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Blue Sky


  • "Blue Sky" started this thread

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Tuesday, August 31st 2010, 10:28am

Introducing daytime naps/routine

Our DD is almost 10 weeks old & whilst she sleeps well at night now & has a good night time routine, she is terrible during the day & really fights her sleep despite needing it which means that I spend most of my day either in the car or walking her in the pram, making sure that my time out coincides with her needing sleep. If I'm lucky the longest sleep she'll have is around 45mins each time but it's usually a case of her just cat-napping - yet she'll sleep from 10.30pm-4am at night & sometimes even longer!

I'd like to introduce a more structured daytime routine/naps but wonder whether she's still too young & wanted to know what others have done/think? She desperately needs the sleep but it's such a battle to get her to sleep during the day.

Any advice, please?
Blue Sky
IVF #1 - :BFP: 29th Oct '09
Baby girl arrived safely on 24th June '10
Another beautiful baby girl arrived safely on 16th May '12 : D



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Tuesday, August 31st 2010, 1:30pm


We've not got a routine for naps yet and O is 6 months old! She fights her sleep during the day and will just cat nap. I've just recently managed to get her to sleep in her cot for upto 2 hours during the day!! It was amazing!! But she usually will just fall asleep on her play mat for 20 - 30 minutes and then wakes up and carries on playing!

I've found that if she sleeps well during the day she'll sleep better at night which is good!!

I've also found that she'll sleep a lot longer if we're out, so either in her car seat or puchchair.

I also found that she used to fall asleep during a feed so would wind her and then try to put her down.

Sorry, I've just realised I've not been much help. Maybe try making it a bit like bedtime, so darkened room, quiet etc.

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Tuesday, August 31st 2010, 1:41pm

Hi bluesky

It sounds as though you have nighttimes cracked so if you want to introduce a more structured routine around daytime naps you should be able to and she's probably at the age now where she would respond well to it.

Generally speaking babies of your DD's age are usually ready for bed a maximum of 2 hours after they last wake. (Although I often found baby bubble was ready a lot sooner after the first morning wake). This generally means that you they have a morning, lunchtime and afternoon nap. I found that a morning nap was the easiest to introduce. We used to go for a walk for the afternoon nap at around 4ish and I found the lunchtime nap the hardest to get sussed.

If you prefer to be led by your baby then you could let her work out her own nap timings but 'help' her but starting some sleep associations after she's been awake for coming up to that 2 hour mark - things such as a quiet, darkened room, lullaby etc etc.

I've just checked my :shush: gina ford book :shush: if you prefer to be a bit more routine led - she suggests a morning nap of around 45 mins-1 hr, a lunch time nap of 2-2.5 hours and an afternoon nap of something like 45 mins for young babies. This is generally the natural routine that babies will fall into themselves though. Her ''routines' can be useful as a general guide though if you're not sure where to start. I often found though that baby bubs would need more sleep that she was suggesting. And as Flic says, sleep breeds sleep so better daytime sleeps generally means better nighttime sleeps as well.

Hope that helps a little.



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Tuesday, August 31st 2010, 1:43pm

Hi Blue Sky,

I only really started trying to get to grips with naps when my LO was 5 months + and, in hindsight, I wish I'd started a lot earlier. I don't know whether 10 weeks is too early or not - personally, though, if I am ever lucky enough to have another baby I would be inclined to start trying to get daytime naps sorted out around about this time, but I'd be prepared for it not to work too well to begin with! I think the important thing is just letting the baby get used to the idea that they go down in their cot for a nap 2-3 times a day, even if they don't nap, or the nap isn't very long - it's a start!

My DS was a VERY hungry baby, who fed every 2 hours, so after a few days of a lot of screaming every time I tried putting him down for a nap (this is when he was 5+ months) I worked out I had to feed him before each nap. It's really not recommended as you're setting yourself up for them not to be able to sleep without a feed - I was lucky in that when I decided to quit the feeding to sleep my DS was fine with it - but that was only a month or so ago!

The important thing is to work out how long your DD can go between sleeps/naps and, once you've cracked that, just make sure you're at least trying to put her down at those times. It's not actually that long - at 5 months my DS had 2 hours before his 1st nap, about 3 before his next nap and 2-3 before bedtime. If you can get her down before she gets too tired you might avoid her fighting it. You might have to experiment a bit with the timings but you will get there eventually. Try keeping the nursery dark and quiet then having a bit of wind-down time in there before you put her down.

Good luck!


