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Understanding Your 16-Month-Old’s Sleep Schedule: A Detailed Guide

At 16 months, your toddler’s sleep patterns might be shifting. Navigating these changes can feel complex, but a better understanding of your child’s needs can make this process smoother. This guide will provide valuable information on the typical 16-month-old sleep schedule and answer your most pressing questions.

The Ideal 16-Month-Old Sleep Schedule

Most 16-month-olds need 11-14 hours of sleep in a 24-hour period. That includes nighttime sleep and one or two daytime naps. A typical sleep schedule could look like this:

  • 7:00 AM – Wake up
  • 12:00 PM – Afternoon nap (1-2 hours)
  • 7:30 PM – Begin bedtime routine
  • 8:00 PM – Bedtime

A Daily Schedule for Your 16-Month-Old

Following a consistent daily schedule can provide structure and help improve your 16-month-old’s sleep. Here’s a sample schedule:

  • 7:00 AM – Wake up and have breakfast
  • 9:30 AM – Morning playtime
  • 12:00 PM – Lunch
  • 1:00 PM – Afternoon nap (1-2 hours)
  • 3:00 PM – Afternoon snack and playtime
  • 5:30 PM – Dinner
  • 7:00 PM – Begin bedtime routine
  • 7:30 PM – Bedtime

Remember, every child is unique. Modify the schedule as necessary to suit your child’s individual needs and sleep patterns.

Transitioning from Two Naps to One

At this age, many toddlers transition from two naps to one. This can lead to changes in their sleep schedule. The key is to follow your child’s cues and adjust the schedule to meet their changing needs.

Nap Transition Tips

  • Observe your child’s sleep cues such as yawning, rubbing eyes, or becoming fussy.
  • Gradually push back the morning nap until it becomes an early afternoon nap.
  • Adjust bedtime as necessary to compensate for decreased daytime sleep.

Challenges and Tips for the 16-Month Sleep Schedule

While every child is different, common sleep challenges at this age can include separation anxiety, bedtime resistance, and night wakings. A consistent routine, creating a soothing sleep environment, and plenty of daytime physical activity can help address these issues.

Frequently Asked Questions About Your 16-Month-Old’s Sleep

Let’s delve into some of the most common questions parents have about their 16-month-old child’s sleep patterns and behaviors.

Understanding Your 16-Month-Old’s Sleep Schedule

What time should my 16-month-old go to bed?

Most 16-month-olds thrive with a bedtime between 7:00 PM and 8:00 PM. However, this can vary depending on your child’s nap schedule and individual sleep needs.

How many naps should a 16-month-old take?

By 16 months, many toddlers transition from two naps to one midday nap. Nevertheless, every child is different. Monitor your child’s mood and energy levels to determine their individual nap needs.

Is there a sleep regression at 16 months?

While not every toddler will experience a sleep regression at 16 months, some might. Factors such as teething, illness, or major changes in routine can disrupt sleep.

Is 16 months too early to stop napping?

At 16 months, most toddlers still require a nap during the day. The transition from two naps to one often occurs around this age, but entirely dropping naps is usually not recommended until much later.

Addressing Sleep Challenges in 16-Month-Olds

Why do babies fight sleep at 16 months?

At 16 months, toddlers may resist sleep due to separation anxiety, overtiredness, or simply a desire to stay active and explore. Maintaining a consistent bedtime routine can help ease this resistance.

Can night terrors start at 16 months?

Yes, night terrors can begin as early as 16 months. If your toddler experiences night terrors, ensure their safety but try not to wake them as it can prolong the episode.

How long should I let my 16-month-old cry it out?

The cry-it-out method varies depending on individual families and children. If you choose this method, it’s important to ensure your child is safe and their needs are met before starting. Consulting a pediatrician or sleep expert can provide guidance.

How do I get my 16-month-old to stop waking at night?

Night wakings can be common at this age. Consistency, a comfortable sleep environment, and ensuring your toddler is not hungry or uncomfortable can help reduce these wakings.

Why won’t my 16-month-old stop crying at bedtime?

This could be due to separation anxiety, discomfort, or overstimulation. A calming bedtime routine, reassurance, and a comfortable sleep environment can help ease these issues.

How to help a 16-month-old with separation anxiety at bedtime?

Bedtime can trigger separation anxiety in some toddlers. Consistency, soothing rituals, and providing a comforting object such as a favorite blanket or stuffed animal can help.

How Can Support Your 16-Month-Old’s Sleep Schedule

If you’re finding your 16-month-old’s sleep schedule challenging to manage, consider seeking support from This online resource is dedicated to providing parents with science-backed advice to better understand and manage their children’s sleep habits.

With, you can learn practical strategies to tackle various sleep issues, from nap transitions to night wakings. They believe that every child is unique and so are their sleep needs. Discover a range of resources to help navigate your parenting journey and ensure your child’s well-being and development.


Mastering the 16-month-old sleep schedule is a significant step towards ensuring your toddler’s health and development. Patience, consistency, and understanding your child’s unique needs are the key. And remember, when in doubt, the experts at are just a click away. Happy parenting!