide (https://www.babysleepsite.com/free-baby-nap-guide/) as well as our Mastering Naps & Schedules e-Book (http://www.babynapswell.com). That e-Book is all about how to get your baby or toddler on a better schedule, and it comes with a load of sample schedules. Might be very helpful for your situation!

    Thanks for commenting, Camelia! Hope these links are helpful. 🙂

  5. I have a very big question mark about when to put my yougest son on the shedule. He is now 5 months old and our days are pretty much a mess since he naps totally chaotic . He in naping not more than 40 minutes but since is very visible that he is not getting enough rest , I usually hold him so he migh get an extra 40-60 minutes. He is not abble to consolidate the naps yet by himself. Therefore , he is somethime sleepy after 1hour, somethimes after 1+1/2, or even 2 ours. There is no day looking like previous one or next one. Because of this we have also big issues in organising meals esspecially preparing a schedulle for introducing solid meals.
    I am thinking that the fact that I am interfering in lengheting his naps could prevent him from settling on a pattern . Should I let him sleep as much as he is abble by himself even this could make him overtired at the end of the day so that I am abble to see a pattern ?

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