You don’t have to fear going to bed! Use this list to develop a nighttime routine that works for your specific child.
That awful time of day when you’re weary but your kids appear to have an endless amount of energy.
When all you want to do is sit and veg, yet all your children seem to care about is sticking as near to you as physically feasible.
After night after night. You’re becoming tired of the bedtime battles and I understand. Keep reading for reasons why bedtime isn’t working and what you can do to fix it.
When Bedtime Routine Is Not Working
I really doubt that every aspect of your nighttime routine has to be altered. You’re probably doing a lot of things correctly! Keep what is working and seek things to add or alter if necessary.
Combine the following ideas to create a bedtime routine that works for your family:
Address medical issues
A variety of factors influence our capacity to obtain a decent night’s sleep. If you have any concerns, consult with your children’s physician, a sleep expert, and/or a dentist before proceeding.
Teach relaxation techniques: Anxiety may thrive in the calm of the night. A kid who has a history of trauma or who has previously had difficulty sleeping might cause their brain to go into a dangerous reaction rather than a tranquil state. Work on relaxing the brain before requiring them to sleep on their own.
Your children’s frequent requests and trouble remaining in bed may indicate a need for connection. It might indicate that he is worried. Rather than assuming the worst, investigate the “why” of the behavior.
Begin early: Create a soothing ritual before sleep – dim the lights, read together, practise yoga, play a board game, paint, or whatever else helps your child move from a busy brain to a peaceful brain.
Limit screen time: I know it’s simpler to put on a TV show or reward them with some screen time, but screens urge most kids (and adults) to “wake up and be aware” rather than to prepare for sleep.
See also: Secrets To Help Hyper Kids Calm Down
Do What’s Best
Every child is unique; just because baths are soothing for some children does not imply they will be for yours. Running around the yard or playing a game of chase could be more effective…and that’s fine!
Reduce your speed: Feeling pressed to move on to the next task can drive some children to panic, resulting in aggressiveness or resistance. Take a deep breath and focus on the here and now. Allow their brain to settle down before going on to the next activity.
To avoid losing track of time, you may need to set an alarm to begin the bedtime ritual. It may include laying out your PJs and toothbrushes earlier in the evening or selecting novels earlier in the evening.
Remember It’s Not Easy
Allow your children time to complete their activities. “Hey, show me what you’re constructing here…” before moving on to the next item.
Make a Routine
Most children feel safe when they know what is going to happen next. Do everything you can to maintain a consistent nighttime schedule. What you’re doing now may not be the ideal habit for you; it’s fine to switch things around and find what works best.
As your children develop, they will be able to do all of the bedtime duties on their own, but keep in mind that their reserve is low at the end of the day. They may require assistance at times. It progresses them through the routine and connects them!
Rather than viewing night as the ultimate separation or “end,” discuss the following day, how you will welcome your kid in the morning, what you will eat, and what you will do.
Give them an Object
Bridge the nighttime ritual disconnect by assisting your kid in selecting an object of yours to keep in bed with them — a shirt, a photo, a book, anything that reminds them of you.
Give people more options: What might make your child feel more at ease and ready to sleep? What about a healthy snack? Is it better to listen to soft music or to listen to nothing at all? Should I use a weighted blanket? What are essential oils? Which smells are they? Is it better to have a nightlight or to be completely dark?
Rather than telling them, “It’s time for sleep,” let them listen in to how their body feels just before falling asleep. Visualizations and mindfulness practises can assist children in identifying these experiences.
Slowly exit: If you’re willing to restrict your stay in their room, make it a process. Discuss the adjustments in advance, such as “instead of sleeping on your bed, I’ll stroke your back while sitting on the floor.” During the day, focus on relaxing the brain and body, expressing empathy, and leading with confidence.
Your child requires your calm presence to shift their brain out of threat mode and into a more relaxed state.
See also: Brilliant Sleep Clocks for Toddlers
Do Not Ignore
Screams, particularly frantic cries, should not be dismissed. Your child requires your calm presence to bring their brain back on track and out of threat mode. With time, their brain will understand that strong sensations can be managed even when you are not around.
Bedtime does not have to be the most difficult part of your day, although it may take some time to arrive.
Bedtime Routine Solutions Bottom Line
Never give up! Continue to be interested in anything that has an influence on the nighttime ritual. Then, do everything you can to effect change.