Help your restless sleepers
GETTING a good night’s sleep is not only important to adults, but also vital for children as it directly affects their development mentally and physically.
Parents often worry about what time their child should go to sleep and whether they’re staying up too late.
Another concern is about children who struggle to settle down at bed time or constantly wake up during the night.
It is important that parents know that sleeping difficulties are common and consistently raised with Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service child health nurses. It is something our team can help with.
When is bedtime and should it be the same time each night?
It is fairly common for children not to want to go to bed and to stay up playing etcetera, but it is important that you do have a regular routine that you stick to.
From six months and older, a consistent bed time and a routine will help have your children settle.
Sometimes it is difficult to have a regular bedtime when families (especially with older siblings) have commitments involving work, community events or sports training in the evenings.
If you do have commitments that make this difficult, then try to ensure bedtime stays within a two hour window for your child.
If you decide bedtime is 7pm, but for instance have a commitment on Friday that makes it difficult, then try to ensure the bedtime is still before 9pm on that particular evening.
My child struggles to get to sleep
There can be a variety of reasons why your child struggles to get to sleep. It is important that your child has wind-down time and can relax before going to bed.
Rather than watching television or running around, try to ensure that in the last hour before bedtime that your child is restful.
Once it is bedtime, it is a good idea with younger children to have a routine of bath, story and bed. This helps children settle into bed.
Older children should listen to gentle music, use breathing exercises or read their own book to settle down.
Phone your local WBHHS child health team on: Gayndah – 4161 3571 Mundubbera – 4165 5222 Monto – 4166 9300 Biggenden – 4127 6400 Eidsvold – 4165 7100