Bedtime for Toddlers

Elizabeth sleeping

Is bedtime a struggle with your toddler? Do you dread that time of day?

Bedtime should be an anticipated time for our children. We want to teach our children to love sleep not dread it.

Tips to make bedtime enjoyable for your toddler are:

1. Set a specific time for bedtime. Your child’s body is on a 24-hour rhythm. When there is a specific time for sleep each day their body will be ready and anticipate that bedtime.

2. Give your child at least a thirty minute reminder that it will be bedtime. This is not a warning. Bedtime is not a punishment. It is a privilege.

3. Use a specific bedtime routine to prepare for bed. It may be a bath, pajamas and a story or whatever routine works for you. Following this same routine each day will be a clue to your child’s body that it is now time to sleep.

4. Limit food and drink to one hour prior to bedtime. The body needs to rest so make sure your child is getting adequate food and fluids earlier in the day. This will also prevent night-time bathroom trips.

5. The bed is for sleeping. It is not the time for your child to play with toys or electronic devices. Electronic devices are especially discouraged because they emit a blue light which wakes up the brain.
Having a favorite stuffed animal or blanket as their sleeping companion can be very calming and helpful.

6. White noise in your child’s room promotes sleep. It can be calming to your child and sends the message to their brain that it is time to sleep. White noise also will block out other sounds that may disturb your child’s sleep.

Sleep is necessary for the health, growth  and development of our children.

If you need additional help with getting your toddler to sleep, staying asleep or waking too early in the morning, contact me for a FREE 15 minute phone consult to discuss your situation and how I can help you.

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Arlene Fryling

Arlene is a registered nurse and certified sleep consultant for children 0-5 years. She has cared for premature, sick, and many healthy babies. For over 15 years she has taught expectant parents how to care for their newborns through classes teaching basic baby care, infant massage classes, and moderating support groups for new moms as they deal with parenting issues.

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