Sleep Training Your 10 Month Old: 6 Easy Steps

 

10 month old baby sitting indoors with block smiling sleep

There are two types of parents with 10 month old babies. Ones whose babies sleep great (because they were sleep trained or just fell into it.) And those who struggle daily because their 10 month old won’t sleep.

Sleep training young babies involves some guesswork and flexibility. But sleep training 10 month olds is more straight-forward. At 10 months old, your baby can learn to settle herself to sleep, wean off night feeds, sleep through the night and take long naps.

You may feel like you have a better chance of winning the lottery than you do getting your baby sleeping well. But I promise, a clear plan and some dedication will get you there!

So if your 10 month old is not sleeping through the night, and you’ve turned into a walking “Mombie” this guide is just for you! Here are the 6 essential steps to sleep training your 10 month old.

This post may contain affiliate links.

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Your 10 Month Old’s Sleep: What You Can Expect

 

Naps & Awake Times

  • Your 10 month old baby should nap a total of 2-3 hours everyday. This is usually divided between 2 naps, but short nappers may still need 3 naps.
  • Your baby will be ready to transition from 3 to 2 naps when she can nap longer than 1 hour.
  • Your baby will nap best with awake times of 2.5 – 3.5 hours throughout the day.

Bedtime

  • Bedtime should fall between 6:30-8 pm.
  • This is the “normal” range for bedtime, but try to keep your baby’s bedtime within a 15 minute range each night. (Super consistent bedtimes lead to the best night sleep.)

Night Sleep

  • Most 10 month olds need 11-12 hours sleep at night. (Some can get by with 10 hours night sleep if they take long naps.)

Night Feedings

  • At 10 months old most babies can sleep through the night without any feedings!
  • Your baby’s growth and weight gain will determine if he needs night feeds. Best to ask your baby’s doctor.
  • If your baby has been cleared for night weaning, check out my Weaning Night Feedings Guide.

Total sleep in 24 hours

  • 13-15 hours

*There may be a rough patch during the 8-10 month sleep regression.

 

Click below to download my 10 month old sleep guide!

Sleep Training Your 10 Month Old: 6 Essential Steps

 

Step #1: Create a sleep-inducing space

Step #2: Start a relaxing bedtime routine

Step #3: Give your baby a consistent bedtime

Step #4: Remove any sleep props

Step #5: Wake your baby at the same time every morning

Step #6: Keep an eye on baby’s awake times

 

Step 1: Create a sleep-inducing space

 

Your baby’s sleep environment will “make or break” his sleep. If your baby’s sleep space is too bright, stimulating or uncomfortable it will result in fighting bedtime, waking at night or waking early in the morning.

Sometimes it just takes adding or removing a few things to make your baby’s bedroom better suited for sleep. This is the easiest sleep training step for your 10 month old! So make sure your baby’s bedroom is blacked out with white noise playing. And have your baby sleep in a sleep sack in his crib. Let’s discuss each of these sleep-inducing elements.

Black out your baby’s bedroom

When our eyes sense light, it sends a signal to our brain to be awake. Sometimes, even the smallest rays of light can have a strong impact and wake your baby. (Especially at 5 am.)

For this reason, your baby’s bedroom should be darkened with blackout curtains. This little trick is a “game changer” with helping babies sleep later than 5 am.

You can DIY this and put cardboard on baby’s windows for naps and night sleep. There are also inexpensive blackout films you can put up and take down easily (see the link below.) Or you can invest in a nice, decorative pair of blackout curtains.

 

The Best Blackout Products

Click to see on

Black out Curtains

Black out Window Films


Travel Black out Curtains

 

Play white noise all night long

White noise has been proven to help people of all ages sleep deeper and longer

It works by preventing sudden noises from waking your baby- like a barking dog, older sibling or the garbage truck. Plus, it’s completely safe. Play white noise all night and during naps for the best quality sleep.

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White Noise Favorites

 

Click to see on

Hatch Baby Sound Machine

Big Red Rooster 6 Sound White Noise Machine

MyBaby Portable White Noise Machine

 

RELATED: How to Help Your 11 Month Old Sleep Like a Champ!

 

Put your baby in a sleep sack

Don’t you sometimes wake at night searching for your duvet that was kicked off hours ago? Our body temperature is highest at bedtime, but drops during the night. We all cool off during the night and will wake to find a missing blanket. Your baby shouldn’t sleep with a loose blanket for two reasons.

