To nap or not to nap, that is the question

Danielle - posted on 12/03/2009 ( 8 moms have responded )

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I have an almost 3 year old daughter who we are trying to debate if we should take away her naps. She has always been a late sleeper and night owl but with school coming up and getting to daycare this just doesn't work. My question is should we take out her 1 nap a day (usually2-3 hours if she does nap and she is a terror if you wake her up early) and to bed by 7 pm or let her nap and not get her to be until 10-10:30. We thought we had it solved taking out the naps as she seems fine without them until its time to get ready for bed than it is a scream fest to get her in her PJ's, brush her teeth, wash her face and hands or bath. And then there are the times she just has such a busy day she ends up needing a nap and of course we let her fall asleep but then it throws the whole schedule off for the next day. Any thoughts, suggestions.

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Jennifer - posted on 12/04/2009

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every kid is different but like many moms have said taking the nap out could be a plus especialey if u work. then u can get a good nights sleep to at night. my daughter is 2 and we had to do with out the nap because she didnt fall to sleep at night till 12 some times. but it depends on what ur doing through out the day my daughter gets crankie in the day but we play and that gets her past the crankieness no joke. but all in all its ur decission.

Cali - posted on 12/04/2009

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I have a 3 year old as well and he is a very routine child, if there is any change in schedule I have a scream fest as well. If you get into a routine without naps she will begin to adjust, it just takes time. Similar to an adult, it takes a while to change our schedule, but eventually it does get easier.

Tina - posted on 12/03/2009

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Danielle,
I don't agree with the rest of the moms here. My daughter is days short of 4 years old. She attends day care and at her center, they still take naps. We also have a 1 year old and we have been trying to get both of them into the same routine. Myah, (3 yr old) would always take her nap around 1 and go to bed around 9. When we started putting them both to sleep at 8, I thought maybe I should take Myah's nap away, but when I did that, she suddenly started waking up often in the middle of the night. So we started her back on the nap, and they both take a nap around 12:30 or 1, and they both go to bed at 8 with no problems.

It is very important that young children get the right amount of sleep as to give their little brains a rest from all they learn every day, and how fast their minds (and bodies) are on the move. If you're still on the fence about it, I would look up on the net, how many hours of sleep a child at 3 needs per day(or night) and space it out that way. But in my opinion, my daughter is a year ahead of her and if she needs naps like she does, I think so does yours. Also make sure she is getting lots of exercise and brain stimulation every day! Good Luck!

Rebekah - posted on 12/03/2009

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I guess your little girl is about ready for half a day Nursery School ( morning or afternoon). Find out in advance, if you can, which she will be attending and then start to re-arrange her day to suit that. 3 hours nap during the day is far too long - 1 hour should be enough. I suggest that this could be for an hour before her lunch, then when she wakes up she will get the idea that it is eating time and will be quite happy. The 'early bath & pj's' idea is a good one, together with a quiet time/reading/lullaby or something soothing before bed. Have you tried 'Classics for Babies' or Classics for Children'? Pick some soothing music and you will find that she will soon feel sleepy and want to go to bed. Maybe she would respond to massage after her bath to relax and soothe her. I hope she goes on OK - it is an important stage in her development now. Rebekah ;~)))

Cindy - posted on 12/03/2009

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Hi Danielle,

I think it's time to be rid of the day sleep. My daughter went through this about six months ago. The only suggestion I have is if you are having problems with the bath and pj's process, maybe start it a bit earlier. So get her bathed at 5.30-6pm and another suggestion is quiet time before bed. Grace and I read books for half hour and she is ready for bed then. If my daughter does have a huge day she goes to bed earlier but sleep during the day will have her up til 10pm.

Good luck with it but I think it's time for sleeps to end for your little one as well.

Cheers
Cindy

Tricia - posted on 12/03/2009

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Both my girls were the same way. By 2 years old we had to cut out the naps. They slept better and longer at night. Very rarely, they will nap during the day (if they're sick or growing). But cutting out the naps has worked wonders for us.

Amanda - posted on 12/03/2009

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let her only take like a 12-1pm nap if u can and let her go to sleep at 8pm i have a 3 yrs old and she takes her naps at school and she gets to her with play and everything and she goes to bed at 8pm then gets up at 6:30- 7 then we do it over again it works for me

Sharon - posted on 12/03/2009

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Take out her one nap.



Her body will fall into the daily rhythm on its own. It will take time though.



With my two youngest, they had to have their naps. I HAD to be home by 3pm so they could get in a nap. My youngest would nap twice a day. Sometimes it would be in the back of the car during errands. I'd wind up eating lunch from a drive through window with the car running so she could get a solid hour sleep in, then I'd have to wake her up and keep on with the errands. She would work through her crankiness, lol.

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