How To Improve Your Child’s Sleeping Habits
For many parents, sending their children to bed is a daily struggle. If kids had a fun-filled day, chances are they never want that day to end, so they put off bedtime as much as they can. The struggle continues the next morning when kids refuse to get up, no matter how hard you try. Irregular bedtime hours result in irregular sleep patterns, which interfere with both your and your child’s daily life. As hard as it may seem, helping your child build good sleeping habits is extremely important. Just ask yourself this question: If your child’s life is organized in schedules, why should they not have a sleep schedule as well? Healthy sleeping habits will not only assure you they have a good night’s sleep, but will also help them feel more energized, perform better at school, and grow healthier overall. So, here we will show how a few simple ways you can improve your child’s sleeping habits.
Create a strict bedtime
Enforcing a strict bedtime is the best way to make sure your child gets the restorative sleep they need to grow happy and healthy. Kids between the ages of 4 and 11 need as much as 10 hours of sleep per night, maybe more, so a good sleeping habit is making sure that your kid goes to bed at the same early hour every day. It is equally important that your child gets out of bed at the same time every morning, too. This will help their bodies settle into a rhythm, that, if maintained, will evolve into a sleeping habit that will become harder and harder to break. In this respect, reducing nap time is also essential as it can disrupt your child’s sleep pattern. Napping should be an option only when strictly necessary.
Limit screen time
A strict bedtime should be improved by the limited use of electronic screens during—and ideally before—bedtime since they can interfere with your child’s restorative sleep. If your child likes to watch movies or play games on their tablets or computers before going to be, establish a digital curfew. Movies and games are filled with bright colors and high-pitched sounds that overstimulate their brain and cause it to be hyperactive at a time when it should be resting. On top of this, the bright light of these devices can trick the brain into believing it’s daytime and that it’s time to be awake. Consequently, your child will have trouble falling asleep and can spend the whole night tossing and turning in bed. Why not try giving them a book?
Cut down on snacks before bedtime
When setting your child’s nighttime routine, there are certain healthy habits that you can introduce before bedtime, too. One of these is cutting down on snacks. Kids usually like to eat something before they go to bed, but snacks that are high in sugar or fat can disrupt digestion and affect their sleep. So, cutting down on these unhealthy snacks can improve your child’s rest at night. If your child still feels snacky, try giving them a banana, as they’re made up of fast-digesting carbs.
Introducing these good sleeping habits into your children’s nighttime routine sounds quite daunting, especially since kids can be defiant little rebels. So it’s very important that you be patient. Don’t force these habits onto your kid as habits take time. Take small steps. Do it one day at a time. Once you see your child sleeping peacefully, you’ll realize all the hard work paid off.