6 Month Old Baby Sleep Schedule
A 6-month old baby is in the middle of a growth spurt as this is the time when babies actively start to interact with their environment. They will begin recognizing faces and respond to stimulations. Their senses start observing the environment, which makes us feel that the baby is growing beyond the initial days.
At this critical junction of development, you need the baby to feel relaxed and get sufficient sleep. Therefore, it’s important for a parent to develop a 6 month old sleep schedule that will help the baby. In fact, there are no definite guidelines on designing a 6 month old sleep schedule because every baby and its environment are different from another baby.
How to Follow any 6 Month Old Sleep Schedule?
Instead of focusing on a strict guideline, parents should try to be consistent in their approach regarding sleep cycles. Perhaps, the best method in developing a 6 month old sleep schedule is to follow a basic guideline and try to follow the timeline. If you’re consistent in your approach, you will be able to develop a sound schedule that will allow your baby to get enough sleep.
This guide is written to help you develop a schedule. It will offer basic guidelines that you can easily follow because these sleep patterns are known to help parents. While these are time-tested techniques, parents should also realize that that they may need to adjust most 6 month old sleep schedule according to their distinct lifestyle.
For instance, if a schedule tells you that your baby should get 2 to 3 hours of nap in the afternoon, the exact timing of those naps will depend on your daily routine. If you’re a busy mom who needs to pick up siblings from school at 2 o’ clock, there is no way you can schedule the baby to take a nap at 2 o’ clock despite suggestions by your pediatrician or an expert.
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The bottom line is to follow any good 6 month old sleep schedule and try to adjust it according to your lifestyle. If the schedule tells you that your baby should sleep 11 hours a night, it’s your duty to customize it to your work routine.
Sleeping Pattern of a Six Month Old Baby
When the baby is six months old, experts recommend that they should get at least 2 to 3 hours of nap every day. Instead of a long nap, it is reasonable to divide these hours into 2 to 4 intervals. Overall, it will mean that the baby should take regular half an hour nap; however, make sure that the nap doesn’t extend to more than one hour because you can easily mismanage the sleep cycle.
Similarly, it’s wise to let the baby sleep for 11 to 12 hours at night. It means that you should try to get your baby to sleep at around 8 o’ clock at night before waking them for your morning work schedule early in the morning. During the nighttime, remember to feed the baby once or twice, which will help them sleep longer and feel relaxed.
For most of us the 6 month old sleep schedule may seem out of focus because it encourages the baby to sleep 13 to 15 hours, daily. This may also make first-time mothers curious because they are not usually accustomed to seeing people sleep that long. While it may seem strange, but the natural sleep cycle of babies is twice as long as an adult. They need to sleep very long hours to help their bodies cope with the stress and anxiety that comes with development in a world outside the mother’s womb.
The most challenging aspect of following any 6 month old sleep schedule is to time the naps perfectly. While it’s relatively easier for the baby to sleep comfortably for long hours at night, they’re not trained to sleep for any set interval during their naps. Most babies will abruptly wake up after 15 minutes, which is challenging for moms as they need to concentrate on a lot of other things.
Likewise, some babies may sleep comfortably, but their sleep cycles will be irregular. It means that your baby may take three naps of 30 minutes each for three to four days, but resist following the same pattern afterward. If such things happen, don’t get agitated because it’s natural for babies to wake up during naps irrespective of what you do to help the baby get a sound sleep.
To cope with the afternoon and morning naps, experts recommend keeping following the schedule regardless of how the baby behaves. The objective of any 6 month old sleep schedule is to train the baby to start following a specific pattern. As such, the schedule is not a strict military-style drill that you and your baby must comply.
Don’t overburden yourself with trivial details. Just try your best, and you will be able to train your baby to get better sleep in the long-run.
Here is an eat-play-sleep schedule that you may follow:
Timeline: 6 month old sleep schedule 1
7:00 – Wake up early in the morning to breastfeed or use the formula milk. The baby can enjoy the breakfast with you, and then play.
8:15 – Breakfast time to enjoy a baby Step-1 food or you can give fruits such as a watermelon.
9:00 – After everyone is gone, you can put the baby to sleep for a morning nap and complete household chores.
10:30 – Depending on when the baby wakes up, it’s time for the milk.
12:00 – By afternoon, the baby will be ready to take a nap again. It’s a mid-day nap.
1:30 – Feeding time before the lunch so you can eat your lunch while the baby is already fed.
2:30 – This is an afternoon nap after lunch so moms can also get some rest before the evening.
4:30 – Wake up from the afternoon nap. It’s again a feeding time for the baby.
5:30 – This is a sort of dinner time where you can offer Step-1 food or introduce the child to some sort of veggies.
6:30 – The bedtime routine and the entire sleep cycle may take more than one hour. At this time you should feed breast milk or formula before helping the baby to bed.
7:00 – Sleep time
Note: During the night, the baby should be fed mother milk once or twice before waking up at 07:00, the next morning.
Depending on your schedule, here is another schedule, which offers more time to interact with the family. Depending on the size of your family and your daily routine, you can also follow this timeline.
Timeline: 6 month old sleep schedule 2
7:30 – Wake up early in the morning to breastfeed or the formula milk
10:00 – Once the baby feels sleepy after playing, you can put the baby back to sleep for a morning nap and complete household chores
11:00 – Depending on when the baby wakes up, it’s time to feed milk and play
1:00 – By afternoon, the baby will be ready to take a nap again. It’s a mid-day nap.
2:00 – its milk feeding time before the lunch so you can eat your lunch while the baby is already fed
3:30 – This is an afternoon nap after lunch so you can also try to get some rest before the evening
5:00 – This is feeding time for the baby. You should try to breastfeed the baby or provide formula milk, accordingly.
6:30 – This is a sort of dinner time where you can offer Step-1 food or introduce the child vegetables.
7:30 – The bedtime routine and the entire sleep cycle may take more than one hour. At this time you should feed breast milk or formula before helping the baby to bed.
8:00 – Sleep time
If you try to follow these 6 month old sleep schedule, you will notice that most babies do not resist sleeping. Like a lazy child who doesn’t want to budge from a comfy sofa, babies are naturally fine-tuned to take naps and sleep more hours than adults.
Most of the times, it’s not the baby that needs adjustment, but it’s our lifestyle that requires modification to align with the sleep cycle of the baby. Helping the baby get ample rest will also help us relax.
Hopefully, these schedules will offer basic guidelines helping parents decide how they want to adjust their lives. Remember, everyone will adjust differently to the schedule; therefore, you don’t have to follow it diligently. Just make sure that you give it your best shot.