1 year old sleep regression

1 Year Old Sleep Regression: A Survival Guide for Exhausted Moms

NOTE: We earn from qualifying purchases made via Amazon Associates and other affiliate programs. Learn more.

What is a Sleep Regression?

Sleep Regressions are expected disruptions in sleep for a baby or toddler that was formerly sleeping well. It is when your infant resists falling asleep, begins waking more during the night, or struggles naps out of the blue.

Sleep regressions occur at expected times since they're related to developmental milestones. As your baby improves in one area (such as walking or talking), it is normal for one more facet of growth to temporarily regress.

Because they coincide with developmental landmarks, sleep regressions may happen at 6 weeks, 4 months, 6-7 months, 8-10 months, 12 months, 18 months, and two years old. Most children experience a couple of sleep regressions within their first 2 years. It is unusual for a child to experience all of these.

The good thing is that sleep regressions are temporary. And your 12-month-old should go back to sleeping well in 1-2 weeks.

So, if your little one was sleeping well, but is suddenly waking up at night, struggling bedtime or naps, and is fussier than usual- she could be going through the 12-month sleep regression (or the one-year-old sleeping regression.”)

What's unique about the 12-month sleep regression?

1 year old sleep regression

So now that you know growth milestones can lead to sleep temporarily regress, it is no wonder that your 12-month-old won't sleep! Many infants take their first steps at this age, talking several words obviously, following simple commands, and progressing their fine motor skills. A lot is going on in your little one's mind and body!

Also, separation anxiety may peak at 12 months old. It is a normal development phase but can be very stressful if your child becomes clingier or yells whenever you put her down or leave the space.

Separation anxiety frequently surfaces at sleep times. If your infant was formerly fine falling asleep on her own, she might now cry when put in her crib awake.

Greater awareness of the world can make it particularly tough for your 12-month-old to wind down and fall asleep for naps. She will fight to fall asleep because she would instead be playing!

Also, nap patterns can change around your child's first birthday. Many 12-month-olds start combating the day nap, causing their parents to think it is time to switch to a single nap. However, this often leads to more crankiness, over-tiredness, and worsened sleep since your baby is not ready for a single nap.

Signs of the 12 months sleep regression.

  • Fighting naps or short naps
  • Waking more at night
  • Resisting bedtime
  • More fussy, restless, or clingy
  • Hungrier than normal

12 Month Sleep Regression Survival Tips

Tip #1: Know What you could expect from your baby's sleep

The first step in fixing your child's sleep problems is to understand what you can realistically expect. Having a good idea of your own 12-month-old toddler's sleep helps you know just what you're working toward.

Naps & Awake Times

  • Your baby needs 2-3 full hours of napping every day.
  • This is usually divided between two naps. It is usually too early to fall to a single nap.
  • Awake times of 2.5–4 hours during the day work best at this age.


Bedtime should lie between 6:30-8 pm.

This is the “normal” range for bedtime, though try to keep your kid's bedtime within a 15-minute range every evening. (Tight bedtimes lead to the best night's sleep.)

Night Sleep

Many 12-month-olds need 11-12 hours of sleep at night. (Some can get by with 10 hours night-time sleep if they nap 3 hours daily and moods are stable.)

Night Feedings

  • Your 1-year-old can sleep through the night without feeding!
  • If you are concerned about your child's growth or weight gain, please double-check this with your child's doctor.

Total sleep in 24 hours

13-15 hours

Tip #2: Maintain daytime active

1 year old sleep regression

Most 12-month-olds are active little souls! They are busy scooting around the furniture or walking and require tons of time every day to practice new skills. So, ensure that your baby has ample time during the day to move around and burn off physical energy.

Plan a baby-proofed play area in your living room to keep your baby busy. You may even place him at a jumper or action center, so he is aroused and busy while you do housework or catch up on emails.

Time spent outside is vital to helping our little ones take in fresh stimulation and burn off energy. Include a visit to the park or playtime at the yard every day. A stroll around the area can help prevent pent-up energy preventing your baby from settling to sleep. On bad weather ti, es, arrange a play date or sign up to get a baby swim course.

Being active throughout the day will stop your 12-month infant from being awake hours in the night wanting to practice his new skills!

Tip #3: Do not make big changes to your sleep routine

The 12-month sleep regression isn't the time to transition to a single nap or switch into a toddler bed. Regressions are cases of restlessness and disrupted sleep. The more you're able to stick to your infant's typical sleep pattern, the better she will bounce back following this regression passes.