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Tuesday, August 31st 2010, 5:28pm

Hi Blue Sky

I can't add much to the above but just wanted to say that I was definitely putting my babies in their cots for day time naps by 10 weeks. I've never put them in their cots for the afternoon nap hwoever as they tend to be the shortest and less predictable in what time and for how long so I tend to just let them fall asleep wherever they are and for however long.

Like Bubble, I have the gina ford book which I do like in terms of giving you an idea of what some babies will and can do in terms of sleep etc. I did find my two were pretty much doing what she suggested already but I had no idea putting them in their cots was good practice! I also half swaddled mine and now actually put them in their gro bags which makes them snug and warm :D For both morning and lunch time nap they have their regular lullaby music on which clicks off about 15/20 mins later. They are in a dark room too which definitely helps them get sleepy. I literally say it's sleeptime now, pop them in their bags, pull the blinds down, music on and leave the room.

There were definitely tears in the early days of introducing the cot to nap in but they really didn't last very long and at the time, I was using dummies to help settle but that quickly stopped too.

I love my lunchtimes now and am not constrained to being back home for them to sleep either; they can now happily sleep in the buggy which makes going out for pub lunches or whatever with friends extremely doable or if I'm travelling far I tend to do it at this time so that they aren't sleeping otuside normal hours.

It's fantastic that your LO is sleeping for such a long time at night and I'm sure if you start regulating daytime naps you'll find this time increases too. My two tend to sleep at 8.30 for an hour (get waken!), 12ish for at least one hour but can be up to 2 and a half hours and then as I say the afternoon one is a bit hit and miss. If they've had 2 and a half horus at lunch they sometimes even skip this. as I'm typing this, my DS has been asleep since 5 o'clock which is really unusual but then he was only asleep for an hour at lunchtime todya. I shall probably leave him another 5 mins and then get going with their bedtime routine! it'll just be a shorter time in the bath now!

Good luck with it and as I said above, it didn't happen overnight but you will hopefully find your LO takes to it relatively quickly if you persevere.


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Tuesday, August 31st 2010, 7:28pm

I would say that you should introduce a routine but you should structure it for your baby. I had terrible, terrible trouble with J getting him to nap during the day (there are number of threads where I was literally crying for help). Eventually I realised that I needed to stop looking at the books that told me what he "should" be doing and just go with what he needed, in J's case that meant that instead of taking 2-3 naps of 1-2 hours each he took 5-6 naps of 30 minutes each time and he could only stay awake for about an hour at a time, now he's down to 3-4 naps of 30-45 minutes each time and stays awake for anything between 1 and 4 hours inbetween.

I had to try several different things to get J to sleep as he started to fight each one after a while and it would stop working so here are some of the things I tried. When he was really little I used to part swaddle him, he didn't like being fully swaddled but would let me compromise and swaddle his arms only, then I could turn him on his side and pat him on the back rythmically with the radio tuned into white noise, it doesn't work straight away but eventually he would drop off. This stopped working once he got older so I tried holding him in the dark and rocking him in my arms until he started to drop off then I would carefully put him down and he would continue the rest of the journey to sleep on his own. Then we went through a period where I would take him upstairs put him down and he would cry for 5-10 minutes before settling himself (don't try this until you are sure that your LO has learned to fall asleep by themself), when that stopped working I would take him upstairs about 15 minutes before I thought he would get tired and we would sit in a quiet, dimly lit room and have a story and a cuddle, once he started to yawn he went into his cot, light would go off and I would rub his tummy while he grotted a little before going to sleep. Now when he starts to show he's tired we go upstairs and he goes into his cot with a toy, the light goes off and I sing him the same 4 lullabys slowly before giving him a kiss and leaving, he usually grots in a half hearted way for about 5 minutes while flinging his toy around before dropping off. I also had to cry him down a couple of times but only do that after 6 months and only if you are comfortable doing so ( I hated it but it did mean that we came to an understanding which means I didn't have to do it anymore). I don't know if any of these will work for you but at least it gives you some ideas!

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Blue Sky


  • "Blue Sky" started this thread

Posts: 65

Reg: Aug 7th 2009

Location: Cheshire

Children: 1 beautiful little boy, JP, now safe in heaven & 1 beautiful baby girl who came home with us!

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Wednesday, September 1st 2010, 1:13pm

Thanks for the advice. Had a horrible day yesterday so decided to start a more formal structure for daytime naps today. DD currently in her moses basked upstairs & has been for the past 40mins - keeps drifting in & out of sleep/crying but will persevere! Determined to crack this one for her sake as much as mine!
Blue Sky
IVF #1 - :BFP: 29th Oct '09
Baby girl arrived safely on 24th June '10
Another beautiful baby girl arrived safely on 16th May '12 : D

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