The No-Cry Sleep Solution for Toddlers and Preschoolers: Gentle Ways to Stop Bedtime Battles and Improve Your Child's Sleepby Elizabeth Pantley
Guaranteed to help parents reclaim sweet dreams for their entire family
New from the bestselling author of the classic baby sleep guide!
Getting babies to sleep through the night is one thing; getting willful toddlers and energetic preschoolers to sleep is another problem altogether. Written to help sleep-deprived parents of children ages/b>/i>/b>
Guaranteed to help parents reclaim sweet dreams for their entire family
New from the bestselling author of the classic baby sleep guide!
Getting babies to sleep through the night is one thing; getting willful toddlers and energetic preschoolers to sleep is another problem altogether. Written to help sleep-deprived parents of children ages one to five, The No-Cry Sleep Solution for Toddlers and Preschoolers offers loving solutions to help this active age-group get the rest they--and their parents--so desperately need.
A follow-up to Elizabeth Pantley's megahit The No-Cry Sleep Solution, this breakthrough guide is written in Pantley's trademark gentle, child-centered style. Parents will discover a wellspring of positive approaches to help their children get to bed, stay in bed, and sleep all night, without having to resort to punishments or other negative and ineffective measures. The No-Cry Sleep Solution for Toddlers and Preschoolers tackles many common nighttime obstacles, including:
- Refusals to go to bed
- Night waking and early rising
- Reluctance to move out of the crib and into a big-kid bed
- Nighttime visits to the parents' bed
- Naptime problems
- Nightmares, "night terrors," and fears
- Special sleep issues of twins, special needs children, and adopted children
- Sleepwalking, sleep talking, snoring, and tooth grinding
Read an Excerpt
the no-cry sleep solution for toddlers and preschoolersGentle Ways to Stop Bedtime Battles and Improve Your Child's Sleep
By Elizabeth Pantley
McGraw-HillCopyright © 2005 Better Beginnings, Inc.
All right reserved.
Chapter OneLearn About Toddlers, Preschoolers, and Sleep
As the mother of four children, I know I don't have to convince you that your life would be easier if your child went to bed easily and slept the entire night—every night—waking up in the morning at a reasonable hour, refreshed and happy. I understand how frustrating it is to end the day with battles over bedtime, and I know the pain of being roused from a sound sleep every single night by a child standing near my bed. But I also know the pleasure of having my four children sleep all night while I, too, have my own good night's sleep.
Bedtime and sleep-related problems are far more challenging than many other aspects of parenting because we parents are directly affected by our children's lack of sleep, since when they aren't sleeping, we aren't either. We simply cannot function well as parents—or, as a matter of fact, even as people—when our own sleep is continually disturbed.
I think you will be surprised to learn that, beyond both the obvious parenting issues and the direct problems associated with bedtime and sleep, your child's sleep habits can affect every single waking moment of every single day. The quality of his sleep (or lack thereof) has a role in everything from dawdling, crankiness, and hyperactivity to growth, health, and learning to tie his shoes and recite the ABCs. Everything.
You are probably reading this book to learn how to end your bedtime battles with your child. Of course, that's the purpose of this book, and I'll share with you many tips for achieving that goal. But even more, you'll learn enough about sleep to be convinced that while the request for "one more drink of water" will fade in memory, the effects of good, healthy sleep in childhood can influence your child's health and welfare not only today, but for his entire life ahead.
Important Facts You Should Know About Sleep
When parents think of their children's sleep, they visualize a quiet child at rest. Actually, sleep is a dynamic activity: a complex series of phases, each of which contributes important aspects to health and well-being. Table 1.1 shows the various stages of sleep and describes what happens at each phase.
