child sleep3

1. Have a consistent bedtime routine
Routines are important for children, especially when it comes to bedtime. Creating a routine before bed—such as taking a bath, playing relaxing music, and having story time, signals to your child that it is time to relax. Routines provide comfort and predictability for children, which sets the stage for the perfect bedtime atmosphere. Eventually, your child’s body may automatically start to become sleepy at the beginning of the routine.
2. Turn off the TV and video games at least two hours before bedtime
Research has shown that light from televisions and electronics (ipads/computer monitors) interferes with the production of the hormone melatonin, which is important for sleep. In order to keep melatonin levels balanced in the body, researchers suggest to turn off tvs, ipads, and computers two hours before bedtime.
3. Night light
A common reason that children do not want to go to sleep at night or have trouble getting back to sleep in the middle of the night, is because they are scared of what might be lurking in the dark. A night light is a simple, easy, and inexpensive way to help alleviate this fear.
4. Set an appropriate bedtime for your child…don’t wait until your child is “tired” before you put them to bed.
Every child is different and therefore every child exhibits different behaviors when they are tired. Many children become hyper when they are actually over-tired! School-age children need between 9 and 12 hours of sleep each night, but there’s a lot of variability in sleep needs and patterns. Know how much sleep your child needs in order to wake up refreshed and set an appropriate bedtime in order to ensure they get the sleep they need.
5. Create a sleep-inducing environment
Bedtime means separation and a stuffed animal or special blanket can make your child feel comfortable and safe. Soft sheets, room-darkening shades, and relative quiet also provide comfort and set the stage for a good night’s sleep. Finally, children do not tend to sleep well when the temperature is too warm. Slightly cool temperatures promote deeper sleep.
6. Listen to your child’s fears
Instead of dismissing bedtime fears, address them. Listen to what your child has to say. NEVER confirm that monsters are real by using “monster spray” or telling your child that you checked the closet for monsters and didn’t see any. Let your child know that monsters are not real, but again, do listen to their fears because there are real feelings hiding behind those fears that need to be heard.
7. Hugs n Kisses and a bedtime story
When children feel loved, they tend to relax. Bedtime is the perfect time for hugs, kisses, and an appropriate bedtime story. Avoid scary books at bedtime and opt instead for pleasant, happy, and peaceful stories.
8. One Last Thing
Kids will always ask for that one last thing — kisses, hugs, a drink of water, using the bathroom, just one more book. They can be quite inventive too. Do your best to anticipate their requests by addressing them during the bedtime routine. Let your child know that once they are in bed, they need to stay in bed.
If your child does gets up, don’t react — simply take them by the hand and walk them back to bed. If you argue or give in to requests, you are giving your child the extra attention they are seeking.