Some children find it harder to get to sleep than others – they might have an overactive imagination, anxiety, a ton of energy or just can’t get in the right zone and could use a bit of help.
Here are seven different things you can try to help your child drift off without a hitch.
1. Bananas and milk
Magnesium is a natural muscle relaxant that helps promote sleep and bananas are full of it! They also contain melatonin and serotonin, two other natural elements that help you to fall asleep quickly, so it makes the perfect snack before bedtime.
Dairy is another good one, especially milk, as it’s packed with trypotophan which is the amino acid responsible for making us feel drowsy after eating a big meal. If you whip up a banana milkshake (hold the ice cream!) an hour before bed, you can go for a double hit of sleepy magic.
2. A calming bath
A nice warm bath is a great activity to help kids relax before bedtime, however there are ways to boost its calming properties even more.
Sprinkle in some Elektra Magnesium Mineral Salt Flakes or Epsom salts (which also contain magnesium) with some lavender oil. There are also other natural products you can try such as a Vitamin C mineral salt mix from Life Basics which is great for soothing sensitive skin ready for a relaxed deep night’s sleep.
NB: Follow the directions on the product packaging for best snoozy results.
Read more about tips for helping kids sleep:
- Sweet dreams! 16 of the best bedtime books for little ones
- The science of singing your children to sleep
- Is this the ultimate trick to get your baby to sleep?
3. Meditation stories
Instead of your normal bedtime stories, why not swap the last one for a children’s meditation book instead?
Meditation is a great way to help kids feel safe, secure, relaxed and can lull them into a deep sleep. Guided meditation via an interactive story is super easy and fun.
Maureen Garth has a series of great meditation story books with titles such as Moonbeam, Starbright and Earthlight. Other books to try are Sleepy Magic by Danielle Wright or Nightlights by Anne Civardi, but there are also lots of other titles out there.
4. Magnesium massage
Okay so it’s magic magnesium again! If bath salts or bananas aren’t your thing you can tap into the sleepy power of magnesium in other ways.
Massage feels great and is a lovely way to bond with your child, as well.
5. Essential oils
There are a number of different essential oils which are great for helping calm and soothe children at bedtime such as lavender and chamomile.
Putting a dab of Badger Night Night Balm on to your child’s pulse points such as the temples and wrists can really help those with excitable personalities, or use a sleep spray in the air such as Aroma Care for Kids.
For extra help creating the perfect environment for your child to sleep easy, use some essential oils in a vaporiser or oil diffuser for an added calming effect.
6. Wind-down podcasts and apps
Listening to a soothing voice with added music effects can be incredibly calming for a child. It’s also a great option for time-poor parents who may not be able to dedicate as much time at night for things like reading stories and massage.
7. Sleepy music
Perhaps your little one responds best to music? There are lots of CDs and downloads you can buy featuring gentle lullabies, classical tunes and other calming music that’s perfect for drifting off to sleep to – such as Baby by the Sea. Another option is YouTube which has a great selection of compilations which you can access for free.