16 month sleep regression is a normal and expected developmental milestone in your baby’s life. It is a temporary period of time when your baby may have difficulty sleeping, typically lasting two to three weeks. During this time, you can expect your baby to wake up more often at night than usual, take shorter naps during the day, and resist going down for bedtime.
This blog post will discuss what you can do to support your baby during this period and how to get back on track with healthy sleeping habits.
What Is Sleep Regression
Sleep is an essential part of life and yet, sometimes it can still become difficult to manage. Sleep regressions are one of these challenging periods that typically affect babies between the ages of 4 and 24 months old. Sleep regressions generally involve a baby’s sleeping and napping patterns becoming disrupted, causing them to become more awake, and fussy, and challenging their caregivers to seek comfort or wanting attention during their usual sleep times.
Read more: 9 Month Sleep Regression
Typically, these regressions are short-lived but can significantly disrupt bedtime routines in the meantime and result in a taxing experience for both parents and babies alike. During these trying times, it may be helpful to identify coping mechanisms that can decrease stress levels of your baby such as a cuddle and reassurance without setting up any overly stimulating activities that could delay their return to a restful night’s sleep.
16 Month Sleep Regression:
If you have a 16-month-old and have recently noticed changes in your child’s sleeping habits, you may be dealing with something commonly referred to as the 16-month sleep regression. Even if it can often bring on frustration, understanding why this sleep regression occurs is important as it may help you get through the tumultuous times (for both you and your child!) that can come with this stage in a toddler’s life.
Read more: 10 Month Sleep Regression
A common cause of this developmentally-related sleep regression is the fact that 16 months is around the same time toddlers typically experience rapid cognitive growth and are constantly learning new skills such as walking, talking, and even attempting potty training.
In response to all these exciting new endeavors, toddlers may become overstimulated or eager to practice what they have been learning throughout their days, leading them to stay up longer than usual and creating challenges for parents attempting to get them back into a consistent sleeping schedule.
Read more: 11 Month Sleep Regression
To help manage this stage in development, it’s important to stick to proper sleep training and make sure your child is getting plenty of physical activities throughout the day. Try not to let your child nap too late in the day as this can make their sleep regimen more difficult.
As overwhelming as this sleep regression can often feel during its duration, keep in mind that it too will likely pass – but in the meantime be sure to give yourself extra time for patience, snuggles, and proper rest for both parent and child!
How Can You Tell If Your Baby Is Going Through A 16-Month Sleep Regression?
Knowing when your baby is going through a sleep regression can be a challenge.
- One of the most obvious signs that your little one is in the midst of a 16-month sleep regression is if they wake more frequently throughout the night than usual. This can result in less overall sleep for everyone involved! Typically, this regression kicks in about two to three weeks before their big birthday, and you may notice that it’s difficult to put your child to bed during this time. It might even seem like they don’t want to stay asleep once they’ve been put down!
- Another sign that your baby is struggling with sleep regression is if they suddenly start waking up earlier than usual. Suddenly having an early riser might mean they are struggling with sleeping soundly during the night – so, it’s worth speaking to an expert such as your pediatrician or seeking additional support if you think this might be happening in your home.
Be sure to take note of any changes so you can follow a consistent bedtime routine to ensure that your baby gets enough restful sleep!
Read more: 12 Month Sleep Regression
Tips For Helping Babies To Get Through This Difficult Transition Period:
The 16-month sleep regression can be a difficult time for both parents and babies alike. From disrupted sleep patterns to revisited night waking, you may find yourself looking for the best way to help your baby through this phase.
Bassinet Or Crib
A bassinet or crib can provide a safe and secure environment for your toddler sleep. This is an especially good option if you are struggling with frequent night wakings – as the smaller size of a bassinet or crib will help them to feel more contained and secure, leading to better quality sleep.
Stick To Your Usual Bedtime Routine
It can be tempting to let your little one stay up later or nap during the day, but make sure you’re still keeping their regular schedule as much as possible.
Don’t Overstimulate Them Before Bed
Try not to do anything overly stimulating before they fall asleep, as this can lead to difficulty settling down and staying asleep.
Give Plenty Of Reassurance
If your baby wakes up in the middle of the night, it’s important to give them comfort and love rather than scolding or trying to “train” them out of their sleep troubles.
Read more: 15 Month Sleep Regression
Enough Physical Activity
Try to make sure your little one is getting plenty of physical activity throughout the day in order to tire them out and help their bodies prepare for sleep.
Find Additional Support
If you are having difficulty managing or coping with this toddler sleep regression, reach out for additional support from your pediatrician or other experts in the field.
Remember that this stage won’t last forever, and with proper care and patience, you can help your little one make it through this challenging period of development!
By taking all these tips into account, you can make sure your baby is getting the restful sleep they need during the 16-month sleep regression – and ensure that you are, too!
16-Month Sleep Regressions can be a difficult time for both parents and babies alike, but with the right strategies and support, it can be managed. Be sure to stick to your sleep cycle, don’t overstimulate them before bed, give plenty of reassurance when they wake up during the night, make sure they get enough physical activity, and find additional support if you need it. With patience and healthy sleep habits, you can help your little one make it through this challenging period of development.