Ask the Experts
Scheduling Nap Time
Q: Should my baby's nap times be on a schedule?
A: Look to your baby for his evolving schedule after about three months; before that, anything goes. "You don't have to be rigid," says Jodi Mindell, Ph.D., associate director of the Sleep Disorders Center, Children's Hospital in Philadelphia and author of Sleeping Through the Night: How Infants, Toddlers and Their Parents Can Get a Good Night's Sleep, revised edition (HarperCollins). "But some structure helps both parents and baby. By 9 months of age, most babies naturally move to napping at around 9 a.m. and 2 p.m." But don't try to force your baby to follow a schedule just to make it more convenient for you.