Last Updated on May 25, 2023
Staying up with your wide-eyed baby at 3 a.m. on a daily basis is no easy feat. You're wracking your brain for answers, desperate not to end up a daytime zombie with all these sleepless nights. Take heart, your light at the end of the tunnel is not so out of reach anymore.
Around this age is a great time to start gently implementing techniques to get your little one to sleep better. We've created a 3-month-old sleep schedule that can help your baby nod off faster and snooze for longer.
With my knowledge as a certified pediatric sleep consultant at Luna Leaps, this guide's got all the good stuff from someone who knows the ins and outs of baby sleep. However, while these tips can help your little one fall asleep and cultivate healthy sleep habits, for a custom plan just for your baby, consider chatting with me!
I've always believed that helping a baby fall asleep involves a blend of love, intuition, and understanding of their unique rhythms. At 3 months, many babies start showing defined patterns in their night sleep. Below, we've laid out a sample sleep schedule for a 3-month-old as a guideline to get you started:
|Wake-up and feed
|8:00 am - 9:00 am
|Playtime and interaction
|9:00 am - 10:30 am
|10:30 am - 11:00 am
|Awake and feed
|11:00 am - 1:00 pm
|Engage in stimulating activities
|1:00 pm - 2:30 pm
|2:30 pm - 3:00 pm
|Awake and feed
|3:00 pm - 4:30 pm
|Explore the world around them
|4:30 pm - 5:30 pm
|5:30 pm - 6:00 pm
|Awake and feed
|6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
|Quality family time
|7:30 pm - 8:00 pm
|Throughout the night
|Nighttime feedings and diaper changes as needed
Babies' internal clock at this age is more developed compared to their 1st and 2nd months, so it's essential to recognize the signs when they're ready to drift to sleep. Continuing to feed at night or provide some more reassuring cuddles before they're ready to sleep is perfectly fine at this age.
A wake window is the span of awake time your baby can handle before they feel the pull to sleep again. Most babies at this age have a wake window between 1 to 2 hours.
Watch out for those little yawns, eye-rubbing, or even moments of fussiness. It's their way of letting you know they're ready for a nap. In other words, these are your baby's sleep cues.
By tuning into these baby sleep cues, you're ensuring your baby doesn't reach the overtired zone which can sometimes make it challenging for them to fall asleep independently.
If you're like many parents, the nap schedule of your 3-month-old can feel like trying to decode a secret language. But with patience and observation, getting your baby to nap can be super rewarding for everyone.
Most 3-month-olds are starting to develop a rhythm to their sleep schedules. Babies at this age can take anywhere from 3-5 naps per day, with some naps being shorter while others can be up to 2 hours.
The last nap of the day is crucial for their bedtime, and it can be quite tricky. Notice how this nap can sometimes be shorter, acting as a bridge to their bedtime routine. Overstretching their late afternoon nap can make it difficult for bedtime when your baby falls asleep at night.
Understanding your 3-month-old's night sleep schedule can be both enlightening and a touch confusing. At Luna Leaps, we're here to support you during this significant phase of your baby's growth.
In this FAQ guide, we address the common questions about 3-month-old sleep schedules. From sleep regression to quick tips, we address common concerns that tend to pop up for parents.
Wondering if it's perfectly normal for babies to opt for a later bedtime? How can you get your baby to snooze longer? We've got it all covered here!
On average, your baby might be clocking a good 14 to 17 hours of sleep in a day, including daytime sleep. As they start sleeping longer and exploring their world, adjusting their sleep schedule based on their behaviors throughout the day and around sleep time is the ticket to ensuring they're well-settled for the night.
While some babies at this age are managing to get 12 hours of uninterrupted sleep at night, waking during the night is still totally normal.
Many little ones at this age are still solidifying their sleeping rhythms and learning the difference between day and night. So, those midnight awakenings might just be for a quick diaper change or a little snack. Their tiny tummies are like little engines - always on the go, especially with all the growing they're doing.
Most babies at this age are taking around three to four naps, though they can last anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours. Some little ones might enjoy longer stretches of daytime snoozing, others might take quick power naps. Both are perfectly healthy and normal!
A comfortable bedtime for a 3-month-old will typically fall between 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm on average. This timing sets the stage for longer stretches of sleep, helping them adequately recharge for the next day.
Every baby is unique, so yours might tick a bit differently. On average, your little one can happily stay awake for about 1 to 2 hours before it's time for more sleep.
It's during these awake periods that you might catch those telltale signs of sleepiness— a little yawn here, eye rubs there. These cues are there to let you know it's time for some rest. Pushing these windows may lead your baby to feel overtired, which can exacerbate sleep issues.
As your baby reaches new developmental milestones, their sleep patterns can shift and evolve.
Here are some gentle nudges to guide your little one towards more extended periods of nighttime rest:
Consistent Bedtime Routine: Establishing a soothing bedtime routine can signal to your baby that it's time to wind down. This might include a warm bath, a gentle massage, or reading a bedtime story. The key is consistency.
Optimal Sleep Environment: Ensure your baby's bed is comfortable and safe. A dark, quiet room with a comfortable temperature can make a world of difference.
Full Tummy: Sometimes, a little nighttime feed can help your baby sleep for longer. Ensure they're well-fed before putting them to bed.
Understand Sleep Cues: Pay attention to signs that your baby is getting sleepy. Rubbing eyes, staring into space, yawning, or fussiness can be indicators. Putting your baby to bed when they first show these signs can help them settle more easily.
Stay Calm and Comforting: If your baby does wake up during the night, approach them with a calm and comforting demeanor. Sometimes, a gentle pat cribside or a soft lullaby can help them drift back to sleep.
Every baby is unique. While some might start sleeping through the night earlier, others might take a bit more time. It's all a part of their individual journey. Celebrate the small victories and know that with each night, you two are both learning and growing together.
As your baby grows, it's not uncommon for their sleep patterns to have some twists and turns. In fact, a sleep regression around 3-4 months is an all too familiar complaint from many parents. These phases typically last a short time in the grand scheme. So, if your baby is finding it a tad tricky to drift back to sleep, know that these changes are temporary.
I suggest waiting until your baby is around 4 months old at the earliest before trying formal sleep training. Babies at this age are still maturing and working out their day and night mixups. However, there's no harm in introducing some gentle sleep-shaping techniques earlier on.
You might encounter a few common sleep challenges as your baby grows and develops. These can include difficulty settling down for naps, waking up frequently during the night, or experiencing a sleep regression.
But don't worry, you're not alone. Luna Leaps is here to offer guidance and support. We will help you understand and overcome these challenges to ensure restful nights and joyful days for both you and your little one.
Yes, we can certainly help as this is our expertise!
With Luna Leaps, you'll receive tailored guidance that resonates with your baby's unique sleep rhythm and family's philosophies. Remember, you're not on this journey alone. Let's ensure your 3-month-old has restful nights. Contact us now and together, we'll work to make bedtime magical! Contact me today!
Hi, I'm the founder of Luna Leaps. As a certified sleep consultant with the Institute of Pediatric Sleep and Parenting, I bring expertise and compassion to helping families establish healthy sleep habits. As a mom of two, including one with special needs, I understand the struggles of sleepless nights and the toll it can take on the whole family. But with a personalized plan tailored to your child's unique needs, we can work together to improve sleep and overall well-being. Let's start this journey towards better sleep together.
Located in Los Angeles, CA and helping families nationwide.