When your child isn’t sleeping well, chances are neither are you. And then, well, it’s hard for anyone to be happy.
Simple answers and practical ways to help your child sleep better.
An inability to sleep happens when our child’s brain is unable to calm down. The brain needs to calm so it can move to a mode called REM sleep.
REM sleep is deep sleep. It allows our brain the opportunity to heal our bodies and charge up for the next day. Assuming the spine is functioning correctly, it will allow communication from the brain to the body.
7 common stressors that affect your child’s brain and its ability to sleep:
- Screen time – electronics cause a release similar to that of cocaine in your child’s brain.
- Chemicals – ranging from food dyes, preservatives, cleaning products, and yes… even sugar. Nothing is more potent to the brain than a concentrated chemical stimulant.
- Fast Paced Routine – our body has an awesome ability to tell time when our fast paced lifestyles are in check. Take some time to wind down with some hours of quiet before bed to their brain can have a chance to come out of GO mode.
- Lack of Exercise – when the body does not use up energy (especially in kiddos) then the brain is just itching for more stimulation. Your child’s brain needs stimulation from movement throughout the day to release and use up the energy produced by their body.
- Too Much Thinking and Problem Solving – similar to exercise the brain needs to be working throughout the day. After a child has spent a lot of time engaging in solving puzzles, problems, and discovery their brain needs to rest. The best way to do this is to interchange kinds of activities. For example, outside play like bike riding, sidewalk chalk, running through the sprinkler, interspersed with puzzles or reading time.
- Sensory Overload – Remember that there are 5 senses we learn in school. A day full of activity can overload your child’s brain. Keep in mind that this effect can last days if they are sensitive. Also, if a room has smells that are too strong or stimulating, too much light, or stimulating sounds it can be difficult to shut the brain off. The brain is always ready to engage. At bedtime, make their room as calming and with a gentle atmosphere as possible.
- A Spine Problem – Even if all of the environmental factors are perfect, if their brain senses a spine problem it is going to be on high alert. A child cannot tell you if they have a spine problem, so it’s important to get your child’s spine checked at your pediatric chiropractor.
The spine affects the brain’s ability to control the entire body. A good pediatric chiropractor will be able to tell if your child needs a specific gentle series of adjustments… which will ultimately impact their whole future.
Changing your child’s environment to suit their needs is a full time job.
If your kids struggle with sleeping, it’s time to take a look at their routines. Check how much stimulation, what types they get and what time of day/how close to bedtime.
The body – made to rest and heal.
Our bodies are made to rest and heal. That means so your child will naturally progress to better sleepers as new routines are put in place.
If not, then you know there’s most likely a spine problem. A problem beyond your child’s control that needs to be checked out and corrected.
You got this!
If you have questions feel free to reach out to us at Radiant Life.