This question came up in our Facebook group - How do you get your little ones to go to bed in their own bed, stay in their own bed and sleep through the night?
Now honestly if there was one magic answer we would all be shouting it from the rooftop, but it's great to have some answers to this from real parents - what worked, what didn't and their tips and tricks for getting toddlers to sleep in their own bed.
There were a lot of great answers in the Facebook group discussion and I thought that it would be valuable to share that information with you, but before I do I want to make an important note.
ALL CHILDREN SLEEP DIFFERENTLY - WHAT WORKS FOR ONE WILL NOT WORK FOR ALL!
As someone who had children who were terrible sleepers (and still aren't great now that they're older) I would often feel that I was doing something wrong or that I was a bad parent because my children were not easy to get to sleep, didn't like to stay asleep and generally seemed to not like sleep!
Honestly, if this is you - read the tips below, try ones that you think might work for you, but don't be disheartened if they don't work. If one person really did have the answer to 'how to get your toddler go to bed' they'd be rich!
Some reader tips on how to get your toddler to go to sleep in their own bed and stay there!
These tips are from other parents and are opinions only. If you are looking for medical help or think there are serious issues please seek out a professional opinion.
- "Be firm. My sons started sleeping in there own beds by 1 when they got up or gave a fuss I was firm and didn’t budge" - Lids
- "You have to just stop letting them sleep in your bed and watch things to fall asleep. It could be a hard couple of days, even weeks, but the important thing is never give in or else they know that option is there" - Kara
- "Don’t be afraid of some tough nights. It can suck but it’s the only way. And the minute you give in is the minute you start all over. Be strong" - Stephanie
- "Be firm and clear with your expectations" - Lisa
- "So this might be against what a lot of people say, but my son watches YouTube on his iPad for 15-20 minutes before bed while I get his baby sister to sleep and then I go in and countdown so he knows how long he has and he gives it to me and we sing a goodnight song and then he goes to sleep. Routine is what it was all about over here. Do what feels right to you or it will be miserable for everyone involved!" - Allison
- "Routine routine routine.
It takes 21 days to start a habit- so 3 weeks of absolutely “no you have to sleep in your own bed”.
Tough- but it will work" - Jane
- "Try the ‘Grow Clock’.. this was a miracle for us. We had exactly the same issues with our 2 year old coming into our bed every night, then my friend bought us one for Xmas. This, along with routine and staying firm has really worked for us." - Hannah
- "Consistency. They wake up, you go in, console/snuggle, put back in bed, leave room. Repeat. It may take awhile but they will get the hint eventually. We personally still co-sleep from time to time but we have a separate bed in the kids room for this purpose rather than bringing into our bed." - Hannah
- "Nanny of 20 years: stay in bed technique. Step 1. Go though routine to calm down your child (bath, pjs, snack and read book).Step 2: because you child is still young- position yourself near the child (facing away with the side of face towards child- so he can see you). No communication whatsoever – you don’t want to reward him with that. If child gets out of bed- put him back. Keep doing this until he falls asleep. Know that the first couple days will be tough but you can do it!!" - Sarah
- "We changed our twins routine so they eat tea a hour earlier so eat at 5 and bed at 630 they normally go to sleep but sometimes have a play with each other in the cots until about 7 715 and sleep until 6 630 every morning (just turned 2yo)
We also get them to sleep with a blanket that they chose so when we say go get ur blanket they know it’s bed time and go get it and come sit with us on the couch to have a bottle then they walk to the cots when they are ready to go lay down" - Maggie
- "Baby gate at the door, they get up open the door whine put them to bed no communication. Stay consistent until they get it did this with my 5 yr old and 3 year old" - Rikki
Hopefully these tips will help you know that you're not alone in trying to get your toddler to sleep and stay in their own bed!
Try some of these and see if they work for you. Remember that this is somthing that will take time, that can be difficult and that everyone will get different results.
If you need more support why not join our Facebook Group and you can ask your own quesions and join in the discussions too.
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