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Does anyone else have a baby that only naps for 20 to 30 minutes at a time?

Posted by on Jan. 25, 2010 at 1:00 AM
  • 21 Replies

I have 2 boys, a 3 year old and a 4 month old.  My 4 month old will only nap for 20 to 30 minutes at a time and then wakes up cranky.  Basically, I put him down when he is sleepy and like clockwork he wakes up about 30 minutes later.  There have been a few occassion's when he will sleep a little longer (maybe 45 minutes), but mostly it's only 30 minutes.  Nighttime sleep is completely different, he'll usually sleep from about 7:30am to 5am before wanting a bottle and then going right back to sleep until about 7am.  My first son was the same way as a baby and it did get better, I just don't remember when (I wish I had written those type of things down).  I know the possible reason is that he can't seem to put himself back to sleep during his transition into a deeper sleep state.  The only thing I don't understand is how he's able to sleep well at night, just not during the day.  I know he's tired, he just can't seem to stay asleep.

Has anyone else had or have a baby who did the same thing?  If so, was there anything that helped?  Do you recall when the naps got better and got longer?  I'm just a little anxious for this to get better and was also curious if anyone else has experienced the same thing since I have had 2 babies in a row who did the same thing, and most people I talk to say their babies sleep great during the day.  I'm hoping this will get better soon because it is very difficult to entertain a 3 year old while trying to constantly tend to an exhausted and cranky baby.

Thanks in advance for any responses!

by on Jan. 25, 2010 at 1:00 AM
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Replies (1-10):
by on Jan. 25, 2010 at 1:14 AM

 Oh my god yes! Going through the same thing right now with my 4 month old.  He only sleeps for more than 20 or 30 if you are holding him.  At first I thought he was just spoiled, but since then I have a lot of people tell me it just a 4 month growth spurt.  We recently had to go to the Dr for an ear infection and while I was there I asked all sorts of questions about it and he said that he is just getting older and doesn't want to miss out on anything.  He said it was nothing to worry about.  It is very inconvinent for me, but I am just trying to deal with it and keep him entertained as much as possible so I can get things done! Thank god he does also sleep through the night.  He usually sleeps from 830 or 930 to 730 or 830.  Good Luck!

by on Jan. 25, 2010 at 1:19 AM

My son will be 7months on Wednesday and now he decided he will only take 1 nap per day (makes for a VERY long day) and he only naps for maybe 20mins if im lucky lol, oh and hes been doing this since like 4.5-5months maybe its from teething idk but he still doesnt have any teeth. He used to sleep from 7:30pm-8am but now i cant get him to go to sleep until 11pm and he wakes up EVERY hour (exactly every hour) then at 4:30am he wakes up for the day (not by my choice lol) i do everything i can think of to get him back to bed but he just wont have it.

When you find a solution please tell me!

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by on Jan. 25, 2010 at 1:29 AM

i went through that with my girls... but for very long time with my oldest. even my younger daughter would do that. my son sleeps better but hes just a week and a half. but hes already sleeps better than my girls did at the same age.

by on Jan. 25, 2010 at 1:43 AM

My little girl thinks if she sleeps longer then 15 20 mins the she is missing something, and belive me SHE dosent MISS much....

by on Jan. 25, 2010 at 1:47 AM

nope my boy goes to sleep at 11:00pm and wakes up around 8am for a bottle then sleeps till 11:00am. then he takes a nap either at 2 or 3 and sleep 2 hours and then stays up till 11:00. its always been this way and works for us. my daughter was a different story though, she never slept, i don't remember most of her 1st year because i was always tired, it seems like a blur. i learned though with my 2nd lol.  

by on Jan. 25, 2010 at 1:54 AM

The best think I have found is really to keep trying to get them to go back to sleep, Try after the baby wakes up to get them Roddy for a few and them try again... It is working for me anyways, I just try to get her so tired she just falls she just turned 1, so its a little easier I guess...she gets up at 9am and I put her down for a nap at 3:pm or so.. I also have a 3year old and a 5 year old so yes I understand how it is to get the baby to nap, Also try to put a fan in the room with the baby to drown out some of the other kids playing, u could have a LIGHT sleeper... Hope it HELPS..


by on Jan. 25, 2010 at 4:21 PM

my 4 yr old slept for about 1-2 hours at a time when she was a baby and then wouldnt take a nap or anyting during the day when she was about 1 1/2 2 yrs old. my son is 4 months and he will take an ok nap as long as I sit with him and hold him. if i feed hme and then set him down he will only sleep about 10-30 min and only takes about 4-5 naps a day :( I dont get a whole lot done but he is happy most of the time he is awake but at night he will sleep in his crib anywhere from 1/2 hour to 5 hours it drives my crazy but in a good way I think :)  I am glad I am not the only one my father in law thinks hes brokw cause he is always awake :)

by on Jan. 26, 2010 at 10:34 PM

I have a 5 month old who will only nap about 30-40 mins at a time he does this 3xs a day and still wakes up at 2am for a bottle.  My daughter was a great napper 2-3 hours so this is new territory for me.  Just when I get started accomplishing something he is up again.  It is frustrating but at least he is a really happy baby.  He's been teething since 3 months and has 2 bottom and about to get one of the top teeth so I am hoping that is the reason.  I try to make sure he full before falling asleep but it doesn't seem to matter.  I am also interested in any other ideas!!  My floor really needs to be mopped!

by on Jan. 26, 2010 at 10:35 PM

That's how my daughter is.  She is five months.   She only sleeps about 20 minutes.  She has been cranky allll day and has only slept about 40 minutes.  She also doesn't sleep at night.

My oldest son was this way as well and STILL gets up at night. He is four.  I hope she gets over this soon, lol!!  I NEED some sleep!

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by on Jan. 26, 2010 at 10:38 PM

I read a bit of the No Cry Nap Solution (not No Cry Sleep Solution, but same author) because I was struggling with naps with my son at about 4 months as well.  In that book, I read that around that age, babies are making a big change in their sleep habits and learning how to sleep.  A baby's first sleep cycle is about 30-45 minutes long and they'll wake up and normally, they'd go right back to sleep.  But at 4 months, because of the developmental changes they're going through, many babies struggle and can't fall back asleep.  So that's what you're going through.  What I used to do is go in to his room at 30 minutes because i knew he'd be waking up soon.  As soon as I saw or heard a tiny little stir, I'd pat him on the back (he was a tummy sleeper) and he'd fall back asleep for about another hour. 

Now he's 8 months old and we're back to the 45 minute naps, but I think it's because he's going through a growth spurt.  He is a struggle to get to sleep for the night as well. 

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