Specifically, stay informed about your relaxing bedtime routine and consistent bedtime every day. If a small one typically falls asleep on her own, continue to encourage this regularly. You'll be able to sit silently in a chair in her room if separation distress makes her cry when you leave her room.

Keep your baby on 2 naps per day, with awake occasions ranging from 2.5-4 hours. Sometimes day-care will transition infants to a nap at 12 weeks old. If your day-care insists on doing so, that is ok. Just be sure baby continues to take 2 naps when home with you. Earlier bedtimes may also be required on day-care days.

(Easier said than done with a 1-year-old fighting sleep) but try your hardest to prevent pulling baby into bed with you. Even though it can look like the one thing that works, it guarantees you will be co-sleeping long-term.

Rather than bed-sharing, keep your baby sleeping in her crib, and you camp out in her bedroom for a couple of days and ride this out sleep regression.

Children thrive with routine and consistency, especially during difficult times. Although your baby may fight his normal sleeping routines, doing the exact activities at the same time each day actually alleviates his restlessness because he knows exactly what is going to happen and that it is time for sleep. So, stay consistent!

Tip #4: Give Additional comfort

As babies and toddlers undergo developmental bursts, it is normal for them to seek their parents' closeness. Your 12-month-old is learning to be more independent and mobile but still requires a good deal of reassurance.

Separation anxiety is the practice of newfound liberty causing stress to your little one. Your infant is understanding more and more that she is another person from her parents. And there'll be times she desires more affection, comfort, and reassurance.

Your baby will also be fussy, over-tired, or clingy due to the disrupted sleep from this regression.

Give your baby additional cuddles, kisses, and one-third time throughout the day. Tell her how much you love her. Make a habit of sitting down together several times per day (for only 10 minutes each), playing a game, reading a book, or singing songs together.

Make sure the baby's bedtime routine is full of eye contact and hugs and free of distractions. This can help your child unwind enough to take falling asleep.

At 12 months old, you may safely present a stuffed animal or lovey. Giving them something to cuddle helps calm and comfort your baby at bedtime.

Tip #5: Feed your baby more often

1 year old sleep regression

There's frequently a growth spurt around your child's first birthday, making your little one hungrier than normal. This additional hunger can make him wake up early from a nap or more frequently at night.

Don't refuse a night-time feed if your baby awakens and looks truly hungry. Feed him, and be sure to concentrate on feeding more the next day.

Your 12-month-old should have solids or milk every 2-3 hours during the day in this regression. Perhaps you will need to increase the number of his feeds or provide a bite more frequently. Feeding sufficient to fuel his growth spurt can help stop his appetite from interrupting his sleep.

Tip #6: Hold off weaning for today

Going through several important milestones at the same time can be a recipe for a sleeping catastrophe! If you decided to wean off breastfeeding when your child turned one, but you are in the throes of this 12-month sleep regression, hold waiting a couple of weeks.

Since regressions coincide with a call for more closeness with the mother, trying to wean may be harder. Rather, use breastfeeding as a way to comfort your baby in this tiring and restless phase.

Tip #7: Find creative ways to get a Rest

There's no shame in admitting you are exhausted and frustrated and require a rest. Nobody wins awards for “toughing it out” through a sleeping regression.

Sleep deprivation and lack of me-time make most mothers grumpy and short-tempered. Carving out little blocks of time for rest and rejuvenation will get you through this rough patch without additional mother guilt as you yelled or snapped in your loved ones.

You don't need a regular babysitter to have a rest.

Instead, there are loads of creative ways of getting help:

  • Do a swap with another mother. You each take turns accompanying the children for 2-3 hours daily. This is loads of time to get a mental break, a rest, or a lunch date with your very best friend, kid-free!
  • See if your gym or YMCA includes a free day-care. You can do a workout regime, hang out in the steam room or rest in the car!
  • You and your spouse take shifts. No point in you being tired and drained all of the time. You get one night of complete sleep wearing earplugs in the guest room. Tomorrow night, you are on shift, and your partner receives a break. Do this during the day, also. The trade-off 2-3-hour breaks to do anything you need on Saturday. On Sunday, it's Dad's turn!
  • Find a teen in your area who will babysit (affordably) for a couple of hours.
  • If naps are almost impossible, it is ok to allow the baby to nap in the stroller or car. Wear earplugs and listen to your favorite music while the infant snoozes on the go. Whatever encourages baby sleep simplest during this regression!
  • Send a spontaneous invite to grandparents asking them to come to see. After a little small talk, hand over the baby to them and sneak off for a rest! Many grandparents are also happy to see the baby in the morning so that you can find an additional hour of sleep.

