How Much Should a 5 Month Old Sleep?

The information in this article is for educational purposes only and should not be considered medical advice. [Read our full health disclaimer]

Updated on February 16, 2023

You don’t need us to tell you that your 5 month old baby goes through amazing changes; both of you are experiencing them each day. One moment your baby is quiet, and the next is babbling, gurgling, and cooing – in that way experimenting with sounds and imitating speech. And while your little one becomes more and more active during playtime, their sleep pattern changes as well.

Your 5 month old baby’s sleeping needs slightly decrease, but they might still spend more time sleeping during the night, or snoozing during the day.

Now, how much does your 5 month baby sleeping time should be? Generally, a 5 month old baby will spend 14-16 hours of sleep time per day including nap times.

Keep reading because we’ll include some great tips for better nighttime and daytime sleep. Let’s get started.

How Much Sleep For 5 Month Old

In regards to a 5 month baby’s sleep schedule, expect your little one to have short naps during the day and long sleep periods during the night. This is the time when you should establish a consistent bedtime routine and a consistent sleep schedule to prevent long naps during the day (so that your baby is less confused between nighttime and daytime). Combining daytime naps and night time sleep, a 5 month old baby will have between 14 and 16 hours of sleep per day.

baby's gray knit hat

If you decide to practice a bedtime routine, experiment with different calming bedtime routine, such as reading a story, listening to music, and so on, in order to see what works best. Remember to put some time aside to practice your bedtime routine and be as relaxed as you can possibly be.

Another thing that you can do when your baby is 5 months old is to help your little one learn how to fall asleep without your help. Your baby might not be able to go to sleep on its own constantly yet, but you can start establishing consistent healthy sleep habits.

5 Months Sleeping Pattern

Given that the circadian rhythm of a 5 month old baby is already developed to a certain point, your baby starts to develop the habit of waking up approximately at the same time every morning and going to bed approximately at the same time every night.

As per most pediatrician’s recommendation, an ideal time for a 5 month old baby is to wake up somewhere between 6 am and 8 am, and and ideal bedtime would be between 6 pm and 8 pm. This is considered normal for a 5 month old baby’s circadian rhythm, and the nighttime sleep should last approximately 10-12 hours at night.

If you think that your baby’s day-to-day sleep schedule is inconsistent, try to wake your little one approximately at the same time every morning, which should stabilize your baby’s bedtime and naps. After a while, your little one should start waking up on its own during that time in the morning.

baby on white and gray mat

When it comes to naps, a 5 month old baby’s nap schedule usually includes 3 to 4 naps, which is around 3 to 4 hours of daytime sleep. A 5 month old baby’s average awake time should be around 2-3 hours between two naps, maybe a little bit more if your baby is a pretty good sleeper.

5 Month Old Baby Wake Windows

The wake windows for a 5-month-old baby are typically around 2 hours long. This means that the baby will be awake for two hours and then sleep for two hours, repeating this cycle throughout the day. The first wake window is usually one of the shortest, sometimes lasting only 90 minutes.

While there is a small percentage of 5-month-olds that can stay awake for up to 3 hours at a time, it is important to remember that 2 hours is the average amount of time they should be awake before needing to rest again.

It is important to establish a consistent wake window schedule for your baby so that they can get enough rest and develop healthy sleep habits. A consistent schedule will help them learn when it’s time to go to bed and when it’s time to wake up.

It also helps them adjust better during times of transition such as when you travel or change their routine in any way. Establishing a regular awake period will help ensure your baby gets enough rest and has healthy sleep habits as they grow older.

5 Month Old Sleep Eat Schedule

A 5 month old baby is usually breastfed or formula-fed every 3 to 5 hours, and this is the perfect age to start eating solid food approximately 3 times a day.

baby fed with bottle in the arms of mother

If you’re formula-feeding your baby, you probably know that a 5 month old baby can eat 4 ounces of formula approximately 6 times per day. If you’re breastfeeding, you’ll have to nurse your baby every 3 to 4 hours, however, every breastfed baby is different. What’s really important is for your baby to be content, your breasts to be emptied, so that your 5 month old baby can gain a healthy weight.

In case you’re pumping breast milk, you’ll have to give your baby approximately 25 ounces of breast milk a day. This means that if you’re feeding seven times per day, you should give them approximately 4.5 ounces of breastmilk per feeding.

