Dr. Robert Oexman, director of Sleep to Live Institute and writer for Huffington Post&#s Healthy Living, shared some great tips on getting children back on track to better sleep, health and learning.
- Eliminate electronics: Research continues to link electronics with sleep disturbance, and even sleep deficiency and lower grades among children and teens. Smartphones, computers, TVs, etc. should be removed from the room at least one hour before bedtime. If your child uses their phone for an alarm, replace it with a simple inexpensive alarm clock.
- Establish routine: Sticking to a certain “bedtime” is very important. Avoid letting a child stay up late to study for classes. Several studies have shown that adequate sleep after studying increases retention.
- Baths before bed: Warm baths or showers can be part of the nightly routine for children. It can also help increase the quality of sleep.
- Create a healthy sleep environment: Ensure your child's room is designed for sleep. "White noise" machines can help drown out the sound from others who have later bedtimes. Keeping the room temperature around 68 degrees is optimal for sleep. The room should also be dark – if your child requires a nightlight select a “low blue light.” Ensuring your child is sleeping on a good mattress is also important. For those who are potty training, mattress protection products can help make middle of the night cleanups quick and easy. Protect-A-Bed offers a Potty Training Protection Kit for fast cleanup.
- Prep for bedtime: Have your children spend at least 30 minutes preparing for bed. Make sure all electronics are absent – books are great replacements for TV shows.
For more tips and resources on sleep from the original post, visit HuffintonPost.com.