Seperation Anxiety- Tips to Help Toddlers Cope

When setbacks occur in your child’s sleep routine, you may need to go back to basics with him. Re-introduce the consistency of the bedtime rituals and do the following:

 

• If your child kicks up a fuss as you leave the room, say calmly and cheerfully: “I love you. It’s bedtime. I will see you in the morning.” Then smile and leave the room.

 

• Get ready for your baby to cry from 30 to 60 minutes but remember this is a want not a need. At this age in the child’s development you really shouldn’t give in to his demands easily or you will only reinforce his confidence in this technique’s effectiveness and you’ll increase the problem.

 

• In the middle of the night, analyse the cries and decide honestly, if you think he’s really in need or if he only wants attention. If you’re sure it’s just the latter, be strong and wait him out. This will give him the chance to cry it out and learn to comfort himself back to sleep. If you must go back in the room, give him a pat on the head and a soothing sentence but do not pick him up or this may signal playtime! (Please note ‘crying it out’ is not acceptable for younger babies and we advise strongly against it).

 

Once you’ve taken the above measures and tackled seperation anxiety your nights should be peaceful once more. The hard part is over and all that remains are a few little adjustments to reflect the physical and mental development of your child. (Lavin, Glaser, 2007)

 

Please note the correct spelling is: separation anxiety

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