At the Lennon Pregnancy Center, we love to have guest speakers. It’s great to get an expert’s opinion an advice. Last week we had a guest speaker from Sweet Dreamzzz Inc. This class is typically very popular because, as you might guess, every parent wants their baby or child to sleep and stay asleep. But how do we do that?
Sweet Dreamzzz believes ‘YOU are the key to getting your child the sleep they require for good health, good behavior and academic performace!’ At first, that can seem like a lot of pressure. However, with their R.E.A.D.Y. Bedtime Routine things become much simpler. Children need and even crave routine and structure- this is a great way to apply that structure to bedtime.
R– Relax. It’s important to have your child relax before bedtime. Try winding down a half hour to one hour before bedtime by doing relaxing activites such as reading or taking a bath. Turn off electronics! They actually stimulate your child. That means no TV!
E– Eat a healthy snack. If your child needs a snack, make it a light one. Carbohydrates are a great thing to eat before bed. Avoid anything with caffeine or sugar!
A– Always go to bed by 8pm. This time will vary depending on the age of your child. Children 3-5 years of age need 11-13 hours of sleep; and 6-12 year olds need 10-11 hours of sleep. Obviously this number is much higher for newborns and infants.
D– Did I wash and brush? This step gives your child some responsibility in their bedtime routine. It’s fun to make a bedtime routine chart where he or she can successfully cross off this step or put a sticker next to it. Children should ALWAYS go to the bathroom before they go to bed.
Y– Yes, it’s bedtime. Children should be comfortable. We recommend a cool bedroom temperature for sleeping. Some children might even want a night light or some form of white noise.
Why is sleep so important?
- Lack of regular bedtime may affect kids’ learning skills
- Children who sleep less have more behavior problems
- Attention problems may be sleep related
- Children without proper sleep do not release as much growth hormone, therefore their growth can be stunted
- Sleep affects every area of a child’s life!
Contact the Lennon Pregnancy Center @ (313) 277-5637 for more information related to sleep or to sign up for one of our parenting classes!