How To Establish a Bedtime Routine for Babies & Toddlers
After a long day of taking in all the world has to offer including playing, and eating, your baby is bound to be exhausted and ready to turn in for the night. When babies come into this world, they spend most of their time sleeping, but once they're a few weeks old, they become more active and require a bedtime routine before they can drift into a peaceful slumber. A bedtime routine allows you to spend a few calm and precious moments before your baby turns in for the night, and we have some great tips for creating a consistent and enjoyable bedtime ritual for your baby or toddler.
Creating A Successful Baby Bedtime Routine
Getting a baby used to a nighttime routine might not be simple at first as they might be extremely fussy and unwilling to go to sleep. However, consistency is key, and eventually, both you and your baby will be able to enjoy the nighttime ritual. You can make the process easier by:
- Turning the lights down, drawing the curtains, and create a dim and soothing environment that calms your baby so they can fall asleep
- Keeping noises to a minimum; it's difficult enough getting a baby to sleep, so be sure to eliminate any possible disturbances
- Placing your child in the same room for their nightly slumber, so they develop an association to ensure they sleep after their routine is finished
A Tailored Bedtime Routine For Toddlers
The key to developing the perfect routine for toddlers is figuring out what activities work and tailoring them to fit your baby's schedule. Here are some common activities to incorporate in your toddler bedtime routine:
A full tummy prevents your little one from waking up in the middle of the night hungry, eliminating any sleep disturbances. It’s never too early to also start brushing their teeth before you put them to sleep for the night.
A warm and soothing bath can strip away the exertions of the day and remove any dirt or grime that builds up during the day. You can even incorporate a post-bathtime routine that allows you to give your toddler a soothing massage with their favorite baby oil for a relaxing sleep.
Change your little one into fresh pajamas or comfortable clothes even if you choose to forgo bathtime as it helps them differentiate between daytime and nighttime and sets them up for a long and peaceful sleep.
Babies love to be gently rocked to sleep which is why you might consider gently swaying your little one on a glider or in your arms while on a rocking chair. The cradling motion has the ability to calm down as the movement triggers natural sleep rhythms making them fall asleep faster.
Singing your baby's favorite lullaby or winding up a musical mobile to play a gentle tune can set the stage for a calm atmosphere to help your toddler sleep. Some great options include the Tiny Love Soothe Groove Mobile and Boho Décor Mobile which can blend into different nursery themes.
If you want to create the right ambiance for your toddler to fall asleep, a night light can be the answer to a dimly lit room. The soft light is gentle on your little one’s eyes and allows them to fall asleep faster. The night light can even be helpful for late-night diaper changes or feeding sessions.
Bedtime Story Books
If your toddler is simply not tired when it’s sleep time, you can consider introducing a storybook in their nighttime routine. An interesting book can provide sufficient mental and visual stimulation especially if it comes with images and it will help tire out your little tot.
Don't forget to plant a goodnight kiss on your baby's forehead and whisper some gentle words before leaving your little one in their crib for the night.
A bedtime routine is very personal and specific to every child; what works for one toddler might not necessarily work for another, so you need to adjust the sleep time routine. Even as babies get older, you might need to change things up, but the foundation of a good bedtime routine is to make your baby comfortable and calm so they can sleep and dream peacefully.
Join Our Mailing List
Sign Up for exclusive updates,
new arrivals & insider-only discounts