Tip #8: Stick to independent sleep habits

Most toddlers need additional comfort to relax and sleep through sleep regressions, but try to keep up with your baby's different sleep customs.

Make it a goal to maintain your 12-month-old sleeping in his crib, and do whatever you can to accomplish this! You might need to sit down in a seat (or sleep on the ground) in the baby's bedroom to get a few nights. Maintaining your baby's sleep environment and constant patterns will make it so much easier to get back on track when this regression passes.

Do your best to prevent feeding or rocking to sleep since this can make babies wake up more at night, having to be fed or rocked.

At 12 months, your baby can be likely to sleep 10-12 hours at night without feeding. What a terrific birthday present to give your whole family!

Tip #9: Smoothly tweak naps (with a warning)

At 12 months old, your little one still needs 2 intervals of silent rest every day. Ideally, this would be two sticks, but if your 12-month-old is fighting naps, it is ok to allow her to hang out in the crib awake during rest time.

If your toddler always refuses the day nap, shorten the morning rest to one hour. This helps her take another rest 3-4 hours later.

Around 12 months old, many infants need slightly longer awake times. This might be a reason your 12-month-old is fighting naps. Increase awake times to 3-4 hours and see if this helps your baby settle simpler.

A fantastic way to help your child catch up on lost sleep would be to move bedtime earlier. This is particularly useful if she is overtired from brief naps or waking a lot at night.

Is it a growth spurt, teething, or a regression interrupting my child's sleep?

1 year old sleep regression

Before deciding the 12-month sleep regression is the cause of all your problems, it is important to rule out other “usual suspects.” Other causes of sleep problems such as 12-month-olds are teething and growth spurts. Let us discuss them below.

12-month sleep regression

Many parents blame teething for months (or even months) of bad sleep. While it's true that teething can interrupt your child's sleep, this intriguing article clarifies that teething only affects sleep for a couple days.

If you can't feel or see a tooth bud in your infant's gums, the odds are that teething is not the issue.

Growth spurt

Growth Spurts make infants hungrier for 2-3 days. Babies need more nutrition and calories during times of rapid expansion. So, it is normal for the little one to want to eat more during the day and night.

If your toddler has experienced a sudden appetite growth with no other indications of clinginess, fussiness, or restlessness- it may be a growth spurt. Increase the number of solid meals by one tablespoon each meal. Or give your baby a snack or milk more frequently during the day.

If your infant has been waking up hungry several times each night for several weeks, it is not a growth spurt. It's a habit. Concentrate on feeding your 12-month-old milk, a snack every 2-3 hours during the day. Then begin weaning off night-time feeds.

Sleep Regression

If your 12-month old's naps and night-time sleep have recently slowed from the blue- and neither added feedings nor pain relief seems to help – it is probably because of sleep regression.

This is especially true if many facets of your child's sleep are affected, like fighting naps and waking up more at night. In cases like this, following the suggestions from this guide will help your child sleep in addition to possible during this rough patch.

Keep in Mind, the 12-month-old sleep regression is a temporary period of clinginess, restlessness, and disturbed sleep. It reeks that it can coincide with your infant Turning one and the party that will ensue! However, a bit of flexibility, and after the 9 tips from this guide, will guarantee this rough patch does not completely ruin your child's sleep.

