Nap schedule - Mothering Forums
Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 14 Old 04-19-2012, 04:28 PM - Thread Starter
 
htovjm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Pacific Northwest, USA
Posts: 216
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)

 

I'm wondering how to go about setting a consistent nap schedule for my 3.5 month old DS.

 

This is a typical day: He wakes up at about 7am, falling back to sleep at around 9-ish. Sometimes that first nap is long, sometimes short. He then takes catnaps at random times after nursing. Normally he has one consistent long nap in the afternoon, but these range in start time and duration. He falls asleep easily with us at about 9pm.

 

DS will only fall asleep with me, preferably nursing. If I move, he wakes up fussy wanting to nurse more. If I wait until he's in a dead sleep, sometimes he will be put down but his nap is always much shorter and he wakes up huffing and puffing. What makes thing worse is he's going through a phase right now where he wants to stretch his legs and he won't be worn in a wrap without protesting. So once he's asleep, I'm pretty trapped. 

 

If I could set a consistent schedule of some sort, I'd be able to plan my day better. But with all the cat naps and random times/durations, I never know what to expect.  I don't wish to force anything on him; I'm just wondering if anyone has any strategy to get him to consolidate his naps more and be more consistent with the time. Should I try to keep him awake more and discourage the little naps? Or could that be harmful to him? 


Happily married to DH 

Stay-at-home mama to DS1 (01/12) & DS2 (01/14)

htovjm is offline  
#2 of 14 Old 04-19-2012, 04:30 PM
 
Bokonon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: San Diego
Posts: 2,975
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

That all sounds like the best you can hope for at that age for a schedule!  Babies can't tell time, and at that age, act purely on instinct, so it's really best to let baby set the lead.  And the thing about infancy is that by the time you start to notice they've set their own pattern, they change it up on you.  Beware of the 4-month sleep regression - it's a doozy!


A, jammin.gif mama to a boy (2005) and a girl (2009)
Bokonon is offline  
#3 of 14 Old 04-19-2012, 04:42 PM - Thread Starter
 
htovjm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Pacific Northwest, USA
Posts: 216
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)

I had not heard of the 4-month sleep regression before. DS wakes up about ever two hours as it is, so I wonder what that would be like. Co-sleeping is miraculous though as he sometimes latches on by himself without much bother to me. I can also sleep through comfort sucking, which is mainly what he's looking for.

 

ANYway, I guess I'll just have to wait it out? I was feeling like this behavior wasn't normal since Dr. Sears seems to imply that most babies follow some consistent pattern after two months....thanks for the input!


Happily married to DH 

Stay-at-home mama to DS1 (01/12) & DS2 (01/14)

htovjm is offline  
#4 of 14 Old 04-19-2012, 04:53 PM
 
cat13's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 1,766
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

My DS started his own semi-regular nap schedule around 4-5 months. I didn't do anything about it, he just showed me that's what he wanted. But as he's gotten older, I have been better about noticing his tired signs and instigating naptime when I see it, instead of just waiting for him to fall asleep. Maybe that will help?

 

Do you side lie nurse for his naps? I find that DS often wakes up when I transfer him to the bed for naps, but if I lay next to him and nurse for a few minutes, then I can sneak away. I usually keep my ipod under my pillow so I can play on it while I'm laying there. I do love staring at his beautiful face, but I hate to say that I can't do that all the time.
 


Mama Bear toddler.gif, Papa Bear treehugger.gif and Baby Bear (8/11) coolshine.gif

cat13 is offline  
#5 of 14 Old 04-19-2012, 09:08 PM
 
wendizbaby's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 900
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

My ds is 5 months and he still catnaps.  I hate it because I can't get much done or plan much.  His catnaps are on a pretty good routine, though.  But with 5 naps during the day, I'm pretty much stuck at home.  I'm hoping for a consolidation of naps around 6 months.  


Mom to my little super hero superhero.gif (02/06) and our super hero-in-training femalesling.GIF (11/11).

wendizbaby is offline  
#6 of 14 Old 04-20-2012, 01:43 PM
 
MN BabyDust's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 147
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

My (now 6 month old) daughter went through many phases of sleep/naps the first 4 months. Around 4 months, she started to put herself on a more regular nap schedule. It just became clear she needed a morning nap, afternoon nap, and often a very quick evening nap depending on the length of earlier naps. Now she has phased out the evening nap. She would sometimes take long naps, sometimes catnaps of 20 minutes or less. It can be really random. Around 5-6 months I started to change how she fell asleep (basically didn't wait the 15-20 minutes for her to be out cold after nursing) and I got her to learn to fall asleep without my boob in her mouth. This takes lots of soothing and other strategies, but now I am allowed to set her down for a nap when she isn't out cold.
Under 4 months I think you just follow their lead, they just sleep when they need to.

