Is Your Childís Bedroom a
Be honest, when you designed
your childís bedroom did you consider their sleep needs? Or did
you, like the vast majority of parents, choose items that looked
appealing? If so you are not alone, but the bedroom environment can
have a huge impact on your childís sleep so it is important to get
Often childrenís bedrooms are
stimulating, completely the wrong environment to relax and fall
asleep in. Children may spend time in their bedroom during the
day playing and therefore not associate the bedroom with a place to
relax and fall asleep. Here are my top 10 tips for you to follow
and turn the bedroom back into a rest room:
possible store toys out of sight in cupboards. If this isnít
possible use a sheet to cover them over at night. There is nothing
more tempting at night for a child than seeing their favourite toys.
Televisions and computers in bedrooms are best avoided. If you
do have them in your childís room they should not be used during the
last hour before bedtime because they are mentally stimulating.
Sometimes posters on the wall and pictures can be enough to frighten
children during the night. The poster of a wrestler looking tough
may seem fine during the day time but at night it can suddenly
become intimidating to a child. If your child wants to keep the
posters up you could cover them over at night or place them in a
position where they canít be seen from the bed.
are very important in bedrooms. Pastel and neutral shades
best for promoting relaxation. Red is best avoided at all costs.
Fast food restaurants are painted red as it is the least relaxing
colour in the spectrum. Fast food retailers rely on a quick
turnover of customers and they use the colour red to ensure that
their customers donít stay for very long.
are an excellent investment particularly during the summer months
when the nights are much lighter. Our bodies need darkness in order
to produce melatonin. It is melatonin that leads us to feel sleepy
so it is important that the room is dark to promote sleep.
can help to set the scene for relaxation. Many of the baby products
now contain sleep inducing scents such as lavender. There are many
products on the market that are specifically designed for children.
Temperature in the bedroom is very important. If it is too hot it
will cause your child to find it difficult to get to sleep. The
ideal temperature is round
about 18 degrees. Buy a nursery
thermometer if you are unsure and keep a check.
can help to set the scene. Try playing relaxing classical music
during the run up to bedtime.
use the bedroom as a place to send your child for a punishment. You
want your child to view time in their bedroom as a positive
experience not a negative one.
your childís bed comfortable? Try out your childís bed for at least
20 minutes and see how it feels. It is surprising that we often
arenít aware that mattresses need replacing until weíve been forced
into spending some time in our childrenís beds. If the bed isnít
comfortable your child is going to find it difficult to relax.
Victoria Dawson is a sleep
practitioner, teacher and trainer, most importantly she is a Mum who
has in the past experienced sleep problems with a child. She speaks
at national conferences about sleep and parenting issues and is
often featured on radio .
Victoria runs training courses for groups
of parents and details can be found at