How to know if my child is overtired & what to do
You know your body is telling you ‘Yes’, but your mind is telling you ‘Nah, not now. I’m too tired.’
Sounds familiar? Especially after a super long day when you have finally hit the bed?
It is actually pretty common to feel that way. Experiencing the ‘too tired to sleep’ moments are a normal part of adult life.
Wait. Not just adult life. But kiddie life too!
Yep, even your kids can get too tired to fall asleep sometimes.
And you know what? They will definitely show signs that that is the case. All you have got to do is to watch out for those tell-tale signs. Try to pick up cues, you know. So you can step in and be their mighty saviour again! Which is basically us saying that you can help them :p
Bad jokes aside, we have covered all the bases when it comes to an overtired child. So keep reading!
Overtired child symptoms: what you need to watch out for
Remember how there are the 4 Cs of diamonds? You know the whole colour, cut, clarity and carat funda? Yep, that is the one. Just like that, an overtired child’s symptoms can also be categorised into 4 Cs. Which are the following:
Almost too cheerful. Maybe even kind of really silly! Sure their hyperactive antics with a touch of goofiness will warm your heart, but watch out. Could it be that your child is overtired? If they have had a long day and they are still having a case of the zoomies at the end of it, chances are that is not a simple burst of energy. It is a surefire sign that they are quite maxed out. Especially if they are quite calm otherwise.
Uh-oh! Here comes the crankiness. From bursting into tears to just sourly pouting at everything you say or do, this sign is not going to be a pleasant one by a long shot. But at least the good thing is you will know what these rapid mood swings are all about. More so if they occur super close to nap time. That said, this symptom is more of a toddler thing than for an older child, but the latter could also behave this way when they are tired beyond their limits. Don’t worry though. We will tell you how to calm an overtired child too. You will see!
This one can easily turn into one of those quintessential ‘aww’ moments. Picture your baby coming up to you and just laying their precious little head in your lap, just asking for cuddles. Cute as a button right? But again if it is too close to bedtime, it is time to scoop your tiny one up and put them to bed. Why? Because they are very, very tired just about now.
Oops! Was that your baby who just knocked over that glass of water? Well, losing coordination or what can be referred to as ‘being klutzy’ out of nowhere is another sign that your tiny tyke or princess has had enough of this long day. So much that they cannot help but trip in exhaustion as they make their way to their bed.
What to do when the baby is overtired?
You can help! In several ways too. There are quite a few hacks that can show you how to deal with an overtired baby in a way that works. We think you should try out the ones we have listed before you. Give them an honest shot. They will help.
- Limit noise
- Turn down the lights
- Get them to do something relaxing
- Make up for lost Zzzs
- Call it day
And your child’s exposure to any other external stimulant that is likely to get them hyper. You want them to calm down now so things like turning off the TV should be pretty high on your agenda. As the visuals and the noise go down, so will the level of their hyperactivity. A wave of calm will start taking over them, helping them get ready for bedtime.
And turn on the white noise. White noise is supposed to be inherently calming. Science backs it. Just put it on your phone or speakers and let the sound get your child into a mellow mood. And if white noise is not to your baby’s taste, you can play any calming track that can relax your tiny tot and make them want to nestle in.
Another pretty effective trick in the playbook of ‘how to deal with an overtired baby’. This one specifically works well when your kid throws a tantrum about going to bed despite being beyond tired. So to soothe them and make them feel they can have their, let them do something calming on their own. Like reading a book. Or colouring a drawing. Any least intense, non-screen based activity will do. As long as it gets them into Zen mode, all ready for bed. P.S. This works well too when they are tired but bedtime is still a little while away.
Did your child sleep late last night? Perhaps they missed their daily nap? Maybe they slept poorly? Whatever the case maybe, you need to make up for the Zzzs they did not get as they are bound to be overtired at this point. Let them take a nap when they are tired even if it is not their usual time to. You can even put them to bed earlier than usual. That should do the trick.
It is officially bedtime! Perhaps not at the time you are reading this, but if you want a surefire solution to ‘what to do when your baby is overtired’, this will work. Nestle into bed with them and start your nightly bedtime ritual. It is possible for your baby to act fussy. Being too tired after all takes a toll on sleep. So let them navigate their way through it. Your restful energy will calm them down and have them snoozing in no time!
Dealing with a fussy, overtired baby is definitely a Herculean task. No doubt about that. However, a combination of these hacks might just be the secret you need to deal with an overtired baby. So be sure to give it an earnest shot.
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