Each of the first four stages of sleep lasts from 5 to 15 minutes, and a complete cycle of the five stages of sleep takes between 90 and 110 minutes. Stages 2 and 3 repeat backward before dreaming sleep is entered, so the sleep cycle actually looks something like this: drowsy, stage 1, stage 2, stage 3, stage 4, stage 3, stage 2, REM (dreaming), continuing through the night by alternating between REM and non-REM sleep in a cyclical pattern. A full and healthy night's sleep that brings the best benefits of restfulness and rejuvenation allows an adequate number of these cycles, usually between four and six.
The Normal Flow Between Sleep Stages
Children (and parents, too) move through these sleep cycles each night, riding them up and down like waves. A child who falls asleep easily and sleeps well all night flows peacefully and contentedly through the stages of sleep all night long.
Now that you understand the concept of these sleep stages and how they work, you can begin to identify and understand some of the common sleep issues that occur with children:
There must be a preface to sleep—time for a child to wind down and relax. A child simply cannot go from wrestling with Daddy on the family room floor and an exciting, bouncy piggyback ride up the stairs directly to stage 1 of sleep. In that case, a second wind is a likely possibility.
Children in the early stages of sleep wake easily. So when you have a child who fights sleep, he may begin to drift off but pull himself back just before he falls asleep, even if he's very tired. He may also be easily awakened by the sounds and activity of the household.
Children enter sleep in a logical progression. If you are reading a bedtime story to a child who is relaxed and entering stage 1, maybe even beginning stage 2, but you get him up to use the toilet or move him to bed, he'll probably wake up fully. You've interrupted the normal flow of sleep stages and must begin the process again. (Oh, joy!)
If your child requires certain conditions to fall asleep—such as your presence—she will wake easily when she senses she is going to lose the very thing she needs most to feel secure before she falls into a deeper sleep.
Stages 3 and 4 are called delta sleep, which is regarded as the most restorative time of sleep. If a child lacks sufficient delta sleep, she will be sleepy the next day, regardless of how much stage 1 and 2 sleep she had. A child who fully awakens frequently throughout the night may not be getting enough delta sleep.
Children spend substantially more time than adults in stage 4 sleep. This is when growth hormones are released, making deep sleep very important for your child's physical development.
While scientists still debate the exact reasons and purposes for dreaming sleep, it appears to be a mechanism by which your brain sorts through the day's events, processes new information, explores issues that you are worried about, stores memories, and "cleans house." Research has demonstrated that REM sleep is crucial at all ages for proper functioning of the brain and psyche. The duration of REM sleep periods increases over the course of a night, so the longer a child sleeps, the more time he will spend in REM sleep time. An adequate amount of REM sleep enables a child to wake up feeling refreshed, happy, and energetic.
Normal sleep follows a cyclical pattern throughout the entire night, but periods of deep sleep (stages 3 and 4) are longer at the beginning of the night. This explains why many children have a long sleep period followed by more frequent awakenings during the second half of the night.
Sleep inertia, which is the gradual awakening process that occurs when a child first comes out of sleep, can be affected by the amount and quality of the child's sleep. The confusion and sleepiness of this state may last longer and be more intense if a child has not had enough sleep. Researchers are still trying to confirm a direct correlation, but if your child remains sleepy and dull for more than a few minutes after waking, it may be a sign that she's not getting the sleep she needs.
Brief Awakenings Between Sleep Stages
All human beings wake up five or more times each night, particularly when shifting from one stage of sleep to another. For a good sleeper, these brief awakenings aren't noticeable or remembered. You might fluff a pillow, straighten a blanket, or check on your child sleeping beside you, and then fade right back to sleep.
These brief awakenings have different consequences in babies and children. While a content sleeper will find a comfortable position and go back to sleep, a more finicky sleeper will become fully awake in search of whatever she needs to go back to sleep. Thus the series of sleep stages must begin anew.
A child can make a very strong sleep association wherein he associates certain things with falling asleep and believes he needs these things to fall asleep. When he begins to fall asleep or comes to the surface in a brief awakening between sleep stages, he may prevent himself from falling back to deeper sleep until he locates what he needs to comfortably ride his wave of sleep stages once again.
