13-Month-Old Baby: Feeding, Sleep, and Milestones by Month - Baby Chick
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13-Month-Old Baby: Feeding, Sleep, and Milestones by Month

Learn all about your 13-month-old baby’s new developmental milestones, feeding schedule, changing sleep schedule, and more.

Published June 11, 2024

by Rande Ludwig

Registered Nurse BSN, RNC-NIC

Medically reviewed by Melissa Hardy

Pediatrician, Breastfeeding Medicine Specialist, IBCLC

Now that your baby is 13 months old, they’re entering a new stage of life: the toddler stage. During their toddler years, your 13-month-old will continue to reach new milestones, have an ever-changing appetite, and have longer wake windows. They will amaze you with all their new skills, so buckle up and prepare for an exciting ride! Let’s dive into your 13-month-old baby’s sleep and feeding schedule, activities you can do together, and more.

13-Month Developmental Milestones

At 13 months old, your baby is now in the toddler stage, which brings about new milestones. Their curiosity will take off, and they’ll become more social, wanting to interact with those around them — but mainly people they already know because stranger danger can also be at an all-time high!12 Some new milestones to expect now or in the next several months include:1

  • Standing alone without support
  • Taking a few steps unassisted
  • Carrying small objects in their hands
  • Pushing or pulling objects like boxes
  • Dumping toys out of a container
  • Pointing at something to tell you they want it
  • Turning the pages of a book while you read
  • Holding a spoon during meals but struggling to get the spoon into their mouth
  • Stacking two or more objects on top of each other
  • Recognizing themselves in the mirror and waving at themselves
  • Imitating others
  • Following one-step directions, like “Put this ball in the bin”

13-Month-Old Feeding Schedule

A sample 13-month-old feeding schedule from Baby Chick outlines meals and snacks, including solids and optional breast milk: wake up at 7 AM, breakfast at 7:30 AM, and other snack and meal times throughout the day. This routine aligns with 13-month-old milestones for a well-balanced diet.

As your baby grows and develops, their appetite will also change. Regarding their feeding schedule, your 13-month-old baby will eat three meals a day and have two to three snacks.11 Their meals will line up with the rest of the family’s meal times.

Now is a great time to transition your baby to cow’s milk. They should have around 16 ounces of whole cow’s milk daily. If they can’t have dairy, soy milk is an acceptable alternative. Avoid other plant-based milk, such as oat or rice milk, as they lack the protein, vitamins, and calcium your baby needs. If they continue drinking breast milk, you can add in cow’s milk as well or wait until they’re done with breast milk.3

You can also start the transition of your baby drinking from a cup instead of a bottle. The goal is to have them drink from an open cup by 2 years old. To help with the transition, serve your baby whole milk, breast milk, or water in a cup during meals and snacks. After they’re comfortable using a cup at meal times, offer it to them at nap time and finally at bedtime.4

Serving Guidelines

It can be hard to know just how much food your 13-month-old baby needs during the day. It’s important to remember that their appetite will fluctuate from day to day, so just because they ate a certain amount today doesn’t mean they’ll eat that same amount tomorrow. The general goal should be to have a rainbow variety of foods each week. But here are some helpful serving guidelines to follow:2

  • 6 servings of grains per day (1 serving equals ½ slice of bread, ¼ cup of cereal, 1-2 crackers, or ¼ cup of pasta)
  • 2-3 servings of veggies per day (1 serving equals 1 tablespoon of cooked veggies)
  • 2-3 servings of fruit per day (1 serving equals ¼ cup of fruit)
  • 2-3 servings of dairy per day (1 serving equals ½ cup of milk, ½ ounces of cheese, or ⅓ cup of yogurt)
  • 2 servings of protein per day (1 serving equals 1 ounce of cooked meat, 2 tablespoons of ground meat, ½ egg, or 1 tablespoon of smooth peanut butter)
  • 16 ounces of whole milk, soy milk, or breast milk
  • Up to 8 ounces of water

13-Month-Old Sleep Schedule

This image depicts a 13-month-old baby sample sleep schedule from baby-chick.com. It outlines daily naps (1-2), total daytime sleep (3-4 hours), and total sleep (11-14 hours daily). Nap 1 is 2.5-3 hours after waking; Nap 2 is 3-3.5 hours after Nap 1; bedtime is 3

Maintaining a consistent sleep schedule will provide your 13-month-old baby with the right amount of sleep for their age and help with periods of sleep regression. At this age, your baby needs 11-14 hours of sleep daily, including a two- to three-hour afternoon nap. Some babies will still take a morning nap and an afternoon nap; following your baby’s lead on when to drop their morning nap is important. It’s still appropriate for your 13-month-old to have their bedtime around 7:30 p.m.5

Sleep Regression

While sleep regression may not be expected at this age, your 13-month-old can experience another period of sleep regression. Sleep regression occurs when your baby has difficulty both falling and staying asleep. It can happen for various reasons, but the most common reasons for sleep regression include teething, illness, a change in their schedule, or a significant life change, such as moving to a new house. Thankfully, sleep regression typically only lasts two to four weeks.6

