The start of a new year of school is just around the corner and that means you want your kids to put their best foot forward. To help them, it’s important to recognize that those laid back days will soon be replaced with busy schedules and after-school activities. Of course, for most families, those relaxed days of summer vacation meant a lax sleeping schedule, so how do you get everyone back on a healthy one that will support a successful school year? Here’s some advice to help you out.
First and foremost, kids learn more by watching than listening, so one of the easiest ways to get everyone back on track is leading by example. All too often, as adults, we dismiss the importance of a sleep schedule, but poor sleep affects people of all ages. So, by adjusting your own sleep schedule, your kids will naturally follow suit (and you’ll feel better, too!).
If you’re not convinced, don’t take our word for it, sleep expert and director of Pediatric Sleep Medicine at Akron Children’s Hospital, Dr. J. Krishna has written a book pertaining to health and sleep issues and the importance of making and sticking with a sleep schedule. So, check out the following back to school sleep tips that will help your entire family get back on track and ready for the upcoming semester.
- Transition slowly. Don’t wait until the night before school starts to try and get everyone in bed by a reasonable hour. The sooner you begin adjusting your sleep schedule, the better. Transition slowly by putting your kids (and yourself) to bed 15-20 minutes early, and moving it back gradually over the course of a few weeks until you get to a reasonable bedtime. It’ll take some time but, when school starts, your sleep schedules won’t be yet another thing to contend with.
- Relax before bedtime. Everyone has certain nighttime habits when preparing for bedtime. While brushing teeth is likely one of them, having additional routines that encourage relaxation is helpful as well. For instance, reading a few chapters of a favorite book instead of staring at a screen is known to help induce sleep. Other examples may include darkening the room to encourage melatonin production, taking a relaxing bath, and engaging in an outdoor activity prior to dinner. Not only will this help kids expel excess energy and stress, but exercise promotes good health and tires out the body.
- Comfort matters. Creating an environment that encourages a good night’s sleep is another key to success. In addition to winding down, and having the bedroom at a comfortable temperature (68-72 degrees), it’s important to block outdoor light and to have comfortable bedding. This may include a quality UFD Legacy White Goose Down Pillow or the UFD Revive Down Alternative Comforter, both of which offer soft luxuriousness and breathable comfort throughout every season.
- Be consistent. In order to maintain a normal sleep schedule, you need to develop one that suits your family’s schedule, based on your work schedule as well as after-school activities. Additionally, you should avoid altering those nightly routines on the weekends. Of course we all like to indulge in staying up late or sleeping in occasionally, but it doesn’t take much to interrupt the routine you’ve worked so hard to establish.
- Let your kids know why sleep is important. It’s normal for kids of all ages to resist going to bed sometimes. However, by communicating with your children the importance of a routine sleep schedule and enforcing bedtime rules, it can become a welcome ending to each and every day.
- Avoid sabotage. Being intentional about nightly habits can help you avoid sabotage. For instance, studies indicate that caffeine can disrupt both quality and quantity of sleep. Therefore, you should avoid caffeine at least three hours before bed. Screen time can also throw off your sleep schedule, so shutting them off at least an hour before bedtime is ideal since the artificial light stimulates brain activity, keeping you awake.
With all of these tips in mind, it’s important to recognize that while adults tend to feel drowsy as bedtime nears, younger children might not, and they may act out as bedtime approaches. By incorporating a nightly routine, you’ll be supporting the natural circadian rhythm for yourself and your kids, which is vital to overall well-being and makes putting kids to bed that much easier.
Check out some perfect pillows for a great night’s sleep!
United Feather & Down is a family owned business with eight generations of experience in the down and feather industry. Founded in Europe more than 200 years ago, our mission then and now has always been to produce the most coveted down and down alternative bedding products.
With a legacy that spans two centuries, our industry expertise, devoted customer service and premium quality products deliver outstanding comfort and warmth for a superior sleep experience. We at United Feather & Down are pleased to offer you our collection of the worlds finest feather and down Pillows, Comforters & Blankets for your home. Combining the ultimate in luxury and comfort, our products will provide the ultimate sleep experience, night after night.
We at United Feather & Down wish you a good nights sleep!