Do you find it hard to get your child to sleep at a reasonable time? Does your child wake you up during the night? Do they not want to sleep in her own bed, or have trouble sleeping unless you help them settle? Poor sleep can affect children’s behaviour, learning, social-emotional functioning and well-being, and thus it is important to intervene early.
Some persistent sleep problems may require medical treatment, such as sleep apnoea or narcolepsy. A medical check-up is important to rule out this possibility. Most sleep problems in children, however, are behavioural in nature and may resolve through use of behavioural strategies.
A consistent bedtime routine and good sleep hygiene is the first step in managing behavioural sleep problems.
Basic strategies include:
- Going to bed and waking up at the same time each day
- Keeping the bedroom dark, quiet, and cool
- Ensure there is no media in the bedroom
- Avoiding caffeine after 3 pm
- Limiting screen time as light can suppress the hormones that assist in a good night’s sleep
These strategies, however, may not suffice in helping your child get a good night’s rest. At Life and Mind Psychology, our Clinical Psychologists are highly trained in working with you to discover what is causing your child’s sleeping problems and to intervene accordingly using tailored evidence-based strategies. If this resonates with you, do not hesitate to call us on 9525 8443. We are waiting to help your child reach their full potential, which starts with a good night’s sleep.