How to perfect your kids’ bedtime routine
Getting the kids to bed can sometimes feel like a nightly challenge.
Younger children often wake up during the night or cry when they’re put to bed, while getting a teenager to do anything they’re meant to can turn even the most patient of parents into a stroppy adolescent.
These situations are not uncommon in kids of all ages, but making sure they get enough sleep is important for their development, and a solid bedtime routine is essential.
TEMPUR shows you how you can improve your kids’ bedtime routine, and ensure you all get to bed relaxed and ready for a good night’s sleep…
WHY IS A BEDTIME ROUTINE SO IMPORTANT?
A bad night’s sleep doesn’t just affect your child – it affects you too.
The effects of a bad night’s sleep are similar for both adult and child, however, as a child is developing and learning a lot more in their younger years than adults tend to, they are in need of their sleep a lot more.
A bedtime routine is about more than just making sure your child gets a quality night’s sleep. The routine itself is an opportunity to nurture your child, giving them a chance to open up about the important things on their mind.
Through the structure of a routine, it makes your children feel comforted and secure as they know what to expect. A routine for children makes them feel at home.
Ensure you do the same things every night – whether putting them in a bath or reading to them – so they get used to the routine.
GETTING BABIES TO SLEEP
New-borns and infants are often amongst the toughest age to get to sleep.
As their sleeping pattern is so intermittent, often ours becomes the same, with feeding times and crying spells determining when we can sleep ourselves.
Because babies are so young, they cannot differentiate between night-time and daytime. This could mean them being chirpier and more playful at 3am, rather than at a more sociable hour for you.
If this is the case, try to be as calming as possible towards the infant by keeping the lights off and being quiet.
If they still won’t sleep, make sure you checked things such as their nappy or spend time making sure their sleeping environment is not too stimulating.
GETTING YOUNGER CHILDREN TO SLEEP
Once your child starts to get older, naps become less regular and their excitable nature reaches the surface, which is why structure is so important for bedtime.
There are several different tips you can do to help improve the ease of your child heading to bed. The main tip is to set a few activities to do before getting into bed -as part of a routine. These can include a bath, brushing teeth, reading or having a glass of warm milk.
This helps your child subconsciously get ready for bed.
Limiting after school activities may also be a good idea if they seem to be struggling with lots of homework. Making sure they go to bed early enough is often the make or break factor of a good night’s sleep for them.
HELPING TEENAGERS TO SLEEP
When transitioning into adolescence, a teenager’s circadian rhythms get temporarily reset. Melatonin, the sleep hormone, is naturally released later into the night, meaning they can find it more difficult to fall asleep.
One way to help with this is to make sure they are at optimum comfort during the night. Tempur’s memory foam mattresses are designed to conform to the weight and feel of your body, providing personalised support and comfort during the night.
It can be a tricky task to help teens with their sleep, but tips such as restricting screen time and avoiding fizzy drinks that contain too much caffeine can really help.
One good tip is to not let weekends throw out a teenager’s sleeping pattern. They will be tempted to ‘catch up on sleep’ over the weekend, or have late nights, but this can jeopardise your teenagers sleeping pattern for the following week, so be mindful of this.
Have you tried these handy tips before and found that they’ve helped? Let us know below…