How To Calculate Waketime Length

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You know waketime length is very important for good naps, but you have no idea how to calculate waketime length. When do you start? When do you end? How do you know how long your baby was up? This post answers that for you. 

How To Calculate Waketime Length

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If you want your baby to take a nice long nap, one of the most important bits of knowledge for you to have is to know how to properly calculate waketime length. The cornerstone for a good nap is having the correct waketime legnth. I have talked extensively about how to figure waketime length out and have given you ballpark numbers to aim for.

That is all great knowledge, but you need to know how to calculate waketime length. 

Waketime starts when your baby wakes up.

Waketime ends when you put your baby in his crib for a nap (or bedtime).

Waketime DOES include feeding time. It is time your baby is awake. 

Easy right?!?!? 

It sounds easy until you add in the “What ifs”. 

What if your baby doesn’t fall asleep for thirty minutes, is that still when waketime ended?

Yes. The purpose of even calculating waketime length is to know how long is perfect for your baby to fall asleep quickly and take a good nap. That thirty minutes awake will not be “nap” time, but it also isn’t calculated into your “waketime.” Take note that with that waketime length, your baby took thirty minutes to fall asleep. That is good data to track. If you need help tracking, be sure to purchase my Logs eBook for only one dollar! 

What if your baby wakes up early and stays in the crib for a while before you get her up? Is that still when it starts?

This is where things can get very tricky. 

The time your baby spends awake in the crib before you get her up is waketime. It is not, however, necessarily minute for minute. This is where you will have to experiment. For some babies, every minute awake in the crib needs to be counted straight across for minutes of waketime. For others, it is more of a “half-time.” So if your baby was awake for 20 minutes in the crib before you got her up, you would count that as ten minutes. The only way to know what is best for her is to experiment and see what happens. 

Conclusion

Now you know just how to count waketime, so in your quest for finding your baby’s optimal waketime length, you can calculate correctly. You are well on your way to better naps!

These posts can help you:

How To Calculate Waketime Length for your Baby

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valplowman

Valerie, also known as The Babywise Mom, is the mother to four children. She has been blogging on Babywise and general parenting since 2007. She has a degree in technical writing and loves using those skills to help parents be the best parents they can be! Read her book, The Babywise Mom Nap Guide, to get help on sleep from birth through the preschool years. You can also find her writing at Babywise.life, Today Parenting, and Her View From Home. Read more about Valerie and her family on the About page. Follow her on FacebookPinterest, and Instagram for more tips and helps.

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1 Comment

  1. Unknown
    August 18, 2018 / 6:30 PM

    My 13 week old daughter went down for a nap at 1:45pm and should be due for her next feeding 3:30pm (1hr 45 minute nap), it took her 10 minutes to fall asleep (only minimal intermittent crying), then she woke up 25 minutes after falling asleep. I allowed her to CIO for 15 minutes but there was no going back to sleep so I went and got her and am making sure not to feed her until her scheduled time at 3:30 (3hrs after her previous feeding). So let me see if I am understanding correctly on what to do for the next time to put her down for nap… -I would not count the 10 minutes it took her to go to sleep toward anything, would just note it to compare with future naps to see what prior waketime is ideal for her to go down quickest/easiest for that nap.-I would count the 25 minutes she slept as her nap time.-I would count the 15 minutes she was awake while I was trying to let her CIO as part of her awake time(75min) before her next nap.-Sooooooo… she has been awake since 2:20 pm and with an awake time of 75 minutes before her next nap that would put her due to go down for her next nap at 3:35 pm which is literally right about when I will be finished nursing her next and I know its not good to switch up the cycle order where she is sleeping right after eating. Ugggggh what would you do, cause I'm stumped?! Have her try to go down for a quick nap after a short awake time and wake her up in time to eat at 3:30pm? If I do that and she won't go to sleep should I just make sure to keep her up for a little while after she feeds (10-15 minutes) then try to put her down for another nap? I feel like the whole rest of the day is ruined 🙁

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