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'I want water'; 'I pee'; 'Mom, give me a kiss' ... Can you imagine that your son slept through the night? It would be great! In Guiainfantil.com We still do not know the magic recipe to achieve it, but Olga Sesé, sleep coach, has given us some keys to improve children's night rest. Also, highlighted two of the most important secrets so that the little ones do not wake up so much (and they also let you sleep!).
When a child does not get a good night's rest, his health ends up suffering. The next morning is more irascible and fatigued, it will cost him more to maintain his attention at school ... But, with the passage of time, his parents' health also suffers, since they cannot rest enough to be full of energy the next day.
But, have you ever stopped to think why your child doesn't sleep through the night? Olga Sesé emphasizes that, in general, there is not usually a health problem that prevents children from sleeping without waking up, however, we should take into account the age of the little ones.
- Babies less than 4 months
When babies are younger than 4 months, they tend to wake up more frequently. Often this is because their stomach size is smaller and therefore they need to feed more frequently throughout the day.
- Babies over 4 months
Beyond 4 months, babies may already sleep longer hours at a time. However, it is normal that they still cannot sleep through the entire night. And it is that the little ones are still 'learning' to sleep, and we must teach them to do it in the correct way.
It is from this moment when we must begin to establish a series of sleep habits so that babies sleep at night. With patience, effort and a lot of love, little by little the child will acquire a good sleep routine that will be maintained throughout childhood and adolescence and adult life.
If the most important aspects to get children to sleep through the night had to be highlighted, they would be, according to this expert, two easy secrets to start up. By working both, we will ensure that children sleep more and better at night, which will have a very positive impact on their rest. The two basic keys are:
- Put children on a good schedule
What time do your children go to sleep? To find the best time for children, we must first take into account their age. Once we are clear about how many hours of sleep they need in each period of childhood, we must calculate what time they should go to bed knowing when they will have to wake up.
According to the American Association of Pediatrics (AAP), the recommended hours, according to the age of the children is:
- Between 4 and 12 months, between 12 and 16 hours (including naps)
- Between 1 year and 2 years, between 11 and 14 hours (including naps)
- Between 3 years and 5 years, between 10 and 13 hours (including naps)
- Between 6 years and 12 years, between 9 and 12 hours
- Between 13 and 18 years, between 8 and 10 hours
- Establish good sleep routines for children
Just as important (or more) than setting schedules is setting routines. These will prepare the children to go to bed and, therefore, help them to fall asleep at the time they should to ensure a good rest.
What are the routines? Is about follow the same 'rituals' every day, before it's time to go to bed. All these activities must be aimed at making the child's rhythm go down so that little by little he relaxes.
For example, we can give our son a bath, then give him something light for dinner, later read a story together, and finally turn off the lights and go to sleep. By repeating the same routine every day, children know what is going to come next and thus prepare themselves for bedtime, both physically and emotionally.
And, to teach children good childhood sleep habits, we must take into account the following keys.
- In your own room or with us?
Many parents choose to share a room with their children. However, others prefer that the little ones sleep in their own room, since otherwise they consider that they will not sleep well.
Faced with this open debate between parents, this sleep expert ensures that either of these two techniques work to guarantee children's sleep, it is an option that must be respected. The most important thing is to make sure that the environment is pleasant and that they have enough space to sleep comfortably (whether in a co-sleeping cot, in a separate bed, etc.).
- The room must be at a good temperature
The environment in which children lie down is just as important. For this reason, we must make sure that our children's room is ventilated and at a good temperature. Only in this way will we create the right atmosphere to promote a good rest for our little ones.
- Turn off the light
Many children are afraid of the dark and that is why many parents leave their lights on while they sleep. However, this sleep specialist assures that to get a good rest, we must turn them off. This is because darkness produces melatonin, the hormone that relaxes children and induces them to sleep. When the room is dark, we invite the little ones to close their eyes.
- Leave the room in silence
It is better for children to learn to sleep without the help of music or other sounds. In some cases, for example, if there is a sibling screaming in another room or other unpleasant noises, white noise can help the child who is trying to sleep to relax.
What tricks do you use to help your children sleep better at night?
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