Sleep Expert


March 6, 2024 Article written by Jenna Wilson

About Jenna and Little Dreams Consulting

Jenna Wilson set up the multi award winning Little Dreams Consulting 8 years ago, following ten years working as a solicitor in Childcare Law. She has trained with Sleep Sense™ and The Sleep Charity (UK) and has attended a multitude of courses with the NSPCC and The Lullaby Trust. Little Dreams offer an antenatal package to educate parents about newborn sleep early, so that they don’t need help to solve developed sleep issues later. Please do get in touch to find out more!

The little Dreams Consulting family is growing and is looking for franchisees across the UK to join their successful team of sleep experts. To find out more, pop them an email at for a (no obligation) chat.

When it comes to sleep, everyone has an opinion and what works for one may not work for another! Every little one is different. However, there are some sleep myths out there that we’re here to de-bunk – particularly when it comes to toddlers! Here are the 5 most common ones we come across:

You should cap the first nap of the day:

This is an early toddler-hood myth. Little ones are ready to drop to 1 nap a day between 12-14 months. Parents often ask us how to make this transition and presume that they should cap the first nap to encourage the second one to be the longer one. However, from a sleep science perspective, we actually recommend allowing the first nap to be the longer one, and capping the second one. The first nap of the day is the easiest one for little ones to fall asleep for as they have residual sleep pressure from the night, and by pushing it back gradually towards lunch time, you can cap the second nap until there’s no time for it anymore – by which point you’ve successfully transitioned to 1 nap!


If you breastfeed your toddler, there is no need whatsoever to introduce a bottle, unless you want to. If your toddler is waking during the night, and is eating well during the day, it’s unlikely that they are waking due to hunger during the night. Of course, hunger can cause night wake ups, so it’s important to make sure, once established on solids, little ones are having all their meals, snacks and milk (if they’re still having this) during their daytime routine. Also adding in a ‘sleepy snack’ such as a bowl of porridge, a banana or some wholemeal toast, to their bedtime routine can help to top them up before bed.

Toddlers will sleep when they’re tired:

Of course toddlers will eventually fall asleep when they’re exhausted. However, often, overstimulating little ones results in overtiredness which means their bodies need to produce more adrenalin to counteract the tiredness. This often presents itself as ‘hyperactivity’ and can actually hinder toddlers being able to fall asleep. Similarly, parents often think that by putting their little one to bed later it will mean they won’t wake as early in the morning. Again, often pushing toddlers into overtiredness with a later bedtime leads to restless sleep over night and early morning wake ups!  

Toddlers don’t need naps:

The average age for toddlers to drop their nap is somewhere between 2 ½ - 3 years. Similarly to the above myth, parents can get lured into thinking that by dropping the nap earlier than this may help night time sleep. Whilst in some, rare, cases this can be true, generally speaking toddlers still need a day time sleep, even a short one, to see them through to bedtime. There’s a common 2 year ‘nap refusal’ which is caused by various developmental stages occurring at the same time. But with consistency, this should pass after a few weeks and little ones should be back to taking a little nap during the day for a few more months at least!

Moving them into a bed will help:

Perhaps the most common myth we hear! We recommend keeping little ones in a cot as long as possible. Moving them into a bed prematurely can cause unnecessary problems with their sleep. Cognitively, toddlers aren’t ready to manage the temptation that being in a bed presents them with until they develop their impulse control. Until this point, it’s highly likely that they will get out of bed if they wake up at night, because they can! So, unless of course your toddler is unsafely jumping out of the cot, hang on in there until they are closer to 3 years old. You could always keep them in the cot and introduce a toddler duvet as a step towards the transition as they get older, the Fine Bedding Co make beautiful coverless toddler duvets which are fully washable – making them a super easy option – especially for when it comes to potty training!

If you are having any trouble with any aspect of your child’s sleep, please do get in touch with us, we would love to help you all get a better night’s sleep!

Visit to book a free, and no obligation, 15 minute call with one of us!

March 06, 2024 — Jenna Wilson