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2 To 1 Nap Transition - 14 Month Old

Any advice on how to go about the transition from 2 to 1 nap? My daughter is 14 months old and I get the feeling she is getting too much daytime and nighttime sleep. She has a hard time falling asleep for naps and wakes up many times in the night talking, etc.

Today I held off her a.m. nap as long as possible, which was 10:15am. It is now 11:30am and she is still sleeping. Did I make a mistake?? Will she not take a p.m. nap and need to go to bed at 5pm?

I would love advice on how to do this! I have read Weissbluth's book, but thought I'd ask the real pros!

1 mom found this helpful

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

After the many responses I received (thank you!) I tried a little of everything for the last few weeks. We were able to make it until 12:30/1pm, but then she'd only nap for 1 hour! So now we are back to a 9am nap (9-11 and I have to wake her up at 11!) and then I put her in bed at 2 and she falls asleep around 3. At 4pm I wake her. Luckily we have our 15 month appt on Monday so I am hoping the dr has some suggestions!

Featured Answers

My daughter gave up her nap when she was 13-14 months old. She was napping at 10 and 3, but I noticed that she wouldn't sleep when I put her down at 10:00 so I tried 10:30 and she would fall asleep, but then she wouldn't go down at 3:00 and would be pretty crabby at 5:00 so I just tried 11:30 and it worked out perfectly. She would sleep until about 1:30-2:00 and then we would put her to bed earlier at night ~ around 7:00 and she would sleep until 7-7:30 the next day. You might have to try different times to see what actually works. My daughter was on that schedule until she was about two years old and then I moved it to 1:00 and now she is almost 3-1/2 and doesn't take a nap at all anymore.

D.,
Chances are if you are transitioning from 2 short naps a day that she may take one longer nap later in the morning and then will be ok until bedtime. Feel her out and see. The great thing is that you can try it for a few days and if it really isn't working for you then change back. Nothing is set in stone. Read her cues and follow them. Good luck!

More Answers

I have Weissbluth's book also and love it! Even still, going from 2 naps to 1 was a very difficult time for both me and my son. I did a lot of driving around trying to get him to fall asleep some days and our days for about 1-2 months were a bit unpredictable - sometimes he'd take 2 naps, sometimes 1. There were days he would fall asleep in the car on the way home from a store (WAY earlier in the morning than I expected). Just hang in there and just try and read your child daily to give her what she needs and yes, put her to bed extra early if you need to. I know someone who's 2 1/2 year old doesn't take naps but she puts him to be by 6:30. My son finally got the "1 nap" down and it was usually b/t 10 and 11am that he'd go down and sleep a good 3 hours. He is still sleeping 3 hours but his nap has shifted to start anywhere b/t 11 and 12:30.

1 mom found this helpful

I did the same thing. I held them off a little at a time. Eventually I just fed them an early lunch and then it was nap time. After a little while I was able to feed them at noon and naptime was 1 or 1:30 and now it's 2 or 2:30. You have to do what's best for you. I always worked better with an afternoon nap, but my neice (13 months) takes a morning nap and that's it. If your day works better with her napping in the am, do it, if pm is better go for it. Good luck!

I would try to feel it out and try little by little. Even though you probably wished she would have been able to stay awake longer than 10:15 it doesn't mean that within the next few days you can't stretch it out longer.
Maybe within a week or so you can get her to stay up until like 11:30 and then increase it slowly until you get her to nap at a good afternoon time.
On the other hand, how does she act when she doesn't get those 2 naps during the day? Is she fussy without them both? Sometimes kids go through phases of not falling asleep right away for their naps as usual. Or, they may wake during the night for a period of time but talk and put themselves back to sleep. If it isn't a phase and has been happening for awhile then I would agree to try to get her to take one nap. Who would have thought that a little issue like this would cause so much confusion huh? I know how you feel. I went through this with my daughter.
Another option is to cut both of her naps short maybe???
My son is 16 mo. old and is still taking 2 naps and sleeping 11 1/2 hrs at night so it's not unusual for kids your daughter's age to sleep a lot.
Jenny

When I switched my son to a latter nap it was about that time. Sometimes he needed a short nap about 4 but now we wake up about 7:30 and we play all morning in the park. Then we come home and have lunch and take a nap about 11 or 11:30 and he'll sleep for about 1 1/2 hours to 2 hours. Then we go back to the park and play. I found that if he doesn't play and use his energy he is hard to get to nap and sleep at night.

