Parents Are Ditching This Very Important Bedtime Routine, Study Shows

Here’s why experts say it's essential to make this step a part of your kid’s nighttime routine.

By: Amanda Mushro
USA, Illinois, Chicago

USA, Illinois, Chicago

Photo by: Cavan Images

Cavan Images

Bedtime for your little one probably consists of a bath, a book, some snuggles and hopefully sweet dreams. However, one study says a bedtime ritual that many parents are leaving out each night needs to make a comeback. Get your singing voices ready mom and dad, because lullabies not only help your baby head off to dream land but can also help them later in life.

According to a YouGov poll of over 2,000 adults, only 38 percent of parents are singing lullabies to their kids at night. What they found was that on average, millennial parents aren’t singing their little ones, but older parents are still crooning a few ditties to their babes every night.

Is it important to sing to your baby? According to a number of studies — the answer is yes. Research shows that signing to your baby, even if you don’t have a great singing voice, can be beneficial to your kid tonight and their future.

Experts say that lullabies help with three essential things: they establish a bedtime routine that puts your baby in the mood to sleep, it helps increase the bond between parents and babies because of the snuggles and sweet sounds, and it helps babies regulate their emotions. All good things right, but here’s where lullabies go beyond the nursery.

A study by the National Literacy Trust found that singing lullabies to babies helps to support and promote early reading development and language skills. So, while you may just be singing Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star, you could be helping your baby get a jump start on their reading skills.

Babies learn through repetition, so hearing the same words in a song each night helps develop their vocabulary and their understanding of language — which are all basic needs for early readers. Likewise, songs that rhyme helps babies develop their phonemic awareness, meaning their ability to hear and recognize different sounds. So, keep on singing at night because those tunes are pulling double duty — encouraging sleep and helping your baby learn.

If you aren’t a fan of basic lullabies, belt out a song that both you and your partner know. That way, your favorite song can become a sweet lullaby your baby recognizes. And, even if you can’t carry a tune, your little one will think you have the sweetest singing voice they have ever heard.