Keep a Regular Bedtime
There are plenty of things that could keep kids up at night – so make sure out-of-whack circadian rhythms aren’t one of them. If you develop a routine that everyone respects, bedtime will be predictable, non-negotiable, and (relatively) easy.
Give them a Break
Today’s kids have more roles and responsibilities than ever before. Sure, extracurricular activities are healthy, but over-doing it is not. Enhance your child’s imagination and sense of moderation by making sure their schedule isn’t structured all of the time. Making room for a little down time is a great skill for them to have – especially when they grow up!
Avoid Snacks with Stimulants
These days, you can get “energy” everything. There’s caffeinated jerky, water, and even soap out there. While most bites packed with a buzz are clearly labeled and easily recognizable, some less-obvious stimulants can sneak into snack food. According to Health.com, the FDA doesn’t require caffeine to be labeled on all edible products. This intensity inducer can be hidden in chocolate, ice cream, and even sunflower seeds. And while all parents know to avoid colas, cream soda, orange soda, and some root beer, it can pack a double punch of sugar and caffeine.
Use Soothing Sounds
Noises at night can be scary or just annoying. Either way, sounds can increase the number of sheep a kid has to count before falling asleep. Machines that produce a variety of ambient sounds (rain, ocean waves, or just a wooshing sound) are far more affordable than moving from the city to the suburbs. You can also introduce your little geniuses to classical music by lulling them peacefully to sleep with it. Certain works by Handel, Strauss, Brahms, or Bach will have them dreaming sweetly in no time.
Ensure Sufficient Sleeping Space
It’s important that kids spend their nights in a bed that’s the appropriate size.
Hand-me-down mattresses are great if you can get them in good condition. But if your toddler is nodding off all the time, a new mattress could help him or her feel better every day. As children grow, keep an eye on their height and weight to be sure you notice when they outgrow the support provided by their miniature mattresses. Visit one of our mattress stores when it’s time to find a big-kid bed. Remember – when your kids sleep better, so do you!