In part one of our blog we thought about what it really means to nurture our children – to care for and protect them – and how this can feel anything but straightforward these days in a culture that sometimes offers parenting advice in over-abundant supply.
Advice concerning children’s sleep is no less prolific and, where problems exist, children’s sleep is a topic that can cause parents to feel defeated or even defensive.
The simplest truth is that our children need the same conditions we do in order to sleep well: to sleep at routine times, to have a bedroom that isn’t full of light, that’s quiet and not too warm, to have time to relax before sleep and to have a comfortable bed to sleep in.
For all the mysteries surrounding sleep and why some children sleep better than others, it’s worth reverting back to this checklist. We wouldn’t sleep well without having these basic needs met, so why expect our children to?
Picture the familiar scene when we’re rushing our child to bed within moments of arriving home from dance or taekwondo, when we’re putting kids to bed an hour early because we’re heading out for the evening, is it any wonder they don’t fall asleep straight away? Similarly a child that doesn’t easily fall asleep whose bedroom is ablaze with late evening sun or pumping with sound from the downstairs tv probably don’t have a sleep problem, but more likely a bedroom that isn’t supporting their sleep needs.
As we endeavour to nurture our children by caring for and protecting them, nurturing their sleep is fundamental to their health, wellbeing and development. And so is their comfort – children crave comfort in a literal and figurative sense.
Make comfort part of your children’s bedtime by sharing special time with them and by giving them a comfortable bed to sleep in. Take care of all your family’s sleep needs with Millbrook Beds – luxury mattresses and beds handmade in the New Forest.