If you’re searching up the 10-month sleep regression in the dark while trying to get a crying baby to sleep, we send you all the love.
This is tough.
And while this may not help you feel any more rested, know that sleep regressions are both common and temporary.
You are not alone, and this won’t last forever.
As babies go through growth spurts, reach developmental milestones, and start to adopt more adult sleeping patterns, sleep disruptions happen.
We’ll take you through the details of why this might be the case at 10 months, how long this chapter tends to last, and how you can survive it all.
In this article: 📝
- Is there a sleep regression at 10 months?
- Why is my 10-month-old suddenly refusing to sleep?
- 10-month sleep regression or teething?
- How long does 10-month sleep regression last?
- How do I get past the 10-month sleep regression?
Is there a sleep regression at 10 months?
10 months is a common age to experience a sleep regression.
By this point, you may have already experienced one (or two) of them.
They’re common at 4 months and 6 months, and then again as your child approaches their first birthday.
They can also rear their heads in toddlerdom, at about 18 and 24 months.
But this is by no means an exact science.
And some babies don’t have sleep regressions at all.
So there’s really no one way to do this thing.
The 10-month sleep regression signs include:
- Your 10-month-old is waking up at night crying. (Sometimes it may look like they’re crying in their sleep.)
- Fussiness, both when they’re awake and at bedtime
- Less nighttime sleep
- Not wanting to nap
- Taking shorter naps
Why is my 10-month-old suddenly refusing to sleep?
There are many reasons why your baby might not be sleeping right now.
They might be teething, developing new motor skills, or going through changes in their sleep schedule.
Of course, this can be particularly frustrating if you’ve gotten used to them sleeping through the night (which, in baby speak, means in stretches that last between 6 and 8 hours).
But know that they’re not regressing in the sense that they’ve gone backward.
The progress they’ve made towards a more regular sleep routine hasn’t been undone.
Your little one is simply responding to all the stimuli coming their way in their waking lives. Plus, they’re making developmental leaps mentally, physically, and socially.
In fact, some experts argue that the term regression is misleading.
Quite simply, this path just isn’t a straight line.
It’s more of a meandering path that babies travel as they learn more about themselves and the waking world.
Some of the things that may be at the root of a 10-month sleep regression?
Their new skills
They may have just started sitting up without support, crawling, pulling up, and babbling to anyone who’ll listen.
And all of this means they’re up for exploring the world around them — and that can be highly stimulating.
They’re also likely getting the hang of feeding themselves with their favorite finger foods.
That’s a lot to take in.
It’s no wonder it’s harder to get a good night’s rest.
If your baby’s not too happy for you to leave the room, it could be that they’re experiencing separation anxiety.
They’re just learning the concept of object permanence — that people and things don’t disappear when you can’t see and hear them.
So, when you’re not there, it can be quite confusing!
They’re still in the process of learning the beauty of returning to the ones we love.
Makes sense that they become more clingy and resistant to letting you go.
They might cry when you leave the room or wake up in the middle of the night looking for you as they try to figure all this out.
Your baby might be in the midst of pushing through some pearly whites — and that can be more than a little uncomfortable.
Around this time (it’s not an exact science), they’re likely getting their top and bottom central and lateral incisors (the teeth in the front of the mouth).
Change in sleeping schedule
If they’ve just started a new nap schedule, for example, you might find that it’s harder for them to sleep at night.
And you may have a bit of an adjustment period on your hands.
Not every 10-month-old sleep schedule looks the same.
At this point of their babyhood, they will need to sleep between 12 and 15 hours a day, including two naps and a longer nighttime sleep.
The goal is to ensure they get two naps that total about 1 to 2 hours and a longer sleep that’s somewhere between 9 and 12 hours.
Where possible, factor in about 3 to 4 hours of awake time between sleeps.
10-month sleep regression or teething?
While teething and a sleep regression are not the same thing, they are certainly linked.
Teething may be one of the many factors contributing to your baby’s sleep disruption.
So instead of seeing it as one or the other, it might be both at the same time.
How long does 10-month sleep regression last?
Only a few weeks — usually somewhere between two and six.
We know that can feel like an eternity when you’re in the middle of one.
But be comforted by the fact that this will pass.
(Without getting your hopes up too much, some only last a few days.)
How do I get past the 10-month sleep regression?
The great news is that sleep regressions typically end on their own.
But if you’re currently right in the middle of one, here are some tips to help you through.
You may have started sleep training by now.
If so, stick to whatever methods you were using before the regression hit.
(But also know that it’s okay to take a break from crying it out if it seems like your baby is in pain from teething or really needs some extra comforting.)
Try as far as possible to keep things consistent.
Create a bedtime that works for you, considering that you probably don’t want your baby to wake up too early in the morning.
And where you can, stick to naps at the same time every day.
Also, make sure that naps are not too close to bedtime, since that can make it harder for your baby to fall asleep when night rolls around.
As much as possible, associate nighttime with sleep and rest and daytime with playtime and adventure.
Having some sort of nightly routine goes a really long way.
Rocking, soothing, singing, reading War and Peace to them — you figure out what you want to include in your particular repertoire.
Put them to sleep in a dark room devoid of distractions, following the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) safe sleep guidelines.
Crib notes (‘scuse the pun): put them to sleep on their back in their own crib without any loose items like blankets and soft toys.
When you put them down, make sure that they’re as comfortable as possible.
A full stomach and a changed diaper go a long way.
If they wake up in the middle of the night, wait a moment before going to them.
They may fall back to sleep on their own.
If not, give them some comfort by soothing and patting them. If possible, try not to get them out of their beds.
And if they’re teething, head here for our top tips for comforting them while they accomplish this awesome feat.
Through all of this, look after yourself. You’ll be able to be the best mama (and human) if you’re as rested as possible.
That means napping when they nap, calling on your community to help out when you need them, and being gentle with yourself.
(If you need to hear this right now: there’s no such thing as a perfect parent.)
If you’re at all worried, check in with your pediatrician, particularly if your baby is displaying any other signs of illness, like a fever or diarrhea.
And keep in touch with your Peanut community.
You are certainly not alone in this.
And it’s all so much more manageable when we navigate the challenges of being a new parent together.