When to Stop Wearing Baby for Naps: Signs Your Baby is Ready for Independence

As a new parent, babywearing can become a lifesaver. It keeps your baby close while allowing you to have free hands to accomplish tasks. However, there comes a time when you have to stop wearing your baby for naps. So, when is it appropriate to make the switch?

The answer is not straightforward, as it depends on several factors, such as the age and weight of the baby, the type of carrier being used, and the baby’s sleep needs. Generally, it is safe to stop wearing your baby for naps when they are around three to four months old and can hold their head up without assistance, and are able to sit with some support. However, some babies may be ready earlier or later than this age range, so it’s important to pay attention to your baby’s cues.

Another crucial factor to consider is your baby’s sleep needs. Some babies may find it easier to fall asleep and stay asleep when being worn, while others may prefer to sleep in a crib or bassinet. It’s important to create a consistent sleep routine for your baby that works for both of you and if they’re not getting enough sleep in the carrier, it’s time to switch to a crib or another safe sleep surface. Overall, it’s essential to prioritize your baby’s safety and comfort when deciding when to stop wearing them for naps.

As a parent, it’s understandable to want to keep your baby close to you, especially during nap time. However, there comes a point when your little one starts to outgrow being worn for naps. Here are some signs that your baby is ready to stop being worn for their naps:

When to Stop Wearing Baby for Naps

  1. They’re too heavy – As your baby grows, they become heavier and more challenging to carry around for extended periods. If you find yourself struggling to carry them and feel like you need to take breaks frequently, it may be time to switch to a different sleeping arrangement.
  2. They’re more active – As your little one grows, they become more active and curious about the world around them. They may start to squirm and wiggle more when being carried, making it difficult for them to fall asleep and stay asleep.
  3. They’re showing signs of wanting independence – As your baby develops, they begin to explore their independence. They may start to resist being held or want to crawl or walk around on their own.
  4. It’s starting to affect your comfort and mobility – Wearing your baby for naps may have been comfortable and convenient at first, but as they grow, it can start to affect your mobility and comfort. If carrying your baby for naps is starting to cause you discomfort or make it challenging to complete everyday tasks, it may be time to switch to a different sleeping arrangement.

Every baby is unique, and there’s no set age or weight limit for when to stop wearing them for naps. However, as your baby grows and develops, their needs change and it’s essential to stay attuned to their signals and adjust as needed. By recognizing these signs, you can ensure your baby is comfortable and safe while getting the rest they need.

Alternatives to Wearing Your Baby for Naps

When it’s time to stop wearing your baby for naps, it can be tough to figure out what to do instead. Here are some alternatives to try:

  1. Crib Naps

Transitioning your baby to the crib for naps can be a natural next step. Make sure your baby feels comfortable in their crib by establishing a consistent nap routine that includes a calming, sleep-inducing habit. Dimming the lights, playing relaxing music, or using a white noise machine can help.

  1. Stroller Naps

If your baby enjoys movement while napping, a stroller may be a great alternative to wearing them. Going for a walk to explore nature or a nearby park can be an added bonus! Make sure to select a stroller that provides a smooth ride and has a canopy to provide proper shade.

  1. Swing Naps

Swings can provide a calm, peaceful, and relaxing motion for your baby that may help lull them to sleep. Swings can be beneficial for babies who tend to struggle with getting to sleep or staying asleep. While using a swing, make sure to always follow the safety guidelines for your baby’s age and weight.

  1. Patting or Rubbing

Some babies may prefer to be gently patted or rubbed for a few minutes to soothe them into a nap. If your baby is one of them, this could be a great alternative to wearing them.

  1. Co-Napping

If you’re co-sleeping with your baby, you can try co-napping. This involves laying in bed with your baby while they nap in their own separate sleep area. Co-napping allows you to recharge and rest without having to physically wear your baby.

In conclusion, transitioning from wearing your baby to alternative napping methods such as the crib, stroller, swing, patting or rubbing, and co-napping can be a great way to provide comfort and a night of peaceful, restful sleep to your baby while saving your own energy. Remember to always follow safety guidelines when selecting and using alternative napping methods.

As babies grow, they may not want to be carried in a baby carrier for naps. It’s important to know when to stop wearing your baby for naps and help them transition to sleeping in a crib or other sleeping surface. Here are some tips to make the transition smoother:

Tips for Helping Your Baby Transition to Napping Without a Carrier

  • Start slowly: Begin by slowly eliminating the use of the carrier for shorter naps or when your baby is already asleep. Gradually increase the amount of time your baby spends sleeping outside of the carrier.
  • Create a consistent nap routine: Establish a consistent nap routine that includes calming activities such as reading a story, singing a lullaby, or cuddling before putting your baby down to sleep in their crib or another sleeping surface.
  • Use a transitional object: Introduce a favorite blanket or stuffed animal that your baby associates with comfort and security during naps. This can help ease the transition from being held in a carrier to sleeping on their own.
  • Try gentle rocking or patting: If your baby is having trouble getting to sleep without being rocked or patted, try doing this for a short period of time before you put them down. Gradually reduce the amount of time you spend doing this until your baby can fall asleep without it.
  • Be patient and consistent: Remember that every baby is different, and it may take some time for your baby to adjust to sleeping without a carrier. Stay patient and consistent with your routine, and your baby will eventually learn to fall asleep on their own.

Knowing when to stop wearing your baby for naps is an important part of your baby’s development. By following these tips, you can help your baby transition to napping without a carrier, which is an important step in their growth and independence.


Knowing when to stop wearing your baby for naps is essential for both the parent and the baby. While babywearing offers numerous benefits, it’s equally important to know when it’s time to start transitioning your baby to other sleeping arrangements.

In this article, we’ve discussed the signs that your baby is ready to move on from nap time baby carrier naps. However, it’s crucial to remember that every child is unique, and there isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. Here are a few tips to help you determine the right time to stop wearing your baby for naps:

  • Pay attention to your baby’s weight: As your baby grows and gains weight, it may become increasingly uncomfortable to wear them in a carrier for an extended period.
  • Monitor your baby’s sleep habits: If your baby begins to resist napping in a carrier, it may be a sign that they’re ready for a different sleeping arrangement.
  • Observe your baby’s behavior: If your baby seems restless or agitated when napping in a carrier, it may be time to transition them to a different sleep environment.

In conclusion, when to stop wearing your baby for naps is a personal choice that varies from family to family. When deciding this, it’s important to consider your baby’s age, weight, and sleep habits. Additionally, transitioning your baby to a new sleep environment should be done gradually and carefully to ensure your baby’s comfort and well-being.