How to Make Sure Your Child is Getting Enough Sleep

How to Make Sure Your Child is Getting Enough Sleep | Baby Chick

How to Make Sure Your Child is Getting Enough Sleep

Figuring out whether your child is getting enough sleep during a 24-hour period can be stressful. Every child is different and if my kid sleeps less than someone else’s kid I feel panicky, worrying about their mental and physical development. There is no exact formula for sleep patterns, but there are some guidelines used to determine what is considered “normal” for each stage and age.

Recommended Sleep Guidelines for Children by Age

Newborn

Newborns and Infants need the most amount of sleep, obviously. For the first few weeks they sleep pretty consistently throughout the day. Newborns should be taking 3-5 naps a day and 8-9 hours of night time sleep. Naps will be several hours long and then the baby will be awake generally 20-40 mins between naps.

2-4 months

Two to four month olds should be taking 3-4 naps a day and having 9-10 hours of night time sleep. This totals 14-16 of sleeping hours per 24 hours.

4-6 months

Four to six month old babies will generally go through a leap here and be awake a lot more during the day. Hopefully, they will be transitioning into much longer sleep stretches at night, some even able to go all through the night without waking. Babies will nap 2-3 times a day and can sleep 10 hours at night. 15 hours is recommended for 4-12 month old babies but its more common to get about 12 hours out of them a day.

6-9 months

Children six to nine months of age will probably be in their sleeping routine now. There should be no more day and night confusion. They should be in a more predictable sleep pattern throughout the day with about 2-3 naps and a solid night time routine. Six to nine month babies can sleep for 14 hours in a 24 hour period.

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9-12 months

Right around this time I know my kids did another transition to two expected naps a day and then would sleep 12 hours at night. Their diet will also change around this time to more table food. Some moms have found this transition to table food to be helpful for their night time sleep because they seemed to be more satisfied at night.

12-18 months

You may notice around this age your little one will start fighting one of their naps or not being tired when it is nap time. This is when they will transition from two naps to one during the day and sleeping 12 hours at night.

18-24 months

18-24 month olds will be down to napping once a day for a few hours and sleeping roughly 11 hours at night.

2-3 years

2-3 year olds can still nap once a day as long as their night time sleep doesn’t seem to be disrupted by it and sleeping 10-11 hours a night.

3-5 year olds

Children this age will drop their day time sleep. So you might get one nap out of them but day to day it might be unpredictable. 3-5 year olds should be having 10-11 hours of nighttime sleep a day.

5-12 year olds

No naps for these guys and about 11 hours of sleep a night.

Tips for Making Sure Your Child is Getting Enough Sleep

1. Make sufficient sleep a priority. It is hard, especially for single and working parents, to get the right amount of sleep for ourselves as parents. Too often that can bleed into our children’s lives. Set a good example and take care of your sleep habits just as much your child’s, it will significantly improve your child’s view of the importance of sleep.

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2. Refrain from working late into the night or allowing your child to stay up too late to work on school projects at the last minute. When you are educated on the benefits of getting enough sleep you can properly educate your children on why going to bed at a good time is important.

3. Keep to a regular daily routine. When kids are in a daycare they stay on a pretty tight daily schedule of playtime, snack time, meal time, and nap time. When you are at home it is important to stick to a routine as well so your child is comfortable, and will learn to anticipate bedtime and nap times.

4. Stay active during the daytime. It is hard to be ready to go to sleep when you aren’t tired. I know that’s true for me, and toddlers even more so. Plan activities during the day that allow your child to use up that energy so when they head to bed they are tired.

5. Monitor screen time before bed. AAP recommends shutting off all screens 30 minutes before bedtime.

6. Keep the bedroom and bed a place for sleep. Keep screens, toys and clutter out of the child’s bed and strongly encourage only sleeping while in bed. One item such as a blankie or security stuffed animal to help with separation anxiety is fine but do not overwhelm your child with too many things to do when they should be sleeping.

