Bedtimes with toddler

Bedtimes are incredibly important for a toddler, as the day finally wraps up for your little one, and gives them a chance to unwind and relax.However, bedtimes are not as easy as they sound and brings their own set of challenges. The kids generally don't want to miss out on all the fun and want to delay the bedtime as much as they can. However, a sound sleep is essential for a child. Infants of 4 to 12 months need 12 to 16 hours, babies of 12 months to 3 years need 11 to 14 hours of sleep and children of 3 to 5 years need 10 to 13 hours of sleep in every 24 hours.

The most common reasons for your toddler to resits bedtime might be one or a combination of the following reasons:

  • Not adapting to her bedtime routine
  • Feeling scared or not being able to soothe herself
  • Wanting to spend more time with you
  • Fear of missing out 
  • Separation anxiety
  • Not being tired enough

How to make Bedtimes easier

Be consistent: Don't change up with your bedtime routine too often. Creating new expectancies can confuse them further. Find a routine which works for you and your child and stick to it. Be consistent and do this for a week or month, and the baby will ultimately adapt to the new timeline.
Set a routine: Follow a set of routine which finally leads up to bedtime. Let the child wind down by having some quiet time, give them a warm bath, read them a story, and tuck them in. Once the child gets attached to the same routine, they will associate the tasks to bedtime automatically and not resist it.
Burn out the energy: One of the most apparent reasons for having trouble with bedtime is because the child is not tired. Let the child play outside and burn out the energy so that they are tired towards the time the evening arrives.
Bonding Time: Make bedtime a time to bond with your little one, ask them about their day, and let them know that you love them when you tuck them in. Having that one-on-one interaction with your child at the end of the day gives them security of love and make them feel secure and safe.
Put a countdown: Put on a countdown before the lights go out. This way, the child will try to beat the countdown and get into their bed early. This feels like a game to them and this spark of excitement can make them look forward to bedtime. However, don't overstimulate the child and ensure that there are no requests to stay up once the countdown is down and the lights are out.
Say goodnight to everything: In preparation for bedtime, make your child wish goodnight to all the members of the family, his favorite toys and books and anything that catches your fancy. This gives the child closure and prepared to finally hit the hay.

How to beat the bedtime stalling?

Stalling the bedtime is something that most toddlers do.This can be due to a handful of different reasons, however, the parents should establish a clear expectation about the bedtimes and be consistent with it. They can come up with several reasons for bedtime stalling like being thirsty, being scared, etc. Be prepared and do the following steps to make sure young one can go to bed at the scheduled time.

  • Make them go the washroom 
  • Keep water by the bed
  • Keep the night light on

Having a healthy bedtime practice can lead to a sound sleep at night which is extremely important for the proper development of the toddler. Make sure you end the day right for your little one.Bedtimes will come with its own trials and errors, but after taking essential steps, you will see that your little one will not need nagging and reminding from you anymore and will embrace the routine without a fight.

References:

https://www.thepragmaticparent.com/bedtime-stalling-with-young-kids/
http://www.parents.com/toddlers-preschoolers/sleep/schedule/are-late-bedtimes-bad-for-kids/
https://www.babysleepsite.com/toddlers/toddler-bedtime-stalling-5-gentle-techniques/

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