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toddler sleep issues

You were all prepared for all those uncomfortable nights during your pregnancy, also fully on guard for those sleepless nights during babyhood. But were you prepared for toddlerhood? Also, those cold head fights, not listening, toothaches, and whatnot!

Let us first understand the stages of the development of the baby; initially, it is in the form of a fetus, and later on it develops to form an infant. After the delivery, it is known as the baby, and as the developmental stages are achieved it is known as a toddler.

In a few instances, toddlers may have their own idea or concept about their sleep schedule. They might tend to sleep only at the night. But maybe they need more than just a six-hour sleep at that age, due to the excessive energy expenditure.

At such times you need to understand that children may need sleep in between the daytime hours, or small bouts of naps which helps in reducing their crank, anger, or stubbornness.

So you might be wondering, what is the ideal sleep schedule for your toddler? or how many hours of sleep are required? Are in-between naps necessary? The answer will depend on your child’s age because, between her first and third birthdays, her nap demands and habits fluctuate significantly.

Here are some tips on how to make sure your child is getting the recommended amount of sleep each night and throughout the day, as well as a look at some sample age-based toddler sleep patterns that can help you determine whether your child’s schedule is on track.


Usually, 10 to 11 hours of sleep combined with naps are needed for toddlers. A combination of two one- to two-hour naps throughout the day (or one longer afternoon nap as she approaches age 2) and a solid 10 to 11 1/2 hours at night will allow your child to get all those hours. Between 12 and 18 months, many children switch from two naps to one, but some don’t until they’re two.


The majority of babies do their best sleeping when they are in bed by 7:30 or 8 p.m. If you go to bed early, your child will have the chance to get the amount of sleep she requires to feel rested (especially since you can typically expect her to wake you up between 6 and 7 a.m.). Additionally, studies show that young children who go to bed before 9 p.m. typically fall asleep more quickly and wake up less frequently at night.


Toddlers are accustomed to their routines. A calming bedtime ritual signals that it is time to start settling down and appeals to your precious pea’s need for constancy. Since it prepares her for going to bed at the same time every night, it also helps her develop healthy sleeping habits.

It’s not necessary to have a complex regimen. However, it should be regular and begin no later than 45 to 60 minutes before bedtime. A bath, literature, soft music, and cuddles are all soothing pastimes. Avoid roughhousing or energetic play because these activities are more likely to energize your child than to promote relaxation.

Even if your toddler’s sleep requirements are different from those of a baby, maintaining a schedule is still a good idea. Your toddler will have a feeling of what to expect from waking up, taking a nap, and going to bed around the same time each day, which can be reassuring and increase her readiness to comply with the schedule.

Following a routine also ensures that your sweetheart gets the proper amount of sleep, preventing her from becoming overtired and cranky throughout the day or under tired when it’s time for bed. That may lower your risk of experiencing sleep issues or complaints and assist you in avoiding those dreaded early-morning wake-ups.


Your 12-month-old’s schedule might be remarkably similar to how it did last month — and stay that way for a few more months — despite the fact that her age technically places her in toddlerhood territory. A 12-month-old should sleep roughly 14 hours per day, with 11 of those hours occurring at night. The final three hours should be divided into two naps during the day.

  • 6:30 a.m.: Awake
  • 10 a.m.: Nap
  • 11:30 a.m.: Awake
  • 2 p.m.: Nap
  • 3:30 p.m.: Awake
  • 7 p.m.: Bedtime routine
  • 7:30 p.m.: Bedtime


Between 12 and 15 months, not much will change for the majority of children. You might need to move bedtime a little bit later if the afternoon nap is beginning to interfere with bedtime but your cutie isn’t ready to switch to just one nap (many babies this age aren’t).

  • 6:30 a.m.: Awake
  • 10 a.m.: Nap
  • 11/11:30 a.m.: Awake
  • 1:30/2 p.m.: Nap
  • 3/3:30 p.m.: Awake
  • 7/7:30 p.m.: Bedtime routine
  • 7:30/8 p.m.: Bedtime


Your one-and-a-half-year-old will likely require 11 to 12 hours of sleep per night in addition to two to three hours for naps. She’ll probably be prepared at this age to go from a morning and an afternoon nap to just one midday nap, typically soon after lunch. A transition can be a significant adjustment, so it’s common for your child to act irritable as her body adjusts. She might need to be put to bed earlier than usual because she will probably be exhausted by the end of the day.

