Toddler Waking Up at 4am

Toddler Waking Up at 4am – Simple Steps To Sleeping In

Home » Toddler Waking Up at 4am – Simple Steps To Sleeping In

A toddler waking up at 4am is not on anyone’s favorite things to do list. Struggling for any period of time with this is a burden even for a seasoned parent.


If your toddler keeps waking up at night and you’re unable to find out why, it could be problematic. Not only for your everyday schedule but also for the health of the little one who isn’t getting proper sleep. Toddlers require 10-12 hours of sleep for a healthy metabolism. That’s why knowing how to deal with your kid’s sleep problems is extremely important.


You might be thinking, how do I solve my toddler’s night waking dilemma? Well, that’s what I’m here to help you with.


In this article, I’m going to talk about some of the main reasons your child might be waking up early and some steps that you can take to ensure that they sleep well throughout the night so that both the toddler and you can wake up fresh and happy the next day instead of being tired and grumpy.


So, let’s get started. 

Why is Your Toddler Waking Up So Early?

Is your little one an early riser? The mystery behind their early morning wake-ups can be puzzling. Several factors could contribute to this phenomenon.One common reason is the timing of their nap time. If your toddler is napping too late in the day or for an extended duration, it can disrupt their sleep cycles and result in early awakenings. Adjusting their nap schedule to ensure it aligns with their natural sleep patterns might help.

Another possibility is night wakings. If your toddler is experiencing frequent disturbances during the night, they might wake up earlier as their sleep debt accumulates. Identifying and addressing the underlying causes of these night wakings can help improve their overall sleep quality.

It’s also crucial to consider if your toddler is getting enough sleep overall. If they are not sleeping the recommended number of hours for their age, it can lead to early wake-ups. Establishing a consistent and soothing bedtime routine can aid in promoting a more restful and prolonged sleep duration.

Understanding the unique needs and sleep patterns of your toddler is key to unraveling the mystery of their early wake-ups. By addressing factors such as nap timing, night wakings, and overall sleep duration, you can help your little one achieve more restorative sleep and greet the morning at a more suitable hour.


Is Your Toddler Waking Up at 4am Due to Hunger

Is your little one consistently waking up at 4am, leaving you wondering why their sleep is being disrupted? One possible explanation could be hunger. Toddlers have small stomachs, and their nutritional needs are different from adults. They may not be able to go through the night without feeling hungry, leading to an early wake-up call.

A simple solution to address this issue is to provide a snack before bedtime. Choose a light and nutritious option that will keep their tummy satisfied throughout the night. Opt for foods that are easy to digest and won’t cause discomfort, such as a small bowl of oatmeal, a banana, or a slice of whole-grain toast with a spread of nut butter.

Another strategy is to feed your toddler a balanced dinner that includes a good mix of carbohydrates, proteins, and healthy fats. This ensures they are getting the necessary nutrients to sustain their sleep. Including foods like lean meats, whole grains, fruits, and vegetables in their evening meal can help keep them full for longer.

It’s important to strike a balance between providing a snack and ensuring they are getting enough sleep. While addressing their hunger is crucial, be mindful not to create a dependence on snacks for sleep. Monitor their overall dietary intake during the day to ensure they are receiving adequate nutrition.

Remember, every child is unique, and their sleep needs may vary. If the early wake-ups persist despite addressing hunger, it’s recommended to consult with a pediatrician to rule out any underlying health concerns. So if your toddler is waking up at 4am due to hunger, offering a light snack before bedtime and providing a balanced dinner can help satisfy their nutritional needs and promote a more restful night’s sleep.


Toddler Waking Up at 4am Crying Due to External Noise

The most common reason for your toddler waking up early or around 4am may be be external noise or disturbance. As I said before, children experience light sleep now and then within their sleep schedule.


If there’s a car horn or a glass clank or perhaps a loud voice or sometimes even a low voice, your toddler might wake up, and getting them to sleep again could be a problem.


Although children usually are not disturbed by external sounds when they sleep, some children have childhood insomnia and sleeping disorders. If your child has been diagnosed with such a condition, you should take extra measures to make sure their sleeping time is peaceful and calm. 


Toddler Wakes up at 4am up Because of Sickness.

Another reason your toddler might wake up early and not sleep again could be some known or unknown sickness. But you don’t need to be paranoid; just get a doctor’s checkup if you’re worried.


