Summer holidays are here! So, if you have a baby or toddler, something important to keep in mind is how travel plans will affect to your child’s sleep routines. The holidays will be much more fun if you organize your trip with the least disruption for your children. Do you know how to encourage you baby or toddler to sleep during the holidays?
During the holiday period schedules become blurred and normal routines become more flexible, but you should make sure that your child gets adequate rest to be able to enjoy the summer and family time.
So how do you handle your babies sleep during travel? Here are some tips to help ensure that your baby gets the sleep he needs:
Tip 1: Avoid scheduling too many activities
One of the biggest mistakes is to plan too many activities in one day. When traveling with a baby or toddler, everything is new and exciting and if you have a day crammed with different activities your child could easily become overtired and overstimulated.
Of course, you don´t have to sit at home and do nothing on your holiday, it is simply better to limit daily activities so that your child is able to assimilate the information he is receiving and to rest. For example, for a small child, just going to the beach for a few hours is a great adventure and it is very likely that when you return home, he will be really tired.
Tip 2: Maintain naps and bedtime
A nap in the car or going to bed later than usual from time to time is not so bad, but if your baby has his nap in a different place each day and goes to bed much later than usual for several days in a row, he will be so tired and moody that a total meltdown will be inevitable. You will end up with a child who is overtired and unable to fall asleep. So I suggest trying to organise at least one nap at home during the day, or if that is not possible, try for an early bedtime.
Tip 3: Give him time to adapt to the new environment
Even if your baby sleeps well at home, he may not do so in a new environment. It is normal for babies and toddlers to test the limits when it comes to sleeping in a new place.
He may cry a little or wake up at odd hours during the night in a place that is strange to him. The best way to deal with this is to react the same way you would at home. Go to the room every five minutes or so to comfort him and let him know he is safe. But if you end up sleeping with him or taking him into your bed in the middle of the night, you could be creating problems for when you get home. If you are consistent, in just one or two nights your child will become accustomed to the new environment and be able to sleep well.
Tip 4. Take his favourite teddy or blanket
If your child has a favourite cuddly toy such as a teddy or a blanket it will be a great help because they will feel safe and have something familiar from home.
Tip 5. If you don’t co-sleep at home, do not start on holidays
Another big mistake is sharing the bed with your child during the trip. Even if it’s only for a few nights, your child will get used to it and he may decide this will be his new preferred way of sleeping, you might find yourself facing a big problem when you get home and try to put him back in his own crib.
I always advise to try to have your child sleep in a separate room, if that is what you do at home.
Have a good and relaxing holiday!!!