How do you keep a toddler sleeping all night long?

It is not uncommon for toddlers to wake in the middle of the night, maybe from fears, restlessness, or just the desire to be with their mom. What are some tips for getting your toddler to sleep soundly through the night?

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23  Answers

0 13

Keeping them well fed right up until bedtime. Tea time and story time with all of their best stuffed animal friends in their room before bed. Tell the child that the sooner they go to sleep, the sooner they will see their friends in the morning. Say: "Sleeping is like magic. When you close your eyes and allow yourself to fall to sleep, it will feel like just few seconds later, (clap your hands gently) and it will be morning again and you will see your friends. In fact, they will never leave you, mommy and daddy will never leave you, we will all be right here with you until morning."

5
19 0

after they finished breastfeeding my three kids were put in their own beds. if they got up they were put back in their beds. sleeping with us was never an option really. they go to bed when they aretold and don't fuss. i was blessed to have good sleeping kids.

3
12 14

My son, by age 2, was always waking up ALL night long for one thing or another. We fought it by trying different bed time routines, keeping water near him, having night lights, having no lights, just letting him sleep with us, etc etc etc. And then he would take long naps during the day to make up for it. It was exhausting. HOWEVER, we discovered after he turned 3 that he had severe sleep apnea due to enlarged tonsils. Within a couple months he had surgery. And now sleeps all night long and no longer takes naps. So if you are having consistent problems with sleeping through the night, and especially if your child snores or shifts a lot in his bed, go see an ENT doctor or at least have your pediatrician check him out. Sleep apnea can be very detrimental to a child's development and yet so few people realize it is happening.

2
2 0

i have twins that are 2 and do the same thing that ur son did and i tried everything

0 14

My son is 2 and a half, and recently started doing this (when previously, since about 3 months of age, he has always slept through the night) - so, we cut out his daytime nap and depsite the cold weather, I make a habit of taking him out for at least 1.5 to 2 hours a day so that he gets plenty of fresh air. We do swimming at our local rec centre and he also attends play groups to burn off energy. Since doing all of this, I have found that he wakes far less in the night, if at all. If he does, we do not let him in our bed. I simply go into his room, cover him up, and I gently stroke his head. He has always loved that, so he quickly goes back to sleep. Someone had told me that around this age, is when they start to develop a fear of monsters or scary things in their room. My son loves Spiderman, so we got him a Spiderman night light. He loves it and hasn't referred to being scared in his room since!

2
0 16

My 2 1/2 year old has had a habit of waking up about once a night. She generally goes back to sleep soon after waking up if she gets a dry pull up and or a sippy cup with warm milk. However, I've noticed that if I am consistant about getting her to nap for 1-2 hours during the day starting at about 1:00 pm., she will usually sleep through the night without a problem. To get her down for a nap I put her in my room on my bed and let her watch a show like Curious George or Cat in the Hat with the TV turned down low and her blanket.

1
13 39

I never had a routine with my 2 and a half year old as a baby because he was colicky and NEVER wanted to sleep! Then after I had my 2nd baby who is now 5 months old, we eat dinner, play, take a bath, and go to bed and read books. My 2 and a half year old has had night terrors for a while and refuses to sleep in his own bed. I have tried everything and nothing works. But I have him on melatonin now and I give him pills called No More Monsters which I get from our local Health Food Store and he hardly ever wakes up anymore!

1
2 1

My two and half year old goes through phases when she sleeps soundly and then she will wake up early or periodically throughout the night. We do not encourage her to sleep with us, but if she does wonder in the bedroom we do calm her down before she goes back to her bed. I'm not sure if it is noise or just not understanding the difference between dreams and reality. Patience and soft words we are trying now.

It is just hard for me currently because I am finishing up my first trimester of my second pregnancy and not sleeping well anyway.

