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How much sleep do babies & young kids need?

 
As parents we know that young children need their sleep to grow and develop, but many of us are unsure as to how much sleep babies, toddlers and pre-school kids actually need to reach their full potential. Unfortunately when it comes to sleep patterns, there’s no such thing as an ‘average’ child, but our sleep guide will give you an idea of what you can expect for newborns to 5 year olds, from day time naps to sleeping through the night.
As parents we know that young children need their sleep to grow and develop, but many of us are unsure as to how much sleep babies, toddlers and pre-school kids actually need to reach their full potential.

Unfortunately when it comes to sleep patterns, there’s no such thing as an ‘average’ child, but our sleep guide will give you an idea of what you can expect for newborns to 5 year olds, from day time naps to sleeping through the night.
 

How much sleep do babies & young kids need?


Have a read through our sleep guide to find out what sleep patterns are common for your little one's age and stage.  
 

Newborn - 2 months old

 

  • Every baby has their own sleep pattern and they often don’t have a regular pattern until they are a little older.
 
  • Generally newborns sleep in 2 to 4 hour intervals, waking up to eat.
 
  • They aren't born knowing how to soothe themselves to sleep, so you may need to help with tricks like swaddling, rocking, breastfeeding and/or using a dummy.
 

2 - 4 months old

 
  • Babies this age may sleep for 6 hour stretches at night and settle into more of a set nap schedule.
 
  • Start getting your baby into a good sleep routine by exposing them to sunlight during the day and avoid over-stimulating them at night.
 
  • Now’s also a good time to start introducing a pre-bedtime routine such as feeding time, bath time, story time, bed.
 
 

4 - 6 months old

 
  • Babies this age usually start to stop their middle of the night feeds and are ready to sleep through the night, anywhere from 6 to 12 hour stretches.
 
  • They will continue to wake up sometimes during the night, but those who ‘sleep through’ have generally learned how to go back to sleep on their own.
 
 

6 - 12 months old

 
  • By now your baby may have settled into a regular sleep pattern during the day and night, although this may change when they are teething or are unwell.
 
  • However some babies stop sleeping through the night around this age because of separation anxiety.
 
  • If this happens, go in and check on your child, keep visits short and try not to pick them up and feed them.
 
  • Try rubbing your little one’s back to help soothe them and leave after a few minutes and allow them to self-soothe. Repeat if need be.
 

1 - 2 year olds

   
  • Children tend to feel comforted by routine, especially at bedtime as it helps them to relax.
 
  • Active toddlers can have trouble relaxing and winding down at night often causing bedtime battles.
 
  • Try to keep things as calm as possible in the evenings after dinner and the lead up to bedtime.
 

2 - 5 year olds

 
  • Sleep problems for toddlers and preschoolers include procrastinating and resisting bedtime, getting out of their big-kid beds when they wake up at night and developing night terrors.
 
  • Stick to a bedtime routine and sleep schedule as much as you can, making sure your kids understand the rules and you are consistent about enforcing them.
 
  • Using a night light can comfort kids who tend to be afraid of the dark or have nightmares.
 
  • You’ll find their daytime naps usually stop by age 4 and have stopped completely by the age of 5 when they start school.

 

Daily sleep guide for newborns to 5 year olds


Check out our sleep guide by age to see how much sleep your baby, toddler or pre-schooler is likely to need each day.


 
Age Total sleep Night sleep Day naps
0-2 months 16-18 hours 8-9 hours
7-9 hours (3-5 naps)
 
2-4 months 14-16 hours 9-10 hours
4-5 hours (3 naps)
 
4-6 months 14-15 hours 10 hours
4-5 hours (2-3 naps)
 
6-9 months 14 hours 10-11 hours
3-4 hours (2 naps)
 
9-12 months 14 hours 10-12 hours
2-3 hours (2 naps)
 
12-18 months 13-14 hours 11-12 hours
2-3 hours (1-2 naps)
 
18-24 months 13-14 hours 11 hours
2 hours (1 nap)
 
2-3 years 12-14 hours 10-11 hours
1-2 hours (1 nap)
 
3-5 years 11-13 hours 10-11 hours
0-1 hours
 
 





















 

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