Getting your children to go to sleep can be one of the biggest challenges as a parent. While this isn’t easy for many, it’s important to try and establish a bedtime routine for your little ones.
When children don’t get enough sleep, they can sometimes find it hard to control their emotions, becoming tired and grumpy – or even hyper. Regular bedtime routines play a large part in helping children to get enough sleep, allowing them to function at their best.
There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to establishing a good bedtime routine. Every child is different. It’s important to discover what works and stick to it, trying to relax your little one, rather than overstimulating them.
Here are a few ideas.
Set a Schedule
Try and set a specific time to start your little one’s bedtime routine and stick to it as much as you can. Your child’s body clock is more likely to adjust to a routine that’s consistent. If your child’s old enough to understand, then tell them when bedtime is approaching. For example: give them a timer, tell them it’s time to brush their teeth or put their pyjamas on. Anything that indicates bedtime is soon.
A warm bath can be a lovely way to soothe your child and get them nice and relaxed before bed. However, some may become excited and want to play in the bath, so this may not work for everyone.
Get your child ready for bed straight after a bath. Once they are in their pyjamas, they’ll start to understand that it’s soon time for bed.
Once your child is in bed, read them a story. Encourage a bedtime teddy or doll for them to cuddle up to for comfort. You can also play some soothing music while you read to help them relax further and leave it playing while they drift off.