Kids & Company Blog

Getting your little ones to sleep…easier said than done!

As I read the excerpt below from our experts at Wholeplay, I can verify from personal experience that every child has their own unique sleeping habits and interest in sleep. Some children are naturally good sleepers while others often feel like they might miss out on something hence they only allow their body to have minimal sleep. I also think that their personal temperament has a lot to do with it  as some children are naturally more temperamental and can have a hard time transitioning.  The most interesting sleeper that I have observed was my friend's daughter. She loved to sleep and slept more than sixteen hours per day until she was one! We speculated that she would be slower developing, but that was not the case at all. She turned out to be an incredibly vivacious and outgoing child. Who would have known! Below is a great excerpt from our friends at Wholeplay, outlining some reasons why it can be a challenge to get your little ones to sleep! 


Why is getting young children to sleep so difficult?

Getting young children to fall asleep and stay asleep through the night is a pervasive problem within many countries, including Canada, with up to 30% of parents reporting sleep problems in their infants and toddlers. Why is this?


  • Babies aren’t born knowing how to sleep through the night or fall asleep on their own. During the first year, parents are required to help babies transition from multiple, fragmented sleep episodes throughout the 24-hour period, to one main consolidated sleep episode at night. If this doesn’t happen successfully during the first year, it can lead to later sleep problems in toddlerhood and preschool.


  • The information on sleep is confusing and contradictory. Much of the information that is written in books, magazines and on the Internet about how to get young children to sleep is based on opinion, rather than fact or research. As a result, a lot of the information that parents read is misleading or contradictory, resulting in increased parental confusion and anxiety around getting young children to sleep.


  • Young children’s sleep patterns constantly change. As young children develop, their sleep needs change. Therefore, the strategies that parents use to get their young children to sleep need to change as well. Frequently, sleep problems arise when parents use sleep strategies that aren’t right for their child’s age or particular stage of development.


  • Every child is different. Ask a parent with more than one child and they will tell you that no two children are alike when it comes to sleep. That means what works for one child will not necessarily work for another child. Sleep issues arise when parents use a “one-size-fits-all” approach to sleep and fail to take their child’s individual temperament and/or unique sleep needs into account.babyswaddle