See My Favorite Products of 2021!
Select a list >MattressesToppers & PadsCooling/HeatingPillowsSheets
Touch a tab above to reveal my top picks for that category.
Of the 60+ beds I've reviewed, these are my current favorites:
My Top PickType of MattressPrice
1. Saatva ClassicInnerspring$887 - $1,774
Save $200 on purchase of $950 or more
2. Puffy LUX
Luxury Foam$1,145 – $1,695
Save $300 + Free Accessories Upto $433
3. Leesa Original
Budget Foam$699-$1099
"Save $200"
4. Nest Alexander HybridLuxury Hybrid$949 - $1799
15% Sale
5. PlushBeds Botanical BlissLuxury Organic Latex$1,149- $2,148
save $1,250 On Bedroom Mattresses + Free Luxury Sheet Set.
6. EcoterraBudget Latex$849 - $1,349
Save $175 Usecode: LABOR175
7. DreamcloudLuxury PillowTop$599-$1,099
Save $200 + $399 Free Accessories(Sheet, Protector, Pillows)
8. LaylaFlippable/2-Sided$499 - $1,099
Save $200 Now
9. Big FigFor Plus-Sized People$1,499 - $2,099
Save $200 With Code: FALL
10. HelixCustom-Fit$500 - $1,149
Save $200!
Mattress toppers & pads are a great way to cool your bed and extend its life.
Topper SizeMaterialFirmnessWarr.
LINENSPA 2 Inch Gel Infused Memory Foam Mattress Topper, Twin
Best Value2"Gel memory foamMedium3 years
Best Comfort3"Memory foamMedium-firm5 years
MyPillow Three-inch Mattress Bed Topper (Twin)
Best pressure point relief3"FoamMedium-firm10 years
LUCID 2-Inch Ventilated Gel Infused Memory Foam Mattress Topper - Full
Best cooling2"Gel memory foamSoft3 years
Milemont Mattress Topper Twin, 2-Inch Cool Swirl Gel Mattress Topper for Twin Size Bed, Blue
Best for back pain2"Gel memory foamMedium10 years
Pure Green
Pure Green 100% Natural Latex Mattress Topper - Firm - 2 Inch - Queen Size
Best for stomach sleepers2"Natural latexExtra-firm5 years
Sleep Innovations
Sleep Innovations 4-inch Dual Layer Gel Memory Foam Enhanced Support, King, Made in the US Mattress Topper
Best for side sleepers4"Gel memory foamSoft10 years
Sleep Number DUAL TEMP
Sleep Number DUAL TEMP
Best temperature regulation-Forced Air-1 year
Tempur-Pedic TEMPUR Supreme 3-Inch Mattress Topper Medium Firm, Full, White
Best memory foam3"Memory foamMedium-firm10 years
Avocado Green
Avocado Green
Best organic2"Organic latexSoft/firm10 years
Bed cooling/heating systems have come a long way – especially the BedJet, my favorite.
SystemTypeBest For...Temp. RangeControl
BedJet V3
BedJet V3
Air cooledBEST OVERALL (esp. for night sweats)66°F-104°FWireless remote control/smartphone app
ChiliPad Cube 3.0
Chili Technology chiliPAD Cube 3.0 - ME and WE Zones - Cooling and Heating Mattress Pad - Individual Temperature Control, Great Sleep Enhancement, Wireless Remote Integration (Queen (80" L x 60" W))
Water cooledBest water cooling system55°F-115°FWireless remote control
Ooler Sleep System
Ooler Sleep System
Water cooledBest temperature control55°F-115°FSmartphone app via Bluetooth
The Pod by Eight Sleep
The Pod by Eight Sleep
Water cooledBest smart cooling system55°F-115°FSmartphone app/smart voice assistant
Mattress Cooler "Classic"
2020 Mattress Cooler "Classic" Chilled Water Sleep Cooling System (Now with a Spare "27x63" Cooling Pad)
Water cooledBest budget cooling systemN/AWireless remote control
SleepNumber Dual-Temp v3
SleepNumber Dual-Temp v3
Air cooledN/ARemote control
bFan Cooling System
bFan Cooling System
FanBest bed fanN/AWired remote control
Brookstone bed fan
Brookstone Bed Fan with Wireless Remote
FanN/AWireless remote control
These pillows excel at relieving neck and shoulder pain:
PillowWhy I Like It
PlushBeds Shredded Natural Latex Pillow
Best Cooling Mattress Pads

