whats the best way to get a nap routine going?

Amy - posted on 08/18/2009 ( 6 moms have responded )




I did have one when he was younger but now he is about 7 months and all over the map...

here are the issues

1. He doesn't have a regular wake up time. anywhere between 4:30-6:30

2. he'll nap for 30min-3hrs and no matter hwo hard i try to make them longer or shorter he trumps me. if after 30min there is no going back to sleep what am i suspposed to do leave him in his crib?

3. to encourage him to fall asleep on his own i'd lay beside him on the floor (older crib one side doesn't go down very nice and im really short so its really hard to coax him to sleep in that thing) so now he will only nap on the floor in his nursing pillow (and yes I've tried putting that in his crib but i don't like doing that! and it doesn't work that well either)

4. he usually falls asleep watching baby einsteins...

any advice would be great? How should I pick the nap times? how do I even get started! Im totally lost i've always let him do his thing but now its pushing bedtime from 7:30 to 9 :O and he isn't sleeping well at night. Oh I forgot to mention we have a wonderful bedtime routine.. dinner at 5 bath at 6:30 stories with daddy at 7:00 bottle after stories in bed by 7:30 usually and usually he'll fall asleep all by himself but lately its been takin a lil more work :(

Thanks so much :)



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Tracy - posted on 08/18/2009




I usually just put my boys down at the same time everyday. Some days were a job and some days they couldn't wait to get into bed! And eventually it worked for us. But when they were little they would nurse, bottle or lunch and then hit the hay. naps were mostly easy for us, and so was bed time it was the middle of the night wakings that i had a hard time with and made them cry it out, it was sad but worked for us. (they were 9 months at that point)

Good luck and I hope that it works out for you. Sticking to a consistant routine is the best, at least it was for my kids, they are sooo routine oreinted.

Jen - posted on 08/18/2009




Keep track of the times he's falling asleep on his own. When you see that he falls asleep consistently at a certain time make those his nap times. At that age my daughter usually took a nap around 11 or 12 and another at about 4:30 or 5. If he likes going to sleep with the movie then lay him down, kiss him, cover him up, turn the movie on, and leave the room. If he wakes after 30 mins. and you can tell he's still sleepy let him cry a little bit until he falls asleep. If he needs comforting then go in and check on him and tell him it's nap time. If you want his bedtime to be 7:30 then make a time that you don't let him sleep past. Since you eat dinner at 5 make sure he's awake by then and don't let him go to sleep again until it's bedtime. A lot of it's going to be trial and error. Just stick with it. Good luck.

Jamie - posted on 08/18/2009




my first thought would be that he needs a later bedtime a nap a couple of hours after he wakes up in the morning and then an afternoon nap as well. Try waking him up at the same time every morning and then laying him down in a darkened room with white noise for his naps. You may have to do this several times before it starts to work. They usually need at least two naps until they are 12 - 18 months old.

[deleted account]

This sounds a bit like some of the things that my son was doing. His naps were very unpredictable and it got really hard to put him to sleep ever. I would rock him and then go to transfer him to the crib and he would wake up so I would have to start over. After he started doing this 3 times before he would fall asleep I finally decided that I needed to let him cry. We had tried CIO before and he never got used to it. So now what I do is rock him until he falls asleep and then put him down. At first he cried but it was only for a minute or two and he wouldn't open his eyes so I knew that he was really ready to sleep. It only took 2 days of crying and now he doesn't cry at all when I lay him down. I think this sort of taught him that I will help him go to sleep but I won't help him stay asleep. Since then his naps have been much more consistent, I think because he knows how to calm himself back to sleep without me there. So I would suggest you try something like this with your son. Rock him or lay next to him until he falls asleep and then transfer him to the crib and then let him cry. Whatever you do I hope it works!

Jessica - posted on 08/18/2009




maybe try implementing smooth transitions, for instance right after each big "meal" go down for a nap instead of playtime in between eat and nap. After breakfast go straight down for a morning nap, and again after lunch going straight down for an afternoon nap, and after an afternoon snack going down for an afternoon nap. Until he grows out of 3 naps a day and shorten your routine to only 2 day a day as needed. So even if he is not sleeping the same length each time, the times he is going down is consistant, then maybe eventually the lenghts of the naps will start to get better and more consistant as well. Hope you find something that works for you! : ) Good luck.

And my last piece of advice I can think of, habits are easier to break the younger they are!! The older they get the more stubborn and determined they get! A lil hard work now making the routine "your way" is better than having to do things "his way" for the next 6 years : (

Anna - posted on 08/18/2009




Here is what I do... Hope it helps

7am bottle, back to sleep

9am breakfast fruit, oatmeal then the movie your baby can read,

11am bottle in bed ( I still give it to her) and she will fall a sleep

between 12 and 1 she wakes up and plays on her matt till lunch

1:30 lunch veggies and cereal

2pm your baby can read

3pm bottle and this nap is the hardest for her... only about 45 min

5pm bottle

then a cartoon of some sort ( she loves kugfu Panda)

6:30 dinner, veggies, cereal and fruit

I try to have her go to bed around 8:30 she will stay asleep then, if she goes to bed any earlier she wakes up at 9pm and is up till about 10:30 which throws off the schedual for the next day. Be flexible. The book Baby Wise really help me. My daughter is now 8months and she sleep between 10-11hrs a night. We had a problem with naps before but she grew out of it. Baby Wise called it the 45min intruder and she would continualy wake up within 45 min. But like I said, she grew out of it :) Have a schedual but be flexible! Hope this helped and good luck

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