1
14 0

Normally, the infants cry due to colic. I suggest give them Babies Magic Tea. I had too and when I tried this product it worked well

0
0 0

To the ones bragging they have perfect children who sleep all night with no problems. Wait until they are older noone has perfect kiddies. Been there done that.. had three that was angels as babies was little brats when teenagers.
Now ive got one who hardly sleeps and is a handful all day long

0
8 0

My Daughter of (almost) 3 is keeping me up all night... she just started crèche 2 months ago after being home since birth. she loves school. She still drinks juice at night; cant seem to get rid of that bottle!!! she has a solid 4-6 hr sleep from then on she has me up on the 10mins / half hr / hr all depends on her. im going insane; im emotionally and physically drained!!! any advice tia

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0 13

It could be the sugar in the juice that is keeping her up. Maybe switch the juice to milk. I add a little organic apple juice to milk to sweeten it up. We drink only goat milk in our house simply for the reason that it is so much sweeter and better for you because humans can digest goat milk better than cows milk. The right kind of milk is very important for bone growth for kids. They can actually go into a kind of frenzy if they don't get enough protein and calcium. Asians get it from dark leafy greens and fish, which is actually the very best diet.

0 0

well..these are all the solution for normal babies...what if someone has a special child....who doesn't understand well....neither see well......or express his feeling..what would be the solution then...my four year old son has developmental problems.if he wakes up in the middle of the night,hardly go to bed again.i don't want any pills in such small age......i wonder if there is any person who could help me...........

0
0 13

Sonia, what does he do when he wakes up? Does he try to play with his toys? Is he crying? Does he still drink from a bottle? If he does, give him another bottle and hold him in a blanket, sing or hum to him, rock him in a rocking chair, or just sort of rock slightly on the couch with him until he falls asleep in your arms. Maybe lay a soft blanket or sleeping bag down on the floor in the living room ( if it's quiet) or his room and ask him if he wants to curl up with you or lay down with you. Maybe, try laying down with him so that you can each look into each others eyes. This can work really well if your both lay on your sides or lay on your stomachs with your head turned to the side towards each other. This helps the child feel connected to you and secure enough to drift back into sleep.

0 0

well susan,when he wakes up,he cries a lot,hardly want to go to bed again.he use to take swing a lot so he want to go to his swing.No he never use a bottle for milk.I sing a lot for him.He sleeps with me and he put his head on my arm.I don't know why.Maybe he feels protected in this way.He has vision problems as well he is still not able to talk .I have tried many things but of no use.when he gets up.....he never wanted to go to bed again.Sometimes he continuously wake for 13 hours.Hardly takes a nap.

12 14

My son had hearing loss and couldn't talk well until after attending an deaf and hard of hearing preschool and still uses some sign language. We had sleeping problems, too, around age 2-3 and discovered he also had severe sleep apnea. Have you had your child checked with an ENT or a pediatrician and discussed his sleeping problems? It sounds like you may need a sleep study and maybe you'll find out what is causing the problem cause it may be a physical one and not an emotional one.

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0 9

My 4 1/2 year old still wakes up most every night and finds her way in our bed. Now that she can climb up on the bed without oneof us lifting her in, I don't even know she has climbed in with us until morning when I wake and there she is! She is going to be starting big school in September so I would love to have this habit broken by then but I am truly at a loss and would love advice! She is my third child so you would think that I would have an answer for myself but I don't!

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0 20

i am facing the same with both my kids, my daughter who is the younger one, slept through the night in her own bed, but my son who is older wandersinto our room at night, we calm him down and put him back in his bed but ten minutes and he is back,now even my daughter has startd doing this...am at a complete loss here

38 0

If she's settling herself without help and everybody is getting enough sleep, where's the problem? She'll stop coming into your room when she's ready.

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4 41

This is an issue for me as well. My son eats very well all day and healthy but he will be 2 in may and this child will take 16oz+ at bed time sleep schedule is completely off everydays different, he goes days without the paci and days where he will scream for hours, he wakes 2-4 or more times for a bottle,paci or diaper change, we've tried everything limiting naps, thickening his milk, pcai , no paci, cup no bottle, earlier or later bed time, scheduled changes,bought light blocking shades,humidifiers, heat on heat off, he just always wakes and when he does hes usually up for good.. IDK what to do anymore? Im exhausted. when he sleeps its deep but unpredictable..

