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Back-to-School Sleep Routines

Getting back into a school sleep schedule can be challenging.

If you’ve felt like most parents and kids the last few weeks of school have been a bit of a struggle. Those late summer nights with early school start times can be a mix for a meltdown. Sleeping schedules can have a big impact on how your back-to-school body feels in the morning. In fact, the average human spends 1/3 of their life sleeping. Crazy, huh?! If you add up an average of 8 hours per night, that equates to about 1/3 of a 24-hour day. Some may feel like it’s a waste of time not to get things accomplished, but rest and sleep are critical to what our bodies need to function well. Benefits of sleep include better memory, higher immunity against sickness, quicker metabolism, and adaptability in life. Proper sleep truly helps recharge your brain. You can learn more about the importance of sleep in this blog

But let’s face it, no one wants to be bossed around, we only hope to provide you with some tips to avoid cranky teenagers and upset kiddos.

  • Start earlier: In some cases, it might mean waking up earlier, but this advice is more practical for parents with little kids under 10 years old. You know the type of kid that it should take just a second to do something, but it takes them five minutes. The solution? Just start earlier. It can also be helpful to give reminders like, “You have one more minute”. Also, give yourself and your child grace. If they have just learned to brush their teeth independently, it can take them longer because they’ve just learned to do something hard for them. Rushing them may just cause tears. Or if they need their stuffed animals in a particular order before bedtime, work on that a little earlier to avoid meltdowns and high emotions. Simply start earlier.
  • Know what your kids need: Parenting is hard enough, but knowing how much sleep children and teens need might be something that slips off the radar. According to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, children 6–12 years old should get 9–12 hours per night. That means for the minimum sleep of 9 hours, a 6-year-old should be in bed and asleep by 9:30 p.m. for a 6:30 a.m. wake time. But how many 6-year-olds actually go to sleep when they are in bed?! If you know yours takes a while before bed, remember the first tip. As for teens, they may think they have it all figured out and can handle those late nights, but they need sleep too. Teens need at least 8 hours of sleep each night, so their schedule could vary and they could have until 10:30 p.m. to get to bed. More than 78% of teens are not getting enough sleep on weeknights. This bedtime calculator could be helpful when calculating bedtimes to wake-up times: along with this blog that’s specifically about teens.
  • Keep a routine: Having daily habits and routines can help with your sleep schedule. Waking up and going to bed at the same time can make a big difference, yes-even on weekends! And as important as deodorant to a teen boy, the term, “sleep hygiene” refers to healthy sleep habits that can improve the ability to fall asleep and stay asleep is critical. If there are challenges with insomnia, sleep hygiene is an important part of cognitive behavioral therapy also known as CBT. Learn more about CBT here And additional sleep tips are in this blog:
  • Rethink their bedroom: If their bedroom has lots of toys, televisions, and gaming devices it is like a kid in a candy shop. Of course, they’ll want to play with their toys, watch television, or be tempted to game and be on social media late at night. Rethink their bedroom and consider redecorating by removing those temptations and devices to a different part of the home like the basement or living room. That way their bedroom is a place for rest and relaxation without distractions. This may be difficult for your teen, but you will be helping them in a big way. The American Academy of Pediatrics found that sleeping with a cell phone near you is worse than falling asleep with the television on. Oof! Read more on this study here:
  • Get a relaxing bedtime routine: Does your family look forward to bedtime? If it’s a mad dash to bed with yelling and running around, it might be time to adjust the routine. Finding a relaxing peaceful environment before bedtime can make a big difference in sleep. Consider playing relaxing music or reading a book with your kids. Technology can also be a big disrupter to sleep. Limit screen time 30 minutes before bedtime and put away the phones, gaming, and TV in another centralized room. This will help create that peaceful routine your body is craving. Another helpful tip for cellphones is to turn them off completely or put them on do not disturb or airplane mode keeping you free from dings and bright lights ruining your sleepiness. Lastly, you might even consider setting your thermostat to a cooler temperature that allows your body to sleep with less tossing and turning in the night. Pair that with some silky and fluffy sheets and blankets and you’ll be as snug as a bug.

There are even more tips from the American Alliance for Healthy Sleep and additional research and reading on this topic, the CDC has infographics for kids and teens to easily understand. Learn more here:

And if your child or teen is tossing and turning and having trouble finding sleep, it could be their old mattress. Bring them to Beautyrest Sleep Gallery and we can show you mattresses that will give your kiddo cozy night’s rest or view them online here

For store locations and hours visit: Wake up and be happy with Beautyrest Sleep Gallery.