Toddler Sleep -- Is it Always This Hard?

We want to assure you that it is not too late to sleep train your toddler and that toddler sleep...

We get it… You wanted the cuddles while they were little.

And now you want your toddler or preschooler sleeping in their own bed at night and not sneaking into yours.

It is a common misconception that sleep training is only for babies, but this could not be further from the truth. Here Sleeper Teachers® we work with sleepers of all ages (even adults) to establish the skill of sleep independence, and we support as many toddler families as we do infants!

By the time little ones are three, four and five, it can certainly feel like all hope is lost and that you have to simply live with a crummy sleeper forever, but we know this is not the case.

Take this review from Joysha, Mom of 2

“I have two toddlers that are past the ideal age for sleep training. I thought we were hopeless… We used to lay down with both kids hours at a time until they fell asleep but not anymore thanks to Amanda. She was there for us and guided us through the changes that happened in the time we had together. One of our main goal was for the kids to learn how to put themselves to sleep and now they do!!!”

We want to assure you that it is not too late to sleep train your toddler and that toddler sleep doesn’t have to be so hard!

For those of you ready to make some changes in your toddler’s sleep situation, check out our comprehensive Toddler and Preschool Age Sleep Guide. This thorough, 23 page actionable sleep guide is for parents of toddlers and preschool age kiddos (2.5-5 years) who want to put an end to bedtime delays and pushback, exhausting night wakes, pesky early mornings, and will equip you with the skills and knowledge to ensure your little one is getting the overall amount of sleep their body needs.

Toddler growth and development depend on sleep

If your toddler isn’t meeting the recommended hours of sleep in a 24 hour period, it is important that you consider changes you can make in your home to help them get the sleep their body needs. The CDC recommends the following:

1 to 2 years, 11-14 hours of sleep per 24 hour period

3 to 5 years, 10 – 13 hours of sleep per 24 hour period

When working with families who are bed sharing, we often find that the family all goes to bed at the same time which is typically a later than ideal bedtime for toddlers and young children. Similarly, when a toddler doesn’t have the skill of sleep independence, naps are often harder to come by which means less daytime sleep, too.

We always recommend that parents take a close look at the sleep patterns of their little ones as a way of determining if sleep training will be beneficial to them! This helps to stick to the plan and stay consistent because you know that you are teaching them this skill in order to support their own growth and development.

“We worked with Sleeper Teachers coach Sarah and can’t recommend them enough. My 3.5 year old son was having a horrible time going to sleep, staying asleep, and getting enough rest during the day. Sarah walked us through how to fix these issues and coached us through every step of the way. Within two weeks our son was sleeping and we are all so grateful!” — Sara, Mom of 2

As our children mature, sleep remains important for learning, memory consolidation, physical growth and immune system strength which is why so many families come to us for support.

Toddler sleep allows for boundaries to be established

Even though it doesn’t seem this way in the moment, when left without boundaries toddlers feel less secure. The expectations and boundaries that are set into motion when sleep training, help our little ones to know what comes next and seek comfort in the predictability.

We hear often from the parents of our toddler and preschool clients that daytime behaviors, meal times and daily routines all improve when boundaries around bedtime are established. This is always a great side effect of teaching sleep independence, but it doesn’t come as a surprise!

Parenting expert, Janet Lansbury sums it up here “to children, our boundaries mean we see you, we love you, we care enough to make the effort, an effort that children always sense and appreciate. Never doubt that.”

You deserve this, too!

It’s no secret that when little people are crawling into your bed all night, or needing you to lie with them for hours until they fall asleep, you lose a piece of yourself.

But guess what? Sleep training your toddler will help you get that lost piece back!

Not only will you have more time for yourself, your partner, your work, your chores or your Netflix account, but you will have a new found sense of confidence around your toddler’s sleep.

“Now by 8:00, at the latest, both of our kids are asleep and happy in their own rooms while my husband and I get to reconnect by watching movies or shows together or even playing board games like we used to do! It’s been so great for our marriage to have our evenings to ourselves again!! I cannot recommend Sleeper teachers enough!!! Coming from the mom who bucked structure and routine we are thrivingggg using both!! Forever thankful and HAPPY!!” — Erica, Mom of 2

No time like the present

We want you to know that there is nothing wrong with the fact that you haven’t sleep trained yet. You have walked the path of parenthood as it has felt right, just as you will walk this next step of the journey.

We hope this blog helps you to see that it is NOT too late to sleep train you toddler, in fact, we would highly recommend it!

If you’re at the stage where a DIY approach is more appealing, check out our comprehensive Toddler and Preschool Age Sleep Guide. The guide provides 23 pages of actionable strategies that will help you work toward putting an end to bedtime battles, middle of the night wakes, pesky early mornings, and general sleep issues.

If you are short on time and interested in quick results with more expert support, reach out to us here to get a free sleep introductory call scheduled.

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