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Stopped Napping...for Good?
Q: My 32-month old son has not been able to sleep at nap time for the last three days in a row. Could this just be a phase? When do kids stop taking naps, anyway? Thanks for your help.
A: Developmentally, children show tremendous individual differences in how frequently and for how long they nap, as well as when they stop napping. Usually, children give up their morning naps between ages one and one half and two and their afternoon naps between three and six.
Your child may indeed not need her afternoon naps anymore. Track her physical activity level, how well she sleeps during the night and for how long. Look for any mood changes especially during certain times of the day. All these variables will suggest whether this is a natural "self-weaning" from her nap or a momentary blip on the screen.
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Carleton Kendrick has been in private practice as a family therapist and has worked as a consultant for more than 20 years. He has conducted parenting seminars on topics ranging from how to discipline toddlers to how to stay connected with teenagers. Kendrick has appeared as an expert on national broadcast media such as CBS, Fox Television Network, Cable News Network, CNBC, PBS, and National Public Radio. In addition, he's been quoted in the New York Times, Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, Boston Globe, USA Today, Reader's Digest, BusinessWeek, Good Housekeeping, Woman's Day, and many other publications.