Are you wondering what is the best 1 year old bedtime routine?
According to WebMD a 1 year old needs 12-14 hours of sleep including naps and nighttime. So you need to take into consideration how many hours your 1 year old is getting throughout the day from napping. Most likely, your child will need about 10-12 hours at night.
That means you need to think about whaat time your toddler typically wakes in the morning, or what time you want them to be waking up.
Then work your way backwards.
Here’s an example 1 year old bedtime.
Your toddler takes a 2 hour nap in the afternoon from 1-3.
You want her to get up no earlier than 7 A.M.
So you count back 11 hours because that would give her 13 hours of sleep in a 24 hour period.
That means you put your 1 year old to bed at 8 P.M.
If it seems like your 1 year old isn’t getting enough sleep, then adjust her bedtime and put her to bed between 7-7:30 P.M.
Do what works for your little one and your family.
Why a bedtime routine is important for your 1 year old.
When our first born was a baby, we didn’t follow any sort of bedtime routine with him.
As a result, he was an absolute HORRIBlE sleeper! None of us got much sleep that first year.
It wasn’t until he turned a year old that we realized we should put him to bed at the same time each night and follow a routine.
Once we started following a bedtime routine, he began sleeping really well at night and even took longer naps during the day. He was finally getting the sleep he needed!
When you have a 1 year old, you know the reason they get upset is often because they are either tired or hungry. So getting a good amount of sleep is helpful for their moods too.
When we had our second born, I had already started following routines with my son and household, so I knew I wanted to follow a routine with the new baby.
That’s why I read the book Babywise: Giving Your Infant the Gift of Nighttime Sleep*.
It was a game changer!
Our baby slept so well. When I told people that she was sleeping 9-10 hours at night at only 4 months old, they were shocked. But it was true and she was such a happy and content baby.
Having her on a routine made all the difference. So we have continued to follow a bedtime routine for her at 1 year old and she sleeps really well.
I wrote my Babywise review, so be sure to check that out.
Sample 1 Year Old Bedtime Routine
7:30 – Pick up toys together
Bath and lotion
Change into Pajamas
7:45 – Read a book
Turn on sound machine and close curtains
Rock for a few minutes and sing a quiet song
Whisper “Good night. I love you.”
8:00 – Lay toddler down in the crib awake
Writing all of that out sounds like a lot, but it really doesn’t take long at all. Following this routine is what helped our little ones settle down at night.
Each part of the routine signals to her that it is bedtime and she is ready to sleep by the time I lay her down.
How do I get my 1 year old into a bedtime routine?
You just have to start.
It will take some time to get used to, but within a week, you’ll see that your toddler understands his bedtime routine signals that it is time to go to sleep.
Before you just jump right into a routine, take some time to think about what you want to be a part of your toddler’s bedtime.
- Do you want to use a chart?
- Do you want Mom and Dad to both be a part of it?
- What time do you want your one year old in bed?
- What time should you start your routine?
After you have answered these questions, you’ll be ready to write down your routine and follow through with it.
Your toddler might not like the change at first, but don’t give in. Think about a month from now when your little one is sleeping well at night.
You will be SO thankful you followed through!
Toddler Bedtime Routine Tips
- Read a book to settle them down and have a few snuggles
- Get room darkening curtains
- Use a sound machine*
- Have a nighttime song that you always sing when they go to sleep
- Talk in quiet voices to signal that it’s time to sleep
- Lay down one year old awake but drowsy
All of these tips will help your toddler sleep better at night, and YOU will too!
P.S. Want to know what to do with your toddler all day at home? Here are 9 things my toddler and I do every day!
P.P.S. Want some 1 year old food ideas inspiration? Here are over 75 foods you can feed your 1 year old!