Remember that although all human beings wake periodically throughout the night, this association process is one of the main reasons that babies and young children call out to a parent in the middle of the night. They need a parent to right their sleeping situation so they feel secure and comfortable and are able to fall back to sleep.
The Biological Clock
Human beings have an internal clock, called a circadian rhythm, that regulates wakefulness and sleep. When it's working properly, people feel awake and alert during the day and sleepy at bedtime. The actual internal clock runs on a twenty-five-hour cycle, but it easily resets itself each day based on the person's sleep habits, timing of meals, and exposure to light and dark.
Some children have internal clocks that set easily; others have a finicky system that can be upset by any kind of external cue: lights that come on after he falls asleep, noise from dish-washing in the kitchen, or the beeping of a parent's alarm clock early in the morning. Haphazard nap- and bedtimes, irregular mealtimes, too much light or activity at bedtime, or not enough light in the morning can skew a child's biological clock as well, disturbing his state of biochemical equilibrium and causing an inability to fall asleep, poor-quality sleep, or too early waking.
The human biological clock needs resetting every day, and the components of a healthy bedtime routine, as will be discussed in the next chapter, will help keep your child's biological clock working properly.
How Lack of Adequate, Restful Sleep Can Affect Your Child
When I began to research sleep and children, an idea began building in my mind. With each piece of research I read, the idea became clearer until I finally reached that "Aha!" moment: for many children, the main reason for temper tantrums, fussiness, irritability, dawdling, and stubbornness is the lack of adequate, restful sleep.
Perhaps an even bigger catastrophe is that poor-quality sleep sets Mom or Dad adrift in that same fog when a child isn't sleeping in a way that allows parents to replenish their reserves. This creates chronic fatigue in the parent—from tending to a child's night waking and other sleep issues month after month, year after year—which can seriously reduce the parent's ability to navigate the day effectively. So the family ends up with a grumpy and non-cooperative child handled by a parent with a very short fuse. In short, everyone in the family suffers.
Fascinating yet frightening new studies demonstrate that children who do not get enough quality sleep may suffer from a long list of problems, including the following:
Mood and Behavior
Increased aggressive behavior
Reduced physical performance of small and large motor skills
Delayed recovery from illness
Disruption in natural growth and development
Impaired hand-eye coordination
Lack of concentration
Compromised decision-making processes
Inability to nap
Increase in nightmares and night terrors
Increase in sleepwalking and sleep talking
Dr. James Mass, an expert on sleep from Cornell University, writes in his book Power Sleep (HarperCollins, 1998), "Sleep plays a major role in preparing the body and brain for an alert, productive, psychologically and physiologically healthy tomorrow." He sums it up by saying, "If we don't get adequate sleep, our quality of life, if not life itself, is jeopardized."
How Sleep Affects ... Sleep
It's a vicious circle: a consistent lack of adequate, restful sleep creates chronic sleep deprivation. Sleep deprivation brings fatigue, but this tiredness is coupled with an ironic inability to fall asleep and stay asleep. The quality of sleep is compromised. Sleep is often fitful, with an increase in nightmares, night terrors, sleepwalking, and sleep talking. Furthermore, in many households the stress over children's sleep issues creates sleep deprivation in the adults, and this stress is felt by the child. So worry and tension add to why everyone in the entire family is short on quality sleep.
How much sleep does your child need? The actual number of hours that your child sleeps is an incredibly important factor for his health and well-being. A sleep study completed by Dr. Avi Sadeh at Tel Aviv University demonstrates that even a one-hour shortage in appropriate sleep time will compromise a child's alertness and brain functioning and increase fatigue in the early evening. That's an amazing finding, and it calls for parents to look very closely at the total number of hours their children are sleeping.
The following table is an important guide to your child's sleep hours. All children are different, and a few truly do need less (or more) sleep than shown here, but the vast majority of children have sleep needs that fall within the range shown in Table 1.2.
