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Mother and Baby

Afraid Of The Dark? 5 Tricks To Beat Your Toddler’s Night Fears

If your child’s imagination runs riot at night and leaves him scared, alleviate his fears with some handy tricks

Things lurking in the dark. Monsters hiding under the bed. People outside the window.

It’s completely natural for your child to sometimes feel scared at night. After all, just think how jittery you were after watching The Returned

So, if you find your toddler’s getting a anxious at night, try some tricks to beat her fears. And yes, they could help you after a TV encounter with Victor, too.

Hold a monster hunt

Search the room with your toddler before bed and make a game out of checking for monsters.

‘Loudly announce “There’s nothing here!” at the end of the hunt,’ says Sarah Ockwell-Smith, author of ToddlerCalm: A Guide for Calmer Toddlers and Happier Parents.

You could also bring in a “monster spray” – aka a spritz of water to scare any ghouls away – and let her have fun with that.

Buy a toy to look after your child

Whether it’s a big teddy or a Buzz Lightyear model, think about going on a shopping trip and buying your toddler a special “guardian toy” to watch over and reassure her at night.

Make a dream catcher

You know, those feathery mobiles you used to make at school and hang over your bed? Well, now could be the time to bring them back.

‘Some children love the folklore behind dream catchers and choosing or making one together to hang by their bed to "catch bad dreams" can be a great idea,’ says Sarah.

Leave a light on

It can help to leave a hallway light on while your child goes to sleep or if she’s unsettled in the night.

‘Or think about buying a nightlight that she can hold and turn on herself,’ says Sarah.

Have a clear out

Simply ask your toddler if there is anything in her room that scares her. If so, put it somewhere else.

Say goodbye to that beautiful (creepy) picture from Grandma then…

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