Getting the kids off to sleep at the right time can be really tough. Perhaps they are just super hyperactive before bedtime. Or maybe they are falling to sleep earlier than needed and ruining their sleeping pattern. It’s a chore, especially with toddlers who tend to benefit more than others from the right amount of sleep. There are some hints and tips which can help get your kids off to bed at the right time. Some may work, others may not. It is about finding something that your child is receptive to and sticking with it so they actually want to go to sleep.
Ensure Their Bed Is Comfortable
You need them to want to go to bed, and you can only do this if it is comfortable. Consider investing in a nicer duvet, like a Canadian eiderdown, or maybe a better type of mattress that better supports their weight. The room needs to be comfortable too, so make sure it is decorated in a way they will enjoy and won’t mind sleeping in. Look at the shows they like and toys they prefer, base your decoration on these and they will be more receptive to going to sleep.
Use A Night Light
Many kids find that they suffer from night terrors, as a result they will be less inclined to want to go to bed. But if you have a night light then they won’t mind because they won’t be in total darkness. You can get all manner of nice nightlights that reflect different interests. Some cast cool images onto the walls and some form like lava lamps. Let your child choose which night light they want so they feel involved and you may find them scuttling off to bed with more happiness. You might want to leave the light on all night if they are particularly scared, but otherwise you can sneak in and switch it off before you go to bed.
Read Them A Bedtime Story
Bedtime stories are the old tried and tested way of getting a child off to sleep. If its a boy, go for stories of warriors and knights and castles, if a girl, then princesses and magic. Let your imagination go wild and you’ll come out with some awesome stories that you’ll be surprised you made up. If your imagination isn’t up to the task then consider reading from a storybook. You can find all kinds of story books out there. Aim for ones that reflect your children's interests. If your little girl likes barbie then tell her stories about barbie and so on. These stories will get them engaged and they’ll happily turn around and try to sleep because they will be thinking of the awesome stories you just told them.
Tire Them Out
Make sure they get enough exercise during the day. At their age, they’ll likely spend the days running around anyway, but if you feel they aren’t getting the exercise they need consider signing them up to after school clubs where they can play sports. They’ll appreciate it as it will give them a new skill, increase their confidence in social situations and they’ll make new friends. The activity will tire them out in a way that will promote sleep. If they are too young for after school activities consider playing with them and getting them tired out by running around.
Ensure They Eat The Right Food
Meaning you don’t want to feed them a load of sugar before they go to sleep because it could send them into hyperactiveness. Watch what you are feeding them and ensure it isn’t something that will make them sleep. You should also consider giving them a certain type of food before they go to bed, such as warm milk. They will associate this drink with sleep, making the process easier. There’s no saying they can’t eat sugary snacks at all, but just try to do that before a form of exercise.
Get Into Routine
You need to ensure they get into some kind of routine so that they expect sleep at a certain time each night. If they don’t have a routine then sleep may come as a surprise and they won’t like it. As such, let them watch a favourite programme before bed. They will look forward to it but know that they have to go to bed afterwards. Getting into a tried and tested routine will make the difference and ensure that sleep is built into their map of what happens in the day.