3 Month Old Sleep Schedule: The Secret To Peaceful Nights

Author Image By Paula McLaren - Norland Nurse NNEB RSH •  Updated: 03/30/23 •  Sleep / Sleep Schedules

Healthy sleep patterns start with a schedule. Here’s how and when to get your baby on a regular 3 month old sleep schedule with top tricks to make it as easy as possible.

How Much Should A 3 Month Old Sleep?

3 Month Old Wake Window

At 3 months, your baby will have 60 to 90 minutes of awake time between their naps.

This ensures that your baby has enough awake time during the day to meet their developmental milestones and to consume enough daytime calories to grow at a rapid rate.

Sample 3 Month Old Sleep Schedule

By 3 months old, you will hopefully begin to see a more regular sleep routine developing.

Here’s a sample 3 month old sleep schedule containing 4 daytime naps:

3 Month Old Sleep Schedule Sample

REMEMBER: At 3 months old, your baby’s routine may still vary from day to day and these are sample schedules for guidance only. Don’t worry if your baby isn’t following a predictable sleep schedule yet.

Nap Schedule For A 3 Month Old Baby

At 3 months, your baby is still very focused on growing and developing a whole host of new physical, emotional, cognitive and social skills through baby toys and play sessions… and as a result, they will still spend most of their time asleep.

Your 3 month old’s nap schedule will now follow a rough routine, however, it can still vary day to day.

Depending on how busy their day is, your baby will take daytime sleep split between 3 and 5 naps.

Here’s what a 3 month old nap schedule can look like:

Nap Schedule For A 3 Month Old Baby

How Long Should A 3 Month Old Baby Nap For?

This is a very common question and for your 3 month old baby, they will nap anywhere between 60 minutes and 90 minutes at a time.

Nap lengths vary greatly and at 3 months, baby may only nap for 30 minutes whilst others can sleep for 2 hours depending on their personalities and what has been going on in their lives.

Typically, a 3 month old will have 3 to 5 naps a day totalling 3 to 5 hours of sleep.

NOTE: The 5th nap of the day is more like a sleep window than a nap as it occurs between baby’s bedtime and their dream feed.

Bedtime For A 3 Month Old

At 3 months old your baby is definitely ready for a simple bedtime routine which should consist of:

The whole bedtime routine should take no longer than 30 minutes and should be repeated at the same time every evening as a part of your 3 month old sleep schedule.

REMEMBER: The purpose of a bedtime routine is to calm your baby in the evening, so that their body can relax and be prepared to sleep. Certain activities have been proven to relax babies, and when done in the right order, it definitely sets your baby up for sleeping longer at night.

Looking to get your little one to sleep quickly and effortlessly? Check out my Bedtime and Nap Cheat Sheet and master the art of making daytime naps and bedtimes as seamless as possible.

What Time Should A 3 Month Old Go To Bed

A 3 month old should be going to bed by 7pm after their bedtime routine is complete.

If your baby is still waking for night feedings, I would recommend having a dream feed before you go to bed to maximise the amount of sleep you can have before having to feed them again.

And if your baby takes fewer naps per day (ie: 3-4), I would suggest having an earlier bedtime to ensure they still get enough sleep.

NOTE: Expect an average of 10-12 hours of nighttime sleep (including the 5th nap/sleep window) but remember, I don’t recommend letting your baby’s night last any longer than 12-12.5 hours.

3 Month Old Sleep Regression

Sleep regressions can hit at any time and are usually triggered by your baby’s changing daytime sleep needs.

The first sleep regression usually occurs at around 4 months of age but it can appear when your baby is 3 months old depending on how they are developing.

And as a result, if you have not done so already, now is the perfect time to start teaching your baby to self-settle by putting them in their crib to sleep when they are drowsy and not fast asleep as a part of your 3 month sleep schedule.

Whether your baby is experiencing a 3 month sleep regression with increased night waking and short naps or learning that they really like to have a feed and cuddle when they wake up in order to go back to sleep…

Teaching your baby to fall asleep independently will go a long way to forming healthy sleep habits and breaking unwanted waking habits in order to get you through the regression far quicker.

To learn more about the 3 month sleep regression and how to manage a baby who won’t sleep unless held, read the following posts:

3 Month Old Sleep Tips

Managing and creating a 3 month old sleep schedule can be a rollercoaster of emotions…

Some days you will find it very easy to get your baby to sleep on time and on other days, it will simply not happen.

