Wow! Can you believe how far your 15-month-old’s sleep has come since their newborn days?
Where once every night was disorganized and new, now your baby has a more reliable rhythm. But their sleep is still shifting and changing as they grow, which can lead to some questions about the path forward – and we’re here to answer those very questions.
This article includes expert advice on the steps you need to take to ensure your 15-month-old gets the rest they need to keep growing and developing well.
For answers to any other questions about your baby or toddler’s sleep, download the Smart Sleep Coach by Pampers™.
We know from our own experiences how frustrating and at times confusing sleep training your baby can be, so we worked with pediatric sleep experts to create an easy-to-use app that can help any parent help any baby learn to fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer.
With 1-click sleep tracking, customized sleep coaching methods, and mini-articles that explain everything you need to know about your baby’s sleep, including how to nap transition and travel while sleep coaching, the Smart Sleep Coach by Pampers™ is your one-stop go-to.
A Sample 15-Month-Old’s Sleep Schedule:
Keep in mind the times mentioned below are simply as an example. Your baby is unique and has their own individual sleep rhythm, so instead of watching the clock when creating your baby’s sleep schedule, pay more attention to their wake windows and sleepy cues.
Wakes Windows are the time your baby is awake between sleeps. When they were smaller, their wake windows were shorter; now that your baby is a toddler, their wake window is a bit longer, and will continue to grow.
Sleepy Cues are the things your baby does when they’re tired, i.e., yawn, rub their eyes, or get a glazed, far-away look. Those stay relatively the same as your baby ages.
By using wake windows and sleepy cues as your guide, you can easily get your baby’s sleep back on track from any sleep regressions or other common sleep disruptions.
Learn more about leveraging wake windows and sleepy cues by checking out the Smart Sleep Coach by Pampers™ . This easy-to-use app guides you step-by-step so you can teach your baby how to fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer for optimal development.
Many 15-month-olds have already completed the 2-to-1 nap transition, though some may still need 2 naps a day. That said, we’ve included sample schedules for both scenarios here.
For more information on nap transitions and why they’re so important to sleep training, read our article on when babies drop naps and how to nap transition .
Sample Sleep Schedule for 15-Month-Olds with 2 Naps:
How Many Total Hours Should a 15-Month-Old Sleep?
Experts agree that a 15-month-old should typically get about 13 hours of sleep over a 24-hour period.
Can a 15-month-old baby sleep through the night?
Yes. By now most 15-month-olds sleep through the night, especially with sleep coaching. Sleep coaching helps babies sleep through the night two ways:
- Sleep coaching aligns your baby’s sleep schedules with their natural circadian rhythm, strengthening their sleep cycles.
- Sleep coaching improves your baby’s ability to self-soothe themselves back to sleep if they wake at night. That means fewer disruptions for them, and fewer disruptions for you, too!
How much nighttime sleep does a 15-month-old need?
As with 14-month-olds, research shows that 11 hours is an ideal number of hours for 15-month-olds to sleep each night.
How much daytime sleep does a 15-month-old need?
Experts agree that 15-month-olds need about 2-3 hours of daytime sleep. This is usually in one mid-day nap, though some 15-month-olds may still be taking 2 naps.
What is a 15-month-old’s wake window?
Wake windows for 15-month-olds taking only one nap is about 5-5.5 hours.
If your baby takes two naps, the first wake window is around 3 hours and 15 minutes, while the second may be a little longer, up to 3 hours and 45 minutes.
Either way, this is so more awake time than ever – which means more time to laugh, play, and grow with your baby.
Is there a 15-month-old regression?
We’re happy to report that no, there is not technically a 15-month sleep regression. However, there is an 18-month sleep regression, and some 15-month-olds may experience early onset of this regression.
Luckily, there are many ways to cope with a sleep regression:
Maintain Consistent Sleep Schedules: Keeping your baby on the same sleep schedule every night helps provide age-appropriate structure to your baby’s sleep patterns.
