J.G. asks from Riverbank, CA on October 01, 2008
11-Month Troubles with Afternoon Nap
I have a really, REALLY active 11-month-old who has been walking since she turned 9 mos, gave up crawling completely three weeks later, and walks and RUNS everywhere now. She's an excellent walker/runner, and tall for her age--most moms we meet mistake her for an 18-month-old, and are wowed by her constant and happy high energy level. Her high energy that lasts all day long makes me think consistent sleep should be extra-important for her. She sleeps well at night and during naps, and knows how to self-soothe. I put her down for naps and nighttime awake, and she falls asleep on her own, usually quickly though naptimes took longer. She was sleeping from 8:30 pm to 7:00 am each night, 10:00 am to 12:00 pm for her morning nap, and 3:00 pm to 4:30 pm for her afternoon nap, though she took a while to fall asleep for her naps. I recently read "Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child" and thought I may be putting her down when she was nearly overtired for naps and nighttime, so I had moved her morning nap to 9:30 and afternoon nap to 2:00. She responded very well to the change, falling asleep faster for both naps and sleeping about the same amount of time for each. I also moved bedtime to 8:00 and have been shooting for 7:30, all of which had been working out well. Then this past week she started having trouble with the afternoon nap, going down in her crib with no protest, but simply talking and playing in there for an hour one day, longer the next, and then not going to sleep at all the next day. The following day we had a poorly scheduled activity, and I didn't get her to a quiet crib until 3:30 (she played hard until that point); predictably she never settled down for a nap that day. The next day she napped great, but then the following day a similar problem getting her down late...and again no nap. Today she was at my mom's all day (one day every week), and she always struggles with both naps at my mom's, but today she had an easy 2-hour morning nap and again no afternoon nap. Each time she's skipped the afternoon nap (after at least 1.5 hrs in the crib) I've moved up her bedtime to 6:30 or 6:45, and she's gone to sleep easily and slept well all night (until 7:00 am). I don't think she's developmentally ready to give up the afternoon nap, though, and I'm worried we're headed down that road fast! What can I do to get her to sleep in the afternoon again, aside from obviously not allowing anything to interfere with her 2:00 nap time for the next week or two? The book suggests waking her from her morning nap after 1 hour, 1.5 hours at the most--but I'm worried she won't be getting enough sleep if I do that. My mom and sister both think I'm crazy for even considering waking her when she's sleeping well. Also, sometimes we have to push her afternoon nap time back due to doctor appointments or other conflicts--how can I keep those occasional disturbances from throwing off her schedule? Thanks for the help!
C.L. answers from Fresno on October 02, 2008
We just dropped my 19 month old daughter's morning nap, because she was basically doing the same kind of thing. She now naps from about 12:30-3:00 consistently and is well rested. She also sleeps at night from 7:30-6:30. It seems that 11 months may be early to drop the morning nap, but if her nap habits continue then you may need to drop the nap.
A.G. answers from San Francisco on October 02, 2008
Hi, your daughter seems to sleep a lot. I wouldn't worry about her not getting enough sleep at all. I understand if it is good for you to get a break, especially when you work from home. But, if she is tired she will sleep. My daughter stopped napping twice a day about that age too, I would say that is normal. Good luck.
T.S. answers from Sacramento on October 01, 2008
She might be getting ready to switch to one long mid day nap rather than the morning and afternoon. My DS went to a 3-4 hour after lunch nap at that age. Now (2 1/2) he still naps after lunch, but only for 2 hours.
L.D. answers from San Francisco on October 02, 2008
Most children around 12months when they start walking will go to only 1 nap per day mostly early afternoon. Mom to 4 year old and a 15 month old, so move the morning nap to the afternoon and bedtime 7 pm
M.B. answers from San Francisco on October 02, 2008
Your daughter sounds like my son a bit. He went from one to two naps at about that time as well. I spoke to my doctor at the 12 month check up and she assured me that even though he took only one 1 to 1.5 hour nap he was getting so much sleep at night (11 or more hours) that he was well in the normal range for how much sleep he needs. He's now 18 months and doing very well - very happy and well rested. He takes one late morning nap - though it can move later if we are doing something in the morning that prevents napping. He goes to bed very early - 6:00 to 6:30 most days and sleeps for about 12 hours. He lets us know if he needs a second nap (when he has a cold for example). But once I gave up on trying to force a second nap everything got much easier around the house and everyone is much happier. I also read that book you mentioned as my sister and sister in law found it really helpful but it just never worked with our baby. Again- once I stopped worrying about it I realized that he was really thriving on his own schedule. Pretty much non stop every minute until sleep comes. Good luck!
H.F. answers from Sacramento on October 02, 2008
It sounds like she's ready for one nap a day. I would try moving her morning nap to an hour later and see how that goes then move it another hour later until you get to just after lunch time. My son dropped his morning nap at 7 months... used to sleep for 40 minutes 2 times a day and now sleeps from 12 noon to 2pm easily... sometimes longer. Hopefully the transition will go smoothly for both of you.
T.M. answers from San Francisco on October 02, 2008
I have a 10 1/2 month daughter who started going through change. Her growing, crawling to standing, teething, eating more, and going from 3 naps to 2 a day. I know it gets frustrating to try and figure it all out but you just take one day at a time. I have loged all her eating and naps and its working out better to find the right combo. It only took about a week or so. My daughter is up by 6:30-7 a.m. I feed her 4 Tb Cereal & 7 Tb of Fruit then around 8:45 she has a 4 oz bottle and nap by 9:00 in her swing. She is out for usually 1 hour then feeding at 11:00 - 3 Tb Turkey dinner & 2 Tb Vegetables & 3 Tb Fruit and 4 oz bottle at 12:00. Usually between 1 & 2 she will go down for her 2nd nap usually 1-2 hours then 3:00 feeding 3 Tb Turkey dinner & 4-7 Tb Fruit (depending on how hungry she is) and snacks & water/juice around 5:00 to have dinner as a family then 7:00 bath, 7:30 6 oz bottle and in bed at 8:00. There are some days that her second nap doesnt go as planned but if I lay her down and she refuses then I just hold her & play with her until bed time. Yes she is very cranky and tired but that was her choice not to nap. This was a perfect example yesterday :0) but not the first time. She slept well through the night and up again this morning working on her schedule again. There are days that will work and days that will not. Just breath and relax and know tomorrow is another day. I hope it helps!!!
D.C. answers from Sacramento on October 02, 2008
Hon, you have to relax. Just follow her ques. I have 4 kids, and im 29 SAHM....so im just an old pro here. I would say, put her down at 8:30 pm...she should sleep until 6:30 or 7am. She is probably old enough now to not need 2 naps in the afternoon. If you try to have her sleep too much she will get anxcious and over wired. For the afternoon nap try putting her down at 11:30 or 12, after a nice lunch. She should sleep from anywhere between 2 and 3 hours. Messing with the sleep schedule as you are right now is not good. Best thing to do is just tune into your lil baby girl and you will be just fine. Im here if you have questions.
T.B. answers from Sacramento on October 02, 2008
Some kids don't require as much sleep as others. My daughter gave up her morning nap at 10 months, much to my disappointment. During the transition, I just moved her afternoon nap way up and then slowly adjusted it back to a more normal time for us (12:30-1:00pm). When I did this she did much better than I expected. I thought she would be cranky and overtired in the evenings, but she was very happy and cooperative. We did move her nighttime bedtime up by 45 minutes during the transition also, but then pushed it back by about 30 minutes once she had successfully transitioned.