The novelist Margaret Laurence famously said: “Holidays are enticing only for the first week or so. After that, it is no longer such a novelty to rise late and have little to do.”
Rising late, going to bed late and being ‘BORED’ are all synonymous with school holidays. However, it’s not only kids that breathe a sigh of relief when the holidays do start – parents do too. No more frantic mornings trying to get children out of bed, organising breakfast and then of course the dreaded school run. On the flip side however, by the time the summer is out, there are few parents who don’t secretly breathe a sigh of relief when school starts again.
Back to school means many things for parents: buying new school uniforms and shoes, getting lunch boxes ready, return of homework schedules and of course, trying to reestablish bedtime routines.
Children and sleep
We all know that not getting enough sleep has an impact on people as it’s vital for our physical, mental and emotional well-being: being sleep deprived can affect concentration and memory, making it difficult to do some things. When children don’t get enough sleep their behaviour and mood can be affected, it impacts on their ability to learn and they can become hyperactive.
Children need different amounts of sleep. The younger the child, the more sleep they need, but on average from about nine years old, a child will need 15 minutes less sleep for each year that they age. So a 14-year-old will need around nine hours sleep and a 16 year old around eight-and-a-half hours sleep each night. So, how do we help our children get a good bedtime routine in time for going back to school?
Bedtime sleep tips
- With shortly over a week before school starts, try scaling back bedtime by 15 minutes a night and encourage your child or children to get up 15 minutes earlier each day.
- Cut back on sugary snacks in the evening as these can can increase energy levels and interfere with bedtime.
- Wind down with relaxing activities prior to sleep time, such as a bath, milky drink and a story to help relax your child
- Create a restful environment in the bedroom. Is your child too hot or too cold at night? Are there distractions such as noise levels, light or is your child overstimulated by toys/computers or electrical devices in their bedroom?
- It’s important too that your child’s bed and mattress are giving them the proper support. Is it worn or soiled? Is it comfortable to sleep in? Try the Bed MOT to see if your child’s bed would pass.
What to do next
Dalzell’s is an accredited Sleep Council retailer which means our expert staff are on-hand to provide advice on sleep related issues. Visit us in-store to meet with the team where we’ll only be too happy to discuss your requirements. Based in Markethill we’re located between Newry and Armagh, so ideally placed to welcome customers from Dungannon, Cookstown and Omagh. With over 500 beds in stock, we’re confident you’ll find a new bed that suits your growing child, or for any member of the family. No time to visit? No problem. Call us on T: 028 3755 1260, Email or view our great selection of beds and mattresses online at ArmaghBeds.com. Our bed and mattress brands include Respa, Sleeptight, King Koil, Kaymed, Staples and Myer’s, so there’s a style and design to meet everyone’s sleep needs. What’s more we provide a Free Collection and Recycling of Your Old Bed service and Free Delivery throughout Northern Ireland, and Counties Dublin, Louth and Monaghan.