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Having routines and boundaries can make life easier for everyone.

  • Knowing what will happen when helps parents make plans and feel more organised and calm.
  • Patterns in their day help children feel secure. It can help them to get in good activity and bedtime routines.

For children in school having routines can help them settle into new environments or routines, cope with changes in their lives and help them eat and rest well.


Routines are built from every one getting used to the same things happening at the same times each day. They can begin early on with something like feeding your baby at night with the light on low - giving a message that nights are for sleeping. 

New routines don't happen quickly, to really get the benefits stick at it. If you start routines later with your child, or they have not worked out before, your children may feel unsure about the change to begin with.

  • Start with one thing at a time – maybe what time your tea is or when bath time happens.
  • Tell your child what the plan is – get them involved in thinking how it would work best for you all.
  • Make a plan to celebrate keeping to a new routine. *Click Here* look for ideas on how you could do this.
  • Don’t worry if sometimes it doesn’t work out– just get back to it the next day.
  • Think about bedtime routines too. Having enough sleep will help children adjust to changes in the daytime routine. 

You can add in more routines to your family day as time goes on.


Who Can Help?

You can contact the Healthy Child Programme by calling Just One Number on 0300 300 0123 or texting Parentline on 07520 631590. Our opening hours are 8am-6pm Monday-Friday (excluding bank holidays) and 9am-1pm on Saturdays.

If you are 11-19 you can text Chathealth on 07480 635060 for confidential advice from one of the Healthy Child Programme team.

To speak to other Norfolk parents and carers, you can join our online community forum below.

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