When Should I Put My Baby on a Sleep Schedule?

By Misty on in Baby Sleep Training and Schedules with 4 Comments

When Should I Put My Baby on a Sleep Schedule?
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If you’ve just started learning about baby sleep schedules, you may also be wondering when you should start your baby on a sleep schedule. Every baby is different and will respond to sleep schedules in various ways, but generally speaking you should think about starting regular sleep schedule around 4-5 months of age.

While some pediatricians state that you can start a sleep schedule even earlier, as early as 2 months, I have found that starting a sleep schedule that early didn’t provide much of an added benefit to our daily lives because babies don’t have consistent sleeping habits at 2 months old and in many cases, they are still waking to be fed at night. The other problem with starting too early is that your baby may have not yet fully made the distinction between day and night and figured out which is for sleeping and which is for being awake. Trying to get your newborn to adjust to a schedule is only going to lead to frustration.

baby sleep schedules

I have had fantastic success with my own kids on sleep schedules after about 4 or 5 months, when their own internal clocks have adjusted, they know that night time is for sleeping and they are only waking once per night to feed, if at all. Things got even better by around 6 or 7 months when the middle of the night feedings disappeared. The point of a sleep schedule is to help your baby settle into a consistent sleep routine that is beneficial to both you and your baby so if you start too early, you are truly setting yourself up for failure.

When you think time is getting close to starting your baby on a sleep schedule, start keeping a journal of your baby’s sleeping and eating habits. What time does your baby begin getting sleepy at night? What time is the last feeding of the day? This will  help you to learn the pattern that your baby is accustomed to and you can then begin building your sleep schedule with the journal entries as your guide. Journal for 2-3 weeks to gain a good grasp on your baby’s current sleeping habits and slowly adjust to where it needs to be. This will cause the least amount of resistance from your baby to a sleep schedule.

Want to learn more about baby sleep schedules?

Sweet Sleep Baby is thrilled to be able to provide you with information to help you put your baby on a baby sleep schedule with the confidence and resources you need. You can start by learning about Baby Sleep Training with a No Tears Approach and then move on to Using Bed Time Schedules to Get Baby to Sleep at Night.

What Age Did You Put Your Baby on a Schedule?

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  1. Rochelle Gordon

    November 20, 2013 at 7:05 pm · Reply

    Great practical advice.

    1. Misty

      November 21, 2013 at 3:07 am · Reply

      Thank you Rochelle!

  2. Bonnie Gean

    November 20, 2013 at 9:20 pm · Reply

    I so wish I had waited to have a baby so I could benefit better from your instructions! LOL My daughter is 35 years old and the grandchildren are 20, 16 and 9 so there is no more night feedings, but this is truly interesting information that others need to take into consideration to make the transition easier from feeding schedule to sleep schedule! Thanks for sharing!

    1. Misty

      November 21, 2013 at 3:07 am · Reply

      What a great compliment Bonnie. Thank you so much!

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