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Sleep and Your 4- to 7-Month-Old


By this age, your baby should be well on the way toward having a regular sleep pattern. Some infants, particularly those who are breastfed, may still wake at night. But most no longer need a middle-of-the-night feeding.

How Long Will My Baby Sleep?

Most babies this age should sleep 12 to 16 hours a day, which includes a longer stretch at night and at least two naps during the day, says the National Sleep Foundation. The average amount of daytime sleep is now about 3 to 4 hours.

By 6 months, most babies are sleeping at night for 9 hours or longer, with brief awakenings.

How Should Babies Sleep?

The American of Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends room-sharing without bed-sharing until the first birthday or for at least 6 months, when the risk of SIDs (sudden infant death syndrome) is highest.

Room-sharing is when you place your baby's crib, portable crib, play yard, or bassinet in your own bedroom instead of in a separate nursery. This keeps your baby nearby and helps with feeding, comforting, and monitoring your baby at night. 

While room-sharing is safe, putting your baby to sleep in bed with you is not. Bed-sharing increases the risk of SIDS and other sleep-related deaths.

Follow these recommendations for a safe sleep environment for your little one:

Helping Your Baby Sleep

You may have started a bedtime routine that you're sticking to. If you haven't yet, now is a good time to start. Soothing activities that lead up to "night-night" time can help relax your baby. A warm bath followed by stories or singing will signal an end to the day, and these same activities can be used at bedtime for years to come.

You'll want your baby to fall asleep on his or her own. This may mean doing your nighttime routine and putting the baby into the crib while he or she is drowsy but still awake. If the baby cries, stay away for a few minutes. Your baby may settle down and go to sleep.

If the crying continues, go back in and soothe your baby for a moment without picking him or her up. This may go on a few times until your baby figures out that the crying is not getting results. This can be tough for parents, since it's upsetting to hear your baby cry. If you know your baby is safe, it's OK to give him or her time to settle down.

Why Does My Baby Wake at Night?

Even a baby who has been sleeping through the night will sometimes wake in the wee hours. Allow some time to let your baby get back to sleep on his or her own. Give your baby a few fussy minutes before you respond. Then, after checking to see that everything is OK, leave your baby alone to fall back to sleep. Remember: Any cuddling, feeding, or talking you do may prompt your baby to wake each night for this attention.

Separation anxiety, a normal stage of development, can cause some babies between 6 months and 1 year old to call out or cry in the middle of the night. If this happens, as with other awakenings, give your baby some time to settle down. If needed, give brief reassurance to your little one without taking your baby out of the crib. 

When to Call the Doctor

Most infants at this age will have a regular sleep routine and are able to sleep through the night. But there is a wide range of normal. If you have any questions about your baby's sleep, talk with your doctor.

Reviewed by: Mary L. Gavin, MD
Date reviewed: December 2016


Note: All information on KidsHealth® is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.

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