0
2 10

Robin, I went through this with my son around that age. Actually, he's still not sleeping through the night uninterrupted. He has night terrors, he's sleeping but he yells about things... Sometimes sad but mostly positive outbursts. Anyway, he out grew waking (half waking/fussing) for the most part at around 18 months. He was waking about 4 times a night. Now its once in a while, he's 3 now. I didn't take the pacifier until 2.5yo and the bottle was taken about 3 months later. When I took the bottle, the fussing started again, but he adjusted. So, my purpose of this comment is to say: hang in there!!

3 42

I would try to maybe limit what is being done when he does wake. Don't offer the bottle or paci and if it's not a dirty or sopping wet diaper don't change either. I would also limit the amount of liquids before bed so they aren't wetting heavy in the night or have a tummy ache. My 18 mo old would wake up and still does occasionally but I just made a routine that I would do if he woke and stuck with it. I would go in gently lay him back done and quietly remind him it's bedtime. Now I can hear him occasionally wake but falls back asleep. I wish you luck and just put a plan and place and hope it gets better!! You know what's best for your child stay strong!!!

0 15

this is just superstition i suppose but i keep a nail cutter under my little oness matressess and i fin d he sleeps better because it keeps all fears and scary stuff away so they sleep better.....anything metal and shiny helps.

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3 6

This can be challenging, we go through phases where they sleep well for awhile then wake a few nights in a row. For our 4 year old we play the radio all night, and sometimes have a fan going. Usually if he wakes, it is a sip of milk then back to bed. the 2 year old is not out of the crib yet, but similar, we play ocean sounds to help her go to sleep initially then if she wakes we get a drink and go back to bed. Sometimes it is not as easy, but overall they go right to sleep, sometimes there is a short cry with the 2 year old in the crib.

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18 0

I am having a major problem with this. My daughter will be two in June. I never had a problem with her sleeping habits before. She was on a set schedule and would be ready for bed around 8pm. I put her in her crib and she was out, or she would talk to herself a little bit but eventually fall asleep with no problem waking up in the middle of the night. NOW...is a completely different story. Last month, we had a fire in our house and things were a little rocky (naturally) I tried so hard to stick with her schedule but, still nothing is working. I do know that there are so many issues at play like we are now in a new house, she no longer shares a room with her brother(she has her own), she is not in a crib anymore, now has a toddler bed. I know in my heart it is a LOT of change for her to deal with, but it has been over a month now and it seems like it isnt getting any easier. She has no problem at nap time, however, she sleeps in her own bed great in the afternoon, but at night, she wants nothing to do with it. I try and try to comfort her but it doesnt work, eventually I get tired and frustrated and just let her sleep with my husband and I. Even then, she still doesnt sleep through the night, she wakes up at least three times throughout the night.........Im completely at a loss, and it breaks my heart, because I know she has never had sleep problems before....She has a check up coming up this week and I really hope the doctor can give me some advice :(

0
15 2

The best advice I could give you is try the same thing consistently for a week and she will adjust. It's probably the transitional move of house! Same thing happened to my friend. I had the same problem with my daughter and I started telling her a story for about five minutes; did this for about five days and then she would stay in her bed and sleep all nigh. Good luck!

0 8

HaVe u tried a light, if she's fine during day it may be that it's light out.

0 0

What I would like to know is if she was there when the fire happened and if it so was it during the day or night! If she was there and it happened at night (even maybe so during the day) maybe she is afraid that it will happen again! Children are smarter than we think and they keep things bottled up inside, because sometimes whether we feel it or not, they think that if they let us know that they would be upsetting us! So I'd just try talking to her, because apparently to what I read if she was doing fine and this didn't start up until after the fire, she must be afraid or something and that it has taken an emotional toll on her as well! Just a thought!

