5 Things You Didn’t Know About Sleep

Posted by in No-Cry Sleep

Sleep (or lack of sleep) affects all 24 hours of your child’s day (and therefore, all 24 hours of YOUR day!) The quality and quantity of your child’s sleep influences his mood, behavior, health, and even brain development.

Adequate, restful sleep is a vital component for your child’s healthy, happy life. Here are 5 things you may not know about sleep.

Toddler and Preschooler Sleep

 

5 Things You Didn’t Know About Sleep

 

1. Poor sleep causes crying, tantrums, whining, and fussing.

Your child’s sleep habits can affect every single waking moment of every single day. A sleep-deprived child is simply not as happy as one who gets enough sleep every day. A tired child is more prone to crying, tantrums, whining and fussing, and is much more difficult to calm.

2. One in three children wakes up at night.

As frustrating as it is to parents, night waking is . . . normal! All human beings wake up five or more times every night, mainly when shifting from one stage of sleep to another. The issue is not for a child to sleep all night without waking up (that’s impossible), but for a child to be able to fall back to sleep – totally on his own – each time he does wake up.

3. The first five minutes of nap time reduce tiredness.

When a child naps, he moves through various cycles of sleep and each cycle has it’s own benefits. The first five minutes of a nap eliminate tiredness for the moment. If woken just after falling asleep a child can’t return to sleep easily, but will be cranky and tired. It takes at least an hour long nap is important to refresh a child for the remainder of the day.

4. Early bedtime means better sleep.

The majority of children have a natural, biological bedtime that is early in the evening. Most babies, toddlers and preschoolers respond best with a bedtime between 6:00 and 7:30 P.M. Most children will fall asleep easier at this time and then actually sleep better and longer when they go to bed earlier. Pushing a bedtime past a child’s natural, biologically-set time means a child who is more fussy and finds it harder to fall asleep later, due to a “second wind” that occurs. So aim for an early bedtime!

5. A dark room and sleepy sounds bring better slumber.

Take advantage of your child’s natural biology so that he is actually TIRED when his bedtime arrives! You can help align sleepiness with bedtime by dimming the lights in the hour before bedtime. Dim lighting triggers the sleepy control center in the brain, just as bright lights cause wakefulness.

In addition, noises can prevent a child from falling asleep, or wake him up after he’s gone to bed. To mask noises and to create a strong sleep cue, use white noise, such as ocean waves or rainfall (use a sound machine), or lullabies, soft music, or a radio set on a talk station. These restful sounds can keep a child sleeping peacefully even when there are noises elsewhere in the house or outside.

 

~ These tips are from The No-Cry Sleep Solution for Toddlers and Preschoolers.

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2 Comments

  1. Elizabeth´s tips are simply the best! I can not imagine how could I ever lead with the worls comments against what I think. Since I discovered her, I immediatly felt the “click” with her articules and books…it is just as if God would send me just what I needed to hear!! thanks Elizabeth for your years of search, supportive words and best of all: solutions that actually work!!! and this autor has something almost anybody got: she doesn´t judged you for anything you do or you don´t do, instead, she tells you you are not the only one dealing with the topic, and clearly makes you believe in you, no matter how much other people think or say…I like this prase: “I was the best mother in the world, until I got my first child”!!!

    • Hi Titi, Thank you for the kind words! I’m so happy to know I’ve helped you be a more confident, happy parent.

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