+65 9795 7367 (WhatsApp Only) angela@upchild.sg

One of the best transitions many parents of young children welcome is the shift from 2 shorter day time naps to 1 long afternoon one.

I must admit that I certainly welcomed this milestone with open arms!

The nice thing about this 1 nap is that it makes it easy to manage your schedule. You get to shift from making sure you are home in time for your child’s nap, to being able to spend the morning out with your little one without the anxiety of napping in the car.

The other pro to the longer midday nap is you get more time to tick off those items on your to-do list. Or if you wanted, you could take this time to unwind and relax, something you probably haven’t done much of since you brought your precious little one home from the hospital.

But as a sleep consultant I am in no way telling you that less sleep is good! In fact, the less sleep your child gets, the crankier they get, and we all know that a healthy amount of sleep is needed for your child to thrive.

So, now you’re probably confused with how to drop down to one nap while still helping your child get the correct amount of sleep they need?

The first thing you need to identify is whether that morning nap is still needed. If your child happily does the morning nap but fusses around the afternoon one, for more than a few days, then this is one of the best signs to drop a nap. You should also note that during a developmental milestone, kids will often have their sleep schedule go a bit haywire, so be sure to rule this out before dropping the nap.

The main reason I advise my clients to be sure it is not just a developmental milestone or illness causing your child to skip a nap is because once you have a routine in place, going back to the previous routine suddenly may cause quite a bit of confusion for your child.

So, you know the time is right to transition your toddler to one nap, but how do you do it?

Let me be blunt, any change with a toddler DOES NOT happen overnight! And if you were to try, you can imagine how it’s going to play out.

So, let’s rather use a gentle approach that allows both you and your toddler to adjust.

I advise my clients that they should start shifting the morning nap back by a half hour or so for 3 consecutive days until the nap starts at around 12:30. You’ll need some patience with this because this may prove hard on your toddler, so don’t freak out if the process takes around a month or so. 4 – 6 weeks is around a good amount of time to achieve this transition.

A word of advice – your child will probably get a bit sleepy around their usual morning nap time so avoid activities that will put them to sleep such as car rides. You can offer a little snack of fruit or a fruit juice to perk up their energy levels to just get over the sleepy bump.

You may also notice that your child may need some more sleep at first, so think about bringing their bedtime a bit earlier for a short while. This is usually only necessary until your toddler has gotten used to the new routine with only 1 day time nap.

And as always, before you know your child would have smoothly transitioned to their new routine without much of a fuss. Best of all, you’ll now have more awake time to spend with your toddler and do more fun things while creating lasting memories.

But, if you’re struggling, remember I am here to support you! If you need a bit of support to navigate the transition, let’s have a quick chat. You can schedule a one-time consultation and get all your questions answered around sleep by clicking the button below:

If your child is growing out of the current sleep sack and looking for a size up, Upchild has our own sleep sack with soft material and smooth zipper that is tried and tested!