We all know that getting sleep is crucial in a child’s life. But what happens when you can’t seem to put them to bed? When their fighting, kicking and screaming become unbearable that you just give up.
From personal experience, I know that it is not easy. It takes a lot of hard work and dedication, but trust me; it is worth it.
Here is a list of steps that worked for me in setting up a bedtime for my daughter.
- Decide on a bedtime. Whatever bedtime you decide on, stick to it. Consistency is key in creating a bedtime; so make sure to be firm on the time you have set.
- Try to not feed your toddler any heavy foods two hours before his or her bedtime. A full stomach makes it difficult for a child to be able to fall asleep. If your child asks for food, try small snacks like fruits or vegetables.
- Give your toddler a bath, preferably with lavender shampoo to help them relax. This works wonders with my toddler.
- Invest in a couple pairs of pajamas. Not only will it make them excited to go to bed, but it will also help them sleep longer since they are more comfortable than regular clothing.
- One very important step to remember is to brush your toddler’s teeth. Adding this step to your list will build consistency, and help them remember something that is usually forgotten.
- The next step is one of the most crucial. Reading a bedtime story with your toddler with help them exercise their mind and help them relax before going to sleep. It is never too early to teach your child new things.
- The last step is to lay them on their bed, crib, etc. Make sure to let them know that it is their bedtime, and that you will be leaving the room so he or she can get some sleep.
*If your child refuses to go to sleep and begins to fight it; put them back to bed, leave the room and check on them every five minutes. Continue doing this until your toddler goes to sleep. This is key in showing them consistency. Don’t give in to their crying and whining. Trust me, it will be worth it, and it will only get easier as days go by.