You and your baby have learned a lot about sleep over the past almost two (!) years. As much as you’ve learned, though, your baby’s sleep patterns are still shifting and evolving. As your baby hits this milestone of 22 months, you may have some questions. Here we’ll answer all your questions about your 22-month-old’s sleep, including “How much should a 22-month-old nap?” and “Should my 22-month-old sleep in a bed?”
And for answers to other sleep-related questions, check out the Smart Sleep Coach by Pampers™. Even if you’ve already sleep coached, this groundbreaking app helps you maintain a consistent sleep schedule to ensure your baby continues to hit their developmental milestones. And if you haven’t sleep coached, it’s never too late – and it’s never a bad idea: better sleep now means better health tomorrow.
A Sample 22-Month-Old’s Sleep Schedule
Here we’ve created a sample sleep schedule. Keep in mind this is just an example – your baby’s unique and has their own rhythms. When creating your baby’s schedule, focus more on their wake windows and sleepy cues than actual clock time.
As a reminder:
Wake windows: The amount of time your baby is awake between sleeps.
Sleepy cues: The signs your baby’s tired, like going glassy eyes or pulling their ears.
By using wake windows and sleepy cues together, you gently shape your baby’s sleep rhythms to help them achieve optimal rest and healthy development.
Sample Sleep Schedule for 22-Month-Olds with 1 Nap
Can a 22-month-old baby sleep through the night?
Definitely. A 22-month-old with consistent sleep coaching can sleep from night to morning with few problems.
For more information on sleep coaching, consider downloading the Smart Sleep Coach by Pampers™ . By combining expert insights and AI-powered sleep tracking, this easy-to-use app creates a personalized sleep plan for your baby and guides you step-by-step through the sleep coaching process. Plus, there are mindfulness exercises that can help in all aspects of parenting.
How Many Total Hours Should a 22-Month-Old Sleep Each Day?
Ideally your 22-month-old is sleeping 12.5 hours over a 24-hour period.
How much nighttime sleep for a 22-month-old?
11 hours of night sleep is a good goal for 22-month-olds.
How much daytime sleep for a 22-month-old?
Experts recommend 1.5-2.5 hours of nap time for 22-month-olds. While they may resist naps, it’s important you keep them on a consistent nap schedule for another year.
When Should Babies Drop Naps Completely?
Experts agree that babies should maintain at least one mid-day nap until they’re 3-years-old, though many parents prefer to keep up a nap until their baby is 5. Of course, you know your baby best – if they begin resisting naps or they struggle to fall asleep at night, it’s probably time to complete the 1-to-0 nap transition.
Maintaining naps does 3 things:
- Naps provide NREM sleep that help with memory consolidation.
- Naps help strengthen night sleeps.
- Naps provide you time to catch-up on work, chores, or simply rest. Remember, you’re working very hard and deserve some “me time.” That’s one of the reasons the Smart Sleep Coach by Pampers™ includes mini-meditations: exercises that let you take a moment to recharge whenever you need them.)
What is a 22-month-old’s wake window?
From 5 hours to 5 hours and 45 minutes is a good wake window for 22-month-olds.
Is there a 22-month-old regression?
Though it’s not technically called a “Regression,” some 22-month-olds may still experience separation anxiety.
Another complication to watch out for: if your baby wakes at night and tries a “great escape” from the crib. This is just them testing out their independence. If your baby does this, lower the mattress to prevent climb-outs.
You’re doing great! You’ve come a looong way since your baby was a newborn with super disorganized sleep. Soon everything will level out and your whole family will be sleeping like – well, you know.
And to learn more about sleep regressions, read our piece on why they happen and how to help mitigate them.
Should My 22-Month-Old Sleep in a Bed?
One of the big questions the parents of almost-two-year-olds is “Should my baby transition from their crib to a bed?” The answer is: it depends.
The general safety rule for cribs is that if your baby is 3 feet tall, it’s time to transition out of the crib. This is because taller babies can climb over the rails and may hurt themselves.
If your baby is less than 3 feet, we recommend sticking with the crib until they’re either 3 feet or 3-4-years-old.
