Parenting Dilemma: The Endless Loop Of Poor Sleep And Behavioral Concerns Among Children

By Hasan Tariq, Parent Herald October 22, 10:49 pm
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Lack of sleep among children results in complications in their growth.This also creates a problem for the family because the child would have much more frequent meltdowns.
(Photo : Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Which is the real problem? Bad behavior or lack of sleep? And which is the result of the other? These questions rise when children become problematic for the parents. Research has shown that children having sleep issues at an age of 18 months or frequent awakenings between sleep are seen having more emotional and behavioral problems when they become 5 years old.

Lack of sleep among kids results in complications in their growth.This also creates a problem for the family because the child would have much more frequent meltdowns. Parents need to understand their child's sleep necessities. Every child has an individual need for sleep, the amount varies from child to child.

Understanding this need is essential. Even forcing the child to spend extra time in bed can cause him to become irritated and annoyed. So, adjusting bedtime according to the child's needs is important.

It's observed that parents who work on these routines with their children are doing a great job, their child will be more active and less emotionally distressed. The New York Times suggests that the ideal situation is to make the toddler go to bed in more or less 15 minutes around the fixed time for bed every night.

Not every kid would go to bed at, for say, 8 p.m. More physically active kids may go to bed early than those troubled by anxiety. As parents, they should calm down the distraught toddler by building a stronger connection with him.

Some kids have such a busy day usually that their hyper active brains have trouble shutting down when they try to sleep. It's a struggle for both the kid and the parents. It's hard to decide when and how much a child needs to nap. The best answer is that there is no major solution.

It depends on the child. Some children aren't much affected at all if they miss some of their sleep while some might ruin their whole day even if 15 minutes worth of sleep is taken away from them. So, it's crucial to understand these rhythms in a child before setting their routines.

According to Science Daily, it's vital for a child's development that he gets adequate amount of sleep. He may start lacking things like self-control, probability of meltdowns increases considerably and he would become quite sensitive as well.

Research shows that too much exposure to LED light suppresses the release of the sleep stimulating hormone called melatonin. One of the smartest moves to make is to keep kids away from screens for a good few hours before bedtime. Dim the lights to build the environment and reading to the child is always a healthy alternative.

All these measures taken and one can ensure that his child is sleeping on time. Parents need to trust themselves when it comes to issues like this. If someone else's child doesn't have as much problem sleeping, it does not, at all, imply that parenting isn't done right. Every child is different and has some unique abilities. Hence, parents should stay strong not guilty.

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