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4 ways to help your child get enough sleep
Claire McCarthy, MD,
Senior Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing
As a service to our readers, Harvard Health Publishing provides access to our library of archived content. Please note the date of last review or update on all articles. No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.
Thanks for this valuable suggestions. Let me give one quick tip on how to help your child get enough sleep.
Establish a consistent and relaxing bedtime routine that lasts between 20 and 30 minutes and ends in your child’s bedroom.
Avoid scary stories or TV shows. It’s better to read a favorite book every night than a new one because it’s familiar.
As you have said we should make sleep time a priority. I think kids need some kind of an incentive a push to go to bed and have a tight sleep. Bed time stories are good reward for kids to go bed.
If we make telling kids bedtime stories a daily routine i think , for that one reason , to hear good stories they will , without any compulsion willing to go to bed and get some sleep.
thank you for an awesome post, keep sharing such a nice post. it helped my child
In addition to the sensible ideas above for getting children a night’s sleep, one of the most important is helping children with bad dreams, since one reason children have trouble sleeping is that they have bad dreams. One of the least productive responses, but one that parents are often told to make is to tell children that dreams are not “real” and to show them there is nothing under the bed or in the closet. But telling children that their bad dreams aren’t “really” scary just keeps children running into their parents’ bedroom night after night. Helping children to realize that “dreams are stories we tell ourselves for a reason” and helping them understand that the reason lies with “unfinished business” from the day before will empower children to make sense of their own dreams and put themselves back to bed without having to awaken their parents. I have written a children’s picture book for ages 3 and up, Mommy, Daddy, I Had a Bad Dream! to help children and parents respond constructively to children’s bad dreams. Joey, a bouncy kangaroo has a series of bad dreams which his parents lovingly help him to understand until, by the last one, he is able to understand why he had it and to go back to bed feeling comforted and in charge. With Joey as an example, children will be empowered to think of their bad dreams as puzzles they can solve.
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