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The amount and quality of sleep affects a child’s mood, behavior, and learning.
- Better quality and longer sleep is associated with better school performance.
Recent studies link not getting enough sleep to a higher risk of obesity.
- When we get the right amount of sleep, the brain helps us to control hunger and achieve a healthy weight.
Children need sleep for optimal brain functioning.
- Sleep allows the brain to recharge and process information learned during the day. Sleep is especially important for children’s memory, ability to pay attention, and learning.
How can I help my child get the sleep s/he needs?
Set and maintain bedtime routines.
- A bedtime routine prepares your child for sleep
- Try to have bedtime be the same time each night
- Turn the TV off an hour before bedtime to make for an easier transition to sleep
Make the room where your child sleeps comfortable.
- Put in a nightlight if your child needs light
- Use dark curtains or shades to keep light out
- Keep it cool and quiet. Soft music or a fan can offer background noise, if needed
- Cozy blankets and pillows can make for better sleep
Avoid caffeine and sugar.
- Drinking caffeinated and sugary drinks can make it difficult to sleep
Keep TV and all screen media (computers, iPads, video games) out of the room where your child sleeps.
- TV is stimulating and can disrupt sleep, making it harder to fall asleep
- Use a nightlight or quiet music to help your child fall asleep