We all know that kids have different sleep needs and those needs change as children get older. Some kids settle down easily at night while others require a little more help to get asleep. Each kid is different and their needs change over time. Ruth, from our iFamily Mom & Dad Squad shares her tips for a simple bedtime! Take a look.
A Simple Bedtime in Three Easy Steps
As a parent of three, I have a little bit of everything in my house. My oldest is very independent and falls asleep at the drop of a hat and will sleep hard through the night. My middle child has challenges with night terrors and needs a little more support to get to sleep, and my youngest is a night owl and would probably stay up all night if I let her.
Both my girls require a little bit of extra effort to get to sleep at night. Many parents with multiple children or even just one can probably relate to this dilemma. I am here to share some ideas to help your kids settle down at night. Food for thought, any strategy that you might try will take time. You will want to give it a few weeks before you try a new one I order to be sure if the strategy works for your child and your family or not. Here are some things that you can try.
Tip 1: Establish a regular bed time routine
Set a regular routine, which is not overly rigid but has enough predictability that your child knows what to expect. An example routine may look like: bath/shower/change into pajamas, brush teeth, reading/story time and sleep. Choose a general time frame for your child to be asleep. The time you choose is based upon how much sleep they need versus your family routine. The sleep foundation provides general parameters for sleep needs based upon age.
Tip 2: Add daily exercise
If your routine isn’t working maybe your child has too much pent-up energy and they need an opportunity to burn it off before they can settle to bed. Offer your child a change to exercise in the early evening. You can go for a daily walk, visit the park or even do something active at home. A favorite in our house are kid’s yoga, dance videos on Youtube or the trampoline. An extra 20-30 minutes of exercise per day helps them to settle down. Check out Cosmic Kids Yoga or Just Dance videos on Youtube.
Tip 3: Try calming activities
When you are nearing bedtime, it helps you give your child time to relax and calm before bed. Calming activities are different for each person. Some people like to read, others like a bubble bath and so on. Kids need calming activities too sometimes. Younger kids typically are trying to avoid going to bed for a variety of reasons but to help them relax you need to find something they enjoy. It could be anything from a quiet game, playdoh, soft music or even an audio book to name a few. Try to avoid things that would rev them up like jokes, loud music, scary movies and blood pumping video games too close to bed time. Save those activities for earlier in the day.
From iFamily to Yours,