By Molly Leighton, Certified Pediatric Sleep Coach, Sleep Shore Sleep Consulting
Nap transitions can be exhausting and confusing. When your baby should be napping and for how long can seem like some crazy impossible riddle. But it doesn’t have to be that way! Want to handle nap transitions like a pro? Follow these guidelines for a smooth transition.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Nap transitions are inevitable and a normal part of sleep! Sometimes the signs and how tos aren’t as easy. Let’s dig into this!
Signs to look out for:⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Nap refusals — Specifically, when a baby or toddler starts fighting a nap on a daily basis (typically in the afternoon), this can be a sign that it’s time to let that nap go.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Sudden erratic schedule — Usually when a baby or toddler is about to drop a nap, you’ll start to see their normally consistent schedule begin to go haywire. You may see bedtime struggles, middle of the night wakings, or sudden early wakeups that appear seemingly out of nowhere.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Shorter naps — Your baby or toddler may begin to take shorter naps. This may lead you to believe you should ADD a nap when really a nap should likely be dropped.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Ok, but HOW do I drop this nap?!⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Take a deep breath and realize that it may be kind of funky for a little bit. Typically, the first nap transitions are the easiest.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
#1 - Back up bedtime temporarily — To ensure that your baby or toddler doesn’t grow overtired, an earlier bedtime will be your best friend. Put your baby or toddler to bed 30-60 minutes earlier during a nap transition. This will help keep your baby well rested.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
#2 - Give it time — In the midst of it, a day may feel like a week. Remember, it takes time for everyone to adjust to a new schedule. Know that it may take a week or two for your baby or toddler to adjust.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
#3 - Enjoy early bedtime — Nap time can be a nice respite for parents. Dropping a nap can seem overwhelming for this reason. You may not get the extra “me time” during the day anymore but enjoy your evenings. Early bedtimes are great for everyone!⠀
Need some guidance on how to transition naps without hiccups? Set up a 1:1 call with me to plan your nap transition with ease.
Ready to work with an expert to get your baby on a solid schedule? Want to get your newborn, infant, toddler or school-age child sleeping an extra hour? Perhaps the goal is your child sleeping the entire night?
Baby Brezza is proud to partner with sleep coach & Mom Molly Leighton. She can help you get your your baby on a solid schedule and achieve your goals. Contact Molly at firstname.lastname@example.org, visit her website at www.sleepshore.com or follow her on Instagram (@sleep.shore) or Facebook (@sleepshore)