The Chronicle

Better nights



Dr Harrington says a common misconcept­ion among parents is that allowing their child to take a nap during the day will impact their sleep at night.

“One of the issues I’ve seen is that these kids who aren’t allowed to sleep at daycare, they’re actually becoming overtired, then they can’t settle well at night, so they muck up when they’re about to go to sleep.”


Regardless of where children spend the majority of their screen time, be it watching TV or on their phone or computer, it all affects their ability to sleep.

“If you think about yourself and you’re watching something on Netflix and you’re watching one episode and before you know it, the next episode comes on and you start watching that, so instead of switching off and sleeping you’re spending the next 40 or 50 or 60 minutes watching the next episode … that’s what happens with children as well,” she says.


Putting discipline around sleep as well as a child’s daily routine is a really good idea.

Multiple European studies have found links between children stuck inside during the day and interrupti­ons to their sleep at night. “So what they found was that children going to bed later are getting up later, sleep duration was being affected in some children and night time wakings were affected.”

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