If your child is not regularly getting close to the amount of sleep on this table, he may be "chronically overtired." This will affect the quality and length of both his nap- and nighttime sleep, which will directly affect his daytime behavior, learning, and growth.
Your child may not seem tired, because overtired children don't always act tired—at least not in the ways parents expect. Regardless of how your child's actual sleep hours match up to the table (because each child's needs are individual), the following signs may indicate he's not getting an adequate amount of sleep. Do any of these apply to your child?
Tends to be whiny, fussy, or clingy
Sucks his thumb, finger, or pacifier at times other than bedtime
Carries a blanket, stuffed animal, or other lovey around during the day
Is hyperactive, especially at times when you think he should be tired
Is overly stubborn
Has regular temper tantrums or easily becomes upset or angry
Has difficulty falling asleep when put to bed
Falls asleep frequently when in the car, bus, or train
Falls asleep in front of the television
Sometimes falls asleep on the sofa or floor before bedtime
Sleeps later in the morning on days when the house is quiet
Takes a long time to become awake and alert in the morning
Does not appear to be well rested and full of energy
Doesn't seem as happy as she should be
Children who are chronically overtired will often resist sleep, not understanding that sleep is what they really need. It's up to you to help your little one get the sleep he needs.
Experts tell us that sleep habits formed in childhood can affect health, mood, learning, and performance—both now and in the future. That's why it's so important to help your children establish good sleeping habits now, so they can reap the benefits for the rest of their lives.
Does Your Child Have Sleep Problems That Need to Be Fixed?
This may seem like an odd question in the first chapter of a book on children's sleep. But before going a step further, take a look at your situation to make sure you are looking at things clearly. I've found that during the early years of a child's life, everyone has opinions about how you should be raising your child, and other people's opinions may sometimes cloud your perceptions of reality. So take a deep breath, clear out all the cobwebs that other people have placed in your path, and first go over what's not a problem.
The Sleep Situation That Doesn't Need to Be Fixed
Your child is getting enough sleep, you're getting enough sleep, and everyone in your household is happy with how things are going. The problem is that your in-laws, your friend, or your neighbor is telling you that something in the way you are doing things is wrong and must be changed. Perhaps your child is up with you until midnight and then sleeps until noon. Maybe your king-size bed is where the entire family sleeps and your toddler's crib holds only his collection of stuffed animals. Possibly Mommy sleeps in the toddler bed, Daddy sleeps on the sofa, or your preschooler sleeps on the floor in your bedroom. Maybe the whole family plays musical beds every night, and you never know where anyone will end up. Or perhaps your bedtime routine is two hours long and includes everything from reading to singing to back rubs. Maybe your two-year-old is still nursing to sleep for bedtime and naps, or your three-year-old sleeps with five pacifiers and the family dog.
Here's the bottom line: if your child is getting enough sleep, you are all sleeping well, and the people who live in your home are happy with the way things are working out, then nothing needs to be fixed, regardless of what anyone else has to say about your family's sleeping situation.
If this is the case for you, then the only thing you need to change is your response to unwanted advice about how you are running your own household. You may want to change the subject when the topic of bedtime comes up in conversation, or do a little research so you can back up your parenting choices more confidently.
Excerpted from the no-cry sleep solution for toddlers and preschoolers by Elizabeth Pantley Copyright © 2005 by Better Beginnings, Inc.. Excerpted by permission of McGraw-Hill. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Meet the Author
Elizabeth Pantley is the author of the parenting classic The No-Cry Sleep Solution as well as Gentle Baby Care, Perfect Parenting, Hidden Messages, and Kid Cooperation. She is frequently quoted as a parenting expert and is the mother of four great sleepers.
and post it to your social network
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
See all customer reviews >
How to get a co sleeping toddler into the crib successfully to me wasn't covered with sufficient enough information.
