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How much should my 21-24 month old baby sleep?

little boy sleeping on a couch

Key points:

  1. Sleep is important for mood and attitude as well as physical and cognitive development.
  2. Toddlers between 21-24 months should ideally sleep between 11-14 hours a day.
  3. Adjusting daytime naps can help ensure children receive enough stimulation and rest.
  4. It’s important to observe a child’s overall well-being and mood to determine if they are sleeping well, rather than solely focusing on precise hours of sleep.

A nice and well-rested sleep is very important to restore our body and brain. Sleeping well is associated with having a better mood, temperament, physical performance, and a positive attitude. Sleep is essential for our brain since during this time it consolidates and organizes everything that happened in the day. In our children’s case, sleeping allows them to continue growing and to wake up full of energy, eager to keep learning and exploring their surroundings. Sleeping is very important for both adults and children. Keep reading to learn more about the recommended hours of sleep for toddlers.

Hours of sleep for toddlers

Sleep is essential for children. It helps them restore their energy for the upcoming day and it fosters physical and cognitive growth. When they sleep, children save energy, allowing them to gain weight and grow. Their vital organs also mature. Likewise, sleeping helps them wake up with enough energy to move, walk, learn, talk, and explore the world around them.


Around this age, children normally need only a one-hour nap a day. This gives them more time to explore their surroundings and play during the day. According to the National Sleep Foundation, the ideal sleeping range for children that are 21-24 months old is between 11 and 14 hours a day. Some kids sleep more or less, however, experts don’t recommend children to sleep above or below this 9-16 hour range.

If you think your child is sleeping more than they need, try shortening their nap and do a lot of activities to ensure that they receive enough stimulation during the day. On the other hand, if your little one sleeps less than what’s recommended, try to strengthen their sleep routine and remember to have a nap before 4 p.m. Sleeping well allows your little one to keep learning and stay active. Your child will receive a lot of stimulation and affection during the day, and, while sleeping, the brain will consolidate those moments and their new findings.

Remember not to worry too much about the precision of sleeping hours. It’s important to keep in mind the recommendations regarding hours of sleep for toddlers, but remember that every child is different. The best way to know if your little one is sleeping well is by noticing if they are happy and well-rested, or if they’re tired and irritable during the day.

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