Does your child regularly struggle to fall asleep? Maybe you have a hard time putting a routine in place? Are they fussy? Are they having night terrors? Whatever it may be, here are a few suggestions and steps you can take in order to help your child get a well rested sleep at night. So that you can also get some sleep and put your mind at ease too!
1.) Make sure your child’s room is a good temperature. You don’t want to have your child’s room too cold as this can cause discomfort and lots of tossing and turning. On the other hand, you don’t want to have your child’s room too hot either. If a room is hot and your child is uncomfortably warm this can cause nightmares and terrors. Keep the room at a nice in between temperature, typically anywhere between 68-70 degrees Fahrenheit is ideal.
2.) Decrease electronics and any television time at least 30 minutes prior to getting ready for bed. If a child is watching tv or a tablet right before bed it will be harder for their brain to quiet down before sleeping. Their brain will remain too active and therefore may cause behavioral issues when trying to calm your child for bed. Aka bouncing off the walls, throwing tantrums, etc. The best rule of thumb is to read a couple of books with the lights dimly lit so that their bodies will begin to ready itself for sleep.
3.) Set a routine. This cannot be emphasized enough! Children love to know what to expect, they are creatures of habit. A good example of a positive routine would be the following. Obviously, you can cater to what is best for your family and implement different techniques, but here’s a generic example to start. 7:00, start your routine. Make it known that the routine will start at the same time every night. Make sure your routine is the same process and nothing is switched up. For instance, put on pajamas, brush teeth, read books, and lights out. Even if you go on vacation or are staying somewhere else for the night, keeping this routine in place will help your child to always know what to expect, which in turn will alleviate any anxiety on their end and make for a peaceful night.
4.) This next suggestion is for anyone who has a child that’s nervous or scared going to bed. For these types of kiddos, it can be helpful to put a spray bottle next to their bed to use as “‘monster spray” or “dream spray”. You can even add glitter to it to make it seem magical and special. Tell your child that any time they fear there’s a monster under their bed or anything that causes them fear, that they can spray their bottle to make it disappear. Or, for those children that easily have nightmares, encourage them to spray it above their bed so that they only have good dreams and it rids the bad ones. This can help to provide reassurance and comfort for the anxious child.
5.) Lastly, for the children that are light sleepers, it can be beneficial to make sure their rooms are dark and that you provide some type of white noise. You can purchase noise makers from the store or now a days you can simply download an app that has various noises on it. For instance, the sound of light rain, wind, or the sound of the ocean. Have your child pick out which sound they like best and set it up so that they have it playing at night while they sleep. This will prevent your child from waking up in the middle of the night from small sounds and other various noises. Their body will adjust to the white noise and they will have an easier time falling and staying asleep.
Obviously these are just a few tips and suggestions to help and there are many more tricks out there. Think of this article, however, as your starter kit to having healthier sleeping habits for your child. If you need more suggestions or help in this area feel free to message me directly at [email protected] or at (720) 217-5501. Here’s to your healthy and happy little sleepers!