Parents of infants assume that once their baby hits a certain age, he or she will automatically start sleeping through the night without any problems unless illness or bad dreams came into the picture. However, unfortunately, that is not always the case. In fact, more often than not, children have difficulty going to sleep and staying asleep at night. But, the good news is, there are tips and tricks to help your child sleep through the night much better. Let’s go over the do’s when it comes to helping your child sleep well at night right now:
The Do’s For Helping Your Child Sleep Soundly At Night
• Create A Bedtime Routine – Kids thrive on routine in general and this is why you will want to create a routine for bedtime each night for your kids. This means you will want to keep the bedtime schedule consistent which will involve a bath, then they get changed into their pajamas, then a bedtime story – and finally the lights go out except for the nightlight. This routine must be set in stone unless a family event, or an unexpected break in the schedule, or illness comes into play. The bedtime schedule and the time must be consistent.
• Teach Your Children Relaxation Techniques Before Bed – Toddlers can learn how to relax, and with that said, once children are out of infanthood, they can start learning how to relax. The important thing is that you will want your child or children to wind down as it gets closer to bedtime. This will involve playing relaxing and gentle music in the background and teaching kids easy deep-breathing techniques to help them wind down. Once again, a bedtime story will help them relax as well but you will want to make sure the story does not excite them too much or else it will only defeat the purpose.
• Use A Weighted Blanket – Weighted blankets are an excellent option for kids aged from 6 to 12 who have anxiety, ADD, ADHD, SPD, and who are under the autism spectrum. These blankets are meant to calm them down each night which means they will get a night of better sleep, and end up being in a better mood each day as a result. These blankets provide a type of therapy which is known as deep touch pressure stimulation, and that is why they are weighted in order to create calming effects.
It is made with 10% of the child’s body weight, and the blanket must fit the child, not the bed. However, even the best weighted blanket is not completely safe for babies, and if you are looking to use one for your toddler, you will need to consult with your child’s pediatrician. In fact, it is best to talk to your child’s pediatrician before using these blankets regardless to make sure that they are the best approach for sleeping if your child has additional needs.
• Check The Light And Noise Level In The Child’s Bedroom – You will want to make sure that there is nothing too bright other than a nightlight or anything loud in your child’s bedroom that will disrupt sleep.
• Make The Most Out Of White Noise – White noise that comes from fans calms adults when it comes to sleeping. The same will apply to children regardless of age. However, if you put a fan in your child’s room, don’t put the fan right in front of your child’s bed or else he or she will catch a draft. Keep the fan away from the child, especially during the winter. There are also white noise machines that serve the same purpose, and there are apps you can download as well that produce white noise as well.
Those are the do’s when it comes to helping your child fall asleep. Let’s now look at what not to do before bedtime which will end up keeping your child up at night!
The Don’ts For Helping Your Child Sleep Soundly At Night
• No Consumption Of Sugar Or Caffeine Close To Bedtime – Yes, it is a known fact that children don’t drink coffee but they love chocolate, and chocolate contains caffeine! Remember that cola contains caffeine as well! That means if you have a tasty chocolate cupcake for your child, only give it to them no later than 2 pm! And make sure the treat is small. The same goes for a cup of cola. In fact, it is best to minimize the amount of sugar to give your kids in general because it is not good for them. But sugar is the worst thing for kids to consume when it is too close to bedtime because they will be on a sugar high for hours.
• Cut Naps Off For Older Kids And Cut The Number Of Naps Down For Toddlers – Yes, toddlers still need to nap a little, but no more than once a day. And, toddlers should not nap anytime after dinner or else they will not sleep. And, older children will not sleep well if they are still napping. By the time your child is in kindergarten, it is time to cut the naps out because he or she doesn’t need it anymore.
• Avoid Scary Movies, TV Shows And Games At Night – Children have active imaginations, and if they watch a scary movie, or play a horror-themed game right before bed – they will be kept up at night! They will be scared and once bedtime is near, only allow your children to watch relaxing and funny TV shows and movies, and only allow them to play relaxing games.
• Make Dinner Time At Least 3 Hours Before Bed – If your child is getting ready to go to bed each night at 8 pm, this means dinner time must be at 5 pm and no later than that. If your child wants to have a small snack in between, then that is fine as long as it is healthy and light like a small apple, a few crackers, or some almonds. But don’t give your child a big dinner too close to bedtime. He or she will be energized while burning the calories from dinner, or it could interrupt digestion which means you will end up with a nasty cleanup job at some time in the night!
• Don’t Allow Your Kids To Use Tablets Too Late At Night – Tablets and smartphones give off a blue light which will keep your kids awake, and the same applied to adults as well. The blue light from these devices will interrupt melatonin production, which is the sleep chemical. If melatonin production is interrupted, then that will prevent anyone from getting good-quality sleep. However, if you must use these devices then be sure to switch the screen settings to night mode which will filter out the blue light. It is best not to use screens close to bedtime in general regardless if it is possible.
With these do’s and don’ts when it comes to helping your child sleep through the night, you now know what to do in order to help your child sleep through the night! And by utilizing these tips consistently, your child will end up having more nights of getting good-quality sleep than not! And, so will you!