Getting your child to sleep soundly throughout the night can sometimes be a struggle, however, sleep is one of the most important factors for promoting a healthier wellbeing and development.
Regular, quality sleep is essential for children’s physical and mental growth, as well as their ability to learn and concentrate during the day.
So, if you have a little one who needs to sleep better, here are four strategies that can help your child sleep better.
1) Establish a Consistent Bedtime Routine
One of the most effective ways to help your child get a good night’s sleep is to establish a consistent bedtime routine.
Our children thrive on a predictable routine, and so by having a set bedtime ritual, you can signal to their mind and bodies that it’s time to get ready for sleep.
Start by setting a bedtime that allows your child to get the recommended amount of sleep for their age. This means that your younger children should go to bed earlier than your older children.
You should create a calming routine that lasts around thirty to sixty minutes before bedtime, and may include activities such as reading, taking a warm bath, or practising relaxation exercises.
2) Create a Comfortable Environment
One of the biggest interferences with a good night’s sleep comes in the form of an uncomfortable mattress. Your child’s mattress should be of high quality and replaced every six to eight years – just like your own.
If your child is complaining that their mattress is uncomfortable, or if they’re waking up tired, then it might be time to shop for something new.
If you’re not sure where to start, then consider consulting with experts such as those at Archers Sleep Centre. Their specialist team is on hand to help you find the perfect make and model of mattress for your little one.
3) Limit Their Screen Time
Excessive screen time, especially before bedtime, can interfere with sleep patterns as the blue light from devices such as smartphones and tablets can disrupt the production of essential sleep hormones – and this goes for both you and your children!
Establish clear rules for screen time in the evenings that are enforced every day, as the consistency will help to limit any tantrums this might cause. Instead of screens, consider engaging them in story time or quiet play.
4) Encourage Physical Activity
Regular physical activity can promote better sleep for all of us, including our children. Encourage your child to be active during the day, as this will help them sleep better at night. You can even do this as a family.
Organisations such as Ramblers are a great place to find local walking routes, though if you have your kids in tow, you might want to stick to the easy options.
Just remember not to complete this exercise too close to bedtime as it can leave them wired and overstimulated, making it difficult to wind down.
Share your tips for helping children sleep better in the comments below!