7 month old sleep schedule: Bedtime and nap scheduleUpdated Jul 14, 2022
Headed toward a nap transition? At 7 months old, your baby may be getting ready to shift to 2 naps, although most continue to need 3 naps for another month or so. We’ll provide you with sample schedules and everything you need to know about your 7 month old’s sleep at this stage of development.
The recommendations listed below represent the average amount of sleep typically needed at this age. However, please note there is a range of normal as some children have lower or higher sleep needs. Your child’s schedule may vary, and that is normal.
IN THIS ARTICLE:
How much should a 7 month old sleep?
Ideally, your 7 month old’s sleep schedule will allow for at least 14 hours of total sleep in a 24-hour period, which is in line with the American Academy of Sleep Medicine’s recommendations for this age group. We recommend aiming for 11 - 12 hours at night and 2.5 - 3 hours during the day, split over three naps. However, you may find that your baby’s nighttime sleep gets a bit shorter until they completely drop the third nap in the next month or two.
This happens when a baby needs more awake time between sleep periods but isn’t quite ready to drop a nap — resulting in a later bedtime and shorter night’s slumber.
[Note: for children who were born early, we go by their adjusted age for sleep development.]
Top sleep tip for your 7 month old
If your baby has transitioned to 2 naps and you’re suddenly seeing increased night waking (or early waking), overtiredness may be to blame. Offer 3 naps two to three times per week to help “reset” their overtiredness and get them back on track.
Sleep fact for 7 month old babies
The third nap can be really hard to get at this age, despite a parent’s best efforts. Instead of trying to stretch a tired baby to their regular bedtime, offer an earlier bedtime to help offset their overtiredness.
Sample 7 month old sleep schedule
Note: Sleep needs vary by child, and this chart should be viewed as an example only.
Naptime schedule for 7 month old
How long should a 7 month old nap?
A typical 7 month old’s nap schedule should allow for 2 - 3 hours of daytime sleep. Expect your baby to take 2 - 3 naps each day. Ideally, the first 2 (or only 2) naps of the day will be at least an hour long. For babies taking 3 naps, the last one is expected to be a shorter power nap of 30 - 45 minutes. Most babies need between 2.25 - 3.5 hours of awake time between naps to be sufficiently tired.
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How many naps for a 7 month old?
Most 7 month old babies need 3 naps a day. However, it’s common to see nap resistance at this age, as babies continue to need longer wake times in order to build sufficient sleep pressure (this homeostatic sleep pressure helps ensure that a baby is tired enough to sleep well).
This tends to result in a lot of skipped third naps. As a result, your 7 month old’s nap schedule may not be as predictable as you would like.
Some babies will begin to transition to 2 naps on the earlier side. We find that babies with strong independent sleeping skills tend to drop naps earlier. If this describes your baby, you’ll want to be on the lookout for signs of the next nap transition, which include a pattern of shorter naps, skipped naps, and/or less than 10 hours of nighttime sleep.
When your baby starts transitioning to a 2-nap schedule, they’ll likely toggle between some 2-nap days and some 3-nap days until they’re ready to drop that third nap fully.
|Morning rise||7:00 AM|
|1st nap||9:30 AM - 11:00 AM (1.5 hour nap); 2.5 hours of awake time before 1st nap|
|2nd nap||2:15 PM - 3:45 PM (1.5 hour nap); 3.25 hours of awake time before 2nd nap|
|Get ready for sleep||6:45 PM|
|Asleep||7:15 PM; 3.5 hours of awake time before bed|
|Morning rise||7:00 AM|
|1st nap||9:15 AM - 10:15 AM (1 hour nap); 2.25 hours of awake time before 1st nap|
|2nd nap||12:45 PM - 1:45 PM (1 hour nap); 2.5 hours of awake time before 2nd nap|
|3rd nap||4:15 PM - 4:45 PM (30 minute nap); 2.5 hours of awake time before 3rd nap|
|Get ready for sleep||7:00 PM|
|Asleep||7:30 PM; 2.75 hours of awake time before bed|
Bedtime for 7 month old
Ideally, your 7 month old will be getting 11 - 12 hours of sleep at night, so bedtime should be 12 - 13 hours after waking in the morning. That said, if your baby needs longer awake windows on the 3-nap schedule, they may only be able to sleep for 10 - 11 hours at night. In those cases, bedtime will be 13 - 14 after waking for the day.
Keep in mind that the timing of the last nap will impact bedtime as well. Since your baby needs at least 2.5 hours of awake time before bed, you’ll want to consider the timing of the last nap when planning bedtime. In some cases, it’s better to offer an earlier bedtime instead of a very late third nap (as that can diminish nighttime sleep).
What time should a 7 month old go to bed?
It’s common for babies to go to bed between 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM. However, the best bedtime for your baby depends on their morning rise time and the time their last nap ended.
7 month old baby sleep FAQ
Q: Can a 7 month old baby sleep through the night?
Many babies this age can sleep through the night without parental assistance. They do wake occasionally, but these self-soothers know how to get back to sleep on their own. If a baby has strong independent sleeping skills and gets enough milk/formula throughout the day, they’re more likely to sleep from bedtime straight through until morning without calling out for you. However, it’s not uncommon to still see night wakings at this age, especially if your baby sleeps better with one to two night feedings.
Q: How often do 7 month old babies sleep?
When planning your 7 month old’s sleep schedule, you’ll want to keep awake times between 2.25 - 3.5 hours long. While most babies continue to need 3 naps, some babies will vary between 2- and 3-nap days, and others may have transitioned completely to 2 naps.
Q: How much nighttime sleep for a 7 month old?
Aim for 11 - 12 hours of nighttime sleep for your 7 month old. Note, however, that a few babies this age on 3-nap schedules may only be able to sleep for 10 - 11 hours a night until they drop a nap and transition to a 2-nap schedule (usually between 8 - 9 months).
Q: How much awake time for a 7 month old?
Awake times for a 7 month old tend to be between 2.25 - 3.5 hours long, depending on the length and quantity of their naps. Generally, the first awake window of the day is the shortest, so expect that they’ll need 2.25 - 2.5 hours of wakefulness before taking their first nap. As the day progresses, your baby will be able to stay awake for longer periods, resulting in the longest window of awake time before bed lasting between 2.75 - 3.5 hours. When a baby starts to need close to 3 hours of awake time before the 3rd nap, it’s typically better to drop that nap and transition to a 2-nap schedule.
Q: How much daytime sleep for a 7 month old?
Target 2 - 3 hours of sleep for your 7 month old’s nap schedule, broken out across 2 or 3 naps.
Q: Is there a 7 month old sleep regression?
Between 7 - 9 months old, we often see a change in sleep habits, and some babies experience a sleep regression. Your baby’s development and growth will lead to a nap transition and the mastering of milestones, which often impact sleep. It’s common for routines to become disrupted when your infant pops up into a standing or sitting position in the crib instead of laying down peacefully at sleep times.
Note: The content on this site is for informational purposes only and should not replace medical advice from your doctor, pediatrician, or medical professional. If you have questions or concerns, you should contact a medical professional.