Bedtime can be one of the most difficult times for parents, especially when your child is a toddler. Kids seem to be convinced that they’re going to miss out on everything interesting the instant that they fall asleep, which means that they tend to fight to avoid going to sleep. However, this doesn’t have to be your life. There are a lot of ways that you can help your child build good sleep habits and make your own life a little bit easier at bedtime.
Develop A Routine
Just like everything else in their lives, kids do best with a routine for bedtime. While they are young, you get to choose what activities go into your child’s bedtime routine. You should set them up for success by having them help you tidy up their toys, taking care of their hygiene and by reading to them for bed. Building habits early in life can help them to keep those habits the older they get, making them more likely to sleep better later on in their life as well. Knowing what to expect from bedtime also helps your toddler resign themselves to their fate.
Limit Screen Time in the Evening
One thing that should not be in your child’s routine is screen time. Electronics are a great way for your child to learn new things, but they also cause your child’s brain to stay awake and focus on what’s on the screen. This can cause a lot of problems when it comes to actually
Keep Dinner Early
Speaking of dinner, you should make sure that dinner is three or four hours before bedtime whenever possible. When the human body is digesting food and sleeping at the same time, it leads to indigestion and needing to go to the bathroom more often.
You should also avoid making their dinners excessively spicy or acidic, as these can increase the likelihood of your child having indigestion. If your toddler is getting hungry later in the evening, try giving them a snack that’s it’s a combination of dairy and carbohydrates, such as a bowl of non-sugary cereal. This combination helps their body to digest the tryptophan that can help make them sleepier, thus helping them get to sleep easier.
Make the Room Comfortable & Distraction Free
This may seem like a no-brainer, but making your toddler’s room comfortable is key to making them actually want to go to sleep. The mattress doesn’t have to be fancy. You can even get it from Amazon. It just has to be comfortable and as distraction free as possible.
Kids are very easily distracted, so this might be harder than you think. A good policy is to keep as much of their favorite stuff out of sight as possible. This will help to keep your child from getting out of bed on their own to play with their toys while you think they’re sleeping.