Daytime Napping Strategies

Your main goal for day sleep at this age is to try to keep your baby from getting over-tired. This will make it easier from your baby to fall asleep and back to sleep. Being over-tired may be the cause of some of your night wakings and may play a role in early morning waking.

Since day sleep does not develop consistently until about 6 months of age, it is not appropriate to do nap coaching with a baby until he is older. You can however try to extend short naps (under 45 minutes). Try for 5-10 minutes to get your baby back to sleep if he is wakes up before 45 minutes. This process should not involve any crying and you can use any method that works for you. Including, rocking, giggling, feeding, swing, stroller etc. You will likely notice that if your baby sleeps for at least 45 minutes, he will be able to stay awake longer (usually 1-2.25 hours).

However, if he sleeps under 45 minutes, he is likely to be tired much sooner often within 1 hour. So shorter nap = shorter wakeful window. Your baby may need a late afternoon nap. It’s fine if this nap is short but your baby should be awake by 5pm at the latest so that the nap does not interfere with bedtime.