Extend Your Bedtime Routine: Bedtime routines are the cornerstone of sleep training – they’re the quiet, calm moments before bed when you and your little one relax and get them into the sleepy time mindset.
If your little one is struggling to fall asleep or wakes randomly at night – a key feature of sleep regressions – you can increase their sleep drive by adding a new element to your bedtime routine. A common addition is another story or quiet drawing time in their sleep space.
Wait It Out: If your baby wakes in the night, wait a moment to see if they self-soothe themselves to sleep – often times they will, especially if they’ve been sleep coached because sleep coaching strengthens your baby’s natural ability to self-soothe. That’s why sleep trained babies sleep for longer periods at night: they know how to settle themselves without calling out for assistance.
Stuffed Animals: While babies less than 12 months should never sleep with stuffed animals, blankets, or pillows, older toddlers, including 15-month-olds, can sleep with a comfort object. Often times that simple “companion” can help babies stay settled and calm when they wake at night.
When Do Babies Start Climbing?
Right now. That’s right, 15-months is around the time many babies improve or learn to climb. This can create some challenges at night if your baby wakes and tries a “great escape” from their crib. Keep you baby safe by lowering their crib’s mattress as they grow.
How Long Do Babies Sleep in Cribs?
The general rule of thumb is to transition your baby from their crib to a toddler or “big kid bed” when they’re 3 feet tall. By that point, they’re too tall for the crib, even with the mattress lowered.
However, if your baby isn’t 3 feet tall – that’s usually around 2.5-3-years old – our resident sleep expert Mandy Treeby suggests holding off until your baby is 3 years old or even 4 years old: “That’s when they are better able to comprehend the transition to a big kid bed.”
Do 15-Month-Old’s Have Separation Anxiety?
Yes, some 15-month-olds will experience their second bout of separation anxiety. Separation anxiety in babies typically first appears around 8 months and then reoccurs typically around 18 months, though can happen a bit earlier.
Rest assured separation anxiety in babies is harmless and normal – and actually worth celebrating!
Separation anxiety in babies corresponds with their understanding of object permanence: people and objects continue to exist when they’re out of sight. Before this realization, you were very much “out of sight, out of mind” for your baby.
That isn’t because your baby doesn’t love and appreciate you; it’s simply because they’re more easily distracted at that age and don’t realize you’re somewhere else. Around 8 months, though, that changes: your baby becomes more aware of your absence and wonders where you are, which can lead to some separation anxiety.
Something similar happens around 18 months, though sometimes earlier: now your baby realizes you’re gone and that you’re doing something else. This can lead to baby-sized FOMO (fear of missing out), which leads to separation anxiety.
One way to minimize or even prevent separation anxiety in babies is by encouraging independent play starting around 6 months.
Simply leave your baby in a safe place and step away for a few minutes, staying either within earshot or using a baby monitor to keep a watchful eye. Most 6-month-olds can play alone for 5 minutes before becoming bored or anxious.
If you maintain independent play, though, that amount of time will grow as your baby ages: by 1 year, many babies can play alone for 15 minutes, by 15-months, that time may be up to 15-20 minutes. In addition to minimizing separation anxiety, independent play boosts your baby’s imagination, focus, and attention span.
For more on how to overcome a 15-month-old’s sleep disruptions or for answers to any other questions about your baby’s sleep, checkout the Smart Sleep Coach by Pampers™.
“Predictive Factors of Toddlers' Sleep and Parental Stress,” International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health .
“Normal sleep patterns in infants and children: a systematic review of observational studies,” Sleep Medicine Review.
“Sleep Physiology in Toddlers: Effects of Missing a Nap on Subsequent Night Sleep,” Neurobiology of Sleep and Circadian Rhythms .
How We Wrote This Article
The information in this article is based on the expert advice found in trusted medical and government sources, such as the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. You can find a full list of sources used for this article below. The content on this page should not replace professional medical advice. Always consult medical professionals for full diagnosis and treatment.