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Sunday, December 23, 2012

10 Tips for Making Your Child Fall Asleep Faster!

After a long day, many of us can hardly wait for our little angels to go to sleep. But what if yours take forever to get to la-la land? Here are 10 tips to help your toddlers learn to fall asleep faster and on their own.

  1.  Avoid feeding your children big meals close to bedtime, and don't give them anything containing caffeine less than six hours before bedtime.
  2. After dinner, avoid all stimulating activities and Warn your children that bedtime is in five minutes, or give them a choice: "Do you want to go to bed now or in five minutes?" but do this only once.
  3. Establish a Consistent Routine:  Among the first steps in helping your child fall asleep is cueing that it’s bedtime. Follow the “3Bs” bedtime routine: bath, book, bed — in the same order, at the same time each night. Try to make sure your children eat dinner at the same time, play a little ( again; NOT stimulating activities) after they’ve eaten, and then wind down with the first B. Avoid scary stories or TV shows. It's better to read a favorite book every night than a new one because it's familiar.
  4. Try a 'Cry It Out' (CIO) Method: Although it’s controversial but give it a try and let your children cry it out as soon as you sense that they are old enough to start falling asleep on their own. “I know how hard it is to let them cry. I've done it with all [of] mine and my partner often had to physically stop me from going up and picking them back up. But it does work,”
  5.  Avoid singing or rocking your children to sleep, because if they wake in the middle of the night they may need you to sing or rock them back to sleep, a condition known as sleep-onset association disorder. (If you have already been doing this, try to phase this behavior out gradually.) Instead, have them get used to falling asleep with a transitional object, like a favorite blanket or stuffed animal.
  6. Make sure your child is comfortable. Clothes and blankets should not restrict movement, and the bedroom temperature shouldn't be too warm or too cold.
  7. If your child calls for you after you've left his room, wait a few moments before responding. This will remind him that he should be asleep, and it'll give him the chance to soothe himself and even fall back asleep while he is waiting for you.
  8. If your child comes out of his room after you've put him to bed, walk him back and gently but firmly remind him that it's bedtime.
  9. Give your child tools to overcome his worries. These can include a flashlight, a spray bottle filled with "monster spray" or a large stuffed animal to "protect" him.
  10. Set up a reward system. Each night your child goes to bed on time and stays there all night, he gets a star. After three stars, give him a prize.
Additionally, what works one month may change as your child grows. Keep working at a style of night-time parenting that fits the temperament of your baby and your own lifestyle. If it's working, stick with it. If it's not, be open to trying other nighttime parenting styles.

Have a nice day! :)

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