Children are generally afraid to sleep alone. To get them to sleep well, they prefer to sleep with their parents or have a parent be with them until they fall asleep. The process of getting your child to sleep alone can be troublesome, but when faced with retaliation, here are 3 things to help you through:
Assure them that they’re safe, show them that all the doors are locked, and let them know that you’re just a bedroom away if they need you.
Give them their special pillow or soft toy to calm their nerves. You can also pretend that their soft toy is a superhero who will protect them while they sleep.
Put in place these golden goodnight rules and be firm when enforcing it
- They MUST stay in bed once they’re tucked in
- You’ll only sit with them for an allocated amount of time
- Lights out time is non-negotiable
- Reassure them that you’ll check back on them in 10 minutes and do it
While transitioning from cot to bed may be difficult for some children, for others, it could be a big boy/big girl move and look forward to it. So, here’s how to make the process fun and safe for everyone.
Let your toddler help choose the bed
If you’re choosing a new bed, allow your toddler some input after you’ve narrowed down the choices. Choose a few which are your absolute favourites, take pictures of them and allow your toddler to choose which ones they like the most. You can even bring them along to try out the beds and their reactions will speak louder than words.
Remember, when they’re involved in making the choices, it makes the transition even easier.
Allow Your Toddler To Pick Their Favourite Bedding
Allowing your toddler to choose their favourite sheets and blankets will allow them to feel more involved and a have a sense of ownership over their bedding. Get them to select a few so that they feel more comfortable sleeping in their own choices and if it gets wet or dirty, there’s another one of their favourites just waiting to replace the soiled ones.
Let Your Toddler Keep Their Comfort Objects
While choosing a new bed and new beddings can be exciting, allowing them to keep their old favourite blanket or stuff animals that they sleep with in their crib is important. Weaning off security objects like these are a little more difficult, and moving into a new bed is definitely not the time to keep these objects away. You want to create a surrounding that is new but familiar for your little toddler.
Child Proof Your Toddler’s Room
It takes time for your toddler to get used to staying in bed at night and while it is important that you reinforce that they stay in bed all night, you should never take that for granted. Ensure that your child’s room is safe at all times. Secure all furniture well, keep plug points covered, no wire or cords within reach, no sharp objects, and keep a baby gate at the door to keep them in their room at all times.
Prepare For Tumbles
While sleeping in the cot meant that your child was safely contained, moving to a single bed may come with risks of tumbling down to the floor if they’re restless sleepers. Fix this problem by fitting side rails on your toddler’s bed, or placing pillows or thick rugs on the floor beneath your child’s bed in case they fall.
Start With Naps
If your toddler is excited with the transition, help them get used to the idea by starting with afternoon naps. Once they seem comfortable napping in their new bed, slowly plan for the big transition and get your toddler excited by planning a countdown to the special day.
Saying Goodbye To The Crib
Once you’ve determined a day to move out of the crib, explain to your toddler where the crib will be taken to and plan a special goodbye to their old crib. Make sure all the necessary is prepared on their new bed and remember to keep their favourite soft toy and pillow on their new bed to ease the process.
Stick To The Old Routine
If your toddler had a bedtime routine that worked well to get them to sleep, continue with the same routine even with the new bed. This helps keep the transition as hassle free as possible and your toddle will feel more secure and accept the changes more readily.