School’s out for summer! Along with warmer weather comes the loss of the school routine, putting children’s sleep at risk. Here are a few tips to keep in mind to help you and your child get healthy sleep throughout the summer.
1. Maintain routines
Maintain consistent bedtimes and wake times throughout the summer. Children thrive on predictable schedules. Keeping a regular sleep and wake schedule will also make the back-to-school transition easier.
2. Exercise during the day
Get outside for some fresh air and exercise during the day. Outdoor time helps keep body clocks on track, and daytime exercise can make it easier to fall asleep and get better quality sleep at night.
3. Turn off screens before bed
Be sure to keep an eye on your child’s screen time over these next few months. With all the free time of summer, children may be tempted to use their devices more. Try your best to keep bedtime screen-free by turning off all devices 30-60 minutes before bed.. Electronics give off blue light and noise that may keep children awake.
4. Stay cool
Create a cool, dark, and quiet sleep environment. Try light pajamas, fewer blankets, and a fan to stay cool. Heavy curtains and a screen-free space help keep it dark during the extended daylight hours of summer. White noise or soft music can cover indoor and outdoor sounds.
5. Wind down in the evening
Plan to begin relaxing bedtime routine activities (like reading, coloring, bathing, and brushing teeth) 30-60 minutes before bedtime to wind down.
6. Ease into Back to School
If sleep and wake schedules do shift later during the summer, making small changes over several days will help transition your child back to school. Try moving bedtime and wake time earlier by 15 minutes every other day instead of making a big change all at once.