Are you wondering what happened to your sleepy newborn?
At 2 months old, your baby is no longer in the newborn phase and they are starting to be much more alert and lively. They will be interacting with you more and be much less interested in a nap during the day, there's just so much going on!
You might be wondering if following a schedule would work for you. You might already be following a pattern of sorts, with baby eating and napping at roughly the same time each day. A schedule can be helpful for forming a routine that works for you both, babies really like consistency, and having a schedule can help your baby anticipate what's coming next.
Schedules can be really useful, but remember, two months is still very young and your baby will go through a lot of changes in their first year. So if you do find a schedule or routine that works well, allow for some flexibility as your baby's sleep and feeding patterns are subject to change!
If you enjoy this article, why not check out what else is coming up for your baby by taking a look at the [15 week old baby milestones] and a [3-month-old schedule]?
Why Are Schedules Important?
Schedules can help us establish a routine that helps our child feel safe and secure, and knowing what is coming next can also help our days run a little smoother. Keeping an eye on your routine is also a good way to track your baby's development by seeing how often they've eaten or slept, and can help you pinpoint if something isn't working.
If you are looking into creating a 2-month-old baby schedule, there are a few things to keep in mind:
At the moment your baby is still too young to be kept on a clock-based schedule, as a lot is still changing regularly for them.
Your baby isn't able to sleep through the night at this age, and will still be waking for feeds so night times can sometimes be unpredictable. However, a consistent bedtime routine is really helpful for letting your baby know when it's time to sleep.
A 2-month-old will still be feeding as and when they need. A meal and snack schedule won't be necessary, but if you know roughly when your baby will want to feed, you can use these times to plan your day.
A routine can help develop your little one's confidence. Two months is obviously still extremely young but as your little one gets older they will know when it's time for breakfast, time to get ready for bed, and so on and this will help them to feel in control, something children don't have much of, but a set routine can help with.
Having a routine for things like storytime can help with family bonding, especially if you have other children, they can get involved too. Your baby will start to associate certain times of the day with spending time with people they love!
Sleeping & Naps
At 2 months old your baby needs between 14-17 hours a day of sleep within a 24 hour period. Your baby might manage a few more hours of sleep at a time at night now but their stomach is still very small, so they will need to wake up to feed through the night for a while longer yet. Unlike when your baby was tiny, you don't need to wake them to feed and there is no set rule for how long a 2-month-old should sleep at night without eating. They should wake from sleeping on their own when they get hungry, the exception would be if your baby was unwell or if you've been told otherwise by your doctor.
It's normal for newborns to have late bedtimes as they sleep so much through the day anyway. But with more awake time during the day, you can start bringing that bedtime down. Ideally, bedtime should be one or two hours after the last nap of the day. It can be tricky to find the right balance, but what you don't want to do, is wait too long in the hope that your baby will sleep longer at night. This is more likely to result in an overtired baby, who will actually be much harder to get to sleep and is more likely to sleep restlessly and actually wake up more.
Babies this age usually nap for anything from 30 minutes to two hours at a time. If you are worried that your baby is sleeping too much in the day and very little at night, they might have their day and night mixed up. A routine can help with this as it allows you to establish nighttime as bedtime. If you are concerned that your baby is sleeping too much, contact your pediatrician, even if just to rule anything out.
For good sleep habits to form, your bedtime routine needs to be consistent. Bath time, diaper change, pajamas, story, a feed, and cuddles are some simple steps to put in place and keep the same every day to create an effective baby sleep schedule.
Whether you are breast or formula feeding, your 2-month-old baby will be getting all their nutrition from milk at the moment. A feeding schedule for 2-month-old babies is too young, as they need to feed on demand to make sure they are getting enough to eat. However, you may find yourself following a similar routine each day and this can make things easier to plan. If you know your baby usually has a feed around 10 a.m., it makes sense to try and keep this time free, or make sure you are somewhere where it will be easy to feed them.
Your baby should be gaining weight steadily so if they aren't, it is important to speak to your pediatrician. Babies are actually very good at knowing when they are hungry and when they are full, so learning to recognize their cues is essential. When babies are hungry they will do things like mimic the sucking motion, smack their lips, nuzzle into you and try to latch on through your clothes, and you will also start to notice a very specific cry that means "feed me!". When they've had enough they will turn away, get fussy, and often fall asleep.
Generally speaking, a two-month-old formula-fed baby will be feeding every three to four hours, while a breastfed baby will feed around every two to three hours. This can vary depending on how tired your baby is, if they are going through a leap or a growth spurt and some days they might not be as hungry as others, this is normal, as are extra hungry days!
Keep an eye on your baby's diapers. If there have been notably fewer wet diapers than usual or your baby's mouth seems dry, this could mean they are dehydrated, offer them another feed and seek medical advice. 2-month-old formula-fed babies poop a couple of times a day more or less, and breastfed babies can go a few days without pooping at all!
