13 - 15 Months

When (and how) to transition your toddler from 2 naps to 1

Baby sucking their thumb while holding a Cotton Doll by Lovevery

Figuring out when your toddler is actually ready to drop their morning nap can be tricky. Most children make this transition around 15 or 16 months, but some drop the morning nap as early as their first birthday. Some toddlers still need two naps until around 20 months. 

3 signs your toddler needs just 1 nap

Because the window of readiness is so wide, it’s best to look for these signs when deciding when to make the change, says Lauren Lappen, Lovevery’s certified sleep consultant.

  1. Your toddler doesn’t fall asleep in the morning consistently for 1.5 to 2 weeks. If they nap sporadically, even 2 or 3 times a week, continue to offer a nap every morning for now.
  2. Their first nap is so long that they can’t fall asleep in the afternoon.
  3. At night, they have trouble falling asleep at their regular bedtime.

Tips for dropping from 2 naps to 1

Keep 2 naps as long as you can. In general, children between the ages of 12 and 18 months need 2 to 3 hours of daily daytime sleep. Dropping their morning nap before they’re ready can make your toddler overtired, which leads to poorer sleep in the afternoon and at night, says Lappen. 

Avoid dropping the afternoon nap instead of the morning one. Though scheduling around one midday nap can be challenging, keeping the afternoon nap is best for your toddler’s sleep health. “They don’t have the stamina to stay awake from the end of a morning nap until bedtime,” Lappen says.

Try not to shift the afternoon nap time up too much. When your child does drop that morning nap, avoid the temptation to shift the midday nap up too much. Your child’s sleep waves are biologically driven, and a big change can be disruptive for them. 

If they seem really tired mid-morning, you can start by moving their afternoon nap earlier by an hour perhaps, from 1 p.m. to noon—and then slowly and gradually move it back every few days, 15 minutes at a time.


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Posted in: 13 - 15 Months, 16 - 18 Months, 19 - 21 Months, Routine, Cognitive Development, Sleeping, Lovevery App, Child Development

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