Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Kids and sleep: Get them on the right track

Wondering how much sleep your child needs? Is your child having nightmares? The Sleep and Your Child: A Guide for Families from Nemours answers these questions and more. A link to this guide is available here.

Kids and sleep: Get them on the right track

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All of us know that kids need their sleep, but it’s not always easy getting there – especially when they put up a fight at bedtime. (In my case, it’s my 2-year-old believing that she’s missing out when I put her down for a nap in the afternoon. "Mommy, I'm not tired! Let's go downstairs," as she rubs her eyes and yawns.)

Wondering how much sleep your child needs? How long will a child still need a nap? What do do if a child is having nightmares? The Sleep and Your Child: A Guide for Families from Nemours answers these questions and more. It’s a good place to start for tips about establishing a routine to help them get ready for bed and what to do about common sleep problems such as night wakenings.

What happens when kids don’t get enough sleep? Research suggests that a lack of sleep in children can have a negative impact on their health, growth, behavior and cognitive development. In this blog, we’ve covered how a lack of sleep could raise a teen’s risk of depression, how poor sleep habits could contribute to obesity, and the importance of consistent bedtimes.

The guide also offers advice on when to seek help for your child's sleeping problems. For babies and toddlers, milestones such as teething, can disrupt sleep for a short period of time. However, the booklet says you may want to consult your doctor if a child cannot be comforted, and irritable day after day from interrupted sleep. To help a doctor review your child’s sleeping habits, there is a sleep chart at the end of the guide where you can write down their daytime and nighttime sleep.

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The guide also available in Spanish. Here's to more restful nights for kids (and parents)!


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Healthy Kids blog Editor
About this blog
The Healthy Kids blog is your window into the latest news, research and advice around children's health. Learn more about our growing list of contributors here.

If you have questions about your child's health, ask them here.

Anna Nguyen Healthy Kids blog Editor
Sarah Levin Allen, Ph.D., CBIS Assistant Professor of Psychology at Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine
Stephen Aronoff, M.D., M.B.A. Chair of the Department of Pediatrics at Temple University Hospital
Peter Bidey, D.O. Medical Director of Family Medicine at Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine
Christopher C. Chang, MD, PhD, MBA, FAAAAI, FACAAI Associate Professor of Medicine in division of Rheumatology, Allergy and Clinical Immunology at UC Davis
Katherine K. Dahlsgaard, Ph.D. Lead Psychologist of The Anxiety Behaviors Clinic at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
Gary A. Emmett, M.D., F.A.A.P Director of Hospital Pediatrics at TJU Hospital & Pediatrics Professor at Thomas Jefferson Univ.
Magee DeFelice, M.D. Division Chief of Allergy and Immunology at Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children
Hazel Guinto-Ocampo, M.D. Chief of Pediatric Emergency Services at Nemours duPont Pediatrics/Bryn Mawr Hospital
Rima Himelstein, M.D. Adolescent Medicine Specialist at Crozer-Keystone Health System
Jessica Kendorski, PhD, NCSP, BCBA-D Associate Professor in School Psychology/Applied Behavior Analysis at Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine
Anita Kulick President & CEO, Educating Communities for Parenting
Janet Rosenzweig, MS, PhD, MPA VP for Programs & Research for Prevent Child Abuse America
Beth Wallace Smith, R.D. Registered Dietitian at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
Emiliano Tatar, M.D. Pediatrician at Einstein Healthcare Network Roxborough Plaza
Jeanette Trella, Pharm.D Managing Director at The Poison Control Center at CHOP
W. Douglas Tynan, Ph.D., ABPP Director of Integrated Health Care for American Psychological Association
Flaura Koplin Winston, M.D., Ph.D. Scientific Director of the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia’s Center for Injury Research and Prevention
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