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How long does your baby nap?

1064 Views 20 Replies 18 Participants Last post by  SpiralWoman
If I go by books on my shelf, I'd think my baby was an abnormal sleeper. When I occasionally ask parents of other babies, I actually find many people in the same boat as me.
My son sleeps just fine at night from about 6/7pm to 5:30/6am, nursing every few hours. The only difficulties we have are getting him to sleep (getting sick of the sling and vivaldi) and keeping him asleep for naps. I haven't actually kept track on paper, but I'd say his naps average 20-45 minutes. Sometimes it's over an hour, but not all that often. I know anything less than a half hour supposedly doesn't "count" in the world of real rest. I don't believe is he is generally overtired because for the most part he is an alert, happy baby. But surely, he needs more rest???
He's been like this since the beginning. The ten minute naps really get to me.
So I'm curious, do many of you have a baby under nine months who actually naps for a couple of hours, a couple of times a day???
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Until my DD was walking, she rarely napped for more than an hour. In fact, half an hour was probably about it most of the time. She did nap alot, and wasn't too hard to get to sleep most of the time, but it was a real treat when she began napping for 1.5 to 2 hours! That happened around her first birthday, when she began walking in earnest and dropped down to one nap a day. I've never considered her an abnormal sleeper. I think babies are just so different, that was just who she was, kwim?
My son is now just a week shy of his first birthday, and like you, I've felt abnormal because he doesn't nap as long as babes his age are SUPPOSED to want to nap. Generally he naps twice a day and comes bobbing up, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed after about a half-hour to 45 minutes. If I like down with him or we're in the car, he will nap longer than this--more like an hour and a half to two hours--but I can't always do this. Sometimes it frustrates me that he will only sleep that long with my company. But like you, I find that he seems pretty happy, healthy, and not over-tired. Like your baby, he also sleeps a good 11-12 hours at night (though not without wake-ups for nursing).

I'm encouraged that he may sleep more solidly at naptime once he's walking, but I'm not holding my breath!
My DS generally took 2 naps for about 45 min-1 hr each until he dropped down to one nap around 11-12 mo. Once that happened, his naps were about 1.5-2 hrs. If I nap with him, he's been known to sleep for 3 hrs though! And during his nap I usually have to nurse him back to sleep at least once.

If he wakes up happy, I always figured he slept enough, and he's crying I figure he needs to sleep longer, so I nurse him and pretend to sleep hoping that he'll fall back to sleep. It doesn't always work though, and sometimes I end up falling asleep myself!
Yesterday the little guy napped for 2.5 hours (yay) but then woke up at 10pm and wouldn't sleep again for an hour or so. jeez. I'm thinking he just doesn't need more than 2-3 shorter naps. *sigh*
He sounds a lot like my Matthew at that age! He would take 2-3 20-40 minute naps a day unless I napped with him, then he could nap a couple of hours (helped having easy access to boob
). He also was up every 2-3 hours at night to nurse. Now at 10 months, he does 6 hours at night, nurses and then sleeps another 3 hours or so. For naps he will sleep about 45 minutes to an hour in his crib or up to 2 hours with me. I think he just gets better with sleep as he gets older. There is hope!
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I agonized over the sleep thing (new mom...wanted to do everything 'right') and am finally coming to some peace and confidence about it. But it is really good to hear about babies who don't nap in the 'typical' (by the books) manner. My ds is 8 1/2 months old and occasionally will nap for an hour and 1/2 or longer (sometimes as long as 2 1/2!!), but it is pretty rare. And he almost always wakes up at 45 minutes and needs to be soothed back down (nursing or rocking). Sometimes he wakes up happy and bright-eyed at 45 minutes and then I know thats it for the nap. Other times he is fussy so I assume he needs more sleep and needs help to get it. Some days it feels like the only thing I accomplish is helping him nap. Also, he almost always takes 3 naps a day...usually 2 short and 1 longer. However, there is no real pattern or predicting it. I have noticed that he is slowing getting better at napping (less wakeful, easier to settle, more long naps etc.) as he gets older. I just figure he will grow into sleeping well and all those books that say babies should be 'blah, blah, blah' and taking 2 naps a day of at least 1 and 1/2 hours each etc. are just there to teach me to think for myself and not believe everything you read. Or, they're teaching me to remember that everyone is unique. I guess not bad lessons when it comes down to it.
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wow can I sympathize!!! My daughter naps for, like, 10 min and then is up for hours. do you put you babe down for naps? If I so much as think about putting her in bed she wakes up. I can't get anything done. It is sooo frusterating.
My son who is 27 months sleeps at least two hours each afternoon and sometimes as many as four.
My daughter goes to sleep at about 10:00 or 11:00pm and sleeps to about 8:00 or 9:00 am - with about 2 nursings through the night. nurses down for a nap for about 2 hours about 11:00 to 1:00, then naps again for about an hour around 5:00 p.m.
It seems like every day is different for us, depending on whether we go out, babe's mood, my patience etc. . . Getting a baby to sleep can be so frustrating. Elizabeth isn't much of a sleeper. She almost always wakes up at 8-9 am regardless of when she falls asleep (usually between 10 and midnight). She usually takes two naps. When she was younger it seemed like she would take 3 or 4 25-45 minute naps a day. This is frustrating for those of us who actually need to get something done. I always blamed it on the fact that I couldn't put her down to nap alone b/c she'd wake up and cry. I usually just would end up holding her the whole time. I think we might be on to something now b/c she's actually letting me put her down in her carseat. I'm wondering if it's because she doesn't like to be put from arms to lying flat. Maybe she feels like she's falling. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that I've finally found the solution. She usually rubs her eyes all the time so I've had a lot of guilt about her not sleeping enough.