For the most part our son has been a good sleeper, but recently he has gotten to the point where if he doesn't sleep with us...he doesn't sleep at all...and neither do we. So, we turned to the No-Cry Sleep Solution book to see if we could find answers. Not only did the book provide tips and guidance on how to solve our particular problem, it provides solutions for a plethora of other sleep issues - all without making your child "cry it out." Sometimes all a parent really needs is an authoritative voice to tell you that everything is fine. We found out that certain behaviors that several well-meaning (though people who should mind their own business) individuals thought was a problem are actually normal. The most important pieces of advice: Make sure they get enough sleep and trust your instincts as a loving parent. You know your kid better than anyone and every child is different. Highly recommended no matter what sleep issues you are dealing with during the toddler phase. One additional warning: If you go with the e-book, most of the page references (and there are a ton of them) will not match up.
We had been having an awful time getting our boys (2 & 3 years old) to sleep at night. I was almost in tears every night it was so stressful. Everyone was telling us that we had to let them "cry it out", put a lock on their door or at least a gate. I felt there had to be another way but I was skeptical of a "no cry" solution. I read through some parts (I'll admit it, I was desperate for answers so I didn't read the whole thing) and came up with a plan. IT WORKED THE FIRST NIGHT!! Since then there have been nights where the boys have tested limits and have not gone to sleep right away but I'm not getting 1/2 as upset as I had been. We're on the right track and we all feel (and sleep) so much better. I love this book!
I found Mrs. Pantley's book very helpful! Reading through the tips I discovered they weren't difficult, I just had to acknowledge each one and incorporate them each and every day. My fourteen month old daughter had to be nursed to sleep and was getting up 1-2 times in the middle of the night and would have to nurse to fall back asleep. After two weeks of practicing tips from the book, my daughter's sleep habits have improved immensely! Now, I'm putting her to bed awake, she fusses as I walk out of the room but then plays for awhile with her `aquarium' on her crib and then falls asleep with no crying. My daughter has also started going to bed earlier and sleeps for 9-10 straight hours. We will continue to work on all eight steps to further improve her sleep habits!
I love Elizabeth Pantley's approach to parenting/sleep advice. When you read her books you feel like you have the ear of a sympathetic mommy friend who has "been there and done that" 4 times of her own. In my opinion that makes all the difference. I used her first book The No Cry Sleep Solution for my first son back in 2005. It did wonders for my sleep and more importantly for my confidence. It helped me to understand that my parenting instincts were something to cherish and not turn off. Fast forward to a few years later- my second son wasn't a bad sleeper at all because had already benefitted from the knowledge I gained from the NCSS (for babies) but there was one hurdle I didn't know how to cross. I was co-sleeping, he was almost 2, and I was ready to night wean him. The No Cry Sleep Solution had some great ideas for that!!! This book has some great ideas for a lot of different issues and I have it on my shelf in case anything comes up in the future. The No Cry books don't pretend to have the ONE answer or system to make your child sleep because there is no one answer. As a mom of 3 I can tell you that all kids really are different. This book gives you a menu of ideas that you tailor to your own child's personality and needs. I HIGHLY recommend this book to any parent of a young child!!!!
