Can't get your little one to nap or stay asleep during bedtime? These 10 sleep apps full of lullabies and stories will help her drift off into dreamland.
Getting your child to fall asleep (and stay asleep) is not a task for the faint of heart. For the most part, repetition, patience, and maybe a little praying are a part of every parent's repertoire. Don't worry, no one will blame you for using every handy tool at your disposal -- like your Smartphone -- to pull it off. Testing out some sleep-inducing apps at naptime or bedtime is an easy place to start, and we've rounded up the ten best apps, designed for babies and older kids, that are worth trying out today.
When it comes to helping your baby fall asleep, nothing compares to the relaxing sounds she heard and experienced while still in your womb. This app helps babies feel as if they're still in the safety and comfort of an enclosed space by replicating the calming noises of a steady heartbeat and low-frequency whooshing and rumbling. ($2.99; iPhone)
If you've spent hours shushing your baby to sleep, you'll want to try this app, which provides the rhythmic, soothing shushing sound for you. The timing feature allows you to keep the noise going, and the sound equalizer automatically adjusts the volume if your baby starts crying over it. (Free; iPhone or Android)
Lullaby for Babies
Sometimes all a baby needs for a perfect night's sleep is a little music. The prerecorded lullabies of this app, which include simple melodies and lullaby classics such as "Hush, Little Baby" will soothe your little one to sleep. You can even set a timer to keep the songs playing for as long as you like. (Free; Android)
Baby Sleep Care Pro
The Baby Sleep Care Pro app is so much more than just a sleep device for babies. Not only can you record 5, 10, or 20 seconds of the noise that best helps your baby fall asleep (like a song or your own voice!), but it also detects any noise coming from your sleeping baby. Once it detects a noise, the app has the ability to call a phone number that you have provided ahead of time, so you can listen to what's happening. The log option also records information related to when your baby wakes. ($1.99; iPhone)
Lightning Bug -- Sleep Clock
With a library of almost 200 sound loops -- including everything from rainstorms and waves to electronic instruments -- Lightning Bug is a white-noise mixer that's bound to have the sound that will help your baby fall fast asleep...and stay asleep. The alarm and snooze prevent you from falling asleep while your baby's still awake. (Free; Android)
Along with its white noise, lullabies, and nature sounds, the Sleepy Sounds app also displays soothing animation while it?s playing. The images serve as a calming night-light that can help kids (and even adults!) fall asleep. You can also record your own music and sounds. (Free; iPhone or Android)
AmbiScience Sleep Aid for Children
When an app uses technical words such as "binaural and isochronic entrainment" to describe how it works, you figure it's got to be good. In layman's terms, this app mixes two tones (or binaural beats) that are sent to each ear; the mix creates a pulsating effect and a frequency that will signal brain waves to slow down and relax. The app also sends a single pulsating tone (an isochronic beat) that may induce meditation. Together, the tones help your child fall asleep quickly and then stay deeply asleep. There are more than 30 tracks, effects, and sounds to pick from. ($1.99; iPhone)
Weissbluth Method Infant Nap App
Inspired by Dr. Marc Weissbluth's Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child, this app provides tips and advice on how to help your baby get the most out of his naps. Designed for babies from birth to 12 months, the app has nap reminders that automatically adjust to the infant's age. Parents can also create a nap log and track the child's sleep schedule. A Weissbluth Method Toddler Bedtime App for kids 12 to 36 months is also available. ($2.99; iPhone)
Sleepy Kids -- Hypnotic Stories to Help Your Kids Sleep
For the kid who can't fall asleep without a bedtime story, this app will share stories (lasting between 30 and 45 minutes) with magical scenarios to inspire magical dreams. The stories will help her fall asleep faster -- and sleep more soundly -- while providing her with messages that will help her feel stronger, happier, and more confident. ($2.99; iPhone)
Slightly different from traditional sleep-time apps, Goodnight Safari is a beautiful, gentle bedtime-story app that puts children (ages 2 to 4) at the center of the action. Kids help prepare some African savanna animals (lions, giraffes, and elephants) for their sleep with simple bedtime routines. The interactive app has a calming narration that will help kids wind down, increase their comfort with nighttime routines, and fall asleep faster. (Free; iPhone)
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