First, it’s not safe. Loose blankets can be kicked onto your baby’s face. Although suffocation is more of a risk for young, immobile babies, it’s nothing you want keeping you up at night!

Second, I can guarantee that your baby will kick off her blanket 347 times each night, making YOU get up each time to replace.

Avoid the frustration of loose blankets by having your baby sleep in a sleep sack. Sleep sacks are wearable blankets and they’re amazing! They keep your baby warm, cosy and safe all night (and give parents peace of mind!)

Sleep sacks are safe to use long-term for babies that can roll, stand, crawl and walk.

 

Keep Your Baby Safe & Cosy with a Sleep Sack

 

Click to see on

Hudson Baby for winter

Halo for summer

Zipadee-Zip all seasons

 

Transition your baby to the crib

If your 10 month old sleeps in a DockaTot, Rock n Play or any other “lounger” it’s time to move him to the crib. At 10 months, most babies are rolling, sitting and starting to crawl. A cosy, nest-like pod may have helped your young baby sleep well, but your older baby needs space to move around and get himself into different sleep positions. Imagine if you had to sleep in one position all night! You’d wake with numb, tingling limbs!

As babies become mobile they need room to roll around and get themselves comfortable. This is vital for self-soothing (something your 10 month old baby is capable of.) Plus, the crib is the safest sleep space for little ones. So transition your baby to the crib now, where he’ll happily sleep for the next few years!

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Here are my guides for transitioning out of the DockaTot and Rock n Play.

 

Step 2: Start a relaxing bedtime routine

 

The purpose of a bedtime routine is to calm your baby every evening, so that her body can relax and welcome sleep. In fact, research shows that a consistent bedtime routine helps children fall asleep quicker, wake less often at night and improves maternal mood. (A triple win!)

For this reason, a consistent and relaxing bedtime routine is an essential sleep training step. Because your baby’s bedtime routine helps her relax and fall asleep, it’s something you want to do everyday. It can calm and settle your baby when she’s sick, teething, going through a regression and even when you travel.

My free Exhausted Mom’s Survival Kit walks you through the steps of creating a peaceful bedtime routine. Doing just these steps alone often helps babies sleep longer at night right away!

 

RELATED: My 9 Month Old Won’t Sleep!

 

Step 3: Give your baby a consistent bedtime

 

Many parents think that it doesn’t matter what time their baby goes to bed. If only this were true! But the reality is that late or inconsistent bedtimes lead to worse sleep, higher aggression and attention problems in children.

Babies really do have a “sweet spot” for bedtime and when you get your baby to sleep at the right time she will settle easily, sleep longer stretches and sleep later in the morning. I’ve personally seen this work with hundreds of babies!

Your 10 month old’s bedtime should fall between 6:30-8 pm. This is the range for bedtime. But make sure your baby’s bedtime doesn’t vary by more than 15 minutes each night.

Inconsistency with your baby’s bedtime makes it harder for her to settle and fall asleep. Your baby will fight bedtime if it falls at different times each day.

 

 

Step 4: Remove any sleep props

 

“Sleep associations” are the props or conditions that we need in order to relax and fall asleep. If your baby is used to being rocked or nursed to sleep, then he associates these activities with falling asleep. He’s gotten used to you helping him fall asleep.

There’s nothing inherently wrong with this! It’s just that he’ll also need your help each time he wakes at night or early from a nap. If this is the case for your little one, then it’s time to teach him how to fall asleep on his own. Babies develop this skill at 5-6 months, so your 10 month old is capable of it.

When your baby can go into his crib awake and settle himself to sleep on his own, he’ll be able to resettle himself each time he stirs at night. (Most babies stir at least 4 times each night.)

We always begin sleep training at bedtime. Once your get your baby falling asleep on his own at bedtime, he’ll naturally extend his nighttime sleep stretches. And he’ll only wake and call out for you when he’s hungry.

My program, 21 Days to Peace & Quiet, guides you through teaching your baby to fall asleep independently. It’s a proven, step-by-step program that has several sleep training methods you can choose from.

 

Step 5: Wake your baby at the same time every morning

 

It may sound insane to wake your baby up in the morning, especially if she doesn’t sleep well at night. But believe me, it works! It’s a simple sleep training trick that leads to more predictable days, which helps moms and babies thrive. Moms can better plan their days and know what to expect. And babies sleep better with consistent sleep times.

