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Sleeping 8 month old boy

As your baby reaches 8 months of age, you may notice a significant shift in their sleep patterns and needs. This is a crucial time for establishing a solid sleep schedule that promotes healthy sleep habits and ensures that both you and your little one get the rest you need.

I’ve taken the time to write this article as I’ve always been a big proponent of a well-laid-out plan when it came to getting my son rested. I’ll give you the best sleep schedule for an 8-month-old baby, from a Dad’s perspective. 

Please remember that all families will use these baby nap schedules differently depending on night feedings, the house’s schedule, or the amount of time needed for the child to be properly rested. To each his own, as they say.

I was strict from the beginning and I implemented the exact schedule with, my now 7-year-old, and he still goes to bed extra early. So that gives my wife and I time to enjoy some time together as well as some much-needed Daddy time. Here we go!

cool kids never sleep sign

Understanding 8-Month-Old Sleep Needs 

Before we get into creating a sleep schedule, it’s essential to understand the recommended sleep needs for an 8-month-old baby. According to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, infants between 4 and 12 months of age should get 12 to 16 hours of sleep in a 24-hour period At 8 months old, you can aim for approximately 14 hours of total sleep per day, with around 11 to 12 hours at night and 2 to 3 hours during the day over 2 to 3 naps.

It’s important to note that every baby is unique, and sleep needs can vary. Some babies may require more or less sleep than the recommended guidelines. The key is to observe your baby’s mood, energy levels, and overall well-being to ensure they are getting enough rest.

I know you’re new parents but you’ll quickly learn very quickly when your baby is tired. It’s parental instinct. From cranky mood, crying, staring into nothingness or simply falling asleep on the ground somewhere in the house. You’ll know~

At around 8 months old, many babies are ready to ‘change it up’ from a three-nap schedule to a two-nap scheduleThe awake windows for a three-nap schedule become too short, and your baby may have difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep for their third nap. Transitioning to a two-nap schedule allows for longer awake periods and more consolidated sleep. And more time to have fun with your child too!

During this transition, you may notice some bumps in your baby’s sleep routine. It’s normal. Overtiredness and increased sleep difficulties, such as the 8-month sleep regression, can occur during this period

However, maintaining healthy sleep habits will help your baby move past these challenges more smoothly. Easier said than done but it’ll pass. Enjoy every moment. 

Setting a Consistent Wake-Up Time

Establishing a consistent wake-up time is crucial for creating a reliable sleep schedule for your 8-month-old or any age really. Ideally, you should aim for a consistent wake-up time each morning, allowing for a predictable daily routine. If your baby typically wakes up around 7:00 am, try to stick to this wake-up time as closely as possible. 

Transitioning to a Two-Nap Schedule

However, it’s important to be flexible and make adjustments when necessary. If your baby wakes up earlier or later than usual, you can adjust the rest of the sleep schedule accordingly, within a 30-minute range. Consistency in wake-up times helps regulate your baby’s circadian rhythms and promotes better overall sleep. It’s healthy for the Moms and Dads as well. We are here too you know…

Crafting a Two-Nap Schedule

Once you have established a consistent wake-up time, you can plan the two naps of the day around it. The first nap usually occurs around mid-morning, roughly 2 to 3.5 hours after waking up. The second nap typically takes place in the early afternoon, around 3 to 4 hours after the first nap ends. 

To illustrate this schedule, here are two sample schedules for an 8-month-old on a two-nap routine:

Dad’s Sample Sleep Schedule 1: 2-Nap Schedule

  • Wake: 7:00 AM
  • First Nap: 10:00 AM – 11:30 AM (1.5 hours)
  • Second Nap: 2:30 PM – 4:00 PM (1.5 hours) 
  • Bedtime Routine: 6:30 PM
  • Asleep: 7:00 PM

Dad’s Sample Schedule 2: Best Nap Schedule

  • Awake Time: 6:30 AM
  • First Nap: 9:30 AM – 11:00 AM (1.5 hours)
  • Afternoon Nap: 1:30 PM – 3:00 PM (1.5 hours) We did this about 60 minutes after lunch. My son and I always slept like babies…Pun!
  • Bedtime Routine: 6:30 PM
  • Nighttime Sleep: 7:00 PM

These sample schedules provide a starting point, but it’s important to customize them according to your needs. Remember, the goal is to establish a consistent naptime routine that works best for both you and your baby. Keep yourself in mind as well! We all need to relax from all this parenting stuff…

++Daddy Tip! PS…Don’t go past 3 pm on any nap day…You’ll regret that at night…

father reading to chilid in bed

Bedtime Routine and Sleep Environment

To promote better sleep for your 8-month-old, it’s important to establish a consistent bedtime routine. A soothing and predictable routine helps signal your baby that it’s time to wind down and prepare for sleep. Your bedtime routine can include activities such as a warm bath, gentle massage, reading a book, or a YouTube lullaby channel playing. 

Creating a sleep-friendly environment is also crucial for a good night’s sleep. Make sure your baby’s sleep space is comfortable, cool, dark, and free from distractions. Consider using blackout curtains to block out any excess light, and use lullabies to create a soothing ambiance. Read this article on the methods that I used to put my son to sleep magically FAST!

happy boy crawling on the floor next to his crib

Dealing with Sleep Regression and Separation Anxiety

Around 8 months of age, it’s common for babies to experience sleep regression and separation anxiety. These developmental milestones can disrupt your baby’s sleep patterns and make it more challenging for them to settle down for naps and bedtime.

During sleep regression, your baby may experience more frequent night wakings, shorter naps, or difficulty falling asleep. It’s important to be patient and provide extra comfort and reassurance during this time. Maintaining a consistent sleep routine and responding to your baby’s needs with love and support can help them navigate through this phase.

Separation anxiety can also affect your baby’s sleep. They may become more clingy and have difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep without your presence. Gradually introducing independent sleep habits, such as placing your baby in their crib while drowsy but still awake, can help them develop self-soothing skills and reduce separation anxiety.

My son and I co-slept so the separation anxiety was not an issue for us. It’s a common thing to do here in Korea. We still co-sleep and he’s 7 years old. I’m enjoying the bonding experience. 

Last Nap of the Day

Creating a solid sleep schedule and good sleep habits for your precious little one is essential for promoting healthy sleep habits and ensuring they get the rest they need. Whatever schedule you’ll be implementing might rub off on your child and will shape his or her sleep patterns as they grow older

So, take my general guidelines and opt for an early bedtime and keep following through. There is no one-size-fits-all approach to sleep schedules. Pay attention to your baby’s needs, adapt as necessary, and seek support when needed. 

With patience, persistence, and a nurturing environment, you can help your precious little human develop healthy sleep habits that will benefit them for years to come.

Happy Sleepiez!

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