Tips to Help Your Toddler to Sleep Through the Whole Night

Most toddlers will need around 12 hours of sleep a day, but this doesn't mean they will sleep straight through the night. It is common for most children to wake in the middle of the night and this can be frustrating for parents. How to get toddler to sleep through the night is a question many parents may ask. This article will let you know why your toddler could be waking in the middle of the night and what to do about it.


Why Won't Your Toddler Sleep Through the Night?

1. Bad dreams

When your toddler's imagination starts to grow, you might see an increase in the nightmares they have. It can be more difficult for your child to distinguish reality and their dreams, which can cause them to wake up in fear. Night terrors are also common when your child may not fully wake from the bad dream they are having.

2.Their daytime schedule is off

Keeping your child up later in the evening so they will wake later in the day is something many parents will try. Unfortunately, this only tends to help for one night. When a child is not getting enough sleep, due to being kept up later, they will not fall asleep easily. If they are napping during the day, this will also make it harder for them to fall asleep and stay asleep in the evening.

3. Never falls asleep independently

When your child is not given the chance to fall asleep on their own, this can cause numerous nighttime wakings. If you sit with your child as they fall asleep, rock them to sleep, or play music for them to get them to fall asleep when your child wakes up in the middle of the night, they will not be able to fall back asleep without these aids.

4 Changes in their environment

When the weather changes or it starts getting lighter out earlier, these can cause your child to have a restless night. If there is an outside street light that turns on, this can also cause your child to wake. How to get toddler to sleep through the night? If you have known the reason is this, you can solve it quickly.

5. Changes in their regular routine

If your toddler was recently sick, you have taken a vacation, or any other change to their daily routine, it can be one of the most common causes for your child waking in the middle of the night. Having an inconsistent bedtime routine especially can confuse your child and will make bedtime more difficult.

6.Checking on them too quickly

If you run into your child's room as soon as you hear them stirring, then you could be reinforcing the behavior. Rushing in when your child begins to cry will only enable them from learning how to soothe themselves and they won't be able to calm themselves down to get back to sleep on their own.

How Can You Get Toddler to Sleep Through the Night?

1. Keep the room dark

Adults and children sleep better when they sleep in the dark. Use blackout curtains or window covers to keep the light from seeping into their room in the evening. Try to avoid using a nightlight as this too can disrupt your child's sleep.

2. Have a consistent bedtime routine

Having a 30-minute bedtime routine that you do every night can make bedtime much easier and let your child know that sleep is in the near future. Keep the routine simple and consistent and avoid engaging in their behavior to prolong the routine. If your child throws their blanket or stuffed animal, just return it to them and don't say anything to them. You want the routine to be boring so they can calm down and easily fall asleep.

3. Keep where they sleep the same

How to get toddler to sleep through the night? Be consistent in where you put them down to sleep. If your child still takes naps, the naps should be in their bed where they sleep at night. You want them to associate where they sleep with sleep and being consistent with this even during naps will make them sleep longer at night.

4. Prevent overtiredness

If your child is awake for too long before they get a nap or sleep for the night, it will be more difficult to get them to sleep. The key is to get your child to lay down before they become overtired, which will make child more relaxed, leading to him/her being able to fall asleep easily.

5. Five-minute rule

The five minutes just before you put your child to bed should be the most relaxing and calm moments. You don't want to be playing with your child, having the TV on, or letting them play games or run around just before bedtime. Keep the five minutes just before bedtime quiet and calm.

6. Wait it out

It can be incredibly difficult but if your child does wake in the middle of the night, you want to wait before you rush in. Start off waiting just one minute then increase this one minute every time night they wake up. This allows your child to learn how to calm and soothe themselves back to sleep. The most you want to wait is 20 minutes to check on them, but let them fuss for a while and see if they can put themselves back to sleep before you rush in.

Learn from Other Mothers

  • How to get toddler to sleep through the night in my experience meant adjusted their daytime diet. Eating a more healthy diet has lead to my child sleeping through the night. - Amie
  • Putting a toddler to bed earlier made all the difference. We would fight to get him to bed but moving up his bedtime an hour earlier meant less fighting and he fell asleep faster and stayed asleep since he wasn't fighting us to stay awake. - Catherine
  • We created a “reward” chart for our little one. It made it easier for us to track how often he was waking in the night and how many nights it occurred. He would get a sticker every time he slept through the night or was able to fall back asleep on his own. - Lisa
  • We turned on a white noise machine. - Becky
  • We turn off all electronics at a specific time. This way they won't get a boost of energy form the lights and is able to fall asleep much easier. - Jamie
  • We started using a sleepy time scented candle. We light it when we start getting PJs on and then blow it out right before she gets into bed. - Laura
  • We gave our toddler a little snack before bed. Nothing with sugar, obviously, but a healthy snack that would keep him full and keep him from waking in the middle of the night. - Erica
  • We had to get a monitor to keep us from rushing into his room every time he woke up. We could see that he was OK and was able to fall back to sleep on his own without worry. - Jade
  • We let our toddlers read books in bed to themselves. After five or ten minutes, we will turn the lights off and they will quickly fall asleep shortly after and stay asleep through the night. - Bethany
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