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How to Help Children with their Sleep Routine

Having a routine of a sound sleep at night is a must for small children aged between two to eight years as it affects their overall behavior and personality in the long run.

Getting toddlers or school-going kids to sleep on time, sometimes, becomes a pain in the neck for parents.

There is hardly any parents who do not face the problem of making a child sleep on time at some point or another. Having a routine of a sound sleep at night is a must for small children aged between two to eight years as it affects their overall behavior and personality in the long run.

A child with no fixed routine of going to bed has more chances of suffering from sleep disorders.

In fact, children’s behavior can gradually change as they turn more irritable, impulsive and mentally unpredictable. Here are a few effective tips to make children sleep according to the desired routine:

A sleep-inducing environment is to be created before bedtime for getting kids to sleep. Setting up regular bedtime and wake-up times helps a lot in making children stick to the routine. They gradually get used to their daily routine of sleeping once their sleep schedule develops into their habit.

Soft music at low sound can be played to make children fall asleep. Turning off T.V. too will help children go to sleep at night. Keeping T.V. turned on at night can be a major distraction in the sleep routine for them. Children should be made accustomed to sleeping to the accompaniment of the continuous rhythmic sound produced either by a fan or by soft music. They can also have a companion in the form of a teddy bear or a favorite doll.

Reading out a favorite bedtime story helps a lot in making a child fall asleep as per their fixed routine. The same story is to be repeated daily as it drives children into the mood of sleeping. A favorite storybook with short stories too has a soothing effect on children. Especially the books where the characters are heading to bed themselves are perfect for bedtime. Scary or ghost stories are to be avoided as they scare the kids and make them lie awake late.

Drinking water or milk before sleeping is also conducive to sound sleep, whereas juice, tea, and other drinks should be avoided. The child has to be so used to his bedtime routine that he goes to bed without being asked to do so. If a kid doesn’t go to bed, the parent should not give in, rather the child should be asked, “Do you want to sleep now or after five minutes?” Such prodding on the part of the parents will help the child stick to his bedtime routine.

Avoid too much fun before bed. The child should never be triggered into a playful mood when it is time for him to sleep. Parents need to cultivate amongst the children the habit of sleeping as per schedule. Last ‘goodnight’ has to be brief and even if the child calls after you leave, don’t come back at once, though it may sound harsh. If you keep coming back, your child will get the impression that calling for Mom or Dad works for them and they’ll get more time to play. It will certainly help your kid if you make them understand that bedtime routine is to be strictly adhered to.

Avoid electronics for 1 to 2 hours before sleep. The use of electronics such as a computer, a smartphone, a laptop, etc. is not to be allowed in the bedroom of the children. All their electronic gadgets should be switched off one to two hours before the sleeping time so that their sleep time is not disturbed. Children should be in a relaxed state of mind with no worry or curiosity in their minds. This also makes them fall asleep without waking up late in the bed.

It is the responsibility of the parents to develop in their child the habit of going to bed strictly as per the fixed schedule. Sound sleep refreshes the mind and it is also a key to good health.

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