October 31, 2023
5 Secrets to Help Kids Sleep Better
Must-Read Sleep Tricks
1. Pesky Screens
What do screens emit? Blue light. What does melatonin hate? Blue light. No melatonin, no sleep. It’s best to avoid screens for 1-2 hours before bed. Screen use during that time can cause delays of an hour or more in falling asleep. Long-term this can cause many mental and physical health issues. Researchers have also found that the longer a young person spent looking at an electronic screen before going to bed, the worse quality sleep they were likely to have during the night. If removing screens feels like an impossibility, you can buy orange-ish filters for them which helps to reduce the effect. We know it’s tricky, but finding alternatives to screen time and keeping screens out of your child’s bedroom will be seriously worth it in the long-run.
2. Bathe Them To Sleep
Taking a warm bath can help your kids fall asleep. That’s warm not hot. This is important. Our bodies have natural temperature rhythms. One of our body’s signals for ‘sleepy time’ is a drop in body temperature. It happens naturally and sparks an increase in melatonin.
Taking a warm bath one to two hours before sleep will artificially raise our body temperature, which will then drop slowly when we get out of the tub into a cooler environment. Noticed those post-bathtime yawns? That’s your body temperature drop signaling to your brain that it’s time to send us to sleep. But, if the bath is too hot, we stay hot and bothered for longer and the technique isn’t as effective.
3. Story Time
If you don’t already have books into your nightly routine, try adding it in right away! Whether it’s independent reading or reading aloud as a family, reading at night is a habit you want to start early. This is something they can continue throughout their lives.
4. Therapeutic Weighted Blankets
Therapeutic weighted blankets, wraps and lap pads benefit children with special needs, autism, sensory processing disorder, ADHD, hyperactivity and more. These products provide gentle pressure that hug the body to produce a calming and relaxing effect.
The proprioceptive input on the body gives the child the input they crave to relieve stress, focus attention at school and obtain the sleep they desperately need. Try these simple sensory motor solutions to make an enormous difference in their daily life.
5. Reduce the Focus on Sleep:
Kids can have trouble shutting their brains off for the night. So, instead of increasing that anxiety by insisting that it’s time to go to bed (“now!”), consider focusing more on relaxation and keeping your child calm.
Try teaching your child deep breathing techniques and create a routine to calm their body.
Calming Visual Input
- Soft light – Think a night light.
- Roll on Essential Oils – Lavender and Vanilla are relaxing scents for a lot of people, but this is a blend of oils specially designed to promote sleep. The roll-on version is super easy to use with kids. Simply swipe a little on their wrists, back of their neck, or even on their chest.
- Favorite stuffed toy – Some kids love to run soft textures through their fingers or squeeze while trying to fall asleep
- Soft Music