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Sleeping Schedule for a 4 Month Old: A Complete Guide

Wendy Turner
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An ideal 4 month old baby schedule

Is your baby about to turn 4 months old in the near time, and you are worried about their proper sleep? Here is a gist of the sleeping schedule of a 4-month-old baby that continues till they turn 6 months old. Babies must get adequate sleep for good health and overall development. Like the DNA differs from person to person, so does the sleeping schedule for all babies at the 4-month stage. Some babies sleep more, and some sleep less.

The important part is how long they remain asleep as they grow. The sleeping schedule of a 4-month-old baby is important to know as sleep patterns start changing this month.

Like adults, babies also experience two types of sleep; active and deep. The initial 3 months of a newborn consist of active sleep, and as the 4th-month approaches, babies start experiencing deep sleep.

Here is a compilation that new parents can consider for the sleeping schedule of a 4-month-old baby and help babies settle into a regular sleep pattern with enough rest.

How Much Sleep Does a 4-Month-Old Baby Need?

How Much Sleep Does a 4-Month-Old Baby Need?

By the time the baby reaches the 4th month, he or she tends to sleep for longer duration at night and for shorter periods or naps irregularly during the day. Every baby might have a different schedule, and it is completely okay.

A healthy sleeping schedule for a 4-month-old baby should be maintained. As the babies turn sleepy, you’ll observe a change in their facial expressions, turning cranky, yawning, etc. These are signs to put the baby to nap again.

You can include certain things in your sleeping schedule for a 4-month-old baby.

  • It is advised to follow the sleeping schedule of a 4-month-old baby by putting them to nap every day at the same time. Nap timings might vary from baby to baby. Their daytime should comprise of 2 to 4 naps. This helps create a routine for the infant and the parents as well.
  • There should be at least one to one and a half hours of gap between naps so that the baby does not oversleep and remains tired all day.
  • The sleep schedule of a 4-month-old baby at night consists of at least 10 to 12 hours straight or with 1 or 2 waking for feeding.
  • The ideal night sleeping time for a 4-month-old baby is between 6 to 8 PM. The sleeping time may vary depending on the last nap of the day.
  • You can consider giving a warm bath to the baby before their night’s sleep and singing a lullaby before bed.

You can create a sleeping schedule for a 4-month-old baby by taking inspiration from here.

What is 4-Month-Old Sleep Regression?

What is 4-Month-Old Sleep Regression?

Sleep regression is a phenomenon where the baby’s night sleep pattern suddenly changes. It naturally occurs in the 4th month, 9th month, and 18th month because of certain transitions. Sleep regressions are completely normal and can be overcome by parents. One of the signs of sleep regressions are babies fighting sleep and naps. It involves a lot of crying, pushing you away, etc.

It is because the babies are either overtired or fear separation. In sleep fighting, babies almost fall asleep, suddenly wake up with a jerk, and not in a good mood. The 4th month of sleep regression occurs due to a few reasons and is surmountable. You can deal with sleep regression for your 4month old baby by going through a few tips mentioned here.

  • The 4-month-old baby is facing a lot of transitions, from body growth to adapting to the new environment. A sudden rush of growth is called a growth spurt, and it is very common in a 4-month-old baby. This growing process makes them hungrier at night and results in their sudden waking up. This can be overcome by increasing the baby’s nutrition.
  • Another reason behind sleep regression is over-awakening time. The ideal gap between the last nap and bedtime should be nearly 2 hours. If, for any reason, the baby’s regular naps are reduced or when parents drop naps, their awakening time increases, which results in the baby getting overtired. This can be tackled by making a single awakening time. If the baby had 4 naps and now has moved to 3 naps a day, it is ideal to keep them awake for 1 to 2 hours in between the naps. This will keep the baby in a happy mood and active.
  • 4-month-old babies usually face sleep regression because their evolving brains and sleep patterns are turning mature. In this case, as parents, you should be calm and supportive. You can get your baby into a consistent sleep routine that changes as they grow. This can be achieved by sticking to bedtime routines in order, like first bathing, then singing a lullaby, and last feeding, etc., and providing them with a bigger space than a bassinet to sleep.
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Can You Sleep Train a 4-Month-Old Baby?

Can You Sleep Train a 4-Month-Old Baby?

Sleep training means a process of teaching your baby to sleep independently, i.e., without any parent’s comfort, like cuddling, rocking, singing, etc. The sleep schedule of a 4-month-old baby can involve formal sleep training, as the baby has gained a good amount of weight and reached a much healthy stage. You can consider these points for effective sleep training.

  • In sleep training, you put the baby to sleep when they start feeling tired or when it is their bedtime. In this case, you don’t need to sing a lullaby or rub their backs.
  • Sleep training does not being harsh on the baby and letting them cry all night. Allow the baby to comfort or self-soothe themselves, and if it does not work, you can try singing a lullaby so they fall asleep.
  • This method works for those parents who are both working and their baby is under a caregiver’s or nanny’s supervision. sleep training is an effective way forward; performing it on a 4-month-old baby is the perfect age. As the baby grows older, it becomes difficult to sleep train them.
  • The purpose of sleep training your baby is not just to make them fall asleep on their own but also to resettle on their own when they wake in between the night.
  • You can try sleep training by putting them on a bed, crib, swing, or bassinet and making them feel how it looks without a physical touch.
  • Consider Sleep training to maintain a nice sleep schedule for a 4-month-old baby. This includes a nice play time and different activities when they wake in between their naps so that they can remain engaged during the daytime and know the difference between playing and sleeping at night.
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What are the Sleeping Tips for a 4-Month-Old Baby?

