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Make sure your child is getting needed sleep by having a regular bedtime and bedtime routine every day

Making a Plan

Communicate with other caregivers about your child's bedtime and naptime needs

Decide on a bedtime for your child

  • Most young children need a bedtime before 9:00 PM.

  • Pick a bedtime that you think your child will be tired, but not too tired.

  • If you think your child will resist bedtime, pick a later bedtime than you want at first (pick a time you know your child will be tired).  Then, every few days move your child's bedtime up by 15 minutes until you are at the bedtime you want.

  • Try out the bedtime you pick and see if it works for you and your child.  Make adjustments if needed!


Pick a bedtime routine

  • Good bedtime routines are not too short and not too long.

  • You should begin a bedtime routine about 30 minutes before you want your child to begin falling asleep.

  • Pick 3-6 elements for your routine, such as:

    • Giving your child a warm bath

    • Having your child use the bathroom

    • Brushing your child's teeth

    • Putting on your child's pajamas

    • Reading books

    • Singing songs

    • Tucking your child in and saying good night

  • Decide on how many.  If you are reading books as part of your bedtime routine, decide on how many books you will read each night.  Pick a number and try to stick with it each night to make it predictable.

Bedtime Chart
This chart can help you and your child with a bedtime routine

Click here for a printable version of the Bedtime Chart!

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