Sleep regression is hard on the whole family, but there are ways you can help your little one overcome it. These include the following:6

  • Don’t let them sleep in your bed, which can prolong the sleep regression period.
  • Keep a consistent bedtime and bedtime routine.
  • Don’t give them screen time before bed.
  • Incorporate relaxing activities into their bedtime routine, such as bath time, reading, or soft lullabies.
  • Put them to bed when they’re drowsy but not yet asleep. This will help them learn to fall asleep on their own.
  • If they wake up at night, allow them to fuss for a few minutes before going in to comfort them. This will help them learn to self-soothe.
  • Try reassuring them while they’re still in their crib, instead of picking them up when they cry.
  • Provide them with a comfort item, such as a blanket or a stuffed animal.

Daily Schedule

A sample daily schedule for a 13-month-old baby includes specific times for waking up, meals, snacks, activities, naps, and bedtime. The 13-month-old sleep schedule starts at 7 AM and ends at 7:30 PM with various activities and breaks throughout the day.

Consistency is key in your baby’s daily routine. Aim for consistent wake times, meal times, and nap times. If your baby has transitioned to only needing one nap per day, aim for that nap to start around 1 p.m. This nap will last around two to three hours. Also, aim for a bedtime of 7:30 p.m.5 Having a schedule provides your baby with structure and stability, aiding their development.

Health Concerns to Watch Out For

At this age, a scheduled well-child check-up isn’t needed, as long as your baby attended their 12-month check-up and received their vaccines.13 As your little one grows, they get exposed to many illnesses. The most common childhood illnesses they’ll be exposed to include the common cold, ear infections, fevers, and the stomach flu. Many of these illnesses can be treated at home, but there are a few things to remember:7,14

  • Don’t give your baby any over-the-counter cold or cough medicine.
  • You can treat a fever by alternating Tylenol (acetaminophen) and ibuprofen. (Make sure to follow the dosing instructions listed on the packaging.)
  • Use saline nasal drops to help with congestion.
  • The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends treating any ear infection in children under 2 years old with antibiotics.

While your baby can recover from most illnesses on their own, if they’re experiencing any of these symptoms, you should contact their doctor:8,15

  • They have a fever for three or more days, or it’s higher than 105 F.
  • They feel cold to the touch, or they feel hot to the touch with shivering.
  • They’re quiet or overly sleepy.
  • They have rapid breathing or trouble breathing.
  • They have a barking cough or make harsh sounds when breathing.
  • They’re hard to wake or appear confused after waking.
  • They have pale, gray, or spotty skin.
  • There’s a change in their cry (such as crying more, being unable to be comforted, or not crying).

If you have any other concerns about your 13-month-old’s health, don’t hesitate to contact your doctor.

Activities for 13-Month-Olds

A 13-month-old baby girl takes her first steps in a living room, while a man smiles and crouches behind her. The room is furnished with a blue sofa, wooden sideboard, and a green armchair. Sunlight pours through the windows, illuminating this precious milestone.

The best way to help your 13-month-old baby reach their milestones is to engage them in fun and developmentally appropriate activities. Here are some ideas to help you engage your little one:9

  • Repeat the sounds your baby makes back to them.
  • Tell them the name of an object they see before handing it to them.
  • Allow them to help with simple tasks, such as putting toys away at the end of the day.
  • Sing songs and incorporate moves for your baby to copy.
  • Dance with them.
  • Read books together.
  • Play hide-and-seek.
  • Teach them wanted behaviors, such as how to touch their pet gently.

Safety Tips

With all the new growth and milestones your 13-month-old baby is going through, keeping them safe is a top priority. Babies explore their world without a sense of danger. It’s up to you to ensure they remain safe while allowing them to explore their environment. Here are a few tips that will help keep your baby safe:10

  • Keep all cords, breakable items, medicines, household cleaners, choking hazards, and hot or sharp objects out of reach.
  • If your baby has possibly consumed any harmful substance, contact Poison Control immediately at 1-800-222-1222.
  • Use safety gates at the top and bottom of all stairs.
  • Prevent drowning by keeping all toilet lids closed and supervising your baby while they’re in the bath or near water.
  • If guns are in the house, keep them unloaded and locked in a secure cabinet.
  • Use a rear-facing car seat.
  • Apply at least SPF 30 sunscreen before playing outside, and reapply every two hours.
  • Don’t smoke or allow others to smoke around your baby.

Watching your baby move into the toddler stage is rewarding and bittersweet as they leave babyhood behind. By helping them reach new milestones, keeping them safe, and engaging them in stimulating activities, you can help support your 13-month-old’s growth. This next year will be full of new achievements for your little one, and their journey of discovery is just beginning.

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Rande Ludwig
Rande Ludwig Registered Nurse BSN, RNC-NIC
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Rande Ludwig is a registered nurse who specializes in neonatal nursing. She earned her nursing degree from the University of North Dakota. After earning her degree, she began working in… Read more

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