What are the Sleeping Tips for a 4-Month-Old Baby?

Sleep schedules for a 4-month-old baby can help establish healthy sleeping habits, which can be continued till they are 18 months old. The 4th month is a milestone for both baby and parents, as the baby starts developing many skills.

These involve grasping things and holding them, recognizing facial expressions, rolling over their stomach, being able to respond by calling their names, and many more.

Here are a few sleeping tips for a four-month-old baby to make them sleep soundly and develop a sleeping routine.

1. Stick to the Sleep Schedule

Stick to the Sleep Schedule

A four-month-old baby’s sleeping schedule can become a proper sleep pattern if a few things are followed daily. Daytime naps and bedtime should have a thin line of difference. You can consider napping a four-month-old by rubbing their back or putting them to bed while they are drowsy. The bedtime routine should be systematic, like bathing, followed by singing, darkening the room, feeding, and then putting them in the crib while they start to drowse.

You can turn on some white noise in their room for a comfortable sleep. It is advisable to put the baby to sleep on their back. This makes it easier to do sleep training.

2. Decluttered Sleeping Area

Decluttered Sleeping Area

As the baby reaches the 4th month, it is an appropriate time for them to be put to sleep in a crib in the same room or a different room. This facilitates their independent sleeping, and they know what it looks like without cuddling and snuggling. As soon as the babies enter their 4th month, there is a growth spurt, and hence it is advised not to put them to sleep in a confined area like a crib full of pillows and blankets.

Always put the baby to sleep on a comfortable, plain surface on their back. A crib full of toys and pillows can cause suffocation to the baby at night and lead to serious problems.

3. Activities for a 4-Month-Old Baby

Activities for a 4-Month-Old Baby

Apart from an effective sleeping schedule for a 4-month-old baby, you should also involve them in many creative activities, as this month is a stepping stone for them. There are many games other than tummy time for a 4-month-old baby that can help parents achieve both mental and physical development milestones. You can try to roll over your baby on a flat surface from their back to tummy or vice versa. Use the baby’s favorite toy to grab his or her attention.

If you want the baby to roll over to the right side, you only need to take the left leg, gently bend it to the knee, and cross the leg over the next side. This will naturally allow the baby to see their right side and will try to roll over his or her stomach.

Besides this, babies start to sit up by themselves or with support from the 4th month.

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4. Developing Their Skills

Developing Their Skills

As soon as the babies approach the 4th month, their cognitive, emotional, and physical development matures. Along with keeping in mind the sleeping schedule of a four-month-old baby, you can also consider adding fun to their routine. A four-month-old baby can feel and explore different shapes, colors, and textures.

Reading an illustrated book during their playtime can help the baby see new pictures and create a beautiful afternoon routine. With the help of seeing and touching different types of books filled with animals and alphabets, the babies develop cognitive skills.

Your baby can easily identify your facial expressions; angry, sad, funny, happy, etc. Consider talking to the 4-month-old baby in different voices and sounds, along with some funny faces. This will help create a bond between the parent and the baby.

5. Reduce Night Time Feeding

Reduce Night Time Feeding

The sleeping schedule of a 4-month-old baby involves at least 10 to 12 hours of sleep with 2 to 3-night wakings. The reason behind disruption in sleep is due to hunger and teething issues. It is important for both parents, especially the mother, and baby, to have the right amount and right quality of sleep. Due to sleep deprivation, mothers can burn out during the day, and the babies can turn out to be cranky. When the babies turn 4 months old, it is the perfect age to start reducing nighttime feeding from 4 times in the night to one time.

To reduce nighttime feeding, you can ensure feeding the baby during their awake time and before preparing them to sleep at night. This will help them get a longer sleep without getting up for feeding.

You can also use pacifiers to maintain the sleep schedule of a 4-month-old baby. This artificial device helps self-soothe the baby at night and is a nice substitute for feeding.

Conclusion

Creating a sleep schedule for a 4-month-old baby is achievable, as the babies can be sleep trained and good sleep habits can be cultivated at this age. Sleep patterns have a large impact on the baby’s happy mood, growth, and sound health. A sleep schedule for a 4-month-old baby is important for both the parents and the baby in order to plan the day.

Most babies have unpredictable sleeping patterns, which makes both the babies and parents overtired. if the sleep schedule for a 4-month-old baby is kept consistent, you can help the baby sleep on time and wake them up happy. A sleep schedule for a 4-month-old baby helps you get ample time with your baby in order to develop and achieve their cognitive, emotional, and physical milestones.

A sleep schedule for a 4-month-old baby should include 3 to 4 naps of equal time, appropriate feeding patterns, and dedicated playing and activity time.

The sleep schedule should ensure that the baby should be getting enough sleep overall for their growth.

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Wendy Turner
Wendy Turner

As a certified pediatric nurse with a Master's in Nursing from Johns Hopkins University, Wendy Turner has enriched various content since 2018. She also holds a PhD in Developmental Psychology from Yale University. Her focus is on sleep training and creating effective bedtime routines for children. She also conducts groundbreaking studies on child sleep patterns. Wendy is a children's book author in her spare time, focusing on stories that soothe and prepare children for sleep.

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