Sleep tips for Toddlers

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Don’t hit the panic button if the time springing forward has your little one springing into a cranky mood! After being in the childcare industry for over 30 years, we have mastered a few techniques to ensure that our little learners garner both healthy sleeping habits and happy dispositions. Follow these tips to help you prevent your child from losing out on those precious moments of sleep.

Tip 1 - Stick to a routine!

Keeping a consistent bed time and wake up time each day is imperative to ensuring your child gets enough sleep. Having a bedtime routine is also an important component. Doing the same activities that help your child wind down before bedtime helps the body know it is time to get ready to sleep. Including a winding-down period a half hour before bedtime is recommended.

Tip 2 - Nap time at the right time!

Nap time is crucial for your child regardless if they are an infant or a preschooler. The time allotted to nap time might change depending on your child’s growth stage, but you want to make sure it is the right amount of time and at the right time of the day. Make sure naps are not too brief and not too late in the day to prevent your child from becoming cranky or too energized when it’s bedtime.

Tip 3 - Say no to sugar and caffeine!

Avoiding caffeine and stimulants in the late afternoon and at night will prevent your child from being too hyper to calm down for bedtime.

Tip 4 – Keep them active!

Keep you little one active throughout the day, at least 3 hours prior to bedtime. A lack of daily physical activity can prevent good sleep. Plus, children who get a sufficient daily dose of physical activity fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer.

Tip 5 - Create the perfect sleeping environment!

Nothing can put your child to sleep faster than a cozy sleep-inducing environment. Create a safe, comfortable and calming environment for your little one and they will fall asleep easier. Make sure that toys and distractions like TV’s are put away and are turned off.  You should also make sure you turn off all of the lights with the exception of a night light. Calming music and soft sheets can also offer that extra level of comfort to ensure a comfortable rest.

These tips can turn sleep time with your toddler from a nightmare to a dream. You can combine these tips with the National Sleep Foundation’s recommended alloted hours of sleep for a guaranteed sweet slumber.

  • Newborn 0-3 months - 14-17 hours
  • Infant  4-11 months - 12-15 hours
  • Toddler 1-2 years old- 11-14 hours
  • Preschool 3-5 years old - 10-13 hours

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