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Sleepovers & Bedtime

The Fall Asleep Fast Challenge

One of the most common complaints from parents is that their kids just won't go to sleep when they're supposed to. Interestingly, the problem usually resides not in the child, but in the sleep routine. If your child is having trouble falling asleep, try these parenting tips.

Overtired Children Can Create Sleep Problems

A child that is overtired generally has a harder time going to sleep than a child who is accustomed to a routine. (Actually, the same goes for adults!). Keeping kids awake longer to tire them out may make going to sleep a struggle. Stick to a routine to get your child to go to sleep on time.

Bedtime Routines for Kids

Routines are one way kids get the signal that bedtime is coming. It's a good idea to wind down the day with a regular routine that may include bath time, story time, quiet time, and/or music time. Adhere to the routine even on weekends.

Stick to the Bedtime Routine

Wishy washy bedtimes don't do anyone any favors. Kids need routine and their growing bodies need regular bedtimes. So, don't slack off on the bedtime routine and lights out time.

Set the Stage for Bedtime

Expecting a child to go to sleep with a party going on outside his room is expecting too much. When it's bedtime, the rest of the house has to accommodate the child. That's not to say that the entire house has to observe the same bedtime, it just means that voices, televisions, and music should be kept low so your child can sleep. Make sure that your child's room is bedtime ready as well. A quiet, dark room is best, but if your child is afraid of the dark, you might want to install a small nightlight. Sometimes a dark, quiet room can scare kids, so if your child needs you to check in the closet and under the bed, do so to assure him that all is ok. Make sure that your child uses his bed just for sleeping. Don't let him read, play, or do homework in bed. Hitting the sack should be the only think he uses his bed for. Sometimes, things your child does during the day can influence whether or not sleep comes easily. Cut down on caffeinated drinks and avoid scary movies if they bother your child.