MN BabyDust is offline  
#7 of 14 Old 04-21-2012, 07:31 AM
 
tanyato's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 204
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I agree with previous posts - up until now you've done the right thing by allowing him to do his thing. I think He'll probably start to be more consistent soon. I am all for baby-led schedules but I think there are things we can do as the parent to help them along. For example, my guy is just about 5 months old, and while I've always been easy going about his naps (I look for signs of tiredness and try to help him to sleep but I've never forced any kind of nap schedule on him) I am very very consistent with bedtime. I pretty much insist that bed time is 7pm (he sleeps until 7am). Some nights I can tell he's just not having it and I try for 7:30 or even 8pm, but it's my one hard fast rule - I want him to get used to having 7pm bed time. I just neeeed to have some time in the evening to myself before I go to bed, and if he gets 12 hrs of sleeping at night (don't worry though, he's still nursing every 2hrs or so) then I don't feel as concerned if his naps during the day are crap. For the most part, it's worked out well. He definitely knows that night time starts around 7. The 4 month sleep regression was a bit of a challenge - there was a while there that he'd require an hour+ of soothing before settling, and then need soothing 30 minutes later etc. But I stuck with it and I'm really glad, because no matter how hard our day is, being able to count on him being in bed around 7 is so nice. And like I said, if he gets that 12 hours at night, I feel much better during the day if we're out and about and he misses a nap or two.

tanyato is offline  
#8 of 14 Old 04-21-2012, 10:56 AM - Thread Starter
 
htovjm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Pacific Northwest, USA
Posts: 216
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)

Thank you for all your thoughtful responses! I feel better about how things are going. Like what you've said, I want baby to lead, but I also want to develop healthy sleep habits. I ordered "The No-Cry Sleep Solution" to check out because it has such great reviews and seems to be gentle/attachment parenting focused. But for now, I'll keep doing what I'm doing and just be observant of his tired signs, etc.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by cat13 View Post

Do you side lie nurse for his naps? I find that DS often wakes up when I transfer him to the bed for naps, but if I lay next to him and nurse for a few minutes, then I can sneak away. I usually keep my ipod under my pillow so I can play on it while I'm laying there. I do love staring at his beautiful face, but I hate to say that I can't do that all the time.

 

 

Yes, I always nurse lying down when I lay with him. It makes things so much easier! Once in awhile I can sneak away, but he likes to rest his cheek on my breast after he's done and he's super aware if I move away (even if in a deep sleep). I always keep my laptop handy unless I want to nap too. I too like to look at DS's face, but you're right...you just can't do that 24/7 orngtongue.gif

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by wendizbaby View Post

But with 5 naps during the day, I'm pretty much stuck at home.  I'm hoping for a consolidation of naps around 6 months.  

 

I know how you feel. Sometimes it's days before I get to go anywhere! I'm hope your DS starts sleeping longer for your sake!

Quote:
Originally Posted by MN BabyDusView Post

Around 5-6 months I started to change how she fell asleep (basically didn't wait the 15-20 minutes for her to be out cold after nursing) and I got her to learn to fall asleep without my boob in her mouth. This takes lots of soothing and other strategies, but now I am allowed to set her down for a nap when she isn't out cold.

 

That is so awesome that you were able to do that! This is what I'm hoping to do!

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by tanyato View Post

Up until now you've done the right thing by allowing him to do his thing. 

 

Thank you! I feel reassured by your post. We have always had a consistent bed times---the naps are just up in the air. I'm seeing that this is just normal for now. smile.gif

 


Happily married to DH 

Stay-at-home mama to DS1 (01/12) & DS2 (01/14)

htovjm is offline  
#9 of 14 Old 04-23-2012, 06:22 AM
 
MichelleZB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 966
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by wendizbaby View Post

My ds is 5 months and he still catnaps.  I hate it because I can't get much done or plan much.  His catnaps are on a pretty good routine, though.  But with 5 naps during the day, I'm pretty much stuck at home.  I'm hoping for a consolidation of naps around 6 months.  

 

Do you really feel stuck at home? Does your son refuse to nap if he's not lying down in his crib? I ask because I have a 4-month-old catnapper and I go out and stay out for hours every day, and he just sleeps when he pleases, in his carseat or stroller or in my arms. I always considered it one of the advantages of having a catnapper.

