Children need quality sleep in order to grow and develop properly, both mentally and physically. In fact, the importance of sleep for babies and children of all ages is crucial for their wellbeing throughout childhood. It also sets the stage for good health and sleeping hygiene in adulthood.
One of the best ways to help your child sleep peacefully is by creating an efficient and consistent bedtime routine. Whether you have a newborn baby or a toddler, children need routines in order to learn new habits.
Read on to discover the best tips for creating a bedtime routine your child will love.
Why Children Need a Bedtime Routine
Children, especially infants and toddlers, need a solid morning and evening routine in order to thrive and feel safe. There have been many studies proving the benefits of bedtime routines for both the child and the parent.
The results show improved sleep patterns, healthy energy levels, and fewer night wakings. At the same time, quality sleep helps the child wake up well-rested, which means they'll be less fussy and in a better mood during the day.
Mothers/parents/caregivers who implement a bedtime routine can also benefit from it by getting more rest and better sleep.
How To Create the Best Bedtime Routine For Your Child
Every child is different and needs different things to help them fall asleep. Even if you have more than one child, they all have a different personality so what works for one child might not work for the other.
The most important thing when creating the best bedtime routine for your child is consistency. Doing the same thing every night will help them learn their bedtime so they won't fuss or ask to stay up longer.
Below are some of the most effective ways to create an ideal bedtime routine for your little ones.
Start the Bedtime Routine 15 Minutes Before Bedtime
The perfect bedtime routine should be short, sweet, and repetitive. This will help the child associate the bedtime activities with sleepy time so they won't fuss or resist.
An ideal timeframe for a bedtime routine is 15-20 minutes. This will give you and the child enough time to go through the routine and build healthy sleep habits. Dress your little ones in cute bamboo baby pajamas and prepare them for a night of quiet, peaceful sleep.
Give the Child a Light Snack or Breastmilk
To start the bedtime routine, you need to make sure little bellies are full for the night. For babies, this means a round of breastfeeding or bottle, and for toddlers and older kids, a light snack.
Keep the snacks light but nutritious so as not to upset the child's tummy. Some of the best bedtime snacks include a boiled egg, yogurt with fruit, a banana, berries, apple chips, a granola bar, homemade applesauce, or a glass of warm milk.
Stay away from sugary or unhealthy snacks as these can give the child a boost of energy and they won't be able to fall asleep.
Run a Bath and Do Dental Hygiene
After a snack, it's time to run a bath for your child and do bedtime hygiene, including brushing teeth, changing diapers, and getting into clean bamboo baby clothes or pajamas.
A warm bath will help the child sleep better and soothe their body and brain, so don't skip this step no matter how tired the child is.
Prepare the Room for Sleep
Preparing the room for sleep is essential for good quality sleep. You can do this by adjusting the room temperature, removing electronic devices, and making the room dark enough to promote sleep.
You can also warm up the baby blankets, give the child a stuffed toy, and use a white noise machine to help the child fall asleep faster. The more comfortable the room is, the more your little one will associate it with sleep. This means removing all distractions, toys, and bright lights to ensure the child focuses on sleep and sleep only.
Read a Story or Sing a Lullaby
Towards the end of the bedtime routine, a sweet story or a lullaby will help the child get even more sleepy. While toddlers and older kids do understand stories, you should also read stories in a gentle voice to your newborn as well.
As you put the baby in a baby swaddle, you can start telling a story or sing a lullaby to associate storytime with sleepytime. You can let the child choose their favorite book or story so they feel important and considered.
This will help you prevent resistance when it comes to the bedtime routine as the child will feel like they have control over some aspects of it.
Cuddle and Give a Kiss Goodnight
After reading a book, spend a few minutes cuddling with your child. This is great bonding time and will help the child feel safe, loved, and cared for. It's also a great ending to the bedtime routine just before she falls asleep.
When you notice the child getting sleepy, it's time for a kiss goodnight and lights out. This is the best time to leave the room so the child learns to fall asleep on her own. It'll also help her feel safe and not wake up in panic if there's no one in the room.
It's important to set clear boundaries with bedtime to make sure the child knows lights out means time for sleep. This means no more talking, playing, reading, or snacking. The more consistent you are with this, the faster the child will learn.
Help Your Child Sleep Peacefully With a Short and Sweet Bedtime Routine
Whether you have a newborn baby, a toddler, or a pre-schooler, every child needs a bedtime routine to make sure they're getting good quality sleep. If you're a new parent, setting a routine can be challenging but these tips will help you find your footing and help your baby sleep peacefully.
If you're looking for high-quality bedding for your child, we have a great selection of soft bamboo bedding sets for every age and bed size. This way, your little ones will enjoy their bedtime even more and wake up feeling well-rested.