Help Kids Sleep During Coronavirus Pandemic

With disrupted daily routines, your kid’s schedules are off and they may not be getting their needed sleep. Here are tips to help kids sleep during the Coronavirus pandemic.

Bed with teddy bear
Kid’s schedules are off and they may not be getting their needed sleep. Here are tips to help kids sleep during the Coronavirus pandemic. #helpkidssleep

Help Kids Sleep During Coronavirus Pandemic

Parenting has never, ever been easy but helping your little ones get a good night’s sleep has become tougher during the COVID-19 crisis. There’s some good news! I’ve found that some basic tweaks like learning to choose the best mattress for kids can help your infant, toddler, or grade-schooler sleep better during health quarantines.

The ongoing global crisis affecting nearly 60 million people worldwide (November 2020) has caused parents to deal with virtual offices, home-schooling, and financial issues on top of the regular requirements of being a good parent. In situations like a newborn baby needing to sleep 8 hours during night and day, it’s especially important for them to have the right sleep environment and sleep schedule.    

Coronavirus and Children’s Activities

There’s no question that COVID-19 has disrupted children’s everyday schedule. That includes different factors, like play-dates, physical classrooms, and after-school activities. When children experience disrupted daily schedules, it can affect other factors like their sleep schedule.

Kids having a lack of sleep can start a snowball effect. However, it can affect them differently than adults. While adults often become low-energy due to sleep deprivation, kids tend to become hyperactive.

Kids and COVID-19

The disrupted daily routine can be tough for babies, kids, and teens. Here’s why. It can cause them to feel stress, anxiety, and feel that they’ve lost control of their everyday life. The situation can also be tough for parents to describe the pandemic to their children.

It’s double-trouble since the pandemic prevents kids from using some of the regular coping mechanisms they usually turn to. That includes hobbies, sports, and friends.

PANDEMICS AND HOW IT AFFECTS KIDS’ SLEEP

The stress and anxiety caused by pandemics can also cause children’s nighttime routines to be affected, too. In fact, this can then affect your kiddo’s focus, mood, and behavior. Fortunately, a good night’s sleep can help in all these areas and more!

Create a School Schedule

If your child is doing online education and/or home-schooling, then it’s important to talk about their daily schedule. That includes lunchtime and two break times. Your children will be more likely to stay on a schedule if they have some control in making it.

Set Bedtimes and Wake-times

When your child is well-rested, they’ll perform better in their everyday activities, including school time. Make sure to set these times for your family on weekdays and weekends.

Making two different schedules provides your tots with the chance to stay up a little later on weekends. Bedtime could be one hour later on Saturday and Sunday, School-age kids still need 9 to 11 hours of sleep and teens need 7 to 9 hours of slumber.  

Your child’s bedtime schedule can also include the “5 Bs”:

  • Books 
  • Bite (bedtime snack) 
  • Brushing Teeth
  • Bath
  • Bathroom

There are a few caveats. It’s recommended kids have a limited reading time that could include a set number of picture books, according to KOED. It’s fun to read but also good to sleep.

In addition, if they’re reading e-books then they should read them no later than one hour before bedtime. The device’s lights function as a stimulant that could prevent your little one from dozing off to dreamland sooner 

Same-Time Naptime

Naps and naptime schedules are both important for children. For example, toddlers 18 to 24-months-old need up to 3 hours of daytime sleep, according to What to Expect. When kids follow a regular naptime, this helps them to follow a bedtime schedule.

Getting your kids to take a nap can be tougher when parents work online during home quarantines. If your kid is demanding more attention during bedtime and naptime, then you should consider spending more quality time with them during the day.  

Help Kids Sleep by Making Nighttime More Relaxing

Internal Clocks

Make sure nights are relaxed. This is important because a person’s “circadian rhythms” (internal clock) tells them nighttime is sleeping time.

However, if a child is “wired,” then their bodies will tell them the opposite. Today, some of the main causes are technology and caffeine. For example, studies show that 60% of kids in the under-12 age group often play on portable gadgets, according to Free Make.  

Bedtime Baskets

This is an effective technique that can help kids sleep during pandemics. The basket should be filled with kid-friendly activities that are relaxing and (in a good way) distracting. This includes options like:

  • Drawing pads
  • Books
  • Puzzles

The best time for children to use these items is after they’ve been tucked in. This prevents the need for parents to stay in the room until their child dozes off. 

Prevent Stalling

Kids often use creative tactics to delay bedtimes, including issues related to blankets, beds, or even itchy feet. While this is normal, it can also prevent them from getting enough shut-eye at night.   

You can help to prevent stalling by using “bedtime tickets.” This can include decorated sticky notes or index cards that kids get every night.

Give them some tickets per night to show you’ll do a few things to help them sleep. This could include making a healthy snack or fixing the blanket on their comfortable selected mattresses.

TALK WITH AND REASSURE YOUR CHILD

This is something you should be doing anyway, but it’s especially important throughout the coronavirus outbreak. While talking to them after they hop into your bed might seem practical, experts explain that this can actually be habit-forming and prevent them from falling asleep.

Daytime Support

A better option is to provide support during the day. Children are more alert during this time since they’ll be more receptive, and it won’t create any sleep problems. Here are some helpful tips when communicating with your child about the current COVID-19 crisis:

  • Answer questions with simple/honest answers.
  • Schedule virtual play-dates. 
  • Provide extra love and care.
  • Be understanding and empathize with their concerns.     
  • Let them share something they’re thankful for.

CONCLUSION

There’s no question that being a good parent is tougher with the current coronavirus pandemic. Fortunately, you can use tactics like daytime support, sleeping schedules, and bedtime baskets. This can help kids sleep and make sleep time a good-night time!

My Mommy Style would like to thank our contributor Brett for writing this article. Brett is a writer at ID-MAG. An enthusiast and expert when it comes to sleep products, Brett dedicates a lot of his time reading, researching, and reviewing about both traditional and emerging sleep brands that manufacture varied types of sleep products – from eco-mattresses, smart pillows to cooling sleep systems, Brett has probably reviewed them all. Brett also finds sleep especially important since he juggles a small business which he runs from home, makes sure he spends time with his daughter and he also writes during his spare time – you can definitely see that he needs a great forty winks all night, every night so he’ll make sure that you get great sleep, too!

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