If you’re a parent, sleep – and more importantly how to get your child to sleep – is often a challenge. For many, bedtimes can feel like a battle!
It’s hard when your child won’t go to sleep, especially if you’re tired or if you’ve got jobs to do once your little one is in bed. But bedtimes don’t have to be hard work. Here are our top tips for creating a stress-free bedtime:
1. Set up a routine
Work on developing a bedtime routine from when your child is young. Babies and children feel safe and secure when they know what’s expected of them. A bedtime routine may include a bath, brushing teeth, a story and a cuddle before lights out. Try to stick with a regular bedtime as this will help your child feel sleepy when it is time for bed.
2. Make bedtime fun
Make bedtime feel like a special time of day; a chance to have some quiet time with mum or dad before going to sleep. Get kids involved – let them choose the story to read or song to sing.
3. Wind down before bed
Even before you start the bedtime routine children should be starting to wind down. Limit the amount of screen time your child has before bed and choose quieter activities such as board games.
4. Exercise can help
Being active during the day can help promote good sleep. Younger kids often don’t need structured exercise – just being outside playing in nature or at the park keeps them active.
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5. Be consistent
Even if it’s challenging, do your best to stick to the routine. If someone else is putting your children to bed, ask them to follow the same routine as you.
Sleep is important for your child’s growth and development. Not enough good-quality sleep can impact on your child’s behaviour, learning and health, so make a consistent bedtime routine priority.