5 Top Tips For Toddler Sleeping

It's widely known that many little energetic toddlers resist bedtime. They hate leaving the thrill of running, climbing, and touching - it's just so exciting. When they start to reach 18 months they start to go through a very independent phase, where you may have noticed that “No!” is their favourite word. But the more tired they get, the more rigid, hyper, and irritable they become.

Besides this normal defiance, below are common reasons why toddlers fight bedtime and the various ways you can help them to get past these sleep obstacles.

  • Your toddler is over excited—too wound up from the TV, playing energetically, or something they're consuming (like sugary juice, sweets, artificial colours & flavours, cold medicine, or a dose of caffeine from colas, Dr Pepper, Mountain Dew, tea or chocolate).

    Tip 1: Limit food and drink before bedtime and keep meals 1-2 hours away (at least) from bedtime.






  • Something is irritating them —bright lights, loud noises, or discomfort ( teething, too cold, has a stuffy nose or itchy pyjamas, ate dinner too late, etc.). It can be particularly difficult during summer when the sun lasts well into the evening, & your toddler may be confused as to why you're putting them to bed when the sun is still out - erm isn't it daytime?

    Tip 2: A way to avoid this is by installing blackout blinds in your toddler's room, and lower them before your child goes to their bedroom, in order to create a dark & calm bedroom environment. It can also help if you don't allow your child to watch TV in their own bedroom or have any screen time in their bed (iPads, iPhones, etc). A dim nightlight & soft music is fine, but avoid anything with a screen. For situations where your child is too cold, it's a good idea to keep a thermometer in their room so that you can keep an eye on temperatures which disturb their sleep & learn how to avoid it next time.


    • They're nosy and stubborn—does not want to go to their own room because they want to see what everyone else is doing.

      Tip 3: At least 30 minutes prior to sleep time, make sure to create a calm environment for your toddler. Try reading a book or having them take a bath as part of this routine, avoid high stimulation activities like the TV or cinema. When you make activities before bedtime about your toddler, they will be less likely to feel that they've been taken away from all the interesting action when you put them to bed.




      • They're hooked on your help—has not yet learned how to fall asleep without you rocking, feeding, or holding them. 

        Tip 4: Tuck your child into bed. Make sure you tuck them into bed while they are in a sleepy state, but still awake. You want them to learn to put themselves to sleep. This makes your child feel supported when they go to bed, whilst allowing them to gain independence by putting themselves to sleep without constant physical comfort from a parent.

        If your toddler has a nightmare and runs into your bed, that's perfectly ok. However, once they have calmed down they should be placed back into their own bed. Try surrounding your toddler with various items of comfort to make them feel safe to fall asleep.


        • Your bedtime timing is off—you are putting your toddler to bed too early (they're not tired) or too late (they're overtired and wired).

        Tip 6: One of the best ways to get your toddler to sleep is to work on bedtime skills—all day long. That means sticking to a routine. Make sure your toddler has the same wake up and sleep times each day. Also, make sure that their nap time is not too late in the day to avoid any interference with their bedtime.


        Try our tips to get your toddler to sleep, and don't give up! It can be hard for a parent (when you're the one who wants to sleep but isn't getting any), we're with you - but it is a completely normal phase for your child to go through, so remember that you're doing a great job, keep trying our solutions and you may find a few techniques that work for you & your toddler.