Babies Transition from Three to Two Naps
As babies grow older and become more active, they may require more sleep in order to grow and develop properly. Therefore, as your little one grows, he or she may transition from three naps to two, with the transition typically taking place anywhere from 6-15 months.
Signs of Transition
Babies usually display the following signs, which indicate the transition to two naps is starting:
- Decrease in daytime sleepiness. Your baby may appear less sleepy throughout the day, and may even actively resist naps. This signals that your little one is ready to drop one of their naps.
- Improved nighttime sleep. Once babies transition, you may find that their nighttime sleep increases and is more restful than before.
- Reduced fussiness. Dropping to two naps will increase your baby’s awake time. This means they are less likely to be overstimulated or overtired, which may lead to improved mood and decreased fussiness.
Though transitioning to two naps can be an exciting time, the process itself can be difficult and the steps can vary depending on your baby’s age. To ensure a smooth transition, it is important to:
- Start with shortening one nap. Before dropping to two naps, you’ll want to start by shortening one of your baby’s naps. Shortening one nap by 10-15 minutes each day will ease the transition, allowing your little one to stay on track.
- Pay attention to your baby’s wake time. How much time your baby spends awake between naps is important. If this awake time is too long (longer than 3 hours), your baby may become over tired, leading to trouble falling asleep.
- Avoid early bedtime. Shortening the naps may make your baby tired in the late afternoon. To avoid an early bedtime, it’s important to have a wake time between 5-6 pm and no nap past 5 pm.
The Two Nap Schedule
Once your baby is used to taking two naps, a typical nap schedule will be as follows:
- Early morning nap. This nap should take place between 8-9 am or whenever your baby wakes up in the morning.
- Early afternoon nap. The second nap should take place between 12-1 pm and should last for 1-2 hours.
Transitioning to two naps is an exciting time for both parents and babies. With patience and consistency, your little one will adjust to the new schedule in no time.