School is back, is your child ready? If your child spent the summer sleeping all day and staying up all night, you will need to adjust their routine to prepare them for the upcoming early mornings. Sleep is important to your child’s physical and mental health and can also affect their academic success. In fact, sleeping 8-10 hours each night can boost memory, sharpen attention, enhance creativity, correct behavior, and improve grades. Below are some tips to get your kids to fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer so they can wake refreshed and ready to take on the day.
Enforce a Sleep Schedule
Enforce a sleep schedule, even on weekends, to ensure your child is getting enough sleep. The CDC recommends the follow hours of sleep for children:
- Preschool, 3-5 years – 10-13 hours per 24 hours (including naps)
- School Age, 6-12 years – 9-12 hours per 24 hours (including naps)
- Teenagers, 13-18 years – 8-10 hours per 24 hours
Work backwards to establish a consistent bedtime based on when your child needs to wake and the number of hours they should be asleep. If your school-aged child needs to wake at 6:30 am to get ready for school, their bedtime should be between 6:30 – 9:30 pm. Keeping a regular sleep schedule will also regulate your child’s circadian rhythm.
Encourage a Healthy Diet
Large meals and sugar in the evening can make it difficult for your child to fall asleep. We suggest having a healthy dinner at least 2-3 hours prior to bedtime. Also, try to limit snacking in the hours leading up to bedtime. Sugar can also greatly affect your child’s sleep, therefore we recommend restricting sugar access after noon.
Allow your child time to relax before turning lights out for the night. Pre-bedtime relaxing activities could include reading, writing in a journal, drawing, discussing their day with a family member, or working on a puzzle. We also suggest using some familiar calming sounds from the White Noise app to help soothe them.
Establish a Peaceful Sleeping Environment
In order to create the perfect sleep environment you’ll want to make sure that the room is cool and dark. The White Noise app is a great addition to your child’s sleep environment. The ambient sounds can help them fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer by masking external noises that might wake them in the middle of the night. Enabling your device’s Do Not Disturb mode will help prevent interruptions and you can set a timer to gently turn the sound off when it’s time for them to wake.
We know it’s hard to establish and maintain routines with children’s busy schedules however a full night’s sleep is essential to your child’s academic success. Use the tips above to start their school year off right. Download the White Noise app now to help your child relax and sleep better so they can wake feeling energized and ready to succeed in school!