It's a tricky time giving up the daytime naps - everyone's a bit tired and scratchy. But don't worry; after a while things will calm down and you'll find a new routine that works.
- If you put your child to bed during the day and they’re still awake an hour later
- If one day your child happens to miss their nap and they’re perfectly fine.
Handling the tantrum hours
The initial problem with giving up daytime naps is the wreck of a child you end up with towards the end of the day – the tantrum hours. You feel really sorry for them when they’re so tired that they can hardly stay awake. Try to move dinner time and bedtime forward and remember that this is a transition period - a difficult one. But it will soon pass.
Hard to fall asleep
Hardest of all is the grey zone, where they do need a nap but then can't fall asleep at bedtime. Or the other way around - they don’t need one, but keep falling asleep in the car or stroller. Try to still give them a daytime nap but have the same bedtime. When you put them to bed at night give them some books to read and 45 minutes to an hour to look at their books before they fall asleep.
Remember: not all children fall asleep within a few minutes when they go to bed. Some kids need wind-down time of up to an hour.
Daytime naps become ‘quiet time’
However, to still have some quiet time to yourself each day, a rest time during the day for everyone is a great idea. Keep that routine going - when you've got a two and a half year old who's no longer sleeping, everyone needs a break. Get them to lie down with a couple of books they like to read. And remember to put your feet up too.