Why a Bedtime Routine?
How to establish a routine
Establishing a consistent bedtime routine is actually quite simple, and it greatly depends on you, the parent or caregiver to make sure that it is consistent every night. This routine should include activities that signal to your child that it is time to wind down and prepare for sleep. A successful bedtime routine for a toddler should be consistent, calming, and predictable and could go something like this:
- Brush Teeth
- Into Pajamas
- Story Time
- Song and Cuddle
- Into Bed Lights Out
Routines for infants
Infants can have a simpler routine:
- Bedtime Feed
- Story Time
- Quick Cuddle and Song
- Into Bed Awake
Maintaining a consistent bedtime routine can be challenging, but there are several tips that can help.
- It is essential to be consistent with the time that your child goes to bed and wakes up. This consistency can help your child’s body clock get into a routine, making it easier for them to fall asleep and wake up.
- It is also essential to be consistent with the activities included in your child’s bedtime routine. These activities should be calming and predictable, and should not change from night to night.
- Keep the routine between 20- 30 minutes long. Too short and the body does not get the cue that it is time for sleep, too long and the body forgets that it is time for sleep.
Bedtime battle can creep up when establishing and maintaining a bedtime routine. If your child is resistant to the routine, it may be helpful to involve them in the process of creating the routine. I suggest having them help you create a Bedtime Routine Chart for their room. This can help them visualize the steps of the routine every night and make it fun for them.
Another challenge is their sleep schedule. If your baby, toddler or older child is struggling in the bedtime routine, it is very likely that they are overtired or under-tired, which can cause resistance. Make sure that they are on the appropriate schedule and getting enough sleep each night. Need the right schedule, download my Awake Windows Cheat Sheet here.
Keep it consistent!
Consistency is essential in establishing and maintaining a successful bedtime routine. Children thrive on routine, and a consistent bedtime routine can help them feel secure and comfortable, leading to better sleep.
It is essential to be consistent with the time that your child goes to bed and wakes up, as well as the activities included in their bedtime routine. If you are looking for more support with bedtime battles or helping your child with their overall sleep habits, Book a complimentary call with me today for more support and guidance here.