I can remember not that long ago sitting in my daughter¿s room in the middle of the night thinking I must be the only mum in the world whose baby didn¿t sleep. I was lucky to get three hours sleep on any given night, and never three hours in a row. But thanks to Elizabeth Pantley and her book ¿the no-cry sleep solution¿ my little girl Milla has gone from a baby who breastfed 10 times a night to a gorgeous 18-month-old who sleeps between seven and ten hours straight! Apart from being exhausted when Milla wasn¿t sleeping, I was miserable because of all the pressure being put on me to ¿do controlled crying¿ from extended family. One even said I was a ¿bad mother¿ for getting up at night for my girl and not teaching her to sleep by letting her ¿cry it out ¿ for hours on end. Everything in my heart said controlled crying wasn¿t right for my Milla. She was a sensitive, gentle and caring girl who was very attached to her mummy. I loved my little girl too much to hear her cry because her mama wasn¿t there when she needed her. After applying Pantley¿s gentle and practical tips, Milla is now sleeping peacefully - and knows that I am there for her when she needs me. I treasure every second with my little girl and am so glad I never abandoned her to cry. We have such a close and beautiful relationship. I feel like the luckiest mum in the world. The first key point I learned from Pantley was that as long as Milla and I were getting enough sleep and we were happy ¿ then we didn¿t have a problem ¿ regardless of what anyone else thought. Milla now wakes once a night, between 5 and 6, and I give her early morning cuddles till get-up time. Controlled crying experts told me NEVER to cuddle my daughter back to sleep. I¿m glad I ignored them because I treasure those mornings when I hold Milla in my arms and feel her soft breathing beside me. This is not a problem for us and a lovely start to our day. Pantley¿s eight bedtime tips seemed rather simple and obvious at first ¿ but once I put them into practice they actually worked. Milla no longer has a night light, has a long and quiet bedtime routine at the same time every night, no tv is allowed when Milla is in the room, she is now going to bed when her biological clock says is the right time for Milla 'not what experts say' and while my husband calls me a ¿sleep Nazi¿, it works! And for those with sleep-log phobias, I still keep a meticulous sleep diary. It helps me notice subtle changes in Milla¿s sleep patterns as she grows older and her sleep needs change. The final chapter in Pantley¿s book ¿ Adult Sleep: Now It¿s Your Turn ¿ was also a life saver. When Milla finally started sleeping well, I would lie awake for hours at night waiting for her to wake. I always tended to be a bit of an insomniac, and her tips for babies have actually also helped me! I would strongly recommend this book to any mum who needs sleep and can¿t find it in her heart to do controlled crying. Pantley¿s approach might take a bit longer than controlled crying 'though even controlled crying isn¿t guaranteed to fix sleep problems quickly and for life' but considering babies and toddlers grow up so quickly, it is worth the investment. My little girl goes to sleep with a sweet smile on her face, not tears!
Below is a copy of the email I wrote the author of this book I'd like to share with everyone. Worth reading if you are considering purchasing the book or want your toddler/preschooler to sleep through the night without more than a few minutes of crying-consider this book a gift to you and your family. This book was so life changing for me I want to tell everyone I know about it. I am a smart, well rounded, well read and open minded person as well as a very dedicated mother, but I knew there was more to learn about my son and his sleeping. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ I'm not sure if these emails get read by Elizabeth but figured I'd write anyway. I want to take the time to tell you how grateful I am for your book, "no cry sleep solution for toddlers." My son was sleeping 11 hours straight from 4-11 months and then the "sleep regression" (as I named it) started. He was getting up 1-5 times a night and the only way I could get him to go back to sleep without serious crying was to nurse him. I never considered letting him "cry it out" but I was willing to let him cry for 5 minutes, max. My son is now 13 months-I was at a point of complete exhaustion on this past 2 week vacation with my family, I was so tired I couldn't keep up with conversations during the day. I came home and decided I needed to find out what I was doing wrong and ways to fix it. I browsed many books online and started reading the "free" pages on amazon from your book. I purchased it the next day but started using tips from what I learned from the "free" pages that night-first one being to remove the nightlight next to his bed. The second I removed it he relaxed his body. That first night I was able to put him to back to sleep without nursing-3 times! I read your book in its entirety the next day, incorporated more of your tips and that night he slept 11 hours straight through!! It's been over a week and he's been sleeping 10-11 hours straight EVERY NIGHT! I also put him to sleep half awake and only had to let him cry 2 times and after 2 minutes he was sleeping (my cut off was 5 minutes before I planned on going into him). I can cry out of happiness while I write this. I believe that sleep is so important for optimal health and mental sanity for my entire family. I want to tell everyone who has a toddler that gets up even once to read your book. It is honest, supportive, written with kindness and GENIUS. The minor things you talk about changing I felt were easy and "no brainers" but they make a world of difference. Thank you so much for writing this book - it has changed my family's life. Best regards,
After struggling for months with our son taking 30-45 minute naps, we finally found some good solutions in The No-Cry Nap Solution! Our son is now sleeping for 1-2 hours for every nap - we are in heaven!! What's so great about Elizabeth Pantley's books is that she doesn't offer THE solution, she offers many different solutions and suggests that you pick and choose the ones that are right for you and your baby. And there are so many solutions to choose from and they are all gentle! I find myself going back to the book over and over when our son is doing something new and different and I always find something valuable to try. Elizabeth Pantley is also available to her readers ... I sent her an email with questions about suggestions for international travel and she responded right away. It was so nice to have an answer directly from the author!
