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How Much Should a Nine Month-Old Sleep?

By Bryan Berg ; Updated June 13, 2017

Your baby is 9 months old, a time of continued growth and changes. However, in the midst of all this developing, your baby needs to get his rest. You may find that he's just not that into sleeping anymore, so getting your baby to sleep may be harder than it used to be.

Your Baby's Development

At 9 months old, your baby is starting to do many things on her own. She may already be able to crawl--if not, she will be soon--and she might even be able to pull herself against furniture to stand. Some 9-month-old babies can actually take a few steps without falling. All of these developmental milestones are bound to tire out your baby. She's expending a lot of energy to perform these new feats, which will help her to sleep better.

Nighttime Slumber

Babies who are 9 months old are usually able to sleep about 10 hours a night, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Your baby should be experienced in putting himself back to sleep when he wakes up in the middle of the night. His ability and desire to put himself to sleep may be displayed in his refusal to be rocked to bed. In most cases, he should not require a feeding or a diaper change until the morning.

Nap Time

At 9 months, your baby is likely taking two naps per day, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. The two naps combined should total approximately three hours, though it's OK if one nap is longer than the other. You may find that your baby isn't into napping much these days, which is understandable given her new mobility skills. However, if you place her in the crib and walk out, she should fall asleep before long.

Establishing a Schedule

Your baby might not be able to tell time, but he does know when it's time to sleep. Though his independence is growing by the day, it's important to keep him on a consistent sleep schedule. Put him down for his naps at the same time, and continue to use the same nighttime routine you've been using.

Sleeping Through Night

While many babies are capable of sleeping through the night at 9 months, some aren't quite there yet. If your baby isn't sleeping a full 10 to 12 hours yet, it's nothing to be alarmed about. However, if you're getting up with her throughout the night and rocking her to sleep, there's no reason for her to expect anything different. Encourage her to put herself to sleep and to go through nighttime without a feeding. These changes may enable her to break out of these habits and begin sleeping through the night.

Standing Up

Another major hang-up for parents is a baby that stands himself up against the rail of his crib, but doesn't know how to get himself back down. You may have no choice to help him to sit down, which can inhibit your baby's ability to fall asleep on his own. Your only option is to keep giving him chances to put himself to sleep as he comes to realize that standing up in his crib isn't a good idea.

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