MichelleZB is offline  
#10 of 14 Old 04-23-2012, 08:49 AM
 
tanyato's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 204
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by MichelleZB View Post

 

 

Do you really feel stuck at home? Does your son refuse to nap if he's not lying down in his crib? I ask because I have a 4-month-old catnapper and I go out and stay out for hours every day, and he just sleeps when he pleases, in his carseat or stroller or in my arms. I always considered it one of the advantages of having a catnapper.

 

funny you put it that way....i've try to see the positives of having a catnapper like: if he's napping and i need to go somewhere, i know it won't be long before he's up and we can go! and if we're out, a 30 minute nap here and there is fine, it's what he'd be doing at home anyways :)

 

 

tanyato is offline  
#11 of 14 Old 04-23-2012, 08:55 AM
 
MichelleZB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 966
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by tanyato View Post

 

 

funny you put it that way....i've try to see the positives of having a catnapper like: if he's napping and i need to go somewhere, i know it won't be long before he's up and we can go! and if we're out, a 30 minute nap here and there is fine, it's what he'd be doing at home anyways :)

 

 

 

Yeah... and is there any reason why you have to wait for your baby to wake up before you go places? Just chuck the sleeping baby in the carseat/stroller and leave when you please!

MichelleZB is offline  
#12 of 14 Old 04-24-2012, 03:56 PM
 
wendizbaby's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 900
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Maybe it's the 4 month sleep regression (he's 5 months), but my son wakes up now if there is ANYthing going on around him.  His short naps turn into practically nothing and then I have a really cranky, crying baby.  Also, because he doesn't get a lot of sleep, his waking hours are shorter (I think).  He can really only last 1.5 hours without having a huge meltdown.  Maybe that's the normal waking hours at this age, but I just assumed it was short because of the short sleep.  Also, because it can change from day to day, I can't plan around his naps.  Sometimes he'll take one long nap and then I have to call whomever I had plans with and cancel.  

So ya...I think it sucks.  Now if he would sleep wherever, then it wouldn't be so bad.


Mom to my little super hero superhero.gif (02/06) and our super hero-in-training femalesling.GIF (11/11).

wendizbaby is offline  
#13 of 14 Old 04-24-2012, 10:20 PM
 
tanyato's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 204
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by wendizbaby View Post

Maybe it's the 4 month sleep regression (he's 5 months), but my son wakes up now if there is ANYthing going on around him.  His short naps turn into practically nothing and then I have a really cranky, crying baby.  Also, because he doesn't get a lot of sleep, his waking hours are shorter (I think).  He can really only last 1.5 hours without having a huge meltdown.  Maybe that's the normal waking hours at this age, but I just assumed it was short because of the short sleep.  Also, because it can change from day to day, I can't plan around his naps.  Sometimes he'll take one long nap and then I have to call whomever I had plans with and cancel.  

So ya...I think it sucks.  Now if he would sleep wherever, then it wouldn't be so bad.

 

all of this sounds familiar to me. i kind of gave up and started taking him out anywhere. after a couple days, he got used to sleeping in a carrier around noise. now it's not such a big deal. he naps at home when we're home and he naps when we're out. if we're home, i try to keep him sleeping longer by laying with him and nursing him but if we're out i just take what i can get. i was seriously driving myself crazy with trying to figure our his sleep "schedule" - what it should be, how to get him on it. i just gave up and now we're happy. and he sleeps more :)

tanyato is offline  
#14 of 14 Old 04-25-2012, 07:11 AM
 
Choose2Reuse's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 185
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

That sounds exactly like what DD was like around that age.  I just went by her schedule--trying to get her to wait on naps or to nap when she wasn't ready only frustrates both of us.

 

One thing that helped A LOT was to wait till she fell asleep nursing, then burp her and gently put her down.  She woke up.  I would nurse her until she fell asleep again (usually just a few seconds).  Then I'd put her down again.  She'd wake up.  Rinse, repeat a billion times.  On the first day it took twenty rounds, then she fell asleep on the mattress.  After that it got gradually shorter, till after a week I could have her fall asleep, pick her up to burp her, and gently lay her in the crib, and she'd just turn her head and fall back asleep again.  (This was my modified version of the No Cry Sleep Solution, because DD can fall asleep without nursing but gets upset if you stop her while she's still comfort-nursing.)   It was a real pain for a week or so, but boy did it help in the long run!!  Might be worth a try! 


Mom to the wacky and wonderful Kalyani (August 2011) femalesling.GIF

Choose2Reuse is offline  
Reply

Tags
Baby

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off