Help your baby learn to sleep well and to protect a naturally developed, healthy sleep pattern.
Wake-Up Time: Some babies wake up early, at 5 or 6 AM, and return to sleep after a brief feeding or diaper change. This is a continuation of night sleep, not a nap. Other babies wake up later and are ready to start the day. Most infants will awaken for the day between 6 and 8 AM. In general, it's not a good idea to go to your child before 6 AM, even if he is crying. Despite what is commonly believed, you can't change the wake-up time by keeping your baby up later, feeding solids before bedtime or awakening your baby for a feeding before you go to sleep.
Morning Wakeful Time: These are periods during which you will watch our baby and the clock to determine the time for your baby to take an age-appropriate nap. Babies 4 to 6 months old experience two hours of wakefulness, while older babies experience about three hours of wakefulness. (The two- and three-hour durations of wakefulness are ceilings, not floors!)
Wind-Down Ritual for Naps: This should take place 20 to 30 minutes before the scheduled nap—bath, bottle, breastfeeding, massage—but limit it to no more than 20 to 30 minutes. Most babies will need three naps throughout the day that last about an hour or so each.
So your baby's schedule should approximately look like this:
Start day: around 6 to 8 AM
First nap: around 9 AM
Second nap: around 12 or 1 PM
Third nap: varies
Bedtime: around 6 to 8 PM.
Establishing healthy baby sleep habits might mean some crying if they get a second wind, because they are overtired, which will be hard on you, the parent. But don't let your baby cry for more than one hour at naps, and when you do go to her, be calm and be consistent with nap schedules based on Drowsy Signs and clock times, because that's what will help your baby learn. You are not abandoning your baby—you are giving her all the attention when she is awake. But now, she needs to be alone to sleep.report abuse