0 13

Wow, that is so hard. Fire really does scare kids. It probably scared you also and she picked up on that. Luckily, the fire issue is a passing issue, and you will all get over it. The big girl bed that she can easily climb out of is an on going issue. Try making sure she is really well fed before bed. Spend as much time playing in her room during the day and reading lots of stories in her own bed before bedtime. Maybe camping out in her room until she is asleep. If you do this consistently, never making, sleeping with you an option, she will adapt to what is normal and familiar, which is sleeping in her own bed. She will settle down eventually. Always use a calming voice and sing to her if you can. One thing I do with my own four year old daughter who has had the same issues, is, I will hold her and rock her in a rocking chair, which I keep in her room. So when ever she is up, I do this, letting her know that she always has my love and comfort. If you haven't just decorated her room and you are willing to paint it, try light blue or light yellow. Maybe even, blue on a couple walls and yellow on a couple. These are the colors of daytime and are the most comforting to kids. So with night lights the room can be warm and inviting.

0 0

I wanted to share this with you. There was a fire in the building on near where my husband works, this was on a Monday while the kids were getting ready for Thanksgiving and doing their "I'm thankful for . . ." projects at school. The following week when we attended the school Thanksgiving celebration I was shocked to see what my 4 year was thankful for. "I am thankful that I do not have a burned down big sister or little sister, that my house is not burned down and I don't have a burned down mommy and daddy." This was her way of expressing that she was thankful her family was okay because she understood about the fire and she had only heard us talking about it. I think your daughter may be experiencing some trauma due to the house, not to mention all the other changes in her life. Also, my 4 year old had slept through the night since she was 3 months old and then all of a sudden between 2 and 3 she started getting in my bed every night. When we found out little girl #3 was on the way we put all the kids in one room for sleeping and one for playing. She started sleeping through the night again. She just didn't want to be alone.

0 20

THE SLEEPING HABITS SOUND THE SAME AS MY 2.5 YR OLD SON, BUT WITHOUT THE FIRE... HE WAS SLEEPING FINE IN HIS CRIB UNTIL SOMETHING HAPPENED WITH ME AND MY BF AND WE HAD TO MOVE INTO MY PARENTS HOUSE FOR A COUPLE MONTHS BUT WE WERE ALL SHARING A ROOM AND WHEN HE COULD SEE US TWO FEET AWAY IN THE BED TOGETHER HE WASNT SLEEPING ALONE IN HIS CRIB AND EVER SINCE THEN HES SLEPT WITH US, WEVE TRIED EVERYTHING AS WELL, IVE EVEN TRIED SLEEPING BESIDE HIM WHEN HES IN HIS TODDLER BED BUT HE WAKES UP SO FREQUENTLY AT NIGHT IT DOESNT LAST LONG, EVEN WHEN HE SLEEPS WITH US HE WAKES UP AT LEAST 4 TIMES EVERY NIGHT... SOMETIMES FOR A BABA BUT SOMETIMES HE DOESNT WANT ANYTHING TO DO WITH IT, HES A TOTAL MAMAS BOY AND JUST WANTS ME, DOESNT WANT HIS DADDY TO CUDDLE US OR ANYTHING BUT IS STILL CRANKY AND FIGITY, HE TALKS FINE AND I ASK HIM WHATS WRONG HE JUST SAYS NO MOMMY NO MOMMY TO EVERYTHING I SAY... IVE TRIED TYLENOL AND DIFFERENT THINGS, NOTHING HELPS HIM SLEEP, I ALWAYS HAVE HIM OUTSIDE PRETTY MUCH HALF THE DAY SO HE GETS LOTS OF FRESH AIR, HE NEVER SITS DOWN SO HE SHOULD BE TIRED AND PLAYED OUT, HE EATS NORMALLY AND STILL DRINKS UP TO TWO LITERS OF MILK A DAY... DOESNT NAP ANYMORE... DOESNT HAVE A SOOKIE, DONT KNOW WHAT ELSE, HAS A BATH AT BEDTIME I ASK IF HES HUNGRY, IF HE IS HE EATS, IF NOT HE HAS AT LEAST A BOTTLE OR TWO OR 4 LOL THEN PJS AND MOM AND DAD LAY WITH HIM IN BED AND WATCH A CARTOON MOVIE TIL HE FINALLY FALLS ASLEEP BUT THEN IT STILL TAKES 2-3 HOURS SOME NIGHTS FOR HIM TO FALL ASLEEP HE DOESNT WANT TO SLEEP HE GETS UP OR TRIES TO GET UP AND PLAY OVER AND OVER THEN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT IS THE SAME... I GUESS WHAT IM SAYING IS SOMETIMES THERE IS NOTHING YOU CAN DO BUT HAVE PATIENCE AND BE THERE FOR THE BABY... EVENTUALLY THEYLL GROW OUT OF IT, HOPEFULLY SOONER RATHER THAN LATER... I JUST TELL MYSELF THAT WHEN HE GETS A LITTLE OLDER AND I CAN TALK TO HIM AND HAVE HIM UNDERSTAND WHY ITS IMPORTANT TO SLEEP, STAY IN BED AND THEN IN HIS OWN BED AND THEN WITHOUT A BOTTLE, I THINK THEY JUST HAVE TO BE OLD ENOUGH TO ACTUALLY UNDERSTAND FULLY WHAT IT IS WE WANT AND WHY WE WANT IT!! SO GOOD LUCK ON YOUR STRATEGIES!!!