If your baby’s morning wake time varies by 1-2 hours everyday, then nap times and bedtime will too. This makes it hard to make plans, run errands and settle into a peaceful evening routine. So if you’re desperate for a more consistent sleep schedule for your 10 month old, do yourself a favor and set your alarm each morning.

The best time to wake your baby each morning should fall right in the middle of her typical wake times. Write down the time your baby naturally wakes in the morning for the next week. Then pick the time that falls right in the middle of this range. That’s your new wake up time!

 

Step 6. Keep an eye on baby’s awake times

 

“Awake times” are simply the periods of time that your baby is awake throughout the day. Recommended awake times for your 10 month old are 2.5 – 3.5 hours.

If awake times are too short, your baby may not be tired enough and ready to sleep. If awake times are too long, your baby may become overtired or overstimulated, which makes it very hard to settle for sleep.

If your 10 month old has 3 short naps you’ll need shorter awake times, like 2-3 hours. If your baby takes 2 long naps, you’ll need longer awake times of 2.5 – 3.5 hours. Some babies can even handle being awake 4 hours before bedtime.

This guide helps you decide if your baby is ready to transition from 3 to 2 naps.

 

Here are some example 10 month old sleep schedules

If baby wakes at 6 am

6:00 Wake, milk*

7:00 Play

7:30 Solids

8:30 Morning nap*

10:00 Wake, milk*

11:00 Play

12:30 Solids

1:00 Afternoon nap

2:30  Wake, milk, snack

4:30 Set the scene for relaxation*

5:00 Dinner, bath*

5:45 Peaceful Nightly Ritual, top-up feed*

6 – 6:30 Asleep*

If baby wakes at 7 am

7:00 Wake, milk*

8:00 Solids

8:30 Play

9:30 Morning nap*

11:00 Wake, milk*

12:00 Solids

12:30 Play

2:00 Afternoon nap

3:30 – 4 Wake, milk, solids

5:30 Set the scene for relaxation*

6:00 Dinner, bath*

6:45 Peaceful Nightly Ritual, top-up feed*

7 – 7:30 Asleep*

* These are by-the-clock events, so try to keep them on a fixed schedule. This sets your baby’s body clock, making sleep come easier over time.

If your baby wakes at a different time in the morning, move your schedule accordingly.

 

Sleep training your 10 month old doesn’t have to be big and scary. It’s all about recognizing the importance of a consistent sleep routine and trying your best to keep it up everyday.

These 6 sleep training steps will help your 10 month old become a champion sleeper. So make you create a sleep-inducing space, start a consistent bedtime routine and make sure your little one goes to bed at the same time each night. Removing yourself as a sleep prop and getting your baby falling asleep on his own will get your baby sleeping long, beautiful stretches. Then you just need to wake baby at the same time each morning and stick to the recommended awake times. A few days or weeks of this, and you’ll be amazed at how well your baby sleeps. Good luck!

Got a question about your 10 month old’s sleep? Ask Jilly in the comments below.

Let’s stay connected!

16 Comments

  1. victoria

    So I have a 10 month old and pretty much since the day she was born she has been held and fed to go to sleep. Well now she won’t self soothe herself to sleep, and needs a bottle to go to sleep…in the mornings my husband goes to work for 10 so me her and my husband load up in the car and head to his job and she will normally take a 10-15 min nap on the way back home and when I try to soothe her back to sleep once we get back she’s got so much energy just from the cat nap she took. How to I fix this she also sometimes does this in the evenings when I pick him up from work around 6. What should I do?

    Reply
  2. Jenny

    Hi there.

    My son wakes up 45min after I put him down.. Sometimes 30min later. I understand that this is because he needs me to put him back to sleep as have been feeding and cuddling. So I’m working on that now haha. But my question is… Do I try settle him back to sleep or just get him up? So tricky…because I feel if I settle him back to sleep then he’s using me to fall asleep again… But then I also don’t want an overtired baby either 😢
    Any advice would be so greatly appreciated.
    Thankyou.
    Jenny

    Reply
    • panagiota

      Hi there Jenny. Thank you for your message.

      When baby wakes about soon after bedtime it means:
      A.) He was too drowsy when he fell asleep at bedtime so he didn’t learn to fall asleep on his own. Make sure your baby’s eyes are still open and he’s “aware” that he’s going into her bed at bedtime.
      B.) he was put to bed too late/too tired. Stick to the recommended awake times for his age. Even if baby falls asleep on his own at bedtime, if he was too tired (awake time was too long) it can cause him to wake more at night.