Here’s an example for a sleep and feeding schedule for a 5 month old baby:

  • 6:30 am – waking up and feeding;
  • 8:00 am – first daytime nap which can be around 45 minutes;
  • 8:45 am – awake time;
  • 10:00 am – feeding;
  • 11:00 am – it’s time for the second nap;
  • 11:45 am – awake time;
  • 1:30 pm – it’s eating time;
  • 2:00 pm – time for the third nap;
  • 2:45 pm – awake time;
  • 4:45 pm – it’s time for the last daytime nap which should be around 30 minutes;
  • 5:15 pm – awake time and feeding;
  • 6:45 pm – last daytime feeding;
  • 7:00 pm – time for a bedtime routine;
  • 7:15 pm – your baby should be asleep by now

During the night, it’s best if your baby has only one night feeding.

How Much Night Sleep For 5 Month Old Baby?

The amount of sleep a 5-month-old needs can vary greatly from baby to baby. Generally speaking, however, most babies this age will need around 15 hours of sleep each day, including 10-12 hours sleep at night and 3-4 hours of day sleep divided into two or three naps per day.

This can add up to around five hours of daytime sleep. It’s important to remember that every baby is different and some may require more or less sleep than others. Some babies may wake up at night while others may not; it all depends on their individual sleep personality.

baby lying on white surface

It’s also important to note that as your baby grows older, their sleeping patterns will change and they will need less sleep overall. As such, it’s important to keep an eye on your baby’s sleeping habits and adjust accordingly as they grow older.

If you’re ever concerned about how much your 5-month-old is sleeping, it’s best to consult with your pediatrician for advice and guidance.

Is There A Thing As 5 Months Old Sleep Regression?

Sleep regression stage is always associated with progress, and your little one is growing neurologically, as well as physically. Sleeping can be interrupted during this period because a 5 month old baby is diverted by physical irritations, including teeth growing, or neurological developments, like walking, pulling up, and rolling. Both of these things are distracting your 5 month old baby from a good night’s sleep.

You might see your baby wide awake in the wee hours of the night, happily hanging out in the crib as it’s learning to pull up. Pulling up can occur as early as four months, however, five months tend to be an average period for this to happen. This can be manifested in 4 am wake ups, as well.

Overall, a 5 month sleep regression per se isn’t pointed out by most literature. However, every time a 5 month old baby is disturbed or excited by its daily life, nighttime sleep can be disrupted. This is the reason why it’s crucial to establish a sleeping schedule and teach your little one to become an independent sleeper, so it can put itself to sleep after waking up in the middle of the night.

Why Is My 5 Month Old Not Sleeping Through The Night?

As a parent, there is nothing more desirable than having your baby sleep through the night. Unfortunately, this isn’t always easy to achieve and can be a source of frustration for many parents. However, there are steps that you can take to help your baby get into a routine that will make it easier for them to sleep through the night.

Baby wearing gray onesie sleeping on bed

The first step is to create a consistent sleeping environment for your baby. This means making sure that the temperature in their room is comfortable and that they have a comfortable mattress and bedding. Additionally, try to keep noise levels low and avoid any bright lights or screens in their bedroom.

It’s also important to establish a nighttime routine with your baby so they know what to expect when it’s time for bed. This could include reading stories or singing lullabies before bedtime.

Finally, if your baby wakes up during the night, try not to interact too much with them as this may disrupt their sleep cycle further. Instead, offer gentle reassurance until they fall back asleep on their own. By following these tips, you should be able to help your baby transition into sleeping through the night more easily.

Sleep Tips for 5 Month Old Baby

Here are some tips that’ll help both you and your 5 month old baby in the sleeping process:

