Establish healthy sleep habits: 24 to 36 months

Between their second and third birthdays, toddlers need about 11 to 12 hours of sleep per night and a 1.5 to 2 hour nap each afternoon.Most children this age go to bed between 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. and get up between 6:30 a.m. and 8 a.m.It may seem like your child's sleep patterns are ultimately the same as yours, but they will spend more time in REM sleep and the deeper phases of non-REM sleep than you do.The result ?Because he will make more transitions from one sleep phase to the next, he will wake up more often than you.This is why it is so important that he learns to calm down and to go back to sleep.

How to establish healthy sleep habits

Now that your child is getting older, there are a few new techniques you can try to help them get a good night's sleep, including:

Put him in a big bed and praise him when he stays there.

This is the age at which your little one is likely to make the transition from cradle to bed, probably because he will be past the age he grew up.The arrival of a new brother or sister can also speed up the decision.If you're pregnant, move your little one at least two to three months ahead of schedule, sleep specialists advise.You want your oldest child to be comfortable in their new bed before they see the baby take their place in their bed.But if the switch does not work well, it is possible to reset it to 3 or 4 months.Your newborn baby might spend those months sleeping in a crib anyway, and your older child will have time to get used to having a sibling, making the transition from cradle to bed easier.Other reasons to consider moving include frequent hopping out of crib and potty training.Your child may need to get up at night to use the bathroom.

Once he uses his new bed, be sure to praise your child when he stays there overnight and at bedtime. After locking up their crib, your child may get out of their crib multiple times just because they can. If your toddler stands up, moderate your reaction. Just get him back to bed, firmly tell him it's time to fall asleep, and go.

Your toddler may start to try and delay bedtime by rolling for a story, a song, a drink of water. Try to anticipate all of your child's usual (and reasonable) requests and make them part of your bedtime routine. Then give your child an additional request but make it clear that one is the limit. He'll think he's getting what he wants, but you'll know you're reasoning with him.

Give him an extra goodnight kiss or tuck him in.

It's okay to promise your child an extra goodnight kiss after you've tucked it in for the first time. Tell him you'll be back to see him in a few minutes. Chances are he'll sleep quickly when you get back.

Potential pitfalls

If your toddler starts getting up more often after graduating in a queen-size bed, put them back to bed and say goodnight. Other than that, how to handle the situation is a personal decision. Expert opinions vary. Some say don't pamper him or bring him to bed. Some say that as long as your child falls asleep on their own, it's fine to go and soothe them, and others recommend going to your child immediately, finding the source of the problem and comforting them. .

Another common sleep problem at this age is resistance to bedtime. Ease or avoid the problem by anticipating and managing requests before your child goes to bed. Few toddlers happily run to bed every night, so be prepared for some difficulty.

You will probably notice that your child has new nighttime worries these days. Fear of the dark, monsters under the bed, or separation from you are common among toddlers, so don't worry too much. Fears are part of your child's normal development. If he starts having nightmares, go see him immediately and tell him about his bad dream while you calm him down. If the nightmares persist, look for sources of anxiety in her daily life. Most experts agree that if your child is really terrified, it's okay to leave them in your bed every now and then.
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