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15 1

My 2 1/2 year old loves to sleep on our bed. I constantly put him back to his bed until he falls asleep. If I am not in the mood to fight where he sleeps we let him sleep in our bed then once he is asleep we put him back in his bed. He may wake up and climb back to our room but he is getting better at staying in his room all night. I guess it is different for everyone so u just have to be persistent and know that it can take some time!

0
0 55

Personally, I don't worry about my daughter sleeping in my bed. One day she will reach an age where she doesn't want to cuddle any more, so I'm soaking it up for as long as I can. With my first daughter, I rushed to put her in her own bed as soon as she came home from the hospital. I now wish I had let her sleep with me like my second daughter does. These are super precious years... enjoy them!

2 20

Sorry I don't have any answers I need help as well, My daughter is 2 1/2 and she still wakes in the middle of the night. She sleeps in her own bed, in her own room, but she will wake up in the middle of the night and talk into the monitor asking for milk or say her pajamas are wet and/or she needs covers. Once I do it she's fine, but my sleep in interrupted and I wake up exhausted. Any suggestions :)

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12 22

She will continue to do it because she knows your coming. I suggest ignoring her as hard as it is. Is she wetting her bed when she says her pj's are wet? Of course I wouldn't ignore that :) Also I wouldn't be giving her drinks in the middle of the night unless she gets up to go to the bathroom by herself at night. I have a 3 year old and have learned along the way :)

1 7

I would strongly suggest that you don't listen to Caras edvice. Children need us, they aren't doing it because they are notty...you will lose your childs trust. Imagine your self in her position, you just need to know that your mum is here for you. It is basic trust in life later.

1 24

I agree with Cara...they will continue to ask for what they know is coming. If she knows that you will get up 30 times a night for her every whim, then she will continue to ask for all of these things. What I would do is start a new routine every night...after brushing teeth and potty, sit and talk with her for a few minutes and let her know that you are always there if she NEEDS you, but that from now on you aren't going to get up in the middle of the night to do the little things that she can do on her own since she is a BIG GIRL. i.e. she can cover herself up on her own, etc. Personally we allow our son to have a sippy cup of WATER ONLY, and it's only about half full or less when we give it to him. That way, if he wakes in the night and wants a drink, he can get one without even getting out of bed. I just know that it helps my son a lot if I talk with him repeatedly about events that are going to happen...such as our bedtime routine, or when we go to the store, letting him know what we are and are not going for ("today we're here for a birthday present for Jane...are we getting something for ourselves? - he says no - Good, right, we're here for a birthday present!" I'm not saying it's the end all be all, but I think that might quell any trust issues that anyone might be concerned with...

38 0

I wouldn't agree. I think children's needs resolve themselves when met. You may get them to stop coming into your room, but unresolved anxiety WILL manifest itself in other ways.

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1 0

when my baby wakes in the middle of the night..i hug him so tight and after a minute he will be back to sleep..