The key for this age is to remain consistent.

The effort you put into your 3 month old sleep schedule now will pay off in the long run, I promise.

Here are my top tips to make creating and sticking to a 3 month old sleep schedule as simple as possible:

My Top Pick
Dreamegg White Noise Machine - 21 Soothing Sounds

White noise machines are a game-changer for your little one's sleep and having one that plays all night is a must. With a long-lasting battery, this compact and stylish white noise machine contains 21 non-stop relaxing noises, which will lull your little one to sleep night after night, no matter where you are!

Buy Now
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.
Our Pick
The Lovevery Play Gym | Stage-Based Developmental Activity Gym & Play Mat for Baby to Toddler

This play gym is designed by experts for baby's developing brain and body. Winner of multiple awards it includes everything you need in an activity gym-from batting to teething to learning to focus-for a whole year of play.

Buy Now
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.

REMEMBER: Your baby does not need to be on a rigid 3 month old sleep schedule. Now is simply the time to introduce healthy sleep associations.

Common 3 Month Old Baby Sleep Problems

The most common sleep problems that your baby may encounter when establishing a 3 month old sleep schedule are:

Frequently Asked Questions About 3 Month Old Sleep Schedules

Looking for more help with creating your baby’s 3 month old sleep schedule? Find answers to the most common questions here.

Can You Sleep Train A 3 Month Old Baby?

No, you cannot sleep train a 3 month old baby yet. At 3 months they are too young for formal sleep training…

However, having healthy and regular sleep routines will set your baby on the right path to good sleep habits and a consistent sleep cycle.

How Do I Teach My 3 Month Old To Self-Settle?

While a baby of 3 months old is too young for sleep training you can start to help them to learn how to self-settle to sleep at night.

It is important that you do not let your little one get distressed and you will need to practise this skill very gradually.

This may not work every time but be patient and eventually, your baby will learn to fall asleep without you having to rock or hold them.

Watch this video to learn more about teaching your baby how to self-settle.

Our Top Pick
HALO Micro-Fleece Sleepsack Swaddle, 3-Way Adjustable Wearable Blanket, Newborn, 0-3 Months

With soft, plush micro-fleece, this super soft swaddle wraps newborns in just the right amount of warmth. This sleep sack swaddle suits infants from birth to potentially 3 months, offering both comfort and safe sleep practices with its arm immobilization feature.

The innovative 3-way swaddling system adapts to a baby's sleep style, a crucial feature for those restless nights. Whether it's arms in, hands-to-face, or arms out, it grows with the baby's swaddling needs!

Meanwhile, the bottom zipper makes midnight diaper changes a breeze!

Buy Now
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you.

How Much Nighttime Sleep Is Appropriate For A 3 Month Old?

A 3 month old baby will sleep between 8-12 hours at night in their nighttime sleep space.

Many babies of this age will still wake up during that time for a couple of feeds but some may begin to sleep for 6 hours in one stretch.

How Long Should A 3 Month Old Stay Awake For?

The amount of time your 3 month old can stay awake will depend on the time of day and their personality.

Most babies of this age will be awake for about 90 mins before needing to go back to sleep.

Can A 3 Month Old Baby Sleep Through The Night?

Yes, if you are lucky!

Depending on your little one’s development, a 3 month old baby is physically able to go for up to 8 hours without being fed.

That being said… many babies will still be waking for at least one nighttime feed after their dream feed (especially if they are breastfed).

In order to help your baby learn to sleep through the night, teach your baby to fall asleep without you and try to avoid rushing to their side when they wake up.

REMEMBER: All babies are different and this is never more true than in the early months when routines can be unpredictable. Try not to compare what your baby is doing with others.

Sleep Schedules Further Reading

Here are some more sleep schedules to help you get the most out of helping your little one sleep as best they can.

After all…

Sleep breeds sleep!

Need More Parenting Help?

Author Image Bio
Paula McLaren is the founder of Teething to Tantrums and a highly qualified childcare expert with over 40 years of experience as a Norland Nanny. She holds a BA (Hons) in Early Years Development & Learning (0-6 Years) and the prestigious Norland Diploma. Paula has worked as a night nanny, run a successful daycare center in London, and helped raise countless children using her tried and tested developmental and guidance methods.

Keep Reading