Sleep is essential for anyone and most important for a child. Sleep is a necessary component of your child’s mental and physical well-being. If you’re having trouble getting your child to sleep, you’re not alone. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, 25 to 50 percent of children and 40 percent of adolescents have sleep disorders.
Understanding your children’s sleep needs is the first step toward improved sleep for them. By combining sleep hygiene, age-appropriate routines, and monitoring of sleep disturbances, you can help your child get the rest they need to grow up strong and healthy.
Why Is Sleep Important?
Sleep is important for children, as they are still developing. A lack of sleep may disturb the child’s happiness, mood, memory, attention, and alertness.
When a child does not get enough sleep, they can become lethargic or hyperactive.
For a child at school age, this may reflect on his grades, as a lack of sleep provides difficulties concentrating and memory problems. When we are talking about sleep deprivation, it does need to be several hours; more than thirty minutes of sleep deprivation may show a sequel.
According to studies, approximately 25 % of children under the age of 5 do not get enough sleep. This number is quite alarming as the first five years of a child are very decisive for their growth.
In adolescents, sleep deprivation has been revealed to influence academic performance and mental health. This can further lead to substance abuse and depression.
As your child grows there, sleep patterns will change, but it is very important to have a consistent routine for children under three years old. Organize a routine for everything, wake-up time, eating, and bedtime, so that your child will be able to follow the rhythm.
When bedtime comes, try to limit the usage of screens, put on their pajamas, read a book or sing a lullaby to them. This will initiate that it is time to sleep. It is important to put your child to bed before they are asleep; this will allow them to learn how to fall asleep with no one’s help.
Babies: As they need to develop a circadian rhythm, babies do not sleep through the night till their 6th month approximately. Most of them may wake up because they are hungry or need to change diapers, but if they wake up out of their normal routine, you may try to talk to them back to sleep without picking them up.
Toddlers: They normally have a minimum of one nap and a maximum of two naps. Most of them are very stubborn near bedtime at this age, as they want to continue to play. You can initiate the bedtime into a playful moment, allow them to choose their pajamas or the book you will read to them.
School Kids: Children have a busier schedule when they start school; they are often hyperactive at that age, which troubles their night. To fix this, you will need to implement a specific time for bed and a specific time to wake up; when you practice this schedule, their bodies will automatically feel sleepy when around bedtime.
Teenagers: At that age, you should work together to have a good sleeping pattern. As they are grown-up, they can adopt the same sleeping routine as you, so if you do not have one, you should think about implementing your own.
One thing that goes unnoticed for parents is that morning are important, do not let your kids oversleep, even on the weekends, as this will set the pace for the week. If you feel like your child is taking too many extracurricular activities, try to ease them.
If you feel like your child has trouble sleeping even though you apply the above tips, you must see a doctor. Applying the tips for at least three months before seeing a doctor is recommended. Let us know in the comments if your child is having sleeping difficulties…