Signs that your Baby is Tired

With their body and immune system developing at a rapid rate, babies can get tired very easily. They will require several small and quick naps and feeds during the day, at least until they grow a bit.

Sleep is a very important factor for a healthy lifestyle. You have to sleep regularly in order to rest and relax your body. It plays an important role in your physical and mental health. It is involved in healing and repairing your heart and blood vessels, helping your brain organizes and stores memories etc.

That’s one of the main reasons why little kids need to sleep more. They get tired quickly and are all the time overloaded with new information and objects.

Just like adults, a well-rested kid is happy and healthy. It is important to develop a regular schedule to stick to.

Some babies have sleep problems, especially when they are overtired or overstimulated, so the parents need to set them to sleep in order to relax and rest.

But, how do you know when your kid is tired and needs to rest? That’s exactly what I am going to explain in this article.

How to Notice When Baby is Tired

The only ways babies communicate with you is by crying. Usually, new parents have a lot of difficulties to understand the reason why your baby is crying or what he is trying to tell you. Eventually, you will start to get used to crying signs and understand the cause easily.

A few of these signs will tell you that your baby is tired. You may be wondering why knowing when your baby is tired is important. You should know because these signs will tell you when it is time to reduce stimulation and start putting your child to sleep. If your baby is overtired, it will be a lot harder to settle him down.

Down below, you can find some signs that show your kid’s tiredness. Try to keep these in mind and you will be prepared to know when you kid needs a nap.

Watch Their Actions

Tired SignsThe first tip to learn when your kid needs a nap is to watch their actions.

Some kids will yawn, which is a sign that they need to rest. Other physical signs that he needs sleeping is when they rub their eyes or suck their fists.

Also, a sign of tiredness is if they thrash their limbs especially their arms. This is not always a tiredness sign, but for some babies it is.


Babies do cry a lot. As I mentioned earlier, it is the only way they have to communicate with you. If your kid is crying a lot, then it might be a sign of tiredness. Maybe, he is trying to tell you that he is unhappy and just want to go to his bed.

Also, crying a lot may indicate that he is overtired and cranky, so they have difficulties falling asleep.

Level of Alertness

When a kid is tired and needs rest, then their level of alertness begins to drop off. Babies can’t communicate with you directly and when their level of alertness is dropping, then It is a good way to tell that he is tired.

If he was playing or was full of energy when suddenly isn’t paying attention anymore to you, to their toys or to the ambient around, then they are getting tired and need to rest.


If you apply a sleep schedule to your kid, then they will probably start to get tired and need sleep around the same time, every day.

Newborn babies also tend to get sleepy after certain activities, such is after they are breastfeeding etc.

The upper mentioned signs are for babies in general. Here are some specific signs for newborns and for toddlers, based on their specific age.

Newborn Tired Signs

Toddler Tiredness Signs

Usually, newborns starts to get tired after they have been awake for about 1 – 2 hours. These are some of the most common signs of tiredness:

  • Yawning
  • Making jerky leg and arm movements
  • Looking worried
  • Sucking his fingers – This may be a clear sign that he is trying to find something to settle him to sleep.
  • Pulling at his ears
  • Closing his fists
  • Focus difficulties – He may even go cross-eyed or just stare at the ceiling all the time.

Toddlers Tired Signs

After they grow up a little, some of the tiredness signs start to change.

When he is at 3-6 months of age, your kid might get tired after about 1-3 hours awake. At 6-12 months, he might be tired after about 2-3 hours awake. After he is 12-18 months old, he might get overtired especially if he misses out his afternoon and morning sleep.

Here are some clear signs for a toddler to tell you that he needs sleep:

  • Grizzling or crying
  • Boredom with toys and objects around him
  • Clumsiness
  • Not paying attention
  • Fussiness with food
  • Clinginess

Final Thoughts

These are some of the signs that your baby is tired and needs to rest.

Be careful, as sleep is important for growing a healthy kid, but babies character and personality are different. Some babies don’t give you obvious signs that they are sleepy. Some babies don’t show physical signs but you may notice a general slight look of tiredness or drop in alertness.

If you are having difficulties to put your kid to sleep, then this might be due to overtiredness and over stimulation. A few things you can try to reduce this is by putting his toys away slowly, taking him to a quiet and soothingly ambient, closing his room’s curtains and turning the lights off to stimulate a night time, playing soothingly music etc.

Also, it is better to set a sleeping schedule for your kid, so he will get used to it and you will probably know when they are tired and need sleep by watching the clock. It may be a bit difficult to learn him a sleeping habit at the beginning, but at the end, it will pay off big time.

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