I recently worked with a client who had spent almost 4 years trying to reclaim the night from his little guy. Their son had spent more time in his parents bed than in his own (and the novelty was really wearing off for mum and dad!) We decided to create a list of tips to encourage this roving little boy to stay in his own bed! Check out his dads blog to see how they got on http://www.godadgo.ie/toddler-sleep-solutions/
TOP SLEEP TIPS FOR TODDLERS
- Set up a regular bedtime routine – it’s the anchor of your day
- Make a reward chart with him. Make it fun. His involvement may inspire him.
- If you like, get new bedclothes that he can help choose
- (For monsters and things that go bump in the night) Get an old squirty bottle. Decorate it with him and tell him you are putting magic spray inside so he can get rid of the monsters. (So magic, it’s invisible!!)
- Make it clear to him that this is his bed and that is our bed.
- Ensure he understands that its night time and what that means. Bedroom should be peaceful – there’s only one job to do here and that is to SLEEP!
- Don’t go on about the changes and new rules – he will sense your anxiety and use it against you! HIs job is to push boundaries and yours is to set them!
- Put him down to bed with minimum fuss and limit the cuddling
- Be persistent and consistent. Be determined – see the finish line and the big picture.
- Work as a team so everyone knows the plan, and stick to it. Take turns returning him to bed – no Good Cop/Bad Cop and no soft target!