Do you hate bedtime?

Do you hate bedtime?

A correct bedtime routine can really help your child transition to sleep

As a parent, I am sure you have often read about the importance of a bedtime routine. This newsletter attempts to provide a few “bedtime routine secrets”. The most important thing to remember with your child’s bedtime routine is that it really is the start of sleep. Recently, there has been hype in the media about how sleep is a time for our brains to get rid of toxins.

So what happens at bedtime?

The wonderful thing about bedtime is that it helps our children transition into the “wonderful slumber of sleep”. Have you watched the inspiring TED video about how important sleep is? Watch it now; you will never think the same about sleep again.

Why is bedtime routine important?

Bedtime routines cue our children’s brains to prepare them for sleep. Children thrive on predictability, consistency and routine. Keep it simple, predictable and the same every night.

My top tips for a bedtime routine:

  • Keep it short – no longer than 30 minutes.
  • If you have a child older than 6 months, feed him prior bath time.
  • A bath is the best start to your bedtime routine.
  • For a toddler, set an egg timer for 30 minutes before bedtime to get him used to the idea that sleep is soon to follow.
  • No IPads/TV/computers for at least two hours before bedtime. Rather invest in some quality family time.
  • Keep bedtime early. Typically, after 8pm it should only be mom and dad left in the living room. (I recently commented on a very good article featured in the Baba and Kleuter Magazine’s September edition about early bedtimes).

What about older children?

Remember that children (until they reach puberty) need to sleep for a solid 11 or 12 hours at night. Therefore, an early bedtime for the whole family is a good idea. In addition, you and your partner will still have a few hours left in the evening to enjoy quality time with each other.

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