how do you help a 3 year old sleep longer?? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 4 Old 08-13-2012, 11:12 AM - Thread Starter
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I have a 3 1/2 year old who wakes up too early! She never used to be an early riser (7:30-8:30am) but we night weaned a few months ago. Right away she started waking up at 5:30 then that changed to 6:30. 6:30 was ok. I could manage 6 am but this morning, for example, she woke at 4:45am!! She will not go back to sleep, even with nursing which I don't want to do until it I want her to wake up. She is relentless about wanting to get up, to read and to have milk. Even if I managed to adjust to this time HOW do I get her (and me!) in bed in time to get 12-13 hours sleep? I mean getting to sleep at 5:30pm that is early! She doesn't nap anymore either so we can't make it up (nap makes night time really difficult-she won't get to sleep for hours if she naps even an hour).


Anyone have advice?

Anyone know WHY this might be like this? Are there health reasons why kids wake up (too) early? 



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#2 of 4 Old 08-13-2012, 06:21 PM
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Do you have blackout curtains? DS wakes earlier when the morning sunlight starts coming in. If she started waking earlier just a few months ago that may have been right around the start of summer & earlier sunrise?

My other thought is, she may be overtired. I don't think you'd have to put her to bed at 5:30pm (that seems insane to me!!) but maybe an hour or two earlier would help her catch up on sleep & sleep in a bit later?

Oh, and does she need to pee? Bringing her to the potty and then straight back to bed (I have to do this with DS almost every morning) could help her get back to sleep more easily.

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#3 of 4 Old 08-13-2012, 06:26 PM
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I second the black out curtains and the potty, and also would suggest white noise, if you don't already have it.  Good luck!!!!

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#4 of 4 Old 08-13-2012, 06:48 PM
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another way of looking at this is making sure she CAN take care of herself when she does wake up.


get her used to a drink and snack you can keep earlier. like water and a banana. and her books and other things she wants to do. that is what i did with dd. if she was sleepy after a while she went to sleep. otherwise she stayed in bed for about an hour longer as i took my time to wake up.


of course after you have tried everything.


however if you do plan to put her in school, getting up early (at a reasonable time like 6 am) might not be such a bad thing.


IF she is able to go to bed early at 5:30 would it affect your home life much. like not enough time for daddy. could he change to mornings with daddy?

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