best shredded latex pillow for side sleepers
Coop Home Goods Memory Foam
Coop Home Goods - Premium Adjustable Loft Pillow - Hypoallergenic Cross-Cut Memory Foam Fill - Lulltra Washable Cover from Bamboo Derived Rayon - CertiPUR-US/GREENGUARD Gold Certified - Queen
perennial, proven Amazon Choice with over 16,000 reviews
MARNUR Contour Pillow
MARNUR Cervical Memory Foam Pillow Orthopedic Contour Pillows for Neck Pain Ergonomic Pillow with RoHS Certification and Pillowcase Covers, White(23.5×14.5×5.5 Inch)
perfect spine support using a groove down the middle
SleepRightSplintek Side
SleepRight Splintek Side Sleeping Pillow Memory Foam Pillow – Best Pillow for Sleeping On Your Side – 24" x 5" Standard Size
full facial cradle plus a perfectly-angled shoulder cradle
Xtreme Comforts Adjustable Pillow
Xtreme Comforts Hypoallergenic, Adjustable Thickness, Kool-Flow Micro Vented Bamboo Shredded Memory Foam Bed Pillow for Sleeping, Back, Stomach & Side Sleepers, Queen Size, Made in USA
thinner and softer than most, so your head will not bend back
UTTU Sandwich Pillow
UTTU Sandwich Pillow, Adjustable Memory Foam Pillow, Bamboo Pillow for Sleeping, Cervical Pillow for Neck Pain, Neck Support for Back, Stomach, Side Sleepers, Orthopedic Contour Pillow, CertiPUR-US
designed specifically for neck support and alignment.
Mediflow Water Pillow
Mediflow Fiber: The First & Original Water Pillow, clinically Proven to Reduce Neck Pain & Improve Sleep. Therapeutic, Ideal for People Looking for Proper Neck Support
clinical tests prove it reduces neck pain
Cradle Me Cervical Pillow
Cradle Me Cervical Pillow - Orthopedic Contour Memory Foam Pillow for Back and Side Sleepers with Neck and Spine Support - Helps Reduce Back and Neck Pain
best overall design with lots of position choices
KaUa Neck Roll
K Ka Ua Neck Roll Pillow Cervical Bolster with Bamboo Cover – Memory Foam Spine Lumbar Traction Spondylosis Support 4” Diameter x 17 “Length (4 Inch)
1,000s of satisfied customers & rave reviews
J-Pillow Travel Pillow
J-Pillow Chin Supporting Travel Pillow - 2020 Version - British Invention of The Year Winner - Supports Your Head, Neck & Chin (Blue)
added chin support prevents your head from falling forward.
EPABO Contour Memory Foam Pillow
EPABO Contour Memory Foam Pillow Orthopedic Sleeping Pillows, Ergonomic Cervical Pillow for Neck Pain - for Side Sleepers, Back and Stomach Sleepers, Free Pillowcase Included ( Firm & Queen)
Designed to support and cushion you neck and shoulders
J-Pillow Travel Pillow
AVOCADO GREEN PILLOW-Loveable non-toxic pillow has an adjustable fill, made from GOLS organic certified latex and GOTS organic certified kapok.
An all-natural, organic and vegan pillow with an adjustable loft to suit all sleeping positions
These are my favorite luxury sheet sets sold online:
Best Luxury SheetsIncludesSizesColours
Fitted sheet + two pillowcasesTwin to Cal KingSand, Slate, White, Light Grey, Blue
Brooklinen Luxe Core Sheet Set – Includes 1 Flat Sheet, 1 Fitted Sheet + 2 Pillowcases – 480 Thread Count Sateen Sheet Set – 100 Percent Long-Staple Cotton – Oeko-TEX Certified – Smoke – Twin
One flat sheet, one fitted sheet, and two pillowcases.Twin to Cal KingWhite, Cream, Steel, Smoke, Smoke Stripe
One flat sheet, one fitted sheet, and two pillowcases.Twin to Cal KingWhite, Ivory, Grey
Boll and Branch
Boll & Branch Luxury Fair Trade Long Staple Organic Cotton Sheet Set - Full, Natural
one fitted sheet, one flat sheet, and two pillowcases.Full, Queen, King, Cal King onlyWhite, Solid Natural, Striped White, Pewter
Best For Specific Needs Soft and Warm: Parachute’s Sateen sheets Most Luxurious: Brooklinen’s Linen sheets Organic Luxury Sheets:  Saatva Lofton Organic sheets Breathable/Cool: Percale sheets from Parachute or Brooklinen

Learn More

See My Top Picks
Compare Mattresses Side-by-Side
Read My Reviews
Use My Coupons

Affiliate Disclosure

Affiliate Disclosure: I may earn a small commission (at no cost to you) if you purchase a mattress after clicking a referral link or using a coupon code on this site. That said, all content and opinions on this site are my own and are NOT affected by these payments.

This site participates in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

*Amazon and the Amazon logo are trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc, or its affiliates.

Leave a Comment