Tips on How to Get a Good Night Sleep
Mom! Mom! Mom! I hate this bed. I hate it. I hate everything about it! Can I sleep with you? Me “No, when you sleep with me I do not get any sleep.” Does this sound familiar does your little one complain about where they sleep? Have you done everything, so they get a good night sleep?
Tips on How to Get a Good Night Sleep
1) Have a set bedtime for your children and wake-up time, and stick to it. This seems simple, but most of us are not very good at keeping the same sleep schedule, so you need to help your children do this. If you keep them on the same sleeping schedule within about 20 minutes before or after, they will be more likely to get to sleep easier, and they will wake up feeling refreshed.
2) Avoid long naps during the day. Your child’s body needs a certain amount of sleep each night. If they are having trouble sleeping at night and are taking long naps during the day, try skipping or shortening their naps. We naturally get sleepy in the afternoon; this is a great time for them to take a short nap. Naps longer than 45 minutes can affect their ability to get to sleep when you want to in the evening.
3) Avoid caffeine for 4 to 6 hours before bedtime. I would also suggest not giving them any beverages two hours before bed time because their bladders can’t handle the liquid. You want to be sure to avoid any giving your child any stimulants such as soda, tea, or too much chocolate in the evening hours. This will prevent them from waking up during the night.
4) Avoid heavy, fatty or spicy foods 4 to 6 hours before bedtime. Their body is working hard to digest a large meal, or they have spicy food in their stomach, it is harder for them to stay asleep.
5) Avoid strenuous exercise for about 2 hours before they go to bed. Regular, strenuous exercise actually will help you sleep more soundly, but not if it is too close to your bedtime. I know this is hard with sports so try to do a cool down routine before they go to bed. I have taught my daughter how to do a five-minute meditation.
6) Having a bedtime ritual is helpful for anyone, not just kids! Doing the same things before bed each night tells our bodies to prepare for sleep. A warm bath, soft music, prayer time, whatever works for them. Use this time before bed to consciously relax them and leave their worries behind. Some people find it helpful to write down what they are worried about and then make an effort to leave the worries on the paper for the night.
7) Have a light snack before bed. A small snack can help you fall asleep. Warm milk actually works, especially if you have it with a food high in tryptophan, such as a banana.
8) Have them help you decorate their bedroom. When you decorate, their room thinks about making it as dark and quiet as possible. Use blinds, window shades or room darkening curtains. A sleep mask can be helpful, too. Try to have the TV or radio off; these can stimulate you instead of put you to sleep. Very soft music may be more relaxing if you must have some noise.
9) Keep their bedroom at a comfortable temperature. Having their room too cold or too warm can keep them awake. Most people feel more comfortable in a cool bedroom.
10) Make sure your bedding is comfortable. Let them choose the blankets and pillows they like for their special place.
11) Only use your bed for sleeping or snuggling! Are you guilty of breaking this one? I am! Your bed should be used only for sleeping or sex. If you keep your bed reserved for these and only these activities, your mind will know it is time to sleep when you get in bed. It doesn’t hurt to try!
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