It could be that the digestion of your toddler might not be good, or they may have fever or cough, leading to their sleep being disturbed. It is a very possible and common reason for night waking.


This rarely happens because the child is not always sick. If it does, you can feel reassured that it is a temporary thing and will pass when your kid gets better. 


Is Your Toddler Having Teething Problems?

Teething is a harrowing and uncomfortable experience for children. It might not be a huge problem throughout the day, but at night when there’s nothing to do, your child may focus too much on it, causing a disturbance.


When your child is developing their first teeth, the process might not be a welcome one. So, your child may be waking up due to teething problems.


Again, this is just a temporary thing. You can try several techniques to make sure your child sleeps peacefully through the night and is not disturbed by swelling or inflammation. The best solution is to give a medicine before you put them to bed to have no pain or swelling. 


Your Toddler had a Nightmare.

The most common reason in this list is surely your child waking up at 4 am or early because of a nightmare. And although nightmares are caused without reason randomly whenever, sometimes, pain or discomfort, as well as sickness, can bring about monsters. So, it is alright to be wary.

This happens very rarely and in only 3 to 6% of toddlers. Be rest assured that every child occasionally experiences a nightmare, so it is nothing to be alarmed about. However, when it does happen, take some steps to ensure that your child sleeps peacefully afterward and tends to forget what happened. 


Steps for Getting Your Toddler a Full Night’s Sleep

We know what might be causing your toddler to wake up early in the night. But the solution remains unknown. Well, if your toddler wakes up at night and doesn’t sleep again, here are some steps and measures you can take to ensure they get their whole night’s sleep.


  • Keeping Premade Food – Did your toddler wake up hungry at night? It is a good practice if you schedule meals and prepare them before. You’ll be able to quickly fix up something for your child if they wake up in the middle of the night hungry. You can also try some go-to-pre-bed snacks to keep their stomach full while they sleep. Some of these foods include oatmeal, eggs, banana, nut butter, cheese and crackers. 


  • Getting a White Noise Machine – If external noise is the reason for your child’s sleep being disturbed in the middle of the night, then getting a monotonous sound-emitting white noise machine may very well be the solution to blocking out all the noises to ensure your child’s sleep. This is also a great choice for autistic kids and those who have some other health problems. Once a child sleeps peacefully for 10 to 12 hours, they become more capable of responding to therapies. 


  • Giving your child warmth – Sometimes, all your children need healthy sleep is some love and attention. A quick bedtime story, a proper goodnight, and a warm blankie might be able to keep your toddler safe from nightmares and disturbances psychologically. Every child needs cuddling and warmth, but some can do without it, some can’t. Ensure you lie down with them before putting them to sleep so they feel safe and secure. 


  • Establishing a proper sleeping routine – One thing that will help a lot, in the long run, is if you establish a proper sleeping routine. A proper sleeping routine means that you make sure the TV is off at a particular time. Turn off or dim the lights in their room. This helps making sure your toddler understands the sleeping schedule on a nightly basis. This is something many mothers ignore especially if they are working. But if you want to see your kid sleeping well and through the night, make sure their sleep time is consistent, and there are no other last-minute plans.


  • Teething Remedies – One effective remedy is providing gentle massages to your toddler’s gums using your clean finger or a soft silicone teething tool. The gentle pressure can help soothe the soreness and provide temporary relief. Another helpful solution is chilled teething toys. The cold sensation can help numb the gums and provide a soothing effect, reducing night wakings and aiding in better sleep.



Toddler night waking can be a real problem to a parent’s psychological and physical health. It can create problems for the child and make the parent tired as well. Some children get over it after a couple of therapies, but others stay like this for a long time. If it persists, you should consult a doctor and ask them if your child has childhood insomnia or other issues. 


Dealing with a toddler waking up at 4am is essential, even if it’s a temporary thing. Remember to create a peaceful sleeping environment and ensure a few things before your child is put to bed. Make sure your child is not cold or the temperature of the room is average. Put on very light and comfortable clothing, so the child is not irritated. 


Although every mother wants their kids to sleep and eat well sometimes, toddlers can get hard to handle. This is normal; don’t feel alarmed. Simply make sure your child is not sick and does not have any other underlying health problems. I hope you found this piece informative and able to help you deal with your toddler’s sleep problems.