A good sleep routine is essential to support growing bodies and minds. Naturally, we relax our routines during the summer holidays, but it’s important to make sure they’re re-established in time for the new school year. It’s easier said than done, but aspects like reintroducing a bedtime and investing in good bedroom furniture like the Julien Bowen midsleeper beds for your child can help.
1. Re-establish Bedtime Two Weeks Ahead
It may seem excessive, but studies show it takes at least two weeks for our body’s internal clock to fully adjust. A two-week transition makes it as effortless as possible.
2. Take All Electronics Out of the Bedroom
This includes games, TVs and phones. There’s no point sending children off to bed at a reasonable hour if they’re going to stay up two hours later without your knowing. What’s more, the blue light emitted from computers and tablet screens interferes with our brain's' ability to fall asleep for up to three hours after they’ve been switched off.
3. Make Beds for Sleeping Not for Playing
For many children, their bed is their only private space in the house, and as such it becomes a haven for reading and playing computer games. Offer your child a bean-bag in their room which it also theirs alone. This will help strengthen the association between the bed and sleep.
4. Remove Distractions from the Room
Make sure all toys and clothes are tidied away every evening before bed. If you’re short on storage space, consider investing in a Julian Bowen mid sleeper or other bed with added drawers and cupboards.
5. Take Caffeine off the Menu
Fizzy-drink consumption tends to rise as the weather heats up, but it’s important to remember most types contain caffeine that disturbs sleep. In the last two weeks before school, impose a ban on all sugary caffeinated drinks after midday. Prepare fruit juices with sparkling water as an alternative to take to the park so you’re not tempted to buy when you get there.
6. Set a Good Example
It’s no good telling the kids to watch less TV and go to bed at a reasonable hour if they know their parents aren’t doing the same. Make having a good and consistent bedtime routine a family thing. You’ll soon feel the benefit for yourself as well.
These strategies are tried and tested, but remember consistency is the key. If you enforce the rules one day and not the next, your children will soon learn that bedtime is fully negotiable.