How random was that?
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We had alot of trouble getting dd to nap when she was little. We always had to have her in the sling and be walking outside. Otherwise she'd only sleep 20-30 minutes. I remember writing it down on the calendar the first time she slept for 40 minutes on her about 4 months. It was such a big event.

However, now at almost 10 months she sleeps from about 8 p.m. to 7 a.m. with VERY FREQUENT wakings to nurse. But she naps great. 2 naps a day, usually over 1 hour in length, often close to 2 hours. The difference between nighttime and naps is that for naps we put her in a big old-fashioned pram and dh pushes her around outside for about 5 minutes. She goes right to sleep, no complaints. She sleeps outside for her naps....even now as we get close to winter. We put her in a big snowsuit and a knitted cap and put lots of blankets on her.

Occasionally I nurse her to sleep, but she never sleeps as well or for as long, unless I can lay with her and nurse her back to sleep when she wakes.

The nap/buggy thing has been a slow process. First she cried alot, although dh would always pick her up and console her. Then she needed a soother to fall asleep and had to sit up in her buggy until she was almost falling over from sleep. If we tried to lay her down too soon she'd get upset and cry. Now she just wants to lie down and go to sleep, no soother wanted...she gets upset if we try to make her sit up!! It's been quite an amazing process and I wish there was some way I could transfer the success we've had with naps to our nighttime!
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Ds, 10 and a half mo., won't nap at all unless he's nursed and rocked to sleep. And then he wants to be held for the entire nap, or else I must lie with him in bed. I don't mind this, usually, unless I'm hungry or have to use the bathroom, and this is the only way he will sleep for more than 20 minutes. He also half-wakes up frequently to nurse. The whole routine drives my mother-in-law nuts. She thinks he should be scheduled and alone in his crib to nap, and left to cry if he protests. I vehemently disagree! I figure he's only a baby for so long, and I should treasure all the snuggly time we have now, because soon enough, he'll be asking me to drop him off a block away from school so his friends don't see me. kiss him goodbye :LOL
ITA w/ Lincoln's mom. I am ok with giving up normall adult productivvity right now to lie down with my baby for naps or sit inthe car while he naps in his car seat after a trip. My concern is for his safety tho. When I can slip away from him & he stays asleep inthe big bed, I do not feel he is safe enough, as he will soon be rolling, then crawling. I cannot get him to sleep without me, so the big bed it must be. On the floor is not an option due to the big dog who will then think *he* has a new bed. How/what can I try to transition him to as a nap time sleeping place? He is only 5 1/2 months old, so I feel now might be the time to start trying to get him used to sleeping somewhere other than the big bed. We don't even have a crib right now. Any ideas much appreciated!
blessings, Maria
I also would love ant advice about where to put the baby for naps -- mt guy does walk and crawl, and he definitely has more guts than brains, so I am too nervous to leave him alone on the bed ...
My 4 month old will have days like that where he only sleeps for a half hour and only takes two naps. I'm a WAHM so it drives me nuts when he does that. The thing that really gets me is that he tends to do that on days when we don't have the car which means that he is setting his schedule completely on his own (rather than getting naps during rides on the car, whenever they may be).

