At 2 months old, your baby is going through plenty of changes that are going to set the foundations for healthy sleep habits well into adulthood. But right now, they might be driving you a little crazy with their wakeups and erratic patterns!
Here, we'll go over why your baby might be finding sleeping difficult at the 2 month mark, and what you can do to help ease this period - for the sake of both your baby and your own sleep! First things first…is there a 2 month sleep regression?
Is There a 2 Month Sleep Regression?
A 2 month old baby is still a newborn, so they’ll still be sleeping the majority of the time. However, towards the end of month 2, you might start to see more distinct sleep patterns taking form, which could include longer stretches of sleep at night.
Until then, a 2 month old baby sleeps up to 18 hours a day, staying awake for no more than 2 hours in between sleep times, so your sleep schedule should be planned accordingly around this awake time.
But, is there a 2 month sleep regression? Generally, scattered and inconsistent baby sleep schedules at the 2 month mark aren't considered a true regression as much as the 4 month sleep regression, 6 month sleep regression, 8 month sleep regression, or 10 month sleep regression, as that would mean you've had a period of consistent nighttime sleep beforehand!
However, this doesn't mean that getting a 2 month old to go to sleep is easy! That's why we recommend our guide to understanding the sleep regression signs and come up with an infant sleep aid to help your baby through this tumultuous phase.
How long does 8 week sleep regression last?
The 8 week sleep regression is less of a regression in the true sense and more of a wobbly period where your baby is starting to wake up to the world around them after life in the womb.
They'll likely seem more alert, and because they're in a transition period - like with all regressions - they're probably struggling to follow the sleep schedule you'd like them to.
Like other sleep regressions, the two month sleep regression can last anywhere from a few days up to a few weeks
But luckily, it can be managed in the meantime with consistent sleep habits and swaddles like the Zen Swaddle, which helps babies self soothe by mimicking your calming touch.
Is 2 months old the time for a sleep schedule?
However, keep in mind that at this age, it’s better to implement a sleep routine as opposed to a sleep schedule.
A 2 month old sleep “schedule” might be too rigid for the age, while a 2 month old sleep routine will allow more flexibility, but will still introduce good sleep habits that can carry over into baby and toddler sleep routines.
Focus more on the routine’s activities than the timing – that will slowly come into play towards 3 months and older, when you can introduce proper sleep training techniques.
If you'd like to see a sample schedule for a 2 month old, as well as suggested bedtimes, solutions to common challenges, and more, read our guide on the ideal newborn sleep schedule.
The Ideal 2 month old sleep routine
Here's a quick example of a gentle sleep schedule you could use with your 2 month old:
- 6:30am - Wake up
- 7:30am - Naptime
- 9:00am - Wake up
- 10:00am - Naptime
- 11:30am - Wake up
- 1:00pm - Naptime
- 2:00pm - Wake up
- 3:30pm - Naptime
- 5:00pm - Wake up
- 6:30pm - Naptime
- 7:30pm - Wake up
- 8:30pm - Get ready for bedtime
- 9:00pm - Go to sleep!
Of course, it's rare that these types of schedules ever run so precisely, but as long as your baby is having around 30-120 minute naps followed by 60-90 minutes of awake time, you should be good!
They’ll still need to be fed frequently, so don’t expect to be sleeping through the night quite yet. Short sleep intervals are still very common in a 2 month old baby's sleep pattern, but usually become longer around 3 months.
Just take it from this Nested Bean Mom & mommy Blogger, Janene (Hello Ivory Rose):
REAL MOM STORY
“Looking back, the first month was all about snuggling, waking a sleeping baby to feed, figuring out nursing, and surviving the 24-hour shifts. They eye bags were real and deep. It was hard.
It was tough needing to be present for my older 3 kids that are still so dependent on me for everything. By 2 months old, things felt a little more consistent with the schedule but I was still so tired."- Hello Ivory Rose
2 months old - The 'sleep learning' stage
This is why we call the 2 to 3 month old age the "sleep learning" stage. Your baby is slowly growing into more set sleeping patterns, but still not sleeping for those long stretches - they're still learning!
The gentle pressure of the Zen Swaddle offers a reassuring and comforting touch that helps to calm babies and, with consistent use, will help them learn to self soothe when baby wakes and fall asleep on their own.
The Zen Swaddle also combats Moro (Startle) Reflex, which is a common cause of wake-ups in babies up to 4 months old.
Real Mom Review
“I bought this for my son when he was 2 months old, after trying out many different swaddles and wearable blankets. He loves sleeping in my arms, but mama's got to get her sleep too! This swaddle keeps him comforted and snuggly, and he can't kick his legs around too much and wake himself up. It works perfectly...I only wish I had found this sooner!"-Stephanie, 6/23/2016
2 months old is a transition time. Your baby is becoming increasingly alert and active, which is very exciting! But it’s also very common to start struggling with routine and short sleeping periods at this age.
On the flip side, some parents start to see their baby's sleep go for longer stretches through the night – it’s going to completely depend on your baby.
Most babies also experience a growth spurt right around 2 months old, which can lead to an extra sleepy and hungry baby.
Tips on Navigating the 8 Week Sleep Regression
Dealing with the two month sleep regression can be challenging for parents whether it’s their first time going through it or not. You just want to get your child back on track so everyone in your household can get a good night’s sleep.
