Parents: Are You Getting Sufficient Sleep?

Source:   —  April 07, 2016, at 0:40 AM

The days are so active that I desire time to stay up on my computer or look TV. My son thinks that since I'm up he should obtain to stay up and have fun, too.

Parents: Are You Getting Sufficient Sleep?

My son hates going to bed, and the truth is I share his feelings about switching off the lights. The days are so active that I desire time to stay up on my computer or look TV. My son thinks that since I'm up he should obtain to stay up and have fun, too. We both wake up irritable in the morning and lately it'south gotten so horrible that his instructor is suggesting he might've ADHD because he'south been misbehaving a lot. Any tips?

As our children'south lives becoming increasingly packed with extracurricular activities, after school classes, and the fixed stimulation of digital devices, proof suggests that they -- love their parents (us!) -- aren't getting the sleep needed for optimal functioning.

Despite needing rest, many parents thrust through fatigue to look one more episode of their favorite show, or to scroll through a few more Facebook posts. Our children chase our lead, postponing shut-eye in whatever clever ways they can.

In her new book, The Sleep Revolution, Arianna Huffington shares this:

One of the first steps in promoting excellent family sleep habits is changing the way we speak about sleep. In many families, sleep is meted out as a punishment to children: "If you don't eat your vegetables at dinner, you're going straight to bed." Children are taught early on that sleep is something to avert as long as possible -- a sword of Damocles hanging over their heads every night--and that with sleep comes the finish of play and fun. What a terrible message to send! We necessity to do a much better work of framing sleep in a positive way for our children, letting them know that sleep is a vital portion of being able to play and have fun, and teaching them healthy sleep habits, including naps and transitions to bedtime, that'll latest a lifetime.

I realize that there'south something appetizing about a noiseless house and the opportunity of doing what we wish without children underfoot. But most adults obtain vastly less sleep than we need, and our children are falling into the same unhealthy pattern as their parents: emotional through their days beneath a cloud of fog and fatigue.

If you resist turning out the lights, it'south not tough to realize why your son refuses to call it a day!

What if you start thinking differently about sleep? What if turning out the lights became a welcome ritual in which you both see forward to relaxing into the stillness of the night?

It can be helpful to to acknowledge your son'south sadness when he realizes that the day is done. But you can expand more positive attitudes toward sleep if you look it not as the finish of fun but an fundamental element to living a happy, healthy life. Speak with him about the incredible ways that our body, mind and spirit are replenished when we sleep. Clarify how neurotoxins are literally cleansed from our brain when we drop into deep sleep, allowing us to awaken refreshed.

Create new bedtimes routines that comprise listening to music to noiseless the nervous system, doing a few kid-friendly yoga poses, or using a pleasing fundamental oil in his bedroom to create a restful atmosphere. Utilize a projector that displays fish or stars on his bedroom ceiling to give his restless mind something to focus on as he slips into a noiseless and peaceful state.

And don't be fooled into thinking that if your son is bouncing off the walls it means he doesn't necessity sleep. Overtired children may act quite energized, disregarding the body'south cues that announce the onset of sleepiness. In The Sleep Revolution, Ms. Huffington cites studies suggesting that sleep deprivation in kids can create them hyperactive, even leading to a diagnosis of ADHD.

Modify your legend about sleep and your son will be more likely to chase suit. If you're tired at the finish of a long and busy day... turn off the lights, perceive your body relaxing, and go to sleep! A weary parent simply cannot proposal the kind of steady support that makes life running more smoothly.

I wish you and your son many restful nights. Sweet dreams!

Susan Stiffelman is the author of Parenting Without Power Struggles: Raising Joyful, Resilient Kids While Staying Cool, Peaceful and Connected and the brand new Parenting with Presence: Practices for Raising Conscious, Confident, Caring Kids (An Eckhart Tolle Edition). She's a family therapist, parent coach and internationally recognized speaker on all subjects related to children, teens and parenting.

To memorise more about her online parenting courses, classes and personal coaching support, visit her Facebook page or sign up for her free newsletter.

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