bedtime issues!

Megan - posted on 10/30/2009 ( 1 mom has responded )

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up until a year ago my daughter (now 2year 10mo) had a set bedtime of 9pm. for about a year now she doesn't fall asleep until around midnight. and then wakes at 9am or so. sometimes she will fall asleep around 5pm then i know she isn't going to sleep til 12 or so. if i keep her awake all day and let her go to sleep at 8 or 9 she is up around 12. if i try to lie her down it is truely a battle, if i put her in her room alone its even worse. i would like her to be on a schedule but it is so tough i need some advise.

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A bedtime routine is a good & necessary thing for small children. A rigid schedule, however, will only work for a short time. Think about how fast your daughter is growing and changing. She doesn't eat the same foods or the same amount as she did last year. Unsurprisingly, her sleep needs change also.



In order to find out how much sleep she personally needs, try taking notes for 2 days and let her go to sleep and wake whenever she wants, day or night. Then, slowly, adjust her bed and nap times to your schedule according to her needs. Don't be afraid to wake her in the morning, this will help you set an earlier bedtime. It will take a little time to settle into a regular schedule. If you've ever had jet lag, you know what I mean.



It also helps having a few little tricks to get her sleepy enough to go to bed. A cup of warm milk with a little vanilla and sweetner or a very sweet, dilute cup of chamomile tea is often enough to make those little eyes start drooping.



You commented that if you put her to bed between 8 and 9 she wakes up at midnight. My oldest daughter did the same thing. We found a small high protein snack (cheese, a slice of meat, etc.) just before sleep helped her sleep through the night. She was waking because she was hungry!



I hope this helps.

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