      This IG post has more details on this –> https://www.instagram.com/p/CBvXEQcKrf5/

      Try implementing these tips for a few days and let us know how things work out. Good luck. Panagiota, BSMS Support Team

      Reply
  3. Victoria

    This is all great and I hope to implement it. But what do you do when you have an almost 4 year old (that still takes naps) and a 2 year old?

    Reply
    • Alyssa Taft

      Hello Victoria,

      Thank you so much for your message. It can definitely be challenging when you have multiple kiddos napping! My best advice would be to try and get the 4 year old and 2 year old on the same nap schedule. You can also try to align the 10 month old’s afternoon nap to be around the same time as the other kiddos. Try to do the same bedtime for all 3 kids (may not be completely possible), but the wake times may look a little different in the morning! Alyssa, BSMS Support Team

      Reply
  4. Ashley

    Hi! I currently have a 10 month old which I have to wake around midnight to feed due to sugar issues. She currently sleeps in a doc a tot and my MIL watches her during the week. Until just recently, I found out that my
    MIL was holding her through her naps and now that I am home with her bc of the virus stuff, I’m finding she won’t sleep unless I am holding her. She also is going through a sleep regression as she is almost walking. The doc a tot is in the crib and I wanted to see if you are able to help me be able to transition her out of the doc a tot and to be able to put her in her crib while she is a wake to go to sleep. As a younger baby, she had some health issues until about 7 months and I had to Rick and hold her up after feedings so she is used to being held at night to fall asleep. Thank you in advance for your help!!!

    Reply
  5. Roxanne

    Hi Jilly,

    When I had my daughter and I was in maternity leave I was able to create a schedule and kept it until she was about 3 months. I had to return to work and my mom and mother in law decided not to follow that schedule. I divided to co-sleep with her for the sake of getting some sleep since she was waking up too much during the night. At the moment she is ten months I am wondering if it is possible to create an schedule for the evening time only, when I am with her since I can’t control what happens when I am at work? Is it possible for her to sleep through the night and have a bedtime routine that will accomplish her sleeping in her crib without me. Thank you for your time !!

    Best regards,

    Reply
    • panagiota

      Hi there mama. Sorry to hear this. (I sure do know the struggle). Don’t worry, we’ll get you there. First, have you tried the tips from this guide? If you haven’t please try implementing these tips for a week or two.

      Also, if you haven’t already, you can sign up for our free Exhausted Mom’s Survival Kit –> https://www.babysleepmadesimple.com/exhausted-moms-survival-kit. It’s a step by step guide that walks you through on how to get your little one sleeping great, day & night. Let us know if you have any more questions. Good luck. Panagiota, BSMS Support Team

      Reply
  6. Lexi Bowles

    We co-sleep with our 10 month old. It started once we couldn’t swaddle her anymore and she wouldn’t settle in her bassinet. Any tips on getting her to sleep in the crib?

    Reply
    • Leena

      Hi Lexi! When making big changes to your LO’s sleep routine, We prefer taking time to spread out the steps. Moving gradually leads to less resistance and tears from your baby.

      👉 So this is an example of how you can gently and gradually transition out of co-sleeping:

      ① Move a few feet away from baby in your bed. Spend 1-2 nights sleeping with some distance between the two of you. This gets your baby used to NOT sleeping right next to your body. An easy way to do this is to scoot away after baby has fallen asleep.

      ⓶ Put baby’s crib (or a Pack n Play) next to your bed and have your LO sleep there. (You’ll probably have to place him in there already asleep.) After each night waking, once he’s fallen asleep, gently transfer him to the crib. If he can spend any amount of time sleeping in the crib the first few nights, that’s a win!

      ③ Move baby’s crib to her bedroom once she’s spending the majority of the night sleeping there. Most babies and parents sleep better in their own rooms, because they don’t wake each other up. Use a video monitor so you can check on your LO.

      ④ Begin sleep training (if needed.) Your baby is now sleeping in her crib, in his own bedroom! The way to get him easily settling herself to sleep and sleeping all night is by beginning sleep training.

      My program, 21 Days to Peace & Quiet, walks you through it all, step-by-step. About 40-50% of parents that join the program are co-sleeping. But we get them all happily sleeping through the night, in a way that suits their baby’s temperament and their parenting styles.

