Admit it, you miss those nights where you can simply go to sleep without worry, and without the little voice in the back of your head telling you to sleep light, because you might be needed. If you have a Toddler, you may already be struggling to get a good night’s sleep.
You know the struggle already, that I am sure of!
My Son went through a phase of waking during the night and wouldn’t settle unless he was moved into our bed. I needed to know how to keep a Toddler in their room at night, and boy did I need it fast!
A night of unbroken sleep is extremely important for Children’s growth and development, so it is important that you build a strong bedtime routine.
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Reasons why a Toddler might not want to stay in their own bed
Ok, so you are not 3 years old anymore, but try and put yourself in their shoes.
Not literally, you understand. Metaphorically speaking.
Toddlers have young minds, they are still not sure about their place in the world, and simple things scare them.
This is the big, number 1 reason why Toddlers do not settle in their own beds. Darkness frightens them.
As a Toddler, you have a very active imagination. When you are a Toddler and you have woken up in darkness, there are things in the room that might look unusual. Instead of thinking logically, they panic and get scared.
Fear Of Being Alone
This is very closely linked to darkness. One of the worst things about life is there comes a point where you need to talk about ‘Stranger Danger’. It needs to be tackled, but in a perfect world, it should not even exist!
When you begin discussing ‘Stranger Danger’ with your Toddler, you are telling them that there are people in this world who want to do them harm. They will take that information in and it can increase the fear they have when they are alone.
They Have Bad Dreams
We have all been there. You have a bad dream and immediately wake up. In your semi-sleep haze, you are not sure what is real and what is not. Now imagine how that feels for a Toddler!
What You Can Do To Help
In this post, I tackle all 3 of the reasons above.
The key point here is that when faced with a troublesome habit that your Toddler has got into, you need to understand the reasons why they do it, so you can tackle the reasons head on.
How To Keep Toddler In Room At Night
Let’s take a look at the tips for keeping a Toddler in a room at night!
1. Night Light
Illuminating your Toddlers room will give them some confidence when they wake during the early hours.
Not only will a nightlight allow them to see what is going on in their room, but it also takes away the fear of darkness itself.
There are many kinds of nightlights that you can try, and I have found (after buying quite a few) that it is best to give them a nightlight that they are interested in.
My Son loves superheroes, specifically the Avengers! So I bought him a Hulk Night Light, which he absolutely loves.
You surely know the kind of thing that your Toddler likes, so pick a nightlight that will take them to a happy pace as soon as they wake up.
You can buy:
Pick a character from your Toddlers favorite film, and search for a nightlight!
2. Nightlight projector
Get your Toddler to sleep peacefully with an awesome light projector!
It isn’t just for when they wake up during the night. If your Toddler goes to sleep relaxed, they are more likely to stay asleep for longer.
A light projector worked for my Son, and it has worked for friends Toddlers when they have told me how difficult it is to get them to sleep.
3. Put Up Some Photographs
Familiarity is calming for most people, and your Toddler is the same.
If they want to get in your bed at 3 am because they are scared and worried after the ‘Stranger Danger’ talk, then why not add in some familiar pictures around their bed?
I printed out a few photographs and stuck them on my Sons wall. Then when he wakes up, he can see them and remember that we are only in the room next door, and he does not need to be concerned.
This is a fantastic tip for keeping a Toddler in a room at night!
4. Use Your Scent
Sometimes, it only takes a few seconds from when they are asleep to waking up and realizing you are no with them.
You CAN head this off during those few seconds without actually being there.
If you regularly wear the same scent, spray a little bit on your Toddlers bed. Before they even open their eyes, they will immediately smell you. As your scent hits their nostrils, they are more likely to drift back off to sleep. All without causing you to break your sleep!
Sure, you might have some expensive sent, but it is worth a night of unbroken sleep.
5. A piece of your clothing
Very similar to the tip above, but this time do not spray any scent onto the clothing before you place it in your Toddlers bed.
When they begin to wake up, they will feel your clothing, which may send them back to sleep again.
6. Talk to them about nightmares
Toddlers are clever. They may not seem it when you have to repeat yourself 6 or 7 times for them to get their shoes on, but do not let that fool you.
Speaking to your Toddler about the nightmares they have is a great way of removing the reality of them.
When they wake in the morning, discuss what dreams they had. If they had bad dreams, discuss why they are not real and explain that dreams are just simply dreams.
They will listen, it may only be for a few minutes, but they will listen. The more you repeat the process, the more it will sink in too.
If you are struggling with how to keep Toddler in a room at night, I feel for you. I have been there.
In fact, most parents have probably been there in the past. It is all part of bringing up a child.
Who said it was going to be easy, eh?
As I said above, the key thing is to realize exactly what is driving them to want to crawl into your bed in the early hours of the morning. It is only then that you can systematically fight back!
Let’s take a look again at the reasons why your Toddler may not want to sleep all night in their own bed:
Fear of the dark.
Resolution – night lights, or light projector.
Fear of being alone.
Resolution – your clothes or your scent.
Resolution – Discuss nightmares and dreams.
Good luck getting your Toddler to sleep in their own room. Have patience, and have a plan.
You will need it.