Time To Drop The Nap?
Jamie Ortiz | Jan 19, 2023
I wanted to hold on to my son's 1 nap for as long as possible and it wasn't working out for him or us anymore! WE LOVE NAP TIME!!
Most toddlers drop their nap somewhere between 3-5 years old (most a little after turning 3). But how do you know it's time to drop the nap?
- Your toddler is fighting nap time, sometimes taking an hour to fall asleep
- Your toddler is fighting bedtime taking a long time to fall asleep (they're just not tired)
- They wake up cranky from their nap
- They are between the ages of 3-5 years old
- Nap is skipped all together
- Their personality seems fine when they skip a nap (usually fine until about 5 pm)
If you're seeing these signs, it could be time to drop their nap. Some ways of doing it are:
- Cut back their nap by 15 minutes to see if it helps with bedtime
- If cutting it back doesn't help, try cutting back by another 10 minutes
- Push bedtime back (but let's be honest…most of us love an earlier bedtime)
- Cut it cold turkey
Nap has been dropped. Now what?!
Once their nap is dropped you'll want to move bedtime up by about 30 minutes that first week to help their body adjust to not having that daytime sleep. After about a week or so, you can go back to their regular bedtime.
But never fear! We're going to replace nap time with quiet time. Here's how:
- Have a quiet time box meant ONLY for quiet time. Place it where they won't see it and make sure it's quiet activities (books, puzzles, quiet toys, etc.)
- You'll want to ease them into it, so stay with them and start off with 15 minutes of quiet time and then slowly increase the time
- Keep the room dim and maybe even some white noise in the background that's a little quiet (some toddlers will fall asleep)
- Let them know your expectations and boundaries during this time
If you're needing more help adjusting to this change, don't forget you can always schedule a consultation with me to make it more specific to YOUR toddler.
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