I read the first No-Cry book for infants when my daughter was about a year old. After being told by everyone - including my pediatrician- to let her "cry it out," I was desperate for something that felt less traumatic for all of us. Within a few weeks, we went from spending almost 1.5-2 hours trying to get her to sleep to a fraction of that, and her sleeping duration went from 2-3 hours a stretch to 6-7 hours. A year later, we found ourselves with more and different sleep issues. I initially started to re-read the first book to refresh myself but then saw this option. I was so excited when I found out that this book, tailored for older kiddos, existed. As with the first book, this one begins by letting you know that you're not alone. That in and of itself was of great comfort to me. For so long, I thought my kid was odd or my parenting was seriously flawed. The author then offers very pragmatic advice on how to identify possible causes of sleep issues followed by ideas with which you can create a sleep plan that makes sense for your child and household. More than once I was surprised at very basic things that as a first-time parent, I simply had not thought about. Tweaking small things can make a huge difference! I have been so impressed with this author's suggestions that I have already acquired her titles on parenting and discipline, the need of which was largely illustrated by our responses to the sleep problems! If you can't stomach the idea of your child screaming alone in his/her room at night, this book is a lifesaver.
I bought the No Cry Sleep solution for babies when I was pregnant, and it helped me immensely. Now my daughter is almost two, I thought I would get the No Cry Sleep Solution for Toddlers and Preschoolers. I found it's tips and techniques fabulous and so relevant for me and my daughter. I love how gentle and child-centred the book - and indeed, all of Elizabeth Pantley's books - are. While her sleep is not perfect, I have learnt through the book, there is no such thing. Having realistic expecations for her sleep is one of the many things I have taken away from the books. This book, and indeed, any of Elizabeth Pantley's books I would recommend for parents, either first timers, or for those with many children.
My 22 month old had stopped sleeping well for over 6 weeks. She woke at least once a night and took over 2 hours to fall back asleep. She was tired in the morning and if she napped (which took me 1.5 hours of crying and frustration (from both of us) until she finally slept) she was cranky for the afternoon and cried when it was bedtime! I was at a loss. Until I read about Elizabeth Pantey’s Hush Hour in “No-cry Nap Solutions.” In only four days after using the techniques and following the advise in the book I saw great improvement in not only my daughters sleep routine but in her behavior; Even her eating improved!! My DD was quiet and rested for 1 hour every day, she went to bed earlier and slept for 12-13.5 hours a night! If she woke, it was at 5 am where she would then fall back asleep within half an hour for another 3 hours! My little girl is happy again! Thank you Elizabeth! This book is a must read for every parent!
Like the other books in Pantley's parenting series, this book offers practical, gentle tips for helping your toddler's sleep habits. Although her tips are not magic overnight answers, you will gain an insight into toddler sleep and get some common sense tips about how to make changes, without tears. I also like that she points out at the beginning that you only have a sleep problem if it is a problem for YOUR family - a nice reminder that each family and child is different and if your current sleep patterns are working, no matter how unusual they are, then don't stress about fixing them. One of my favorite parts is the last part where she breaks down her advice into sections based on specific issues and problems. Highly recommended for those parents who want tips and reassurance outside of the usual cry-it-out literature.