7. Stay aware of sleep problems. Sleep apnea, insomnia, restless sleep, fighting sleep, and lack of attentiveness during the day are signs of sleep problems.

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Indications that Your Child is Not Getting Enough Sleep

In young children (toddlers/babies):

  • Baby is constantly cranky, whiney, needy, clingy, fidgety or hyperactive.
  • He or she wakes up groggy and falls asleep again quickly after being woken up.
  • Baby has trouble going from 2 naps to 1 nap.
  • Elementary age
  • Hyperactivity
  • Falling asleep at inappropriate times
  • Lacks alertness and motivation
  • Has trouble falling asleep and then has restless sleep

Your little one’s sleep habits may ebb and flow as he grows, and the most important thing to remember is that his little bones and body are growing strong and need plenty of rest and fuel.

About the Author /

Hannah Southerland is a stay-at-home mom and wife of two little boys. She blinked and now they are 3 and 4 and taking over her world with karate moves and an endless need for snacks. Over the past 4 years, she’s been researching topics on sleep, baby care, and motherhood, trying to parent the best way she knows how!

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Instagram post 17862171103601373 All of these things make me happy. What would you add to your self care toolbox?⁠
I'm seriously needing some of these things tonight to start a new week. Hoping you mamas get some self care time too! 💕⁠
📷: @hallmark⁠
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Instagram post 18081610903134401 Praying that your toddler let's you get to sleep this weekend. 🙏💤⁠
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Instagram post 18073051357163780 When it comes to clamping the cord, our mottos is "what's the rush?" The blood volume in the placenta and cord at the time of birth is BABY'S blood. It's simply mid-circulation in the placenta at the time of birth. It just makes sense to leave it be and let it finish its job.⁠
No, the blood won't drain out of baby and go backwards into the placenta.⁠
No, your baby is not more likely to get sick from jaundice.⁠
Yes, your baby will still be getting oxygen while they figure out breathing, especially important if they need resuscitation.⁠
Yes, your baby will have better iron levels for the first year of their life.⁠
Look at how thick and engorged this cord still is at 4 and 18 minutes after baby was born. Just imagine how much blood baby would have lost if the cord had been clamped immediately, or at 60 seconds, 90 seconds, or 3 minutes! The placenta was expelled immediately before the 18 minute photo was taken. The pulse in the cord could still be felt even AFTER THE PLACENTA HAD BEEN DELIVERED! The cord was finally clamped and cut more than an hour after birth at 73 minutes. ❤️⁠
📷: @lawrenrosephotography⁠
Informative post and words by @bundleborn⁠
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Instagram post 17852665306696124 With the holiday season upon us and moms trying to make everything magical for their families, remember to stop and take a moment to take care of you. ❤️ Have a hot cup of coffee, a long warm shower and some alone time. Communicate this with your partner not as a wish but as a necessity. We must take the time to take care of ourselves to better take care of them. 💕⁠
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Instagram post 17990835490280335 I totally felt this way when I was pregnant. And kinda feel this way after all that turkey. 🤣🦃 Happy turkey day to all you expecting mamas!!⁠
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Here are some tips to combat isolation:⁠
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1️⃣ Get outside when possible.⁠
2️⃣ Video chat with friends/family.⁠
3️⃣ Join a virtual group.⁠
4️⃣ Invite someone to come over.⁠
5️⃣ Find a local mom's group.⁠
6️⃣ Listen to the radio or a podcast (it's interesting how this can make us feel connected with others)⁠
7️⃣ Run an errand--even grabbing a coffee via drive-thru can feel good.⁠
8️⃣ Get to know your neighbors.⁠
What would you add to the list?⁠
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📷: @hallmark⁠
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Instagram post 17855722339639264 ✈️ Tips to Survive a Plane Ride with Kids ✈️⁠
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Flying on a plane with your little one for the first time can be terrifying. Are they going to cry the whole time? How will they handle the airport, the turbulence and the landing? Well we have some tips that will help prepare you for your flight with your kids. Here's what to do to have a more enjoyable experience 😊 {Link in bio!}⁠
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