How To... Help Kids Sleep
You may have no problems falling asleep after a long, grueling day at work, but your kids certainly may. Kids' sleeping habits vary widely and you may find that your kid is the one that just can't fall asleep at naptime or at bedtime. Here are a few tips to smooth your child's journey to dreamland.
Step 1: Add soothing noises
Many parents have had success with noisemakers -- little machines that can produce a variety of soothing noises. The sounds of the ocean, wind and rain have a soothing effect on many kids.
Step 2: Establish a routine
Create a relaxing environment for your children before bedtime. Oftentimes, kids need time to wind down before actually being sent to bed. A warm bath followed by reading a book may be just what they need. Repeating the same regimen every night right before bedtime may make falling asleep as easy as the routine.
Step 3: Make the room dark and comfy
Test your child's sleep environment if possible, or at least make sure that each part – the pillows, the mattress, the blankets, the room temperature and the bedroom itself - is comfortable and makes sleeping easy. If the room is too light, consider blackout curtains.
Step 4: Check his/her diet
Watch what your child eats, especially right before bedtime. If your child eats or drinks any food with high levels of protein, sugar or caffeine in the evening, he or she will find it more difficult to sleep because of the energy created by these foods. Instead, give your child food with simple carbohydrates as a bedtime snack.
Step 5: Make sure your child exercises
Encourage your child to expend his or her energy throughout the day by playing outdoors. Exercise keeps children healthy and helps them sleep more easily.
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