Sleep Strategies for Kids
Children need a lot of sleep and most kids sleep less than required. This may make them sleepy or cranky and irritable during the day time. If your child is very tired by bedtime s/he may become hyper and refuse to sleep. Here are some sleep strategies for kids so that your child is fully rested and ready to go in the morning!
Make before-bedtime quite: What does your kid do before bedtime----Does he wrestle or play with his dad or sib? Watches television? Children love these activities so naturally he does not like to go to bed. The key to get your child to bed is to make the time before sleep quite. Put him to bed before he is actually very tired. If your child is tired by bedtime then he may find it difficult to sleep. It is advisable to ensure that your child sleeps early at night so that he gets about at least 9-10 hours of sleep at night.
Have a scheduled bed time and a bedtime routine: Children love routine so have a consistent wind down schedule before putting your child for sleep like-----give him a bath, change his clothes, read a story in bed. But ensure that whatever you do both you and your child enjoys and he feels relaxed. This will make him feel sleepy and ready for bed.
Make his day busy: Children are bundle of energy and can go on and on even they are really tired.
They stimulate themselves to avoid sleeping. Keep them busy during the day like take your child to park to play, play at home with them –this way they have fun and spend the energy that prevents them from sleeping at night.
Make him feel safe and secure: Does your child resist sleeping because he afraid of dark or afraid to sleep in his room. Reassure him that he is safe, talk to him about his fears and reassure that you are in the next room and will be with him when needed. In addition make his room conducive for good night sleep like (keep a small night lamp if he is scared of dark), play music if your child likes it.
Having a consistent daily schedule before bed will give your child an expectation of what comes next. In addition ensure that your child has everything that he wants to sleep well through the night –like his favorite stuffed animal, his preferred blanket, a drink of water, visit to the washroom. Most importantly make the time just before bed quiet and calm---this makes him sleepy and comfortable and when his body and mind are ready for sleep, he will fall asleep much easier and sleep well through the night.
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Source: Onlymyhealth editorial team Sep 12, 2011
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