If you have any concerns about your baby's weight or feeding don't hesitate to speak to your midwife or pediatrician.
The newborn stage is kind of like a bubble for babies, sleeping, cuddling, pooping, and eating is what they know! But now, your 2-month-old is much more alert, they will be engaging with you and really starting to show their personality.
Your baby might have discovered their hands and feet now, and will probably be putting their hands in their mouth a lot. Their movements will also become more fluid as their muscles strengthen and they become more coordinated, and now their legs are straightening out and getting stronger, you can expect lots of excited kicking.
Now that your baby's neck is getting stronger and they can hold it up for longer, they might start lifting their shoulders during tummy time and even try to roll over! Your 2-month-old baby will also become more sociable. Babies love watching people's expressions: make funny faces and play peekaboo with your baby, they will love it!
Reading with your baby and engaging in play is really beneficial for their development. Sensory toys that you can hold up and show baby will be fascinating to them. Soft scarves and feathers, and different soft textures you can brush on your baby's skin are lovely things to do to stimulate their minds. Although 2-month-olds love getting excited and playing, they can get overstimulated easily too. If you notice your baby looking away, avoiding eye contact, and generally fussing, they need a break.
Two months is a key time for emotional development. Your baby is starting to be really interested in what you say to them, and they might try to respond with cute babbling sounds, so chat to them and let them 'answer' you. Your baby can recognize your face now as well as your voice and smell. They might get upset if you leave the room, they don't understand that you aren't gone forever, so need lots of reassuring! Peekaboo is a great game for helping your baby start to understand object permanence.
Your two-month-old may already be smiling a lot, this is the age when many babies begin to show a 'social smile' meaning they are smiling because they feel happy, how cute! Certain emotions your baby feels from birth include interest, happiness, distress, and even disgust. They can now show you how they are feeling through their facial expressions (disgust is an easy one to spot!), and how they move their body. Between now and six months old, your baby will start being able to express many feelings. Anger, fear, surprise, and sadness will all start to make appearances.
Looking for a sample 2-month-old schedule? These are just suggestions for how your day could look, and as long as you are happy with how things are going, there is no need for a strict schedule. The exact timings aren't as important as the routine as this is what your little one will start to recognize.
Sample Schedule For An Exclusively Breastfed Baby
6 a.m. Awake for a feed, sometimes goes back to sleep, sometimes ready for playtime.
Feeding on and off until 9 a.m.
9 a.m. Morning nap in the buggy while on a walk.
11 a.m. Feed.
11.30 a.m. Playtime.
2 p.m. Nap, feed then playtime when awake.
4.30 p.m. Nap, followed by feeding and playtime.
6.30 p.m. Bath, pajamas on, and storytime.
7.45 p.m. Feed, followed by bedtime.
10 p.m. Awake for feed then back to sleep.
1 a.m. Feeding. Back to sleep, maybe with a couple more feeds before waking up for the day.
Sample Schedule For A Formula-Fed Baby
This feeding schedule is more dependent on being able to warm your baby's bottles, but you could easily time things for when your baby will be napping or in between feeds.
7 a.m. Wide awake, ready for a bottle.
7:45 a.m. Playtime.
10 a.m. Bottle.
10.30 a.m. Walk in the baby carrier.
1.30 p.m. Bottle.
2 p.m. Playtime, and tummy time
4 p.m. Playing with siblings who are back from school.
5 p.m. Bottle at dinnertime with family.
6 p.m. Playtime.
7 p.m. Pajamas and storytime.
8 p.m. Bedtime bottle and lullaby music to fall asleep.
12 a.m. Bottle, then back to sleep.
4 a.m. Bottle, will sometimes sleep for a longer stretch and have an early morning bottle at 5.30 a.m.
Sample Schedule For A Baby Who Is Mixed Feeding
6 a.m. Wakes up and has a feed in bed with mom. Will sometimes fall asleep for another 30 minutes or so.
7.30 a.m. Takes big brother to school, naps in the car.
9 a.m. Bottle.
10.30 a.m. Playtime.
11 a.m. Grandma comes over so Mom can get some work done.
12.30 p.m. Bottle.
1 p.m. Walk in the buggy with Grandma, nap on the walk.
3 p.m. Feed with Mom.
4 p.m. Playtime.
6.30 p.m. Feeding, sometimes a short nap.
7 p.m. Playtime.
8 p.m. Pajamas on, storytime.
8.30 p.m. Bedtime bottle with Dad.
1 a.m. Awake for a feed.
4 a.m. Wakes up for a feed.
Remember these schedules are just guides to give you an idea of what your routine might look like. It is important to create your schedule based on what your baby is already doing now, with possibly a few tweaks here and there due to changes in sleep patterns, awake time, nap time, feeding needs, and so on.
If you found this example of a 2-month-old schedule helpful, then why not take a look at our sample [6-month-old] or [8-month-old schedules] as your baby grows?
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