As Mandy Treeby, our lead sleep consultant, notes, “I usually recommend keeping them there until around the age of 3 or 4 when they are better able to comprehend the transition to a big kid bed.”
Of course, you know your baby best, so if you think they’re ready to transition from a crib to a bed, transition away!
How To Sleep Train While Traveling
As your baby ages, you may become more mobile or travel more. So, how do you maintain your baby’s sleep schedule while traveling?
To Sleep Train in the Same Time Zone: Simply maintain your normal sleep schedule but you may want to add a few minutes of bedtime routine to help calm your baby after an exciting day of travel and stimulation.
How to Sleep Train Across Time Zones
If you’re simply going over one time zone, it may be easier to keep your baby on their typical sleep schedule.
If you’re traveling to a time zone more than one hour +/-, adjust your baby’s sleep before you travel to match the new time zone.
You do this by incrementally moving your baby’s bedtime and wake times forward or backward, depending on where you’re traveling.
Traveling East to West
Adjust your baby’s bedtime up in 15-minute nightly increments for each time zone you’ll traverse.
For example, if you’re traveling east to west four time zones, put your baby to bed 15 minutes earlier four nights before your trip; the next night it’s 15 minutes earlier, and so on.
Traveling West to East
Adjust your baby’s bedtime back in 15-minute nightly increments for each time zone you’ll travel across.
For example, if you’re traveling west to east 3 time zones, move your baby’s bedtime up 15 minutes three nights before your trip, then 15 minutes the next night, and 15 minutes the final night.
How to Get Your Baby Back on Track After Travel
Once you return home, go back to your typical schedule. Though your baby may experience early wakeups or other sleep disruptions for a few days, they will “click” back in place if you maintain your bedtime routine.
How to Manage Separation Anxiety at 22-Months
Separation anxiety in babies can intensify or become more pronounced between 18-22 months. This is because their concept of object permanence is becoming more advanced: whereas in earlier bouts of separation anxiety your baby simply understood you were somewhere else, now they understand you’re somewhere else and doing something else. They wonder what you’re doing, how long you’ll be gone, and why they’re not with you. We like to call it “baby FOMO” – fear of missing out.
If your 22-month-old shows signs of separation anxiety – crying out when you leave the room or being more clingy than usual – you can minimize separation anxiety with these techniques:
Peek-a-Boo: This classic game is more than just fun – by “disappearing” and “reappearing,” you’re subtly showing your baby that you will always return.
I’ll Be Right Back: A more interactive form of peek-a-boo, “I’ll be right back” diminishes separation anxiety and increases your baby’s “alone endurance.”
To play “I’ll be right back” you simply say those magic words and step out of the room for a few minutes. Then you return and enthusiastically say, “I’m back!” This proves to your baby that, yes, you will always return to them. For the next round, extend the amount of time you’re out of the room, and then add more time the third round, and so on – this acclimates your baby to being alone.
Why Independent Play is Important for Babies:
Separation anxiety can also be minimized by encouraging independent play.
Starting at 6 months, allow about 5-10 minutes of alone time. By 12 months your baby may be able to play alone for 15 minutes without getting bored, and by 22 months, it’s almost 30 minutes. Introducing your baby to alone time early will go a long way in alleviating separation anxiety later.
Alone time also helps grow your baby’s imagination, focus, and attention span.
If you have any other questions about your baby’s sleep – from the science behind baby sleep to how to handle the witching hour – check out the Smart Sleep Coach by Pampers™.
We know from experience that sleep coaching can be difficult or frustrating at time, so we created this app to make it easy, seamless, and fun! We want you and your baby to happy, healthy, and well-rested – and the Smart Sleep Coach by Pampers™ helps on all accounts!
“Bedtime routines child wellbeing & development,” BioMed Central Public Health.
“Relations Between Toddler Sleep Characteristics, Sleep Problems, and Temperament,” Developmental Neuropsychology.
“Development of infant and toddler sleep patterns: real-world data from a mobile application,” Journal of Sleep Research.
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.