He does go to sleep every night between 6:30 and 7:30. I nurse him right before I go to bed. Then I take him to bed with me (he starts out in his crib). He wakes between 3 and 4 to nurse and then again 2 hours later. We usually get up around 7:00 a.m. He was taking three naps with no awake time longer than 2 hours. However, he is now stretching out that awake time, so I'm thinking he may be transitioning from three naps to two.

Getting him to sleep...when he was in the hospital he refused to sleep in his bassinet, even if his arms were completely limp when I put him down. So for the first few weeks he slept on my chest. Then I was able to put him down in the bassinet if he was asleep. To get him to go to sleep I had to either swaddle him or carry him in the sling and walk around the house with my special go-to-sleep walk. After three months, the swaddling was no longer necessary, but I still usually use the sling to get him to go down. Once he lays his head down on my chest, I know it's safe to gently take him out of the sling and lay him down (either in his crib or on a blanket I have by my desk for him to nap on). Then *very important* I pat his back with my hand until he settles and then I gently taper the heaviness of my pats. Then he'll sleep for anywhere from a half hour to two hours. Sometimes I will nurse him to sleep, but not usually since early on we did have latching problems and it was when he was falling asleep that he'd get lazy with his latch and really hurt me. He also tends to spit up and that will often disturb his sleep, so I try not to nurse him to sleep. Then again, sometimes I do nurse him to sleep because he seems to sleep longer with a full tummy.

With all that said, I FEEL YOUR PAIN! It drives me crazy when he won't nap, and he can't really entertain himself yet. I hope he learns to sit soon so he can entertain himself more. I've been told that an exersaucer would work well, but I'm afraid I'd be tempted to put him in it all the time so I could work, and then I would feel guilty for the exersaucer becoming a substitute parent.
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Since Mieke began to crawl her sleep haibts have improved remarkably! I think she wears herself out.

She sleeps about 2-21/2 hours during the day (total, in 2 sleeps). But she was about 8 1/2 months when she started this, so I'm not much help.
Sometimes I don't think I know what babies those books are talking about. My daughter took 2 naps that were 30 to 45 minutes for the longest time. I take care of 3 babies under a year old (at different times) and two of them hardly ever nap for more than 45 minutes. One takes a catnap in the morning and then is out for 2 hours in the afternoon, but he is close to a year. I think when they are little, their sleep cycle is short. When you lie down with them, they are comforted by your presence when they surface from their sleep cycle, so they are able to go right back to sleep. DD's naps started lasting an hour to an hour and a half around 9 months and then she cut down to one two hour nap around 14 months. Either her sleep cycle lengthened as she matured, or she just started feeling more secure with her environment and is able to put herself back to sleep.

Actually though, while I was writing this, she woke up after an hour and I had to go lie down with her for a little bit. She is 19 months old.
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Yep, similar here too. From about 2 months old he would take 40 minute naps almost to the minute. Sometimes 20 minute ones. It was really hard to get him to sleep too--often the amount of time to get him to sleep far exceeded the length of the naps.

Of course, my DS has almost always been held for naps. If I put him down it would be 10 minutes, max. If I could even put him down. If I laid down with him, same story.

Eventually he started taking 1 hour naps with help. When he starts to wake up we would get up and walk around until he settled again. If he was in his baby hammock (which I bought around 6 months) I would bounce it until he fell back to sleep. I had to sit right next to him so I could catch him before he really woke up--if I moved too slowly it was all over.

Now he takes 1.5-2 hour naps at almost 11 months old. Usually in the hammock, but sometimes still on my chest (like right now--he's teething really badly).
Sleep, babies, sleep! Oh, why won't you sleep? My 8 1/2 month old dd is a power napper...usually 30-45 minutes and them wham! We're up and out of there to go play some more!!!! She's got a horrible cold right now, so she's napped great today. In a way, I'm happy that she's napped so much...I feel bad that she's sick, but the naps have been nice (2 1/2 hours this morning, going on 2 hours this afternoon!)
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