      You can enroll to the program here: https://www.babysleepmadesimple.com/21-days-to-peace-quiet-program

      Hope these tips help! Good luck mama! / Leena, BSMS Support Team

      Reply
  7. Alexandra Do Nistor

    Hi Jilly,
    My 10 month boy is getting worse with his sleep. He slept through the night since he was 1 month old until 5 month when he started teething. After that he started waking up every 2-3 hours for breastfeeding and we kept doing this until he was 8 months old. After that I refused to breastfeed during the night and we gave him a bottle with water since we had hot nights and he got thirsty, but recently, the last two weeks at least he wakes up every hour, and he does not go back to sleep unless we give him water. I am exhausted and i tried to let him cry it out some nights, i tried to soothe him, nothing works. I know he can sleep the entire night without any problems but i just don’t know how to get back there. He sleeps in his own bed, by himself, even during the day naps, i just put him in, give him the pacifier and his sleep toy and he goes to sleep, but during the night he just can’t go back to sleep on his own. Any advice for me? Thank you so much!

    Reply
    • Leena

      Hi Alexandra! Thank you for your post! That sounds exhausting! Usually when sleep is suddenly off the rails but has been good before, it can be a sign of a regression. There is one often at 8 months, so it could be that it threw your previous sleep routine off and you’re still seeing the affects of it. The best thing you can do is to jump right back to your sleep training as the base is there and you KNOW that your LO can STTN and self settle. Jilly’s 10 month old guide above has many tips so follow and implement them closely for 1-2 weeks and you should see improvements. Consistency is key here!

      If you’d like detailed assistance, I would also recommend our program, 21 Days to Peace & Quiet. We offer 4 different step-by-step methods for you to choose from (from super gentle & gradual to quick & efficient.) Each step of the way you get advice based on your baby’s developmental stage, energy levels, and temperament.

      You enroll on this page: https://www.babysleepmadesimple.com/21-days-to-peace-quiet-program

      The program costs $197 now, but you should know that in just a few weeks’ time Jilly’s updated program will be out and it will have a $97 DIY option.

      Jilly is currently on maternity leave. As of October 1st she will be answering questions in our private Facebook group 1-2 times per week. (In the DIY option you do it all yourself. There’s no messaging option or Facebook group. BUT you get all the same information and resources and can definitely get your baby sleeping great.)

      In general, when you are 100% consistent in following the steps of the program, your baby will be sleeping great at night within 1-3 weeks. It depends on the method you choose as well as your baby’s adaptability. But we cover all of this in the program!

      I hope this isn’t too confusing. Happy to answer any questions you have about the program.

      Have a great day! / Leena, BSMS Support Team

      Reply
  8. Donna

    Help…. we do try and follow the majority of the above but baby will only sleep nap or night time with assistance to fall asleep be it feeding , rocking etc.

    We have taught him this bad habit how do we fix it ?

    He is back to waking 4 times a night and it’s a fight to get him to sleep every night and nap x

    Reply
    • Jilly Blankenship

      Hi Donna,

      The way to fix this is by teaching him to settle himself to sleep, both at bedtime and during the night when he wakes. When he can do this, he’ll fall asleep easily at bedtime and sleep longer stretches, because he can resettle himself during the night. He won’t need you to get up and feed or rock him anymore. It’s magic!

      There are many ways to teach babies how to fall asleep on their own. That’s what I help parents do in my sleep training program, 21 Days to Peace & Quiet. It gives you all the details plus several step-by-step methods to choose from. Here are all the details: https://www.babysleepmadesimple.com/21-days-to-peace-quiet-program

      All the best,
      Jilly

      Reply
  9. Helen Stephenson

    Hi Jilly, my baby is 10 months tomorrow, she has always been exclusively breastfed but now eats ALOT of food, she only has a feed in the morning and evening, and before naps which is my issue. She is completely reliant on being fed to sleep which I am desperate to stop. I know this is really going to be down to my will power but I’m finding it extremely hard and wondered whether you have any tips?

    I track awake times and once she is asleep she sleeps very well, 2 naps in the day totalling 2-3 hours and normally sleeping through the night. When we try putting her down awake she goes absolutely mental this is the same for naps and bed time. I find it extremely upsetting and normally end up giving in which I know is the wrong thing to do but I feel like my breast feeding journey needs to come to an end once she turns 1 and also feel in the long run self settle will be much better for her.

    I would really appreciate any advice you could give.

    Kindest regards
    Helen

    Reply

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