That’s why we’ve compiled a list of solutions for parents wondering how to get baby to sleep through the night. We’ll walk you through the steps to restoring a sense of normalcy and overcoming the 2 month sleep regression!
Creating a Soothing Environment
To encourage better sleep for your baby, it's important to establish a peaceful sleep environment. Ensure the room is cool, quiet, and dark; consider using blackout curtains to simulate the night at any time of day. A consistent, low-level white noise can also help mask household or street sounds. Keep the nursery free from stimulating toys or bright lights before bedtime to signal that it's time to wind down.
The Power of Swaddling
Dressing a newborn for sleep isn’t something you should take lightly, and this is where a baby swaddle comes in. This is the best way to address the 2 month sleep regression.
There are many reasons why swaddling baby is a good idea. The snug wrap mimics the coziness of the womb, providing a secure feeling that can prevent startle reflexes from waking your baby.
Choose a lightweight, breathable swaddle to keep your baby comfortable and safe. Be mindful of the swaddling technique to ensure it's not too tight and that your baby's hips can move freely.
But, we also have the premier weighted swaddle for newborns to help you harness the full power of swaddling. Explore our zipper swaddle, bamboo rayon fabric swaddle, or arms up swaddle (the best transitional swaddle).
We also have a weighted sleep sack for when the time to move on from your swaddle comes. That being said, let’s look at some other ways to address the two month sleep regression.
An 8-week-old's sleep schedule can be significantly impacted by their feeding schedule. Try to feed your baby every 2-3 hours during the day to ensure they're getting enough to eat before nighttime.
A 'dream feed' just before you go to bed might help your baby sleep for a longer stretch at the beginning of the night. Always burp your baby well to avoid discomfort from gas that could wake them.
Other Soothing Techniques
Beyond swaddling, there are various ways to soothe a fussy baby. Gentle rocking, swaying, or bouncing can help, as these movements remind babies of being in the womb. Soft singing or playing calm music can also be soothing. Some babies might respond well to a warm bath before bedtime as part of a relaxing nightly routine.
The Importance of Daytime Sleep
Naps are just as crucial as nighttime sleep. At 8 weeks old, babies typically need several naps throughout the day. An overtired baby can have more trouble sleeping at night, so watch for signs of sleepiness.
Try to lay your baby down for a nap at the first sign of fatigue instead of waiting until they're overtired. Learn more about the ideal newborn nap schedule in our blog.
Caring for a newborn is demanding, and it's vital to look after your own well-being. Sleep when your baby sleeps when possible, and don't hesitate to ask for help from family and friends to catch up on rest.
Consider speaking with other parents for support and advice - it can be reassuring to hear from others who are in the same boat and struggling with the 2 month sleep regression.
Remember that every baby is different
Perhaps your friend’s baby is already sleeping close to 7 or 8 hours through the night, and you’re still stuck waking up every few hours with your little one. Don’t worry, there’s nothing “wrong” with your baby.
Since 2 months old is a transition period, every baby is going to make that transition at their own pace. Remember that these challenges (short sleeping periods, sleep regression, short naps, fussiness or colic during the “witching hour”, etc.) are all very common for many babies.
Keep attending your regular check-ups with baby and of course consult your pediatrician if you think something is really wrong, but know you are not alone in these challenges – even if it might feel like it!
Don’t get hung up on the perfect 2 month old schedule
Although 2 months old is the ideal time to start implementing a more consistent bedtime routine, don’t obsess over following a rigid schedule.
Focus on implementing the same calming activities before bed to get a routine in place when baby falls asleep, and if you’re really craving some form of a sleep schedule, start with focusing on wake-up time and the first nap of the day.
While most of your day’s schedule will be a little erratic, you can usually start planning a set time for you and baby to wake up in the morning, and at what time they can take their first daytime sleep of the day.
Even gentle sleep schedule ideas like these can help your life feel a little more structured during a chaotic period!
Enjoy this period with your baby!
There’s a lot to look forward to as your baby cruises through the 2 month mark. We know the two month sleep regression is challenging, but it’s temporary.
Soon your child will start to be more alert and their little personality traits will be coming out. You’re going to be hearing more giggles and grunts, and notice your baby discovering their hands and toes.
Final Thoughts on the 8 Week Sleep Regression
Dealing with the 2 month sleep regression can be frustrating, even though the 8 week sleep regression isn’t necessarily a full-blown “regression” (your child hasn’t necessarily formed a concrete sleep schedule at this time, after all).
But we hope this conversation has provided you with clarity on overcoming it and helping your baby get a good night’s sleep - and by extension, helping you and your partner get the deep, restful sleep you both deserve as well.
Learn more about common regressions beyond the two month sleep regression in our blog. We have tips on 18 month old sleep regression, and we can also help you prepare for the 3 month old sleep schedule that awaits you ahead.
Our blog also has resources on topics like when to start sleep training, how to transition out of swaddle, what to do if your baby cries in sleep, your newborn won't sleep unless held, or your newborn cries when put down, home remedies for teething baby at night, when do toddlers stop napping, baby separation anxiety, when should baby sleep in their own room, and more.
Otherwise, invest in the power of a good night’s sleep at Nested Bean through our weighted sleepwear today and put the 8 week sleep regression in the rearview mirror!