Toddler Sleep Training

Having small children is rarely a restful experience, and the toddler stage can be truly exhausting. If your little tyke screams for hours after you tuck him in or climbs into your bed at 3 am, you may feel desperate for ideas. Solutions are out there, but whether they feel right for you will vary depending on your natural parenting style.

  • Consider Your Routine

Routines are very important, especially in the early years of life. Try and set up a schedule for your evening; this will usually involve something like: ‘dinner, bath time, cuddles, story time and milk, lights out.’ This should help soothe your child into relaxed and sleepy state. Try and keep the house as quiet and peaceful as possible during the evening to encourage a relaxing atmosphere. You may also want to consider a calming CD to play in your child’s bedroom after lights out so they’re not left lying in silence.

  • Sleep training

If you can stand the sound of your toddler screeching for the time being, you could attempt controlled crying. This involves simply letting your child cry without coming back into the room to console her, making bedtime stricter but hopefully ultimately teaching your toddler that you won’t reward negative behaviour. If she gets out of bed to come find you then simply pick her up and take her back to bed, and repeat this process until she surrenders and sleeps. This tactic can take some willpower, so you’ll need to be tough.

  • Gradual Withdrawal

Many parents find that sitting with their toddler as she nods off and then moving further away each night; sitting outside the door one night until she sleeps and then eventually not being there at all is a good happy medium between controlled crying and co-sleeping.

No one method will work for every family, so experiment with tactics until you find your perfect solution. You should be able to solve your sleep problem without abandoning your parenting beliefs, and the reward of a restful night will be well worth a few months of experimentation.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *