How to Get Your Child to Sleep in His or Her Own Bed

Learn how to get your child to sleep in his or her bed from Dr. Kimberly Williams in this Howcast video.

Transcript

Parents often ask me, "How do I get my child to sleep in their own bed?" This really requires a series of behavioral interventions. If done correctly, your child could be sleeping in their own bed in a matter of a few weeks. If done correctly your child can be sleeping in their own bed in their room in a matter of a few weeks.

The key component of getting your child to sleep in their own bed is to remove attention from them. This means getting your child into their bed and gradually moving yourself, as the parent, further and further and further away from the bed. I always suggest a very brief nighttime ritual. And then, as a parent, sit a few feet away from the bed and do something like read a magazine or check your PDA. And yes, the child may demand that you come closer or that you give them attention, but you have to ignore them. And I do know that this is the hard part, but soon they'll be comfortable with your distance, and you're able to move further and further away. Eventually, you'll be near their bedroom door, and eventually, you'll be out of the bedroom door.

As long as there is no medical condition keeping your child from sleeping at night, this is a great strategy to get your child to sleep in their own bed. Your child may jump out of their bed to come into your room. That's okay, you have to make the situation uncomfortable, so the child can sleep quietly on their blanket on your floor. Don't let them in the bed, because they have their nice bed in their own room, and you want to motivate them towards that goal. And these are just a few helpful tips to get your child to sleep in their own bed.

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