  • Notice the signs of sleep readiness. It’s crucial to notice when your baby is ready for sleeping as this will make the sleep process much easier. If your baby starts to fuss, sucks its thumb, yawns, or rubs its eyes, it’s probably ready for bed or a quick nap. These signs can be different for every baby, so if you’re able to notice the specific sleepy signs of your baby, you’ll be better at putting your baby to sleep once it’s ready.
  • Stick to a bedtime sleep routine. A regular sleep routine before going to bed, such as listening to music, taking a bath, or reading a story, is very helpful for putting your 5 month old into the right bed mood.
  • Take time for daily naps in its crib. There will be days when you won’t be able to put your baby for a nap in its crib, but try to make an effort so your baby can have at least one nap in its crib.
  • Help your baby to try new skills while it’s awake. Due to the fact that sleep regression usually happens around the same period when your little one approaches an important development milestone, you should encourage your baby to practice its skills such as motor skills as much as possible (so it won’t be tempted to do them when it’s time for bed). Flipping and rolling over, creeping, crawling, or babbling are some of the new abilities that your 5 month old baby will try to practice.
  • Sleep Training. Sleep training is an important part of helping your baby learn to self-soothe and get a good night’s sleep. Most adults wake up several times during the night, but babies expect their parents to help them fall back asleep. To help your baby learn how to do this on their own, there are different sleep training methods available. The cry-it-out method, the Ferber method, and the fading method are all popular options that can be tailored to fit your baby’s temperament and needs.
  • Avoid Night Feeds. Eliminating night feeds is an important step in helping your baby get a good night’s sleep. The best way to do this is by ensuring that your baby’s nutritional needs are met during the day, so that he doesn’t need to eat at night. To accomplish this goal, it is recommended to offer more frequent feedings in the late afternoon or early evening. This will help calm him down and also reassure you that he is getting enough food.

5 Month Old Baby’s Sleep Struggles Explained

While some babies don’t want to go to sleep for no obvious reason, there are some sleeping issues that are characteristic for a 5 month old baby and this level of development. Here are some of the most common sleeping problems and some tips on how to cope with them:

baby in black and white stripe shirt lying on bed
  • Your baby might start being a little bit cranky. At this age, your baby might start teething, and even though you might not see the teeth yet, they are knocking on the door. One of the common symptoms of teething are crankiness, drooling, rash on the chin, pulling the ears, and biting. So if your 5 month old is cranky, the sleeping process will be a little bit harder. In order to relieve the pressure, you can give your baby a ring for teething, and if that’s not helpful, you can ask for advice from your baby’s pediatrician.
  • Your baby might start waking at night. Up until recently, you were able to say that your baby is sleeping very well. However, at 5 months old, your baby might start waking up in the early morning hours without knowing how to go back to bed. It’s pretty common for 5 month old babies to wake up at night due to the fact that they’re settling into a new sleep pattern and might be into a sleep regression period. This is why you should try and leave your baby to fall asleep on its own. Don’t pick your baby up unless you think it’s hungry, ill, or needs a diaper change.
  • Changing nap schedule. A 5 month old baby needs less naps during the day, and this can make your baby more tired. If you think that a change of routine is what makes your baby fussy, you can implement an abbreviated version of your baby’s bedtime routine as a naptime routine, including closing the blinds and turning off the lights in the room, listening to quiet music, or reading a story.

 FAQs

Concluding Thought

Your baby will experience changes with every month that goes by – and in the fifth month of age, sleeping is one of the major ones. So, when your baby is shifting its sleep routine and is a little bit fussier than usual, the best thing you can do is to continue encouraging healthy sleep habits, because they can be very helpful for your entire family to go back on track.

Article Sources

  1. Mindell, J. A., Leichman, E. S., Composto, J., et al., (2016, June 2). Development of infant and toddler sleep patterns: real‐world data from a mobile application. Journal of sleep research, 25(5):508-516. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/jsr.12414
  2. Crabtree, V. M., & Williams, N. A. (2009). Normal sleep in children and adolescents. Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Clinics, 18(4):799-811. https://www.childpsych.theclinics.com/article/S1056-4993(09)00039-X/fulltext
  3. Sadeh, A. V. I., Mindell, J. A., Luedtke, K., & Wiegand, B. (2009, February 24). Sleep and sleep ecology in the first 3 years: a web‐based study. Journal of sleep research, 18(1):60-73. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/j.1365-2869.2008.00699.x
  4. Bathory, E., & Tomopoulos, S. (2017). Sleep regulation, physiology and development, sleep duration and patterns, and sleep hygiene in infants, toddlers, and preschool-age children. Current problems in pediatric and adolescent health care, 47(2):29-42. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S1538544216301225
  5. Sadeh, A., Tikotzky, L., & Scher, A. (2010). Parenting and infant sleep. Sleep medicine reviews, 14(2):89-96. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S108707920900046X
Bree Taylor - Lead Editor

Lead Editor

Bree is an interior designer with a passion for helping people improve their sleep quality.

She specializes in creating comfortable and functional bedroom spaces that promote a good night’s rest.

When she’s not testing mattresses or helping people get the best rest possible, Bree loves to travel and explore new cultures.

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