It is quite a challenge for parents to put their babies into sleep, especially in the night. In a survey conducted on 1300 new parents, it has been found that more than 60% of parents of 1-2 years child have faced difficulty in putting their babies to sleep at night. In the case of parents of 2-5 years babies, the number was more than 45%. Unfortunately, insomnia is common in our society for people of all ages.
Grown ups can try various sleep aid supplements but toddlers are too young to be using supplements. Children can have trouble sleeping and from my personal experience, I can say that there is nothing worse than having sleepless nights, trying hard to put your precious ones into comfort. In this article, I am going to share some tips and natural sleep remedies for toddlers which can make your baby sleep regularly.
How Much Sleep Does Your Toddler Need Actually?
Before trying dead hard to make your baby sleep, you must determine whether your baby is suffering from sleep deficiency or not. It may seem pretty obvious, but there are many confusions among parents about the sleeping requirements of their kids. It is also essential to keep in mind that the quality of sleep is equally important as the quantity.
According to the National Sleep Foundation, infants should sleep for 12-15 hours every day. For toddlers, the sleep time should be 11 to 14 hours and teenagers should sleep for 9 to 11 hours.
The quality of the sleep is very much connected with many other factors, like the sleeping time, diet habit, comfortability, and the overall physical well-beingness of your baby. The timing of sleep is a decisive factor in this matter. Children who fall asleep before 9 pm seem to sleep better and without interruption than kids who fall asleep after 9 pm.
Negative Effects of Sleep Deprivation
Unfortunately, when your child is not getting enough sleep, that means you are also having some sleepless nights. Your baby’s sleep time is directly connected with their daytime performance in the school. It also affects the cognitive functions of their brain and they fall victim to brain fog. Although there are lots of good supplements for brain fog, its certainly not good to get used to supplements at this early stage.
In the survey I mentioned earlier, it has been found that 7 out of 10 children under age 7 were not getting sufficient sleep at night. Kids don’t have similar reactions to sleep deficiency like adults. Unlike adults, kids don’t always act sleepy when they are sleep deprived. Rather, they often get overtired and become irritable and hyper. It also hampers their body metabolism functions and increases the risk of heart diseases and obesity.
Home Remedies for Good Sleep
There are various natural sleep remedies for kids that you can try to put your baby to bed. However, these actions are of two types. Some of these options are intended to have a long-term solution by making changes in your kid’s lifestyle. And some of them are for instant relief for your loved ones. We will talk about both in the following:
1. Bedtime Routine
The timing of sleep is a decisive factor for getting quality sleep. According to the National Sleep Foundation, getting to bed before 9 pm is super helpful for kids. Sleeping before 9 pm will help reduce the chances of sleep disturbance in the middle of the night and will increase the chances of getting early morning benefits.
Many kids nowadays sleep late at night following their parents. It may not seem like a great deal to many but if your kid is going to bed late at night, you should get alarmed.
Try to prepare an easy bedtime routine for your kids. This way, you can allow your kid’s body clock to adjust with the routine.
2. Night Weaning
You can try night weaning your baby after they get 20 months old. Many people blame breastfeeding for the sleepless night of your infant. That’s actually not true. We have tried weaning off our baby at night and it has worked for us. It will take time for your baby to adjust to night weaning but it will help stop waking up in the middle of the night in order to get nursed. Thus, it can help both parents and the baby to sleep at night.
This strategy also works great with potty training.
3. Dietary Discipline
Food is the best natural medicine one can find in this world. If your baby is having sleep disorders constantly, then maybe it’s time to rethink what you are feeding to your baby. It is important to feed your baby a balanced diet. You should feed your baby foods that contain essential macro and trace nutrients like magnesium or calcium.
The last meal of your kid before sleeping should contain more protein and fat than usual. This will help keep a healthy blood sugar level all throughout the night, making your baby less hungry to wake up in the middle of the night.
4. Trade “Screen times” with “Green Times”
Our social and family life is not as same as it was hundreds of years ago. Our lifestyle is evolving with the progress of technologies and thus increasing the gap between us and nature. Night time was supposed to be absent of lights which trigger sleeping mode in our body. You should limit your baby’s screen time as much as possible. Televisions, mobile, lights – most of these gadgets emit blue lights that hamper our body clock’s natural schedule. You should stop your kids from using these gadgets and use blue light filtered light sources at night time.
5. Don’t Over Schedule Your Kid
It is very easy to get super hyped about parenting. Trust me, this thing is happening all over the world. It is important to teach your kids how to utilize time properly to learn various types of skills you aspire them to learn. But it is also equally important to give their time of relief. Don’t over Schedule your kid. They should have 1 or 2 hours or more lazy time of their own. This will put their nerve on ease.
6. Audio Books or Bed Time Story
Try to culture a bedtime routine for your babies. Reading audio books or sharing bedtime stories with your kids is a great thing you can adopt. Not only will this help your baby sleep but this will also boost its psychological development manifolds.
7. Chamomile Tea
Chamomile is one of the most suitable natural sleep remedies for children. It has many benefits like boosting the immune system and treating colds and indigestion. However, the main benefit of this herb is its nerve-easing capabilities. Chamomile Tea is very safe and effective for your kids to settle them down enough to sleep. This herb is safe for everyone, but you should check beforehand whether your baby is allergic to the Asteraceae family plant or not.
8. California Poppy
California poppy is a very effective and gentle natural herbs for sleep and for calming the nervous system down. Although it’s name is California poppy, it does not contain opium or opiates. It is used in many nerve-easing meds. If your baby is over the age of 2 years you can use this herb to make him/her calm.
The aroma of lavender can do miracles. It is widely used in aromatherapy to release anxiety and stress, and put your mind to rest. You can bath your baby with organic lavender or you can leave some lavender leaves and flowers on your kid’s bed. It will help your child sleep well.
You can also use lavender essential oil as a natural sleep aid for toddlers. Just read instructions and follow them properly before using essential oils.
10. Try Following Acupressure Technique When Necessary
You can try a simple but effective Acupressure technique to give your some comfort. The Acupressure point given in the picture is the nerve point where you can massage gently. Massage slowly and gently, bottom to up. It will soothe your baby and this technique is effective for adults too.
This was my list of natural sleep aid for children. Many of these natural sleep remedies also work as natural sleep aids for adults.