6-9 Month Baby Sleep Pattern

image001When your baby gets to the 6-9 month old range, his sleep requirements will decrease to about 14 hours each day. Most children of this age are sleeping 7-8 hours at a time – a welcome relief for sleep deprived parents! While a younger child can sleep almost anywhere, the child in the 6-9 month age range will show a marked preference for his own room and bed. Learn all the details of sleep pattern for 6-9 month olds and how you can establish a healthy sleep pattern with your baby.

6-9 Month Baby Sleep Pattern

What to Expect

In the 6-9 month age range, your baby may be getting sleep in larger chunks of time. Expect the child in this age group to sleep a total of about 14 hours of sleep. Most babies in this age group are taking two naps each day, one in the morning and another in the afternoon. Each of these naps will last 2 to 3 hours. Most babies have gained enough weight that they no longer need to feed every 2 to 4 hours. This is a critical point in developing your baby’s future sleep patterns so it is important to be consistent in nap and bed times.

Characteristics of Baby Sleep Pattern at this Stage

Characteristics

Description

Sleep through the night

Most babies will begin to sleep a full 6-7 hours at a time during the night at this age. Be sure the environment is set to allow the baby to soothe herself back to sleep when she wakes up.

Stays up because of developmental milestone or separation anxiety 

As the child begins to master new skills during the day time, she may be keeping herself awake “practicing” those skills, such as sitting up, crawling and cruising.

You may begin to notice that the baby that used to go to anyone now shows a decided preference for you only – and this “separation anxiety” may be very apparent at night.

Needs consistent sleep training

The patterns you and the baby develop now will set the stage for future sleep patterns. It is time to begin some form of consistent sleep training – either letting your child “cry it out” or comforting him when he cries at bedtime. Most babies will respond to one technique or the other but when you find the one that works, be consistent!

For more tips and tricks about setting feeding and bed time routines for the 6-9 month old baby, watch this video:

How to Establish a Healthy 6-9 Month Baby Sleep Pattern

In the 6-9 month age range, it is important to establish a healthy sleep pattern. Follow the procedures below:

  • As much as possible, keep to a regular day time routine with regular meal and nap times. Babies crave consistency! The schedule as explained in the above video can serve as a reference.
  • If you have not already done so, establish a consistent bedtime routine with your baby. Have a specific bed time that does not vary too much. Children of this age respond very well to routines. Games before bed time should be quiet – reading is a great activity for this time. A warm bath and changing into pajamas will soon be a signal to your baby that bed time is approaching.
  • Put your baby to bed a little earlier if you find that he cannot seem to relax. Some children fight sleep when they become too tired, so try starting the bed time routine 30 minutes earlier.
  • Finally, children must learn to soothe themselves and put themselves to sleep. Put the child in his bed when he is sleepy but still awake. If you rock your baby to sleep each night, he will take longer to learn to go to sleep on his own.
  • Know how to deal with the crying when waking up at night. When the 6-9 month old baby awakens in the middle of the night, give him a chance to put himself back to sleep. In the case where he will not soothe himself, quietly go into his darkened room shush him back to sleep. Leave him in the crib resisting the urge to pick him up or rock him. Often, letting him know he is not alone will be enough to put this age child back to sleep.

What Are Common Sleep Problems for 6-9 Month Old Baby?

Even with the best bed time routines, there are some common sleep problems in this age group.

  • Waking at night due to separation anxiety is very common at this age.
  • As the baby begins teething, the discomfort may wake her up.
  • For babies who have not learned to put themselves back to sleep, any disruption in sleep may lead to crying and inability to get back to sleep.
  • As the baby begins to learn to crawl and turn over, she may do those actions at night and not be able to get herself back into a good sleep position.