Children’s sleep aid: five tips for a healthy night’s sleep – focus online

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Every third first grader has problems with the Fall asleep or sleep through. So that chronic sleep disorders do not develop, which are sometimes dragged into adulthood, parents can do a lot.

The nightly horror comes on bare feet, and it lets the adrenaline level of parents skyrocket before the little Quengel voice begins: "I can’t sleep!" Sleepless children make mothers and fathers angry, especially when they are already at school age and after general feeling are actually out of the worst.

Why is that? We parents are responsible for the right framework conditions so that our children can develop healthily – and that includes enough sleep. Everyone knows how important they are to health and learning; everyone knows how you feel when you have slept badly. So we go crazy for the child to be in bed in time – and then it doesn’t sleep.

Simple rituals to help children fall asleep

Everyone third First graders have permanent problems with their night’s sleep, as shown by the "Cologne Children’s Sleep Study", the largest investigation in addition in Germany. This ranges from the usual difficulty falling asleep (10 percent) and staying asleep (8 percent), night terrors (4 percent) and wetting (11 percent) to sleepwalking (3 percent) or nightmares (14 percent). Interesting result of the study, incidentally, also that parents obviously do not notice much: They reported significantly less sleep disorders than their children themselves.

Unfortunately, sleep cannot be brought up just like elbows have to be dropped from the table or hands washed before eating. That makes parents helpless, so they try to counteract it with cunning and trickery: the hot milk with honey, the lavender sachet next to the pillow, the sound of the sea from the CD. Some swear by Schüßler Salt No. 7, dissolved in hot water for drinking, others on dinner with a lot of garlic, because it lowers blood pressure and makes you tired.

Normal sleep problems in the foreground

If none of this helps – and it helps astonishingly often, if only because of the ritual character – then the families end up at the pediatrician. He has to investigate whether there are organic reasons behind the sleep problems and, if in doubt, transfer the child to one of the 25 German children’s sleep laboratories. The Datteln Children’s Clinic has operated one for more than 20 years. There, doctors examine four children every night, monitor brain waves, breathing, oxygen, ECG and muscle tension. Unlike in the past, the focus has not been on the serious special cases for a good five years, but on the normal sleep problems.

Senior physician Bernhard Schlueter formulates his mandate as follows: "20 to 30 percent of all adults have permanent difficulties falling asleep and staying asleep, and it is our task to prevent this in good time." Because chronic sleep problems can develop from very small everyday events through repetition. “Typical is the socially very competent little brooder,” says Schlueter, “who wallows in bed because he is concerned about the seating arrangement at his birthday party. If something like this happens more often, he increases his ability to sleep. ”

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Christina Cherry
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