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10 top tips to help your toddler go to sleep

If your child finds it difficult to sleep independently, you’ll know just how detrimental missing a good night’s sleep can be for your child (not to mention for you!). No-one wants their child to be tired and grumpy during the day, but it is hard to know how to encourage positive sleeping habits.

Fortunately, help is at hand. My First Milestones is a series based around important milestones for your toddler, like their first birthday celebrations or their first day at school. In Goodnight, Sleep Tight, Button the bear doesn’t want to sleep – until Daddy calms him down and gets him ready for bed. With tips on how to get your child to sleep, this book is ideal for sharing with toddlers as a bedtime story.

You can read the book for free on the Oxford Owl eBook library. In the meantime, here are 10 top tips inspired by the book to help your child get a good night’s sleep:

1. Stick to a set bedtime

Try to keep to a consistent time for going to bed and waking your toddler in the morning. Routine is great for encouraging healthy sleep.

2. Have a soothing routine

Make sure your child’s bedtime routine is calm and peaceful. Warm lighting and a quiet environment are ideal.

3. Banish screens

Turn off all screens for an hour before bedtime. Not only is the content often overly stimulating; there is considerable evidence that the blue light from screens suppresses the secretion of melatonin, which makes sleeping more difficult.

4. No scary stories

Avoid content (cartoons or books, for example) that is scary just before bedtime. This both makes sleeping easier and reduces the risk of bad dreams.

5. Relaxation techniques

You could try some relaxation techniques with your child before bedtime. Remember that baths are great for relaxation, too.

6. Eat and drink appropriately

Sugary foods and drinks are a surefire way to make your toddler hyper, so try to avoid them at bedtime. Milky drinks can be a good alternative treat.

7. Storytime

Share a story with your child once they are tucked up in bed. Regularly reading with your child not only helps them get to sleep but also has a range of other benefits, such as improving their vocabulary and giving you time to bond.

8. Reassure your child

Give your child lots of reassuring hugs and kisses and let them know it’s time to go to sleep when you say goodnight. For children who don’t like the dark or who have bad dreams, this can be very comforting.

9. Use a night light

A dim night light can help some children get to sleep. Some children find it difficult to sleep without complete darkness, so this won’t work for everyone.

10. Dealing with bad dreams

If your toddler’s sleep is disturbed by a bad dream, help them understand that the dream is not real and reassure them that they are safe.

Bonus tip: Read the book!

Goodnight, Sleep Tight

Goodnight, Sleep Night

Amber Stewart and Layn Marlow

Button is a little bear. When it comes to bedtime, sometimes he worries about having bad dreams. In this heart-warming story, Daddy knows just what to do to soothe Button’s fears and help him get to sleep.

This book includes beautiful illustrations from Layn Marlow and sets the perfect tone for a good night’s sleep.

Read the eBook

Buy on Amazon >

More books from My First Milestones

Please note: all book links lead to more information on Amazon.co.uk

I Need My Blankie

Amber Stewart and Layn Marlow

Bean is a little rabbit. She’s getting bigger every day but she thinks she’ll never be too big for her blankie. In this gentle story, find out how Mummy and Daddy help Bean to feel grown up enough to let go.

Buy on Amazon >

My First Day

Amber Stewart and Layn Marlow

Puddle is a little duckling. He’s not sure he’s ready for his first day at school. In fact he’s really worried. But Mummy packs enough love and support into his school bag to carry him through the day.

Buy on Amazon >

I Need My Blankie

Amber Stewart and Layn Marlow

Scramble is a little otter. He can do lots of things but he can’t swim. In this positive story, discover how Scramble’s family and friends help him to enjoy the water.

Buy on Amazon >

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