When the clock strikes 5:00 am, your baby cries and tells you she’s awake. If she stays awake even after a feed or a diaper change, she’s waking up too early. This is especially true if she’s cranky during the day. While babies are early risers by nature, a daily 5:00 am wake-up is a little early – even for babies.

There are several reasons why your baby might be waking up too early.

Too much sleep?

Your baby may be waking up early because he went to bed too early or not tired enough. He may not be getting enough activity or playtime during the day. His naps might be too long or too late as well. Even if he wanted to sleep in, he physically can’t go to sleep anymore because his body doesn’t need it.

Too little sleep?

Getting your little one to wake up later in the morning highly depends on how active she is during the day and her nap schedule. Waking up too early might also mean she’s overtired and not getting enough sleep. We know it’s the opposite of the first point mentioned above, but both situations can be true.

How to help your baby get enough sleep

First, take a close look at your baby’s sleep schedule. A typical six-month-old baby needs about 12 to 15 hours of sleep over 24 hours. This is usually broken down into 10 to 12 hours at night, and the rest of the time can be divided into two or three naps during the day. 

If your baby wakes up too early and is cranky during the day, her naps might be too long, or she’s going to bed too late. Adjusting her whole sleep schedule will help her get the sleep she needs. 

Put down your baby at about 7:00 or 7:30 pm and see how it works. Move up his bedtime by ten minutes each night and see if that helps him stay asleep longer. This doesn’t give instant results, and you’ll need to wait a week or two to see if this was successful.

If you think it’s too much sleep, move her bedtime later by ten minutes each night until bedtime is an hour later. This might work in making her wake up later as well. Check on your baby’s nap schedule as well. Some babies who nap too late in the afternoon may have a harder time falling asleep at night but also might be overtired.

Try adjusting nighttime and naptime sleep schedules until you find the right timing for you and your baby.

Other tips to help your early bird get more sleep

Keep the room dark

Sunlight might be getting into your baby’s room, causing him to wake up earlier than he should.

Keep the room quiet

Babies are sensitive to sound, and neighborhood noises like a dog barking or a phone ringing might rouse her from sleep early. Using a noise machine can help to drown out external noises; you can check out a few of my favorite products here.

Wait a few minutes

Don’t rush into the room or to your baby’s crib to pick your baby up when you hear them waking up. Wait five to ten minutes to see if they fall back asleep. Your baby might soothe herself back to sleep or entertain herself for a few minutes.

Contact Good Little Sleeperzzz Today!

If you need help getting your baby on a sleep schedule that works for your little one and the whole family, contact Good Little SleeperZzz today. Laura Knecht, the founder of Good Little SleeperZzz, is a certified sleep consultant that can provide solutions to your baby’s sleep problems.