Your baby’s sleep rhythms have taken on a nice, predictable pattern by 8 months, but there are still changes ahead.
To help you stay on top of your baby’s sleep, this article offers expert advice on some of the most common questions we get from parents of 8-month-olds, “How much should my 8-month-old sleep at night?” and “Is there an 8-month nap transition?”
If your baby is struggling to fall asleep or stay asleep, download the Smart Sleep Coach by Pampers™.
In addition to 1-click sleep tracking that updates your baby’s sleep schedule and customized sleep coaching methods, the Smart Sleep Coach includes mini-articles explaining everything you need to know about your baby’s sleep, from what hormones regulate your baby’s sleep to how to sleep train while traveling.
It’s a game-changer – and a sleep saver!
Sample Sleep Schedule for an 8-Month-Old Baby
Every baby’s unique, including your own. Focus less on the specific clock times and more on wake windows – the amount of time your baby is awake between naps or their last nap and bedtime.
Wake windows are a fundamental driver of sleep. Learn more about how they work by checking out the Smart Sleep Coach by Pampers™. It guides you step-by-step so you can teach your baby how to fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer.
Note: Your baby will transition from 3-2 naps around now. This can lead to a schedule shift and some fussiness, especially in the afternoon. For more on nap transitions, read our article on how and why to nap transition.
Tip: The wake window times here are accurate for an 8-month-old, so please do use them for your own baby. Age-appropriate windows are fundamentally important to your baby’s sleep and overall health.
Sample Sleep Schedule for 8-Month-Olds with 2 Naps
How Much Should an 8-Month-Old Sleep?
Typically, 8-month-olds sleep about 14-hours in a 24-hour period. Your baby is still growing. All this sleep helps their bodies develop well. Sleep also improves cognitive and learning abilities, consolidates your baby’s memory, and can help reduce obesity later in life.
How Much Should an 8-Month-Old Sleep During the Day?
About 2-3 hours over 2-3 naps. Some babies may take a shorter 3rd nap in the afternoon. If yours does, keep it below 45 minutes and consider nap transitioning.
Do 8-Month-Old’s Nap Transition?
Yes, 8-months is a great time for your baby to complete their 3-to-2 nap transition. If your baby naps too much for their age, they’ll struggle to sleep at night, which will throw off their entire sleep schedule.
- Common signs your baby is ready for a nap transition include:
- Your baby struggles to nap.
- Your baby takes shorter naps.
- Your baby struggles to fall asleep at night.
- Your baby wakes up at night when they used to sleep well.
- Your baby misses a nap and isn’t fussy (we love this one!).
For more on nap transitions, including how to nap transition, read our article on dropping naps while sleep coaching.
How Long is an 8-month-old’s Wake Window?
Most 8-month-olds are awake for 2 hr. and 15 min -3 hours between daytime sleeps or their final nap and bedtime.
How Much Should an 8-Month-Old Sleep at Night?
About 11-12 hours at night with occasional night feedings, depending on your baby.
Is There an 8-Month-Old Sleep Regression?
We wish we could say no, but unfortunately most babies do experience a regression in this period, though for some babies it’s closer to 7 months, others it’s closer to 9.
Regardless of specific timing, this regression can be caused by a few factors:
“Talking” Up a Storm: Alright, “talking” is an overstatement, but you may notice around 8-months that your baby is saying more simple words, including potentially “mama” or “dada.”
Crawling: If your 8-month-old hasn’t started crawling, they likely will soon. You can encourage your baby to crawl by putting an object they like – such as a teddy bear – on the floor a few feet away from where they’re sitting. This may inspire them to lean forward for the object, which can lead to crawling!
Teething: Sometimes teething can be a bit uncomfortable – another potential sleep regression cause.
Gentle gum massages, chilled fruit or a chilled metal spoon, and/or teething rings are all great ways to help alleviate your baby’s teething pain and help them sleep.
Also, be sure to keep their chin and cheeks clear of excess drool. Otherwise, they may get drool rash.
Separation Anxiety: Some 8-month-olds may experience separation anxiety. Rest assured, this is completely normal – and actually a good thing.
Separation anxiety in babies means they understand object permanence – that is, objects exist even when out of sight. In other words, your baby realizes that when you leave the room, you’re somewhere else, doing something else. They wonder why, what, and when you’re coming back. If they wake at night and can’t see you, this separation anxiety may kick in.
How To Minimize Separation Anxiety
- Play Peek-a-Boo: Yes, we’re serious – this simple game is great fun for your baby and subtly teaches them that when you “vanish,” you’ll always come back.
- Play “I’ll Be Right Back”: This isn’t really a “game,” but you can treat it like one. Basically, to play “I’ll be right back,” you tell your baby “I’ll be right back,” step out of sight, wait 10-20 seconds, and then reappear with a big cheer: “I’m back!” For each round, lengthen the amount of time you’re “gone.” This will help acclimate your baby to being alone.
- Let Your Baby Play Alone: Starting at 6-months, you should give yourself 5-10 minutes of independent play each day and add more time as they age. (Always keep an ear and baby monitor out for them, though.) In addition to conditioning your baby to be alone, thus overcoming separation anxiety, independent play can improve focus and creativity!
- Overtired: Yes, being overtired can make it harder for babies to sleep. This is because you’re your baby is overtired; their bodies are releasing both sleepy and wake-up hormones. (We explain this in more detail in our article on the science behind your baby’s sleep.)
One reason a baby may be overtired is they’ve dropped their third nap. If your baby has transitioned from 3 naps to 2, move bedtime up about 30 minutes for a few days until your baby adjusts.
For more help on sleep coaching, download the Smart Sleep Coach by Pampers™. It’s an easy-to-use app that creates a personalized sleep plan for your baby so you can both rest easier!
“Night waking in 4- to 8-month-old infants,” Journal of Pediatrics.
“Infant sleep and development: Concurrent and longitudinal relations during the first 8 months of life,” Infant Behavior and Development.
“Infant growth in length follows prolonged sleep and increased naps,” Sleep.
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.