Bedtime Routines Our Sleep Consultants Swear By
Aug 07 2019
Whether your child is five months or five years, a solid bedtime routine can help cue that it’s time to sleep and make the transition easier. It doesn’t need to be complicated to work, it just needs to be consistent!
Here are the routines some of our sleep consultants have used successfully with their own children:
“For our bedtime routine, we would give her a bath, then jammies and I would nurse, then my husband would read 1-2 books and then we'd swaddle (until 5 mos.) and then walk around the room saying goodnight to different things and turning out the light, closing shutters, etc. Then we'd put her down in her crib awake, with her paci. We had a sleep song that we sang as she was going in the crib. It served as a sleep cue.
As she got older, (and usually in the fall) we would also take her outside for a couple of minutes to say goodnight to the stars/airplanes.”
- Amy, Huckleberry Sleep Consultant
“Diaper, pajamas, feed, a couple of baby books, snuggles with lullaby, kiss, lights out and leave.
When my son turned 4 he started getting really anxious at bedtime with lots of fears, trouble separating, etc. We started doing a bedtime yoga pose and then something we made up called “the wiggles.” It’s a twist on a yoga relaxation tool I use with adults but basically, he tries to make his body limp like spaghetti and wiggles his legs and then arms.
So, at 4, my son’s routine was:
Pajamas, storytime, yoga pose (usually legs up the wall), the wiggles, lights out, lullaby and scratch back for a minute, kiss, goodnight and leave
Needless to say, his routine at that age so looooooooooooooooooong, but he really needed the extra wind down due to anxiety plus restless legs!”
- Liz, Huckleberry Sleep Consultant
“For age 18 months plus or so I'd say my bedtime routine looked like: Supper, Bath, Pajamas, Bedtime Snack, 2 books, some hugs and kisses, lights out.
This hasn't changed much for my two girls who are 10 and 7, except we don't do a bath every night and the older one reads to herself. And we've added in a family prayer.”
- Kristal, Huckleberry Sleep Consultant
“My son is now 10 and my daughter is 5. In some ways it feels like we’ve basically had the same routine since they were infants, though of course we’ve modified it over the years as needed.
When they were babies we would wash up, brush teeth, and then enter their bedroom with lights dimmed and white noise on. We’d change the diaper, get them into pajamas (and sleep sack) and then cuddle while reading bedtime stories. Then, they’d breastfeed with lights on. Once they were falling asleep independently, I was sure to stop before they fell asleep. Then we’d turn the lights off and cuddle while I (or their dad) sang lullabies. Then they’d go into their crib awake with their lovey and drift off to sleep.”
- Amber, Huckleberry Sleep Consultant