I also pushed the morning nap later. Now (17 months) he goes down anywhere between 10:30-12:00 and sleeps for about 2 hours straight. Sometimes he will wake after the first hour but if I nurse him or rub his back he will fall asleep again. He will then stay awake til about 7:00 when he goes down for the night.

D.,
Chances are if you are transitioning from 2 short naps a day that she may take one longer nap later in the morning and then will be ok until bedtime. Feel her out and see. The great thing is that you can try it for a few days and if it really isn't working for you then change back. Nothing is set in stone. Read her cues and follow them. Good luck!

I found this transition to be very hard - both in getting my daughter used to it, and for me because I had been used to a lot of free time around the house while she slept! I think you did the right thing by holding off the am nap. What I did was just keep pushing the am nap back by 15 minutes each couple or few days until she was going down around noon. Eventually got her to one, 1 pm nap, but it took several weeks to get there. Even if the adjustment time is difficult, you'll likely get to one good nap and hopefully that will improve the night sleeping. My daughter was 18 months when we did this transition and is now 3 and still takes a solid, 2-3 hour nap each afternoon. Good luck!

I love Weissbluth's book and have been following it since around 6 months when I finally had the sense to read it and understand how/why children sleep the way they do. I cannot say enough good things about it. JG has some fantastic advice; mine is fairly similar.

Our son is now 15 months and about 6 weeks ago, started showing signs of 'nap dropping readiness'. Prior to that, he would wake each day around 6:00 - 7:00, take his first nap from 9:00 - 10:30/11:00, take his second nap from 1:00 - 3:00/3:30, then go to bed around 6:30. He was so predictable and would fall asleep and stay asleep without issue.

Just before 14 months, he would still take his morning nap and then refuse to take his afternoon nap or have a hard time getting settled down for it. Sometimes he would skip it altogether. As you can imagine, it made for a pretty rough afternoon because he was exhausted. On those days, I put him to bed earlier - sometimes at 6:00 or even 5:45. My son has some pretty strong "please put me to sleep" cues (he gets clumsy, whiny, cries for me to pick him up but then wiggles and fusses out of my arms), so whenever he presents these cues I respect them and put him to sleep.

We tried making the morning nap shorter in hopes that he'd still want his afternoon nap. It didn't work. What we have done is try to keep him awake and entertained during the morning to 'hold him off' so that he only takes an afternoon nap. It works when we schedule new, fun, different activities that hold his attention. It did not work when we used to do our usual routine (which would be wake, eat, go downstairs and play) because he would want to go to sleep again by 9:00...mostly because that was what he was used to. At daycare this has been really easy - he transitioned to the toddler room where everyone naps at the same time. On the weekends, I actually schedule new and different things to keep him entertained and draw his focus away from the old schedule. This past weekend, we did breakfast at our normal time, played for a little bit, then went to watch a volleyball tournament. He had a blast and must have forgotten that "hey I usually nap at 9:00". I've never felt like he is sleep deprived because he is not showing the 'sleep cues' at his typical naptime of 9:00 nor is he falling asleep. But, boy, when it is time for the afternoon nap he is out like a light and could sleep for 3 - 3 1/2 hours!

This could take several weeks, but you could try to either make the morning nap short (no more than an hour) or make the 'morning nap' the only nap but just gradually keep pushing it later and later each day. The hard part about pushing the nap later is that you'll be on a goofy schedule but keep in mind it is only temporary. Your baby may want to go to bed at night a little earlier than normal but don't panic because in our experience we found that an earlier bedtime has not equalled an earlier wake time; in fact he sleeps a little bit longer in the morning. As a result, he is more well-rested and can make it through the morning without the nap.

I thought I would miss the days when our baby took two naps but to be honest, I'm thrilled that he showed signs of wanting only one nap and took to the transition like a champ. I don't feel like our day is so constricted now, and we can actually get out and do more fun things with the baby!

Good luck to you and feel free to PM me with questions. I'm no expert, but I totally love Weissbluth's methods and am fortunate to have had a great deal of success with them.

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