For kids, daytime naps are as important as night time nap. Kids napping within the day is a way for them to recharge and rest to be ready for their extraneous activities such as playing. Regarding their developmental phase, napping helps the body to hone their cognitive and physical attributes. There is a point where the kid’s body can stay alive the whole day without needing the napping session. In this article, we’ll tackle the importance of napping for kids and when this napping session stops.
What age does your kid stop napping?
Not all kids have the same need for nap time at a certain age. Some kids will drop their napping session at a particular age while some stops napping at a later age, sometimes it would just depend on how your kid adopts the environment. In an average, kids would start to drop their nap time at the age of 5 where he is about to go to school at 6 years, dropping nap time at that age is a perfect way to practice so that when your kid is at school, he manages not to sleep. However, there are some kids that drop the napping time at earlier ages such as 3-4 years old, if this happens make sure that their need of about 12-14 hours of sleep daily is still achieved by putting them to bed at night earlier.
Signs that your kid doesn’t need a nap time
- Your kid would usually have his nap time at the same time every day. When you notice that he is no longer having a nap within that time frame and there is no indication of tiredness, it means that he doesn’t need nap time.
- Aside from there is no signs of tiredness, your kid wouldn’t have a moody attitude or grumpy feeling when he misses a nap.
- They wake early in the morning without the need to go back to bed.
- If the kid sleeps at night with an increased duration than usual, there is a possibility that there is no need for nap time because his rest within the night is just enough to have energy throughout the next day.
- When your kid is having trouble getting his sleep at night because he still has energy. This usually happens when the kid falls asleep in the afternoon. If this is the case, you may not need to ask them to have a nap time because it shows that the energy that they gained from sleeping at night can sustain their daytime activity.
Why do kids resist nap time?
It doesn’t mean that when a kid resists a nap time for a day, he is now ready to drop it off completely. There are a couple of reasons why kids resist nap time.
- Being overtired. When your kid is overtired, his body will send signals in his brain so that the receptor responsible for giving energy would still supply him to keep going. This energy will then be used to overcome tiredness and sleepiness.
- Afraid to miss out on an activity. If your kid is anticipating a particular activity, most likely, he’ll resist the afternoon nap time to make sure he won’t be able to sleep.
- Body clock interruptions. If your kid resisted nap time for a couple of days already because of a particular activity, their body clock changes and adapts as well so when you are about to tell him to nap, his body can no longer get accustomed to it.
Read also: “Why do Babies Fight their Sleep”
How if the kid can’t stop napping?
If your baby is still at the age of 2 and below, there is no way for them to drop the daytime nap sooner. The need for napping depends on the age of your child. For those ages 0-3 months, they need to have at least ore than 12 hours of sleep so it is just normal if your child who can’t survive that day without sleeping because the body needs it for developmental changes. What is not normal is if your kid takes a nap at least 4x in a day with 2 hours duration if he is already 3 years old and above. If this happens, then there is a possibility that it has something wrong with its developmental phases so you may need to consult your doctor.
How to let your baby transition from one nap to no nap?
1. Don’t supervise the transitioning suddenly
It is not advisable to transition the no nap time session too soon because there is a possibility that your kid is not yet ready for it. So that your kid’s body will not be astounded to the changes, it is best to gradually present him the ways on how to transition to no nap time until he himself would be the one to have a resisting way not to sleep.
2. Introduce a quiet time
There is a possibility that your kid would suddenly resist not to take a nap. If this happens, you may still encourage them to need to to have a rest by having a quiet time. You can do this by explaining to them the importance of rest without the need to sleep, he can do some quiet or mind-game activities or you can let him lay in bed but be sure not to give him gadgets. Quiet time is best to do at least 30 min-1 hours.
3. Move the usual bedtime earlier
Studies show that kids that didn’t have a nap time will have difficulty sleeping at their usual sleeping time at night but when you adjust their sleeping time at least 1-1 ½ earlier, they can sleep easier and so that the length of their sleep will be sufficient for the next day not to have a nap time again. If your kid gets used to the pattern, eventually her body clock would no longer permit him to take a daytime time but with a longer rest at night.
4. Be consistent
There are moments that your daily routine of transitioning to a no nap time is disturbed especially if during weekends where you have planned activities with the whole family. Whether you are just bonding at home or out of town, you must still be able to stick with the process of transitioning to no nap so that your kid’s body will not be confused as well.