5 practical tips for parents of toddlers that won’t stay in bed

Teaching toddlers to fall asleep themselves is an important part of their development. However, teaching children to stay in bed and fall asleep on their own at the age of 2-3 years can be a challenge.

Here are some effective strategies and tips to help your toddler develop good sleep habits.

Children thrive on routines, especially at bedtime. A consistent routine can include a bath, reading a bedtime story, and a quiet time in bed.

This helps the child calm down and understand that it is soon time to sleep.

Choose activities that signal that it’s time to sleep, such as brushing your teeth and putting on pajamas. Include relaxing activities such as a listening to a soothing story audiobook together.

Be consistent with bedtime, even on weekends, to help your child’s internal clock adjust.

my toddler won't stay in bed

Ensure that the child’s bedroom is quiet, dark, and at a comfortable temperature. Use sound machines or soothing music if it helps the child to relax.

Use blackout curtains and consider a sound machine to create a quiet and dark environment.

Make sure the child’s bed and bedding are comfortable. A favorite stuffed animal or a special blanket can provide extra security.

Encourage independence during the day. Let the child practice being alone for short periods of time, which can make it easier to be alone at bedtime.

Give your child time to play alone in their room during the day to build comfort with being alone.

Encourage your toddler to dress himself and help with small tasks, which strengthens independence.

A toddler who has pent-up energy is less likely to sleep well. Ensure your child is getting plenty of physical activity during the day. Not only is this important for their overall health, but it can also help them fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer.

Toddler won't stay in bed at bedtime

For children who struggle with the transition to sleeping alone, consider gradual adjustments.

Start by sitting near their bed until they fall asleep, then progressively move further away each night until you’re out of the room. This can help ease the transition and reduce their anxiety about being alone

You can also gradually reduce your presence as your toddler falls asleep, but continue to provide reassurance by saying goodnight and promising that you are close.

Talk to the child about the importance of good sleep and be sensitive to their feelings and fears.

Dealing with a toddler who keeps getting out of bed can be challenging, but it’s a common issue that many parents face.

By establishing a consistent routine, creating a comfortable environment, addressing any fears, setting clear limits, and being patient, you can help your toddler learn to stay in bed and enjoy a full night’s sleep.

Remember that every small step forward is a success.