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Childhood-diseases

Question
Posted by: Ann | 2006/11/15

Q.

Can't get child to sleep

Hi Doc, I am having a problem with my 20mth old daughter and that is that I just cannot get her to sleep at night. I used to be able to just put her in her bed and she would go to sleep on her own but she has now found out that she can open her bedroom door and the result is that I am having to lie with her every night but I still battle to get her calm. She wakes up around 07:00 to 07:30 in the mornings and has a sleep from 13:00 to about 15:00 to 15:30. Please could you give me some tips on how to get her to sleep at night, once she is asleep she usually sleeps through the night, but it is just a constant nightly battle to get her to go to bed and sleep!

Expert's Reply

A.

Paediatrician

This is a very common problem. The house should be peaceful and quiet when you put her to bed. No loud TV in the background. Read to her for a while even though she is still very young. Nursery rhymes are probably the best at her age. Leave a night light on in her room. It seems that she prefers not to have her bedroom door shut. Once you have finished reading to her if she is still awake , kiss her goodnight and leave the room. If she climbs out of bed gently lead her back to her bed and leave the room again. You may have to rerepeat the exercise often but eventually she will get the message that she must go to sleep.

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