0
12 26

I have an almost 3 year old that still wakes up too. She sleeps in her own bed, but will 'fetch' me during the night to come sleep in her bed. I'm 8 months pregnant and certainly needs now all the rest I can get before little one comes.

So if anyone knows how to stop this, please let me know. When I wake up in the morning, I am so dead tired:(

0
12 22

Maybe she wasn't ready for a rel bed yet? If she isn't comfortable being in there alone and keeps getting up...Sounds like the only solution is to tell her no and put her back to bed alone. Easier said than done I know :)

3 6

My 4 year old stepson only wakes when he has to go potty. My 2 year old daughter hardly ever wakes during the night, if she does, shes just goes back to sleep on her own. My youngest however will be a year old in Febuary, he is still not sleeping threw the night.. Hes gotten better and sleeps longer, but getting him to stay asleep is a diff story. I can usually play his lulliby bunny, and rub his back or tummy and he rolls over and falls back asleep but as soon as my head hits the pillow, hes awake again. I repeat my steps, play his music, rub his tummy or back for a few min then back asleep, but i think he knows when i walk away cause as soon as i do, hes right back up. The only way I can get him to deep sleep, and i know its a bad habbit, is to put him in bed with my husband and I, then hes passed out, but hubby and I are up all night casue hes a kicker, hits, and rolls alot!! Hes on Milk during the day but still breast feeds during the night... Im at the end of my rope on how to get him to stay asleep in his crib, which is right next to my bed..!!?? If he wakes up and hes alone in the room he will go back to sleep, but if me or hubby are in there he will cry and scream until he gets out and into our bed.. Any one have advise on what to do for that?

0
26 16

You could try putting him in his own room. If he goes back to sleep after he wakes up if you aren't in the room then he might do really well with that. And if it turns out that he isn't ready you can easily put his crib back in your room. :-)

3 6

I wish I could, thats what i have been wanting to do, but unfortunitly we live in a 2 bed apartment, my 4 year old and 2 year old share one room, my hubby, me and the baby are in the other... And to top it off my mother-in-law lives with us, she sleeps in our livingroom.. Thanks for the input, but hes kinda stuck where hes at right now...

1 0

Just a thought - but maybe the breast milk isn't keeping him full at night? Maybe you should switch and give some in the morning or whenever is best, and then milk at night to stay full?

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1,738 8

I pretty much agree with Laura H. We parent our dd back sleep if she needs it. Mostly, make sure she's not hungry or thirsty before going to bed, make sure she's comfortable, check the temperature of her room, etc.

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0 9

my son is 2 1/2 years old...he slept threw the night with no hassle...now he is waking up a 3 and.sometimes 7. his schedule use to be 9-9 not anymore

31 9

Gosh, I guess we don't even bother. Our 2 and a half year old is in her toddler bed next to our Queen bed. And our 9 month old son is in the cosleeper on the other side of the bed. when either wake we just encourage them to go back to sleep. Daddy takes care of daughter and I the son. Our daughter is happy there if she wakes it only takes a few gentle words and she off to sleep again. or a quick trip to the potty and she is good.

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0 55

My daughter that is 21 months will only wake up if I put her to bed too early. If I put her down around 8 pm, she will certainly wake back up and be up most of the night. However, if I wait until she is definitely tired (which is sometime between 10 and 12), she will sleep all night without any problems. Some kids just don't need as much sleep. I would stop her daytime naps, but her daycare is required to offer a nap. And given the opportunity, she will easily nap for 2-3 hours. Thus the extremely late bedtime.

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0 14

I'm really sorry but I wouldn't count it as sleeping all night without any problems if she is up until 10pm - midnight. THAT to me would be enough to count as a problem. However you need to do what is right for you & your daughter - hopefully she will grow out of that some time soon for you.

0 55

Again, I just feel she is one of those kids that doesn't require as much sleep as the norm. So to me, it's not a problem. I'm guessing this will all change when she finally gives up her daytime nap. Maybe it's not a problem for me because I'm a night owl myself, so I'm usually up anyways.

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