Naptime Basics

Practical tips so your little one, and you, get the break you need.

Between 3 months and 12 months, most babies need two daytime naps, usually with lengths of 30 minutes to two hours each. Here are some tips from sleep specialist Jodi Mindell, Ph.D., of Children's Hospital, in Philadelphia:

  • Most infants are ready to take their morning nap about two hours after they wake up.
  • Put your baby down to nap in the same location where she sleeps at night.
  • Develop a routine that is a miniversion of the bedtime routine.
  • Be careful of letting your infant nap exclusively in the Snugli, a stroller, or a car seat. If he becomes too accustomed to these things, he might not be able to nap anywhere else.
  • When your baby is napping, don't tiptoe around the house, afraid to flush a toilet or squeak a floorboard; you want him to be able to sleep through the noises of normal house-hold activity.

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