The Chillest Bedtime Routine For Getting Your High-Spirited Child To Wind Down

A consistent bedtime ritual will help prime your kiddo for sleep both physically and mentally.

Written by Una LaMarche
Collage Of A Little Girl Bouncing On A Purple Bed In The Clouds Representing The Chillest Bedtime Ro...

Ah, bedtime. Such a quiet, cozy, ritual when you can curl up with a good book and slowly unwind… oh, wait, you’re a parent? LOL, scratch that. Bedtime with kids can often feel like a civil war in your own home — a lawless battlefield of broken promises, empty threats, and endless glasses of water. And that’s when kids don’t have trouble falling asleep.

If you have a child who occasionally struggles to transition from energetic wakefulness to peaceful slumber, bedtime can be downright unbearable. But by making some small tweaks to your nightly habits and incorporating Vicks PURE Zzzs Kidz Melatonin Gummies as needed, you can create a routine that gives your high-spirited kiddos (and, by extension, you) the rest they so desperately need. Here’s how:

Roll Out Bedtime Vibes Early

Bedtimes vary from family to family, depending on school and work schedules, kids’ ages, and lots of other factors. But one mistake lots of parents make is expecting children to transition from meals, screens, and the generally chaotic energy of daytime to a peaceful sleep in a very brief window. Who among us hasn’t grabbed a tablet or phone from a kid’s hands, turned out the lights, and then been surprised when they say they’re not tired? (I’m tired, kid.)

The deceptively simple solution is to prepare for bedtime earlier than you think you need to. Whatever your ideal bedtime, introduce “bedtime vibes” about one to two hours beforehand. That means cutting off screens, making sure lights are soft and loud noises and roughhousing are kept to a minimum. (As a mom of two boys, I can hear some of you laughing, but we have to at least try, right?)

Stick to What Works

Again, all families are different, and every bedtime routine will vary. But when you find the combo that works for you and your kids, stick to it like you’re practicing a viral dance craze for social media: every step counts! If you do dinner followed by a bath, reading, and a lullaby with a snuggle before lights out, it’s crucial that you keep it consistent night to night. The very act of the pre-bed ritual will prime your kiddo for sleep both physically and mentally so that when it’s time to finally close their eyes, they’re ready. Also, it bears repeating that screens are a stimulant and are best avoided within an hour of bedtime. Ever spent a night mindlessly scrolling and then looked up to realize it’s after midnight? Exactly.

Become a Sleep Detective

No one likes an endless bedtime, so when you’re dealing with a child who can’t settle, it can be frustrating. But there are many environmental and social factors that could be causing sleep issues in your kids. They might be experiencing anxiety that makes it tough to conk out, which may be helped by addressing problems at school or with friends. It could also be something as simple as a hormonal phase, a growth spurt, or needing a night light or white noise machine.

If you can’t find a reason for the chronic restless nights, it’s helpful to learn to tell the difference between kids who resist bedtime (i.e. most kids) and those who really have trouble falling asleep. Some signs to look for: tossing and turning for more than a few minutes; lying awake (assuming they didn’t have an espresso after dinner); and frequent night waking (assuming they aren’t sick).

Try Mindful Melatonin

If you’ve created a relaxing nighttime routine and ruled out common sleep disruptors and your kid is still having trouble falling asleep, it’s time to consider melatonin. If you’re hesitant, we get it; many parents have heard of melatonin but are unsure about what it is, as well as the proper dosage for kids. So here’s a cheat sheet: Melatonin is a naturally-occurring hormone our bodies make to regulate sleep-wake cycles, which is why it’s often a first step in helping kids who have problems transitioning from day to night. And like any supplement or medicine, kids need a formula that’s gentler than what adults take. That’s why we love Vicks PURE Zzzs Kidz Melatonin Gummies — they’re mindfully crafted for kids with a low dose of melatonin to help your child fall asleep naturally.*

And don’t worry — melatonin isn’t like a light switch that will turn your kid from “on” to “off.” Vicks Pure Zzzs are made with melatonin to help your child fall asleep naturally plus a complementary blend of botanicals that will work with your child’s body to promote sleep. Best of all, Vicks Pure Zzzs are completely drug-free, gluten-free, and lactose-free, so they’re non habit-forming. And the gelatin-free, berry-flavored gummies will be a pre-toothbrushing ritual your children will look forward to on nights when needed. For tired parents and kids everywhere, Vicks PURE Zzzs are the stuff sweet dreams are made of.

For Ages 4+; *These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.