The afternoon nap improves children's memory, but not all children agree with this assumption that all early childhood experts put the spotlight on. The 1-year-old in particular may begin to show signs of conflict as the time of daily bedtime approaches, which the parent often distributes throughout the day to rest, one mid-morning and one mid-afternoon. For the rest of the children the golden rules are subjective but all in all simple, above all because it involves decrypting their need to rest throughout the day. Here is a guide to understand when it is necessary to follow the baby's needs and change his daily habits with bedtime or reduce the opportunities for rest, helping him to reconcile sleep only in the afternoon.
Read also: 10 things you absolutely must know about sleeping babies
In this article
- Rest of the children, the rules to follow for the daily sleep
- How to go from two sleeps a day to just one
Rest of the children, the rules to follow for the daily sleep
The nap of children up to one year of age is functional to their growth. The night's rest, accompanied by a short rest in the middle of the morning and a more consistent one in the early afternoon, helps them to recover their energy. Several studies have also confirmed that napping makes it easier for preschoolers to learn, so maintaining at least one daily sleep is a winning routine. But what if the little one is opposed to these pit stops? According to Harvey Karp, researcher and author of The Happiest Baby Guide to Great Sleep, babies between the first and second years of age experience a transition period that leads them to need one bed a day instead of two. A tearless sleep is possible if you follow the baby's needs: but how do you know when he actually needs to sleep only once a day during the day? Here are the signals to decrypt.
Double daily sleep, when needed
The baby still needs to sleep twice daily if these conditions occur during the day:
- She is less than 1 year old
- When you try to put him to sleep and, despite the conflict, the baby eventually succumbs to sleep
- When the baby gives in to sleep in the car during the day
- If the child is tired or angry
- If the child is going through a period of transition (insertion into the nursery, arrival of a sibling)
- If the child often wakes up at night and does not rest as he should
In all these cases it is best to keep the daily bedtime twice a day, even if the little one is opposed or does not seem to want to sleep. She needs it and it is okay for the parent to accompany him in the sleep routine.
A sleep a day, how to know if it's time
Similarly, it could also happen that the child from one year onwards does not actually need to sleep twice a day. How to identify this new phase?
- The child struggles not to sleep and actually, even if he gives in, rests little or no rest at all
- The child does not even fall asleep in the car
- In any case, the child remains energetic until the evening
- The afternoon sleep is peaceful, while for the morning it is more resistance
How to go from two sleeps a day to just one
The rules to follow when you understand that the baby no longer needs two sleeps a day but only one follow a gradual process, which does not force the baby but supports him in slowly abandoning the habit of the double sleep. Among the rules for a good sleep - because the question of daily naps is also linked to the night balance - there are:
- Graduality: postponing the morning nap by 15 minutes until you get to the after-lunch slot is a good way to make the switch
- Help with night sleep: As reported by George Cohen, author of the book American Academy of Pediatrics Guide to Your Child's Sleep: Birth Through Adolescence, babies in this transition phase may experience a bit of habit change and suffer from mild sleep deprivation. Anticipating dinner time to put them to bed earlier therefore becomes strategic in order to help them recover their energy during the day.
- Downsizing their daily routine: a child who sleeps less and has more energy in the evening despite a single nap is not necessarily a child who can manage a thousand different playful activities during the day. Resizing the opportunities for socializing and external stimuli can be a good idea so as not to tire them more than they should.
Fonti per questo articolo: Harvey Karp, The Happiest Baby Guide to Great Sleep; George J. Cohen, American Academy of Pediatrics Guide to Your Child's Sleep: Birth Through Adolescence; Elizabeth Pantley, The No-Cry Nap Solution.
- ninna nanna
- children's sleep