Bedtime Routines

The Best Bedtime Routine For Your Toddler (1-3 Years)

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With this article, you may establish a soothing, regular bedtime routine for your child who is between the ages of one and two years old.

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Does your formerly restful sleeper now make bedtime a nightly drama? Toddlers can make bedtime a war zone because of their endless energy and growing independence. 

Don't worry, tired parents! With the help of this advice from Storybook, you can establish a peaceful and reliable sleep routine that benefits your child as well as you. It's time to discover the keys to restful sleep, so bid farewell to nighttime conflicts and hello to lovely dreams! ✨

The importance of a toddler bedtime routine

Do you recall those quiet goodnights when your child fell asleep without causing any trouble? With its constantly shifting emotions and increasing independence, toddlerhood has the potential to turn bedtime into a regular fight.

But before you give up (and maybe even grab some plush animals), remember that a regular nighttime schedule is your best tool!

"Bedtime routines are vital for a child’s sleep quality and quantity." 💡Sleep Foundation

How long should a 1-3-year-old toddler sleep?

Though they may appear to be in constant activity, even the most active toddlers require sleep! Establishing a healthy sleep schedule and ensuring your child is well-rested for all their adventures depend on knowing how much sleep your child requires.

Toddler sleep schedule

How to create a bedtime routine for a 1-3-year-old toddler

The days of saying goodbye with ease are long gone! The toddler years can frequently transform bedtime into a nightly tug-of-war due to their turbulent emotional landscape and growing sense of independence.

Don't worry, Storybook will help with this guide; you can establish a soothing and reliable sleep routine that benefits you and your child. For more info, check bedtimes by age

"The activities in a good bedtime routine help your child fall asleep more easily at bedtime. Without a good bedtime routine, it can be hard for babies, children, and teenagers to settle to sleep." 💡Raising Children

1. Set a consistent bedtime schedule

Just like grown-ups thrive on routine, so do toddlers! Aim for a similar bedtime each night, even on weekends. This helps regulate their internal clock, leading to longer, deeper sleep stretches for everyone.

2. Start wind-down time early

Signal "sleep mode" 30-60 minutes before bedtime by transitioning from high-energy activities to calmer ones.

3. Bath time

A warm bath can be a soothing prelude to sleep. 

4. Engage in pre-bedtime calming activities

Take part in relaxing activities suitable for your age; for example: Curl up with a book and enjoy a soothing tale (for a wealth of choices, browse our Storybook collection!). While reading, think about giving yourself a little massage.

🛌Include stories with massage 

5. Incorporate comfort items

Incorporate familiar comfort items like a lovey or stuffed animal to provide security and promote self-soothing.

6. Limit sugar and caffeine before bed

Limit your intake of sweets and caffeine in the hours leading up to bed. These may interfere with sleep cycles and cause restlessness at night.

7. Avoid lengthy goodbyes

Even while it's important to say goodnight, protracted farewells can backfire. Keep it short and sweet, and make sure your child understands you're close by and ready to help if required.

Discover bedtime routines tailored to your little one's specific age group!

🤱🏻 Newborn Bedtime Routine (0-3 Months)

👶🏻 Bedtime routine for babies (4 to 11 months)

🧒🏻 Bedtime routine for kids (3 to 5 years)

🧑🏻 Bedtime routine for teens (6 to 12 years)

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Sample bedtime routine for a 1-3-year-old toddler

Here's a practical example:

Sample Bedtime Routine For 1-2 year old

For more information and practical examples: morning routine for kids

Tips for a winning toddler bedtime routine 

You and your child can sleep soundly by establishing a regular and soothing bedtime ritual. To get you going, consider these important pointers:

Set a regular bedtime and wake-up time

The secret is to be consistent! A regular sleep pattern facilitates a more seamless nighttime experience by assisting your toddler's internal clock. Even on weekends, try to stick to the same bedtime and wake-up schedule, giving yourself a 30-minute grace period.

Limit fluids before bed

Although it's essential to be hydrated, consuming too much fluids immediately before bed can cause overnight bathroom excursions that interfere with sleep. Promote drinking water all day long, but avoid having too many drinks right before bed.

Reduce screen time one hour before bedtime

The blue light emitted from screens can interfere with melatonin production, making it harder for your toddler to fall asleep. Swap screen time for calming activities like reading, singing, or taking a bath in the hour before bedtime.

Limit sugary snacks close to bedtime

Sugary treats can give your toddler a temporary energy boost, making it harder to wind down for sleep. Opt for calming snacks like yogurt with fruit or whole-wheat crackers before bed.

How to adjust the bedtime routine as my toddler gets older?

Your little explorer's preferences and needs for sleep will inevitably change as they grow into toddlerhood.

  • Understanding the Growth Spurt
  • Tailoring the Schedule
  • To adapt to these changes, consider these tweaks

✨ Remember:

  • Embrace flexibility: Modify the schedule to accommodate your toddler's changing requirements and tastes. Don't be scared to try out new things or change the schedule.
  • Consistency is key: Maintaining a regular routine aids in regulating their internal clock and enhances the quality of their sleep.
  • Offer choices: To empower them and encourage independence, provide your toddler choices for activities or comfort items when the time is right.
  • Communicate and adapt: Have frank conversations with your child and modify the routine in response to their input and evolving requirements.

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