A Bedtime Routine Improves Sleep
In a study conducted in 14 countries and with over 10000 mothers, researchers found that less than 50% of babies, toddlers, and preschoolers have a consistent bedtime routine.
Of those that do, they:
- Have earlier bedtimes
- Spend a shorter amount of time in bed before falling asleep
- Wake less during the night
- Spend more time sleeping
The ideal thing to do—according to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine—is set up a string of activities that lead up to sleep. This can include things like a bath and reading a bedtime story.
Dr. Timothy Morgenthaler explains,
It’s important that parents create a consistent sleep schedule, relaxing bedtime routine and soothing sleep environment to help their child achieve healthy sleep.
Babes With Poor Sleep And Behavioral Problems
In littles, there’s a relationship between sleep disorders and mood disorders.
That is to say—serious insomnia in 4-year olds increases the risk for mood and behavioral problems like:
Likewise, 4-year olds that struggle with mood and behavioral disorders are more likely to be diagnosed with insomnia at 6-years old.
While further research is needed, this study suggests that tackling the problem sooner (rather than later) may safeguard against major sleep disorders and major behavioral disorders.
If you have a babe who struggles with sleep, you may want to look into acupuncture (it’s safe for babies) and baby massage—both of which are drug-free, calm the mind, and reset your babe’s circadian rhythm.
Cellphone Use Disrupts Fetal Behavior
New research shows that the ring or vibration of a cell phone during your third trimester of pregnancy is enough to startle your babe and interfere with normal fetal behavior, including sleep cycles.
If you are pregnant, carry your cell phone away from your body and out of your pockets—for example, in a bag. And if you must carry a cell phone, keep it as far away from your babe’s head as possible.