How do I help my Child sleep?
Most parents struggle with bedtime at some point in their child’s lives. Some children really have a hard time getting good quality sleep and this impacts their happy mood, focus and ability to concentrate. Getting adequate sleep helps to naturally strengthen the immune system while inadequate or poor quality sleep is linked to a higher risk of illness.
Unfortunately if your child isn’t getting a good night’s sleep, this most likely will impact their parents sleeping patterns too. The last thing you need at the end of a busy day is a bedtime battle.
So we have come up with 7 tips for parents to help their child sleep.
7 Tips for a Good Night’s Sleep
Reduce screen time before bed
Research has shown that reducing screen time for at least 2 hours before bedtime aids in the production of sleep as it reduces the interference of the blue light that is emitted from the screens. This blue light affects melatonin, the hormone that plays an important part in the sleep-wake cycle.
Children love routine and we are aware of the importance of routines for growing toddlers and preschoolers. Creating a night time routine which could include a relaxing warm bath and a story book being read, around the same time every night could help to set the scene hopping into bed. This simple yet soothing bedtime routine can help your child to automatically relax and become sleepy.
Chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla)
This is the best all round herb for children. Chamomile’s carminative actions help to treat restlessness, anxiety, and irritability. It is the perfect herb for upset infants and children who can’t settle down enough to fall asleep. A gentle Sleep Tea that features Chamomile is available here. Chamomile is a very safe herb to use for children and is simple to give them.
Create a sleep-inducing bedroom
Beautiful Soft sheets, a darkened room with light limiting shades and quiet can help your child differentiate between day and night, making it easier to fall asleep. Creating a sleep-inducing environment is important because it sets the stage for sleep by reducing distractions. It’s only when a child is calm and not distracted, that they can fall asleep more quickly and with less help.
Help relieve their fears
Ghosts, Monsters and other scary creatures do not actually wander around at night, but instead of rejecting bedtime fears, speak about them with your child. If a little reassurance does not work, try using a special Lavender Monster spray! Getting your child to help you make a spray during the day, to ward off the monsters at night can be very simple.
You only need some simple Ingredients
- Spray Bottle (200mls)
- Distilled Water
- Witch Hazel
- Lavender essential oil
- Cedarwood essential oil
Simply add 1 tsp of witch hazel to your bottle, 20 drops of Lavender and 20 drops of Cedarwood. Then fill the bottle with your distilled water and shake. Your new monster spray will be the magic trick to make those monsters run away.
However it could also be useful to make some time during the day to address any fears at night and stay away from using bedtime for these scary conversations.
Keep the room cool
Your child’s sleep cycle is not only reliant on a darkened room, but it’s also sensitive to temperature. Melatonin levels help to regulate the drop of internal body temperature needed to sleep and a room that’s a cooler is better at promoting the benefits of a deeply restoring sleep.
Magnesium is a naturally occurring mineral and an essential nutrient. Magnesium has an amazing calming effect on the nervous system that can help a restful sleep. A dosage for most children ages 2 to 8 years old is 100 mg of magnesium at bedtime. However the type of magnesium in your supplements can also make a huge difference! It’s the type of organic acid that the magnesium is combined with that can change the effects of the supplement. For example, magnesium oxide will have a laxative effect but Magnesium glycinate has a calming effect and is a better option for bedtime.
Just remember – Children are very smart and will quickly learn how to delay bedtime if they can.
Why does my Child keep waking up at Night?
Waking up during the night is part of the normal sleep cycle, but when your child’s night-time calls and cries are keeping you awake, it can be pretty tough. Taking steps to help prevent your child’s nightly wake-ups in the first place and sticking to a constant response when they do wake up will help you get through this stage.
This can be obvious. Is there a TV in the room? If so, please take it out of there- bedroom is not a place for TV when you are a child.
But Is there loud noise from neighbours or the road outside? Maybe your child shares the room with a sibling or parent who makes a lot of noise? If this is the case a white noise generator or fan can be useful in these circumstances.
If the room is too hot and the child’s body can not cool down, then this can also be a factor.
As your child’s thought processes become more refined, they can develop the capability of becoming afraid of things. And some fears like a fear of the dark or a fear of being alone can make it harder for the child to sleep.
Why does my Child have Trouble Falling Asleep?
There are many reasons why a child may have trouble falling asleep. It could be lack of exercise, too much sugar late at night, scary movies they have watched or stress about something they are feeling.
If you are worried about your child’s sleeping or lack thereof, and you feel that their sleep-wake cycle may be related to a disorder such as ADHD or a mood disorder, you need to seek further help.