When that highly-anticipated first day of school comes around, it can be challenging for your teen or young child to wake up, especially when they’re used to a relaxed nighttime summer schedule. Dr. Alice Hoagland, Insomnia Clinic Director at Rochester Regional Health, says that creating a normal sleep schedule for kids doesn’t begin with sending them to bed earlier; it starts with waking them up earlier.
“Wake up time is more important than bed time,” said Hoagland. “There’s a gland in your brain that regulates your body 24 hours a day, and that gland gets set by when you wake up in the morning, not by when you go to bed.”
Hoagland recommends waking your kid up an hour earlier every three to four days, preventing them from taking afternoon naps, and filling their days with activities, so when nighttime comes around they’ll be fighting to stay awake.
Kids don’t have the option of napping or waking up late to catch up on sleep when school starts. According to Hoagland, a lack of sleep can have negative side effects that can impact your kid’s performance in school.
“They lose focus, they can bounce off the walls and their attention span can be all over the place,” said Hoagland.
She continued, “Teenagers who don’t get enough sleep can underperform in school which can lead to mood issues, like low-grade depression or anxiety brought on by lack of sleep. Ensuring they don’t feel this way starts with a normal kids sleep schedule.”
Watch the video below for more information on creating a normal sleep schedule for kids.
Create your own Sleep Schedule for Kids with this Template:
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