My 2.5-year-old son's sleep pattern has drastically changed the last couple of weeks. Now he generally goes to sleep about 10pm, sleeps through until 9am or a bit later. He is only awake for about 4 hours, then sleeps again for 4-5 hours, then is awake again for another 4 hours, then bed for night .... He will not wake easily. Once asleep, it's very hard to rouse him....

I'm quite concerned he sleeping way to much... He is my 4th child, never had one slept this much... Any thoughts on the amount he is sleeping? Is it normal or should I be worried?

  • 1
    The only appropriate answer is to talk to your doctor about this. Sure, it might be nothing, it might be temporary, but it might be something serious or even life threatening. That's why you have a doctor/PA/nurse practitioner/primary health provider. Please don't worry about bothering them. That is what they are there for - to make sure your child is healthy, and if not, to treat. No one on the internet can answer your question factually; an exam and some bloodwork is necessary to answer this with any certainty, and none of us can do that. – anongoodnurse Dec 4 '18 at 18:10

First: you note that the pattern drastically changed in the last few weeks. A drastic change may be nothing to worry about, but is always recommended to discuss anything that changes that significantly with your pediatrician. So in this case, please do so. The remainder of the answer will address whether the length of sleep itself is normal (but not considering the drastic change).

The National Sleep Foundation has a good article including a list of appropriate amounts of sleep per age.

For 1-2 year olds, they list 9-16 hours of sleep being appropriate, with more than 16 being considered excessive, and 11-14 the recommended amount. 3-5 year olds they consider up to 14 hours appropriate, with more than that excessive, and 10-13 hours being recommended.

Given you've listed your child as having 11 hours + 4 hours of sleep = 15 hours per day, that's not considered excessive at this age, though it's certainly on the high end.

This is something that you should be talking with your pediatrician about, and my pediatrician asks me every visit how much my children are sleeping.

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    +1. "...[it] is always recommended to discuss anything that changes that significantly with your pediatrician." Very important to emphasize. I can think of a number of medical causes for (more or less) sudden onset of excessive drowsiness in children. Some will pass, but some need medical treatment, and which is which can't be determined by averages. – anongoodnurse Dec 3 '18 at 16:18

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