H is almost fourteen months old and is still on two naps a day. From everything I’ve read, and from what her baby peers are doing, it’s common for babies/toddlers to stick with two naps until anywhere between 12 – 18 months approximately. At the start of this year she actually started sleeping longer for her naps too – the effort of walking more and more taking it’s toll on her energy stores. But over the last few weeks, we’ve had days where a long morning nap has resulted in over an hour of afternoon cot play…but no sleep.
I have been monitoring her sleep patterns for a while (in fact I always have done and probably will for a long time, but in this case it was with specific attention on how easily she got to sleep!) and have known she’s been on the cusp of dropping to one nap for a while. When she’s at nursery, she’s only had a post-lunch nap for the last week or two; There is so much going on there she’ll only sleep when she’s good and shattered. But at home she notices her tiredness more easily so has still needed two naps.
Today I decided to see if she would go through until 12noon without a nap. The odds dropped quite quickly when she woke up at 5:55am rather than her usual 6:45 – 7am. I got her up and dressed at 7am like normal and we followed our usual morning routine. However as 9:45 / 10am closed in, I didn’t take her upstairs for her usual sleep. Instead she carried on playing but started to increasingly grouchy very quickly. So we went for a walk, leaving at 10:05am. By 10:15am she was asleep. A resounding “No” in answer to the question “Is she ready for one nap?”.
I walked around for a while and got her home for 10:45am. She’d slept for 30mins at which point I got her up and got her playing. After a groggy phase, she quickly perked up and was on top form right through until 1:40pm. She didn’t even throw any lunch on the floor and had a good drawing session…all over her high chair table.
I gave her a drink of milk and put her down for a nap at 1:50pm. By 1:55pm she was sound asleep and still is just after 3pm. So from today’s experiment, if she can’t last the whole morning without a sleep, she only needs a ‘power nap’. I think I’ll try this out for a few weeks and then when she’s got used to a shorter morning snooze I can try and phase it out.
I don’t remember going from three to two naps being quite so tricky!