A poor night’s sleep can affect your children’s performance at school and the way they interact with other kids. It can make them feel cranky and highly irritable. It can even put them at risk of several health problems, such as obesity and low immune system.
Your kids’ dreams play a huge role in the quality of sleep they get. If they have good dreams, they’re likely to sleep better at night. To make sure their dreams won’t get in the way of their sleep, here are some tips you can use.
1. Make them sleep early
Children who sleep late are more prone to getting bad dreams. As much as possible, tuck them early to bed and ensure that they sleep at the same time each night. Creating a routine is essential in adapting a good sleeping habit.
Limit your kids’ access to their gadgets at night. Remove computers and television sets from their rooms to avoid the temptation of staying up late to finish their favorite games or TV programs.
Exposure to light can send the wrong signal to their brain and may trick them to think that it’s still morning. It can also help if you can avoid too much stimulation before they get to bed, such as letting them watch action or scary movies.
If you are considering engaging them in physical activities and play, do them after they get off from school and not before their bedtime.
2. Ensure a comfortable sleep
For their comfort, ensure that your kids’ room are at the best temperature. Make sure that they are not too cold or too hot. It’s also a good idea if you can invest in adjustable beds. This type of bed allows you to change the angle of your kids’ mattresses for their ultimate comfort.
Children also find it easier to sleep in a room with little to no light. If you worry about your kids’ safety, getting a nightlight can surely help. Just make sure that it’s positioned far away from your kids’ beds. In case they worry about being alone, you should reassure them that you’ll be checking their room every few minutes until they fall asleep.
Playing soothing music can also help your kids sleep well. For some children, hearing white noise works better. To know your kids’ preference, ask them what they want and what can make their rooms more comfortable for them.
3. Allow your kids to have security objects
There are kids who can’t sleep without their blankets. For some children, they find it easier to sleep when they have their toys with them in bed.
If your child has a specific security object, don’t take it away from him since its absence can make him feel agitated and anxious. These emotions will make it even harder for him to sleep. Instead, try to reinforce it with relaxation techniques and coping skills. As your child learns how to get to sleep on his own, he’s likely to outgrow his comfort toys and blanket, too.
4. Encourage your kids to talk about their day
Children who experience a lot of stress during the day tend to have bad dreams at night. To help ensure that they get a good night sleep, encourage them to talk about their day. If they are going through something frustrating or stressful at school, try to address and help them resolve it.
Explore their strengths and build your kids’ confidence as much as possible. If they feel happy and secure during the day, they can also feel secure and in control during their sleep.
5. Retrain the way their brains think
If your children frequently have bad dreams, help them learn how to distinguish what’s real and what’s not. In case they fear seeing monsters, approach the situation as logically as possible. Help them realize that there’s nothing to be afraid of under their beds or inside their closets.
If they are still having a hard time, encourage them to create a new ending for their dreams. Help them defeat the monsters by empowering them to change how events happen in their sleep.
Aside from helping them feel more secure and in control, it can also boost their creativity.