Bedtime can sometimes feel like a battle, especially when you have children with attention and anxiety issues. Overstimulation during the day can keep them up longer than you’d like, and make it harder for them to fall asleep.
We get it. We’ve been there. Next time bedtime rolls around, try some of these easy and natural ways to help your child settle down at night.
Get plenty of physical activity during the day
Well before your kid is even starting to think about bedtime, make sure they get plenty of exercise and play time during the day. Experts say that kids should get at least 90 minutes of activity each day, preferably outside if possible. Playing outside, running around, swimming, sports, and so on are all great ways to keep your kid active each day. The more energy your child spends during the day, the more tired they’ll be at night.
Bed is for sleeping, not for playing
If your child has a habit of playing in his room, or even in his bed, set boundaries that make it clear that the bed is for sleeping. If your child often plays on his bed, he might not see it as a place for sleeping when bedtime rolls around, and could think back to the fun game he was playing earlier and want to play it again. If the bed and bedroom are for sleeping and other quiet, relaxing activities, it might make it easier to him to fall asleep.
Similarly, try to remove any stimulants from your child’s room, like TVs, video games, tablets, etc. It’ll help keep that separation between play and sleep.
Create a bedtime routine
Kids thrive on routines. And while it should include the obvious things like bathing, getting into pajamas, brushing teeth, and so on, try to think outside of the usual to include more bedtime activities that will help your child calm down. Maybe an hour before bedtime you turn off the TV, computer, and tablet to go take a bath. Then after the teeth are brushed and the pajamas are on, you read a story together. Making a routine and sticking to it will help your child realize that the day is done and it’s time to start calming down.
Have a relaxing bath
Baths are a great way to help the body relax after a long day. Playing soothing music, talking about all the things you did that day, removing toys can help make the bath more relaxing. If your child is particularly active today, try using lavender bath products or essential oils. The scent of lavender is naturally calming and can help your kid settle down.
Getting a child to settle down for bedtime can be a herculean effort, but with a few changes to your child’s routine, bedtime will quickly become a dream.
Learn more about the importance of sleep for children with attention and anxiety issues, and how Brillia can help today.
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