My 14 month old wakes up at 4:45am every day! Is this a sign he needs to switch to one nap a day?

Emma - posted on 12/08/2012 ( 7 moms have responded )

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Hi lovely mommies out there,

I would appreciate your thoughts and advice on this.

My 14 month old has always been an early riser but lately it's just been getting steadily earlier and earlier. He's now regularly waking (FOR THE DAY) at 4:45am. Often he has pooped too and changing his diaper after a poop is so stimulating that it's almost impossible to get him to go back to sleep after that. Even when he hasn't pooped we've had trouble getting him to go back to sleep. He will just cry and cry and cry. (We have successfully sleep trained him and he now naps and goes to sleep very well by himself - we did this at 6 months but we have always had this issue of him waking up too early). PLEASE NOTE: I do not need opinions on whether or not you agree with sleep training. If you don't agree then please simply do not comment on my post.



Back to the issue:

He has two naps a day. The first one is around 8:30-9am and he'll sleep for 1.5 hrs, sometimes 2. Then the second one is around 2-2:30pm and he sleeps for another 1.5-2 hours. His bed time is around 7-7:30pm. So during the day he usually gets 3-4 hours of sleep in naps and during the night usually 9.5 hours.



I'm wondering if this waking earlier and earlier may be a sign that he's getting enough sleep with his day time and night time sleep and now could do with switching to one nap a day.



Specifically I would appreciate advice from other moms whose children have always woken up early and what they do to cope.

And from moms who are or who have made the switch from two naps to one.



Thanks very much



Emma

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Janise - posted on 12/09/2012

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Hi Emma, we made the switch from two to one nap when they turned 17 months. It didn't happen overnight. They started sleeping a bit longer on their morning nap and then shorter on the afternoon nap. It kind of phased out on its own. At times they would switch from one to two and two to one. That took about a month. Sometimes they will let you know that they need another nap (rubbing their eyes and at times they cry and you can't console them). They are now on their one nap schedule (from 10/1030am to 2pm) and go to bed at 8pm. Whenever we say naptime or bedtime they run up the stairs to their room. I hope this helps.



Janise

www.MamaInHeels.com

Kelly - posted on 12/08/2012

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Well I have a 15 month old so,Hunter.He was starting o wake up anywhere between 4:30-5:00 for the day at about 13 months old! We too have him 2 naps for about 2 hours at a time.and his bedtime was 7:30pm.



What we recently changed too has been working great,this is just what worked for us so if it doesn't work for your son I am sorry but maybe you can get an idea from this



We gave him one nap for about 2.5 hours at around 1:30-3:00ish everyday (he sleeps for about 3 hours now that he is yous to the time change) we would let him stay up until 8:00-8:30 every night! Now I know what your thinking that that's a extra hour later but in all honesty it wore hunter out so much playing for about an hour than story time and he slept enough in the day.if he gets to cranky he goes to bed at 8 if my around half 8 he now sleeps until 7:30 in the morning which is good,he gets about 11 hours sleep which is enough! An about 2-3 in the day!



This worked for us and I hope it works for you,some people don't like that we let him stay up until 8 but it works for us and for hunter and all he does is have story time for a bit longer so I don't think it's too over stimulating.Also when he is around 3-4 yo we will set In a 7 o clock bed time but for now what we works!



Hope this helped it worked for us for a long time until hunter got ill and we let him sleep in out bed now he doesn't want to sleep in his own and we are currently trying to get him back in the routine and getting him out of the habit of wanting to sleep in our bed.

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Emma - posted on 02/14/2014

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Hello,
I'm the original poster and I want to update this thread for the benefit of anyone coming across it now:

I will say that with *some* success we got over this problem though it has been a recurring one with our son.
- I switched him to one nap a day at around 15 months. The transition was a little tough but he gradually got used to staying awake during 8-9am and his one nap got longer (usually 2 hours, sometimes longer).
- for the early morning waking I set up a very dim lamp
in his room on a timer (like what you plug your Christmas lights into). I set the lamp to come on at 5am to start with and would let him
Cry until it came on (usually he would only wake 15 mins-30
Mins earlier). After several days of 5am light up
I set the lamp to come on at 5:05am. Over the course of a few weeks we
Gradually shifted it further forward until we reached 6am
I went slowly so that he had plenty of time to get used to the new wake up time.
I would say that this generally worked quite well. There were of course times when he would wake early again and sometimes if he got right off track again if have to set the lamp back to 5:30am.
Through all of this we have figured out that our son is simply an
Early riser. He needs no more than 10
Hours sleep at night. It doesn't seem to make
Much difference if we put him down later. He's like a rooster!

Hope this helps. Sorry about the mess - writing on my phone.

Kelly - posted on 12/09/2012

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Hi Emma,



It took about 1-2 weeks for him to get yous to the change.We did it in stages,is funny how similar the sleeping habits sound isn't it.Hunter would do the same he would rub his eyes a lot and seem tired for the first few days of the change in squedual but this only meant that he went to sleep quicker when it was time for his nap.



Good luck.

Emma - posted on 12/09/2012

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So Janise, when did you make the switch to one nap and how did you approach the process?

Thanks so much for your help!

Emma - posted on 12/09/2012

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Hi Kelly, thanks so much for your reply. Its amazing how similar our sons' sleeping habits have been.

Please can you tell me, how long did the process take switching from two naps to one and did you do it in stages? My son is so tired by 8:30-9am. He is difficult to handle sometimes. Also by 7:15pm (after just one nap yesterday) he was rubbing his eyes like crazy. He went down at 7:30pm and still woke at 5am (he only had 2 hrs of naps total yesterday).



Does this sound familiar?

Janise - posted on 12/08/2012

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Hi Emma,

My twin boys had the same issue waking up at 4:45am or 5am every morning when they were at the same age as your son. We used to nap them twice a day at 8;30 and 2pm, bed time at 8pm. We did this for a month or so. We then slowly changed their nap schedule from 8:30 to 9:30 and from 2pm to 3:30pm, bed time at 8pm. Once we pushed their nap time to an hour or so we noticed they started waking up at 5:45 or 6am. They are now 19 months, nap once a day from 10am to 2pm, wake up at 7am and go to bed at 8pm.



Good luck!



Janise

www.MamaInHeels.com

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