FROM BECKY: Now I have explained some things that will help you prepare for your new bedtime routine, follow the links below from Kate on how to create and stick to that routine. Below that are some more thoughts on how to make things easier for you, other family memebers and your child to cope with the routine and how to follow up the next day.

http://blog.autismtreatmentcenter.org/2010/03/from-kate-wildesleep.php

http://blog.autismtreatmentcenter.org/2010/03/from-kate-wilde-sleep-take-2.php

1) Pick someone to be on bedtime duty each night. The new routine coul take your child one hour or it could take three nights to settle in to, depending on how tired and how persistent they are. Invest in some earplugs for your other family members and whoever is not on bedtime duty that night gets to wear the ear plugs and sleep through the disturbances. You can get some really good wax or silicone earplugs from the pharmacy that really do a good job of blocking out noise. It’s important that you alternate bedtime duty so that at least one of you gets a sound nights sleep.

2) Do not let your child sleep in the next day! The purpose of the routine is to help their bodies know that when it’s bedtime, we are tired and need sleep. If your child has been persistent and has been up half the night crying or getting out of bed, they will be tired the next morning. If you let them sleep in then they will not be tired again the following night. I know it may feel challenging if you also feel tired, but know that it will pay off in the long run. Your child will be ready for bed the next night.

3) The playroom is the best place for sleepyheads. If your child is tired then you don’t need to skip the playroom that day. Whenever your child isms, they get to take a break. If the two of you are tired, you can play quietly together and don’t have to exert yourselves.

Please let me know if you have anything you’d like to add or ask about the bedtime blogs.

Sleep well!