How can I make my toddler's nap time easier? Sleep

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Toddler boy sleeping in bed with a teddy bear
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When your little one is tough to get down for a nap, there are a few different solutions you may want to consider.

Stay Consistent

"Naps are tough. If children get overtired, it's harder to have them settle down for their naps, so you want to start settling your child for a nap prior to their being overtired. Naps also may not occur exactly the same time every day for some children, especially if the sleep varied the night before. Having a nap in the same place around the same time is helpful. As they get older, the number of naps decrease and also it may not be possible (especially if you have other children) to have...

"Naps are tough. If children get overtired, it's harder to have them settle down for their naps, so you want to start settling your child for a nap prior to their being overtired. Naps also may not occur exactly the same time every day for some children, especially if the sleep varied the night before. Having a nap in the same place around the same time is helpful. As they get older, the number of naps decrease and also it may not be possible (especially if you have other children) to have the naps in the same place daily. Do the best you can, and stay as consistent as possible. If they really refuse, taking a rest time is still important." -- Alison Mitzner, MD, pediatrician, New York, NY

Don't Force It

"Both of my kids stopped napping at 2 and I never forced or tricked them into it. Instead, we got more playing time. Don't stress yourself trying to make your child sleep."

Stand Your Ground

"Lay him down, shut off the lights, and walk out of the room. Every time he gets up, put him back in bed and say it's nap time. My son has done this for up to two hours, but now he goes in there and lies down."

Keep Trying

"If your toddler doesn't want to nap, he could be phasing out naps, or he could just be going through a phase. Allow him to have quiet time in his crib. If he's screaming, leave him with a few books or toys. Hopefully he'll fall asleep, but at the very least, both he and you will get a bit of a rest."

Have 'Quiet Time' Instead

"I tell my son he can read, play his music box, or sleep, but it's quiet time in the house. This means we don't make a noise either. After an hour, he can get up. I don't think he's ever made it an hour without falling asleep."

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