  • 6:30 a.m.: Awake
  • 12:30 p.m.: Nap
  • 2:30 p.m.: Awake
  • 6:30 p.m.: Bedtime routine
  • 7 p.m.: Bedtime


Two-year-olds require between 11 and 14 hours of total daily sleep. You might notice that naptime grows a bit later or shorter when your child enters her second year. She might be able to return to a somewhat later bedtime depending on how long the nap was.

  • 6:30 a.m.: Awake
  • 12:30 p.m.: Nap
  • 2/2:30 p.m.: Awake
  • 7 p.m.: Bedtime routine
  • 7:30 p.m.: Bedtime


During this time toddlers generally cut out their sleep completely or may have a bout of nap during the day time. When your toddler has entered this age group usually requires 10 to 13 hours of sleep.

  • 6:30 a.m.: Awake
  • 1:30 p.m.: Nap or quiet time
  • 2:30/3 p.m.: Awake
  • 7/7:30 p.m.: Bedtime routine
  • 7:30/8 p.m.: Bedtime


Bedtime arguments are occasionally unavoidable when raising a toddler. However, using these techniques can help minimize opposition to nighttime and naps and get your little dreamer (more) on board.

Follow a schedule. It is more likely that your child will be weary when you tuck her into bed if she wakes up, naps, and goes to bed around the same time each day.
Have a regular schedule.

The same holds true for the activities you engage in to wind down before bed and nap, as well as how you respond to requests for one more tale, another glass of water, or getting out of bed. Your toddler will be more likely to follow the plan if she is aware of what to anticipate (and what won’t work).

Make necessary changes to your timetable. It may be time to change your toddler’s nap schedule or put her to bed a little later if she routinely acts like she isn’t sleepy at nap or bedtime or if she starts to wake up earlier than usual.

Give your consent to play. Tell her she can sing or play softly with a plush “friend” or two until she goes to sleep if she insisted she wasn’t tired. The “permission to play” card gives your child the impression that she has won, which can make it easier for her to fall asleep at night.

Keep moving throughout the day. Your child will get tired by having lots of physical playtimes and exposure to outdoor air.

Avoid using a screen. The AAP advises avoiding screens at least two hours before bedtime and preventing screen-based gadgets from being used in your child’s bedroom.

Examine sleep hygiene. A more formalized sleep training program may be wise if you’ve made previous modifications but your youngster is still refusing or regularly waking up at night.


You’ve no likely already begun to learn from experience that even the best-laid plans for your toddler’s sleep can go awry. Here are a few that you might encounter frequently.

absence of a bedtime ritual. The most frequent and convenient obstacle to evening happiness must be this. Toddlers are accustomed to their routines. Even if your family’s schedule is chaotic (and who’s isn’t? ), it’s worth the bother to establish a calming, regular bedtime ritual that begins early enough to guarantee enough zzzs.

phobias and nightmares. Your toddler’s anxieties at night, whether they involve monsters under the bed or a dread of the dark, are quite real. Your instinct to reassure her with kisses and cuddles (without staying too long by her bed) is spot-on and will help your child resume her regular sleeping schedule.

illness or a trip. When you have a cold or are sleeping in an unfamiliar bed, it may be more difficult to fall asleep. In these trying times, adopt a do whatever it takes mentality to ensure that your child gets some rest. While camping or during flu season, extra hugs, kisses, and special demands are acceptable; nevertheless, try to return to the old schedule as quickly as you can to prevent these transient sleep troubles from developing into habits.

Regression in sleep. This brief sleep regression is typical among toddlers. Your greatest efforts to calm down your young child may be undone by new developmental milestones, such as learning to walk, as well as by major-to-her, minor-to-you life changes, like getting a new pet or babysitter. major life changes like having a new sibling or moving on to a new place that is not familiar to the child.

gnawing ache. Your toddler may experience teething discomfort once more as those canines, incisors, and molars erupt, which can disrupt sleep.

Your child resists giving in. A toddler’s job description is, to put it simply, to refuse almost everything. That includes time for bed! To assist your child accept when the lights go off, give her a choice between two sets of pajamas, a book you’ll read to her, and which stuffed animals will join her in bed.

Your youngster doesn’t want to be left out. Except for the bed, your little social butterfly and constant mover and shaker want to be in the center of everything.
Your young child misses you. When your child begs you to stay with her after lights down, it’s generally not a game; separation anxiety is very real.

Keep those visits brief and uninteresting, and diffuse the tension with a neutral conversation about the day and what might happen tomorrow. To avoid her wondering where you are when she wakes up and comes looking for you, try to leave the room before she falls asleep.


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