Getting your kids to sleep to a schedule and stick to a nighttime routine can be tough, but it is essential to improving the quality of their sleep and ensuring that they are rested enough to grow and progress through life with relative ease. It’s also vital for the sanity of frazzled mommies and daddies too. Thankfully, if your child is a poor sleeper, there are several simple things you can do to get them to sleep on time.
Set a Schedule
The most important thing you can do if you want to get your kids to go to sleep at bedtime is to actually set a regular bedtime schedule in the first place. It is unfair to expect kids to go to bed at 6 pm one night and 8 pm the next. We all have a body clock which needs a routine to function correctly, so set a sleep time and stick to it no matter what to avoid ‘repeated awakenings and groggy kids in the morning.
Have a Bedtime Ritual
Having a ritual that you and the kids do every night before bed will help to familiarise children with sleeping and waking times and will enable them to wind down before you put them down. Giving your kids a bath and then reading them a bedtime story is a simple but effective bedtime ritual. Check out 14 Bedtime Rituals for more great ideas for bonding with kids as you get them ready for bed.
Limit Screen Time
Whether your child is a toddler who loves watching TV or a teenager who’s glued to their smartphone, you will be doing them a favor by banning the use of technology for at least one hour before bed. Screens give off blue light, which can mimic daylight and make it tough for us to drop off when we go to bed. So, turn off your Wi-Fi connection and spend some family time together in that one-hour window before lights out.
Make Their Beds Comfy
Some kids can’t get a good night’s sleep simply because their beds are not very comfortable. Lumpy, sagging or plain cheap mattresses can cause all manner of aches and pains that keep kids up at night, so buying them a good mattress is as important as it is for adults. Memory Foam Doctor's Mattress Buying Guide is a great place to start if you’re looking to buy a new improved bed for your kid that will support their small body and aid their sleep.
Try a Nightlight
If your child has trouble sleeping because they’re scared of being alone in the dark, giving them a nightlight is a no-brainer. The simple addition of a little illumination in your child’s bedroom could be all that is needed to ensure they don’t come creeping into your room every evening.
Have a Wake-Up Time
Work out how much sleep your child needs and wake them up in the morning no later than their ideal. If you let your child sleep in, even on the weekends, it will send their body clock out of whack and prevent them from getting to sleep in the evenings, when it is really essential.
Do you have any tips for getting the kids to sleep without any fuss?