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Toddler napping necessity

I was enjoying a short power nap to rejuvenate my body and mind. A quick power nap for me is 20 minutes on average. It amazes me how a short nap can have such a powerful impact on my day. I remember my daughter growing up and now my grandson, and from age 3 on, both fought to not have to take a nap. You can tell they need a nap with a variety of tells! The most obvious is yawning, also look for squinting of the eyes; another is a term I call zoning out. Zoning out is when the toddler stares off into space for a couple of moments. On the lighter side, I imagine I can see a couple of horns growing out of the top of their heads and acting in unimaginable ways.

In my daughter’s case, she loved taking naps until she saw the movie “Honey I Blew Up The Kid.” Where in the movie, a giant toddler fights back and does not want to take a nap! At the toddler’s enormous size, it’s a bit difficult for his parents to control the situation. When toddlers, in general, do not want to take a nap, it can be an enormous challenge for parents. One key factor for maintaining control of these situations (too numerous to list) is to remain calm and not let your energy rise to the level of shouting; it just exacerbates any situation. Popular dog trainer “Caesar” sums it up by saying to maintain a “Calm assertive style” of communication. I totally agree. When a parent loses control, the toddler gains leverage.

There are a variety of techniques that parents have in their toolbox. My favorite is to say; “Let’s take a nap together!”, “Let’s read a book together!”, “If you take a nap, we can (reward mentioned)! Let’s go to the park, play outside, have a treat, and watch a favorite show. Lots of other methods may work.

Web MD suggests that as kids grow and develop, naps give their bodies and minds time to rest and recharge during the many changes that occur during growth. Plus, if children get overtired, it’s harder for them to fall asleep at night, compounding the problem. A Toddler napping will benefit from a reduction in fatigue, improved immune system, and often a significant attitude adjustment. A lot of growth during growth spurts happens when toddlers are sleeping. In a study by Dr. Monique LeBourgeouis, “Sleepy children cannot cope with day-to-day challenges in their worlds. A rested child may be well-behaved and happy, resulting in much happier parents or caregivers. The experts say that skipping napping after age 2-5 years old. Well, my experience, having passed those ages eons ago, is that a good nap makes everything better!

“Remember, every day is a gift! Some are just a little more fun to open than others. – © Joel M. Vernier 08/29/2022 Author of: “The Guinea Pig In The Freezer.” joelmvernier@aol.com

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