Frequently Asked Questions => SLEEP => Topic started by: Jaime on February 13, 2007, 20:39:21 pm

Title: Typical Amounts of Day and Night Sleep
Post by: Jaime on February 13, 2007, 20:39:21 pm
Keep in mind that the following is an average - some babies need a little more sleep, and some will need less sleep.  You cannot fit a baby into a clock.  A baby's temperament, amongst other things, can influence their sleep requirements, as can milestones, teething etc.  The most important thing is to watch for your baby's tired cues.

Age/milestones             Sleep needed per day             Typical patterns
Newborn                        16-20 hours                       Nap 1-2 hours in every three;
Dont have control over                                                5-6 hours at night#
anything except their

1-3 months                    15-18 hours                       Three naps, 1.5 hours each + catnap;
More alert and aware                                               8 hours at night#
of surroundings; able  
to move head

4-6 months                    15-18 hours                        Two naps, 2-3 hours each OR;
Gaining mobility                                                       3 naps; 2 2hr naps & 1 45min catnap
                                                                                10-12 hours at night

6-8 months                     14-18 hours                        Two naps 1-2 hours each;
More mobility; able to                                                   10-12 hours at night
sit and crawl

9 months old                   14-17 hours                        2 naps of 1.5 hours each;
                                                                                11-12 hours at night

1 year old                        14-16 hours                        2 naps, 1 of 1 hour and 1 of 1.25-1.5 hrs
                                                                                11.5hrs at night

                     The transition to one nap usually occurs in the 12-18 month range

18 months old                                                        1 nap - 2 hrs
                                                                                11.5hrs at night

2 years old                                                             1 nap - 1.5hrs
                                                                                11.5hrs at night

3 years old                                                             1 nap - 1.25hrs
                                                                                 10.75hrs at night
                       Daytime naps usually stop by the age of 4
4 years old                                                            no more naps!!
                                                                                 11.5hrs at night

5 years old                                                             11 hrs at night

6 years old                                                             10.75 hours at night

# - This is the longest stretch of night sleep that could be expected before waking for a night feed, and not all the sleep the baby will get at night.  Especially in the early days, babies will wake more often for feeding.  

Short naps - some babies have biorhythms that make them short nappers.  Things to ask:
  * have naps ever been longer than 45 minutes or so?
  * is he cranky during the day?
  * is he sleeping well at night?
If your answers are no, no, and yes, then you probably have a short napper on your hands, and will have to adjust your EASY routine to reflect that.  You can read a real life example in the BWSAYP book on p. 215.

Secrets of the Babywhisperer, p. 189
The Babywhisperer Solves All Your Problems, p. 20, 201
adaptation from a Similac mailout, which adapted from Ferber's "Solve Your Child's Sleep Problems"
NHS advisory handouts (