Australia Day! How to handle the fireworks and your little one's sleep.


Thought I’d share my top tips managing your little one's sleep today as it can sometimes be extra tricky with all the 'Straya Day' celebrations!


We want our little ones to enjoy this day as much as possible but are often afraid that if we bend the rules too much, our routine will become out of whack and sleep may be impacted! 


Australia Day can be especially tricky because of the fireworks. Deciding whether your little ones should be included in that part of the festivities can be a tough call. Do you take them to a public fireworks display and risk a major meltdown? Or forgo the fun, put them to bed and hope and pray that they sleep through the fireworks?


Whether you decide to head out or stay home, you can still maintain healthy sleep habits. You know what’s best for your child. Always do what feels right for you. 


The following tips can help your little ones stay happy and well rested in spite of all the fun, fireworks and excitement.


If you’ve decided to take your baby or toddler to a fireworks celebration our top tips are: 


1. Don’t skimp on naps. Naps are so important! Well rested children are better equipped to handle a later bedtime and are less likely to have a melt down when the excitement ramps up. Try and ensure that your little one has an opportunity to nap at their regular times throughout the day, even if the naps take place on the go in a pram or car. For babies and toddlers, an extra cat nap later in the afternoon may help them to make it through the evening without becoming too overtired.


2. Give your child fair warning.  Show your little one videos of fireworks to prepare them for the experience. Knowing what they look like and how they sound can be helpful! Make a game out of it, guessing which color will pop up next as each firework explodes.


3. Find an out of the way spot to watch. If your going to a local public fireworks display you may be sitting on a beach or on the grass among hundreds of other people. Large crowds, loud noises and darkness can be overwhelming for some little ones, especially those that are sensitive to sound or light. Finding a less crowded place to view the show can help your child to feel more secure and relaxed. For an even more controlled environment, consider watching from inside your car. Your child may feel safer and you’ll make a much quicker exit when it’s time to head home to bed.


4. Be prepared. Although most adults can handle the intensity of fireworks, children may become scared or overwhelmed. A pair of headphones or earplugs can help filter the sound especially if they are sensitive. If the sound becomes too much for your child, let them listen to their favorite music. A favorite lovey or comforter to hold during the display may also help your little one relax.


5. Dress your little ones in their pj’s for the fireworks!  If they fall asleep in the car on the way home, you can transfer them right into their cot or bed. 


If you’re staying home, our top tips are: 


 1. Put your baby or toddler to bed before the fireworks begin. Getting your child to bed at their regular bedtime is always the best way to ensure they’ll have a good night’s sleep.


 2. Use white noise. White noise machines, white noise apps or a fans can be very effective at blocking out unwanted noise.  If you’re child doesn’t usually sleep with white noise and you’re worried that it will actually keep them awake, put them to bed first and  turn up the volume once they’ve nodded off and slowly make it louder and louder. Be sure to keep your white noise running throughout the entire night. This will buffer against the sound of the fireworks or parties in the neighborhood. 


3. Offer comfort and reassurance. If your child wakes up and is frightened or upset, be caring and responsive to their needs. Always notice how you are feeling and take a few deep breaths before entering your little ones room. A calm and reassuring reaction can help our children to move past a night time scary incident quickly. If they need extra cuddling and reassurance, offer it. 


Hope these tips help! 


Sweet dreams and Happy Australia Day! 


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