Any parent will know the struggles of getting their little one to sleep at bedtime and this can end up becoming a battle after numerous hours of trying and failing for hours on end. Nearly every parent has had to deal with a difficult bedroom routine at some stage and you may be left at your wit’s end as to find a strategy that works. Not only will your child be exhausted the following day after hours of missed sleep but can also cause a great deal of strain on family relationships. Take a look at some top tips on how to get your child to sleep:
Set an individualized bedtime
Young children need approximately 12 hours’ sleep per night to function the following day, however, the good news is that their sleep patterns don’t change very much in comparison to adults. As a result, once you have set a bedtime routine, it will be easy for them to stick to it. Children that rise early will always wake at the crack of dawn, regardless of whether you put them to bed late, which needs to be taken into consideration when setting a bedtime routine, so they get the sleep they need.
Turn off the screens two hours before bed
We are now living in a generation in which children are exposed to more screen time than ever before, however, the more time they spend looking at a screen throughout the day, the less likely they’ll be able to sleep. Blue light is emitted devices such as laptops, tablets and phones which reduces the sleep hormone, known as melatonin in the body and keeps the brain alert. Before bedtime, ensure the room is dark and peaceful and keep devices out of the room so they don’t feel enticed to play on them during the night.
Read a bedtime story
Do you ever remember your parents reading you a story before bed? There was a very good reason for it. According to scientific research, a bedtime story helps promote sleep as they have a wind-down period before closing their eyes. Goodnight Sweet Dreams from juliana-sheikh.co.uk is an interactive storybook designed to prepare your little one for a good night’s sleep.
Get plenty of natural light in the day
If possible, ensure your child is spending enough time outdoors and exposed to natural light throughout the day. Sunlight keeps melatonin levels in check, which means they will feel more awake in the daytime and sleepier in the evenings.
One of the reasons why a child may not want to feel asleep is for the fact that they don’t feel secure. At bedtime, they’re away from you for a long period of time which means that the separation could cause anxiety and distress. To combat this issue, you could consider introducing a personal object such as a toy or blanket to them that they can become reliant on to help them feel comforted and secure at bedtime and help them drift off to sleep.