The Importance of Communication
Good communication is an essential tool when families are looking to improve their little one’s sleep. It is particularly important when dealing with toddlers and young children – communicating positively about sleep and any changes you’ll be making to things like bedtime routines can really help with your little one and how well they sleep.
Positive talking about sleep
If you have a toddler or young child who isn’t sleeping well, it can be really easy to slip into negative ways of talking about sleep to them.
When one of my children was smaller and sleeping badly, I know that we definitely fell into this trap – the more we talked about the fact she wasn’t sleeping, the more this increased her negative associations around sleep and the fact that she wasn’t sleeping well.
So, if you have a little one with sleep challenges, make sure that any chat you do have with them about sleep is framed in a positive way. Ensure that you let them know that you know that they are able to sleep well and that you have every confidence in them to be able to do it. This will help to build their self-confidence and also their confidence that they are able to sleep well.
Communicate any changes
If you plan on making any changes to bedtime routines or ways of dealing with night wakings, make sure that you communicate these changes with your child well in advance of implementing them. No-one likes changes sprung on them by surprise, not least a determined toddler who likes to do things their own way!
Communicate with your wee one about any changes a few days in advance of making them to make sure that they are aware of what is going to be happening and are feeling comfortable with it. If you’re able to get any input from your little one about these changes – steps in a bedtime routine for example – this will all help in getting your child to feel confident and accepting of the changes that are being made.
Parents should communicate too
Communication between parents around sleep issues is also really important when trying to make changes to sleep. If there are two parents involved with a little one’s sleep, it’s vital that they are both in agreement with any changes that are going to be made. So, if you and your partner are looking to address your wee one’s sleep challenges, make sure that you talk to each other first about the ways in which you would like to tackle it. Once you’ve decided to make changes, it’s crucial that both parents are on the same page and are committed to the way in which you intend to change. It’s very confusing for a child if each parent is dealing with things in a different way, so to help them become more confident it’s really important that you are both dealing with the challenges in the same way.
Lots of luck to you if you are making changes to how you deal with your child’s sleep. I’m here for individual support if you feel your family could benefit from it.
Caro Graham is a Certified Sleepy Lambs Sleep Consultant based in Edinburgh, Scotland. Caro can support families locally or around the world. Book a FREE 15-minute call. Just click HERE to book!