Plenty of adults know the pain and frustration of being unable to fall asleep. The problem is so widespread among mature people, in fact, that the Centers for Disease Control considers it a public health epidemic, with the issue causing billions of dollars in lost productivity and an unknown, but substantial, number of accidents every single year.

Given the popularity of phrases along the lines of "sleeping like a baby," it might be expected that the youngest children are much less likely to suffer from such difficulties. In fact, however, insomnia among infants and young children is probably nearly as common as with adults, although it is far less often recognized for what it actually is.

That means that, at any given time, many parents are looking for effective ways to get baby to sleep. An infant who has difficulty sleeping, after all, can easily disrupt an entire household. Worse, there are reasons to believe that these issues can even slow development and eventually lead to pointed physical problems or illnesses.

All of this means that concerted, systematic baby sleep training is of growing importance for many families. For those who make the effort, fortunately, real results can normally be expected. While insomnia is common among young children, it turns out that it is frequently easier to treat than the adult form of the syndrome.

One of the proven, fundamental tactics is to establish regular, consistent, sleep-time routines. All people are ultimately creatures of habit, of course, and infants are even more susceptible to the influence of routines than older people are. Working to build up a set routine for around bedtime can help young children and infants learn to segue gracefully into sleeping, as the habits themselves eventually contribute to greater relaxation.

That can mean, for example, establishing that a particular set of activities always precede going to sleep. Whether that is a few minutes spent quietly cooing to a or the reading of a favorite book, these events can put even the youngest children into a mood and frame of mind that is especially conducive to sleeping.

While engaging in concerted efforts of this kind can be a big help, it is also important not to overdo things. In fact, even the most gregarious baby will benefit from being left alone to struggle with sleeping somewhat, as this hands-off time allows children to learn the crucial skill for themselves. Overcoming the issue, then, often requires quite a bit in the way of dedication and good judgment from parents.