Some sing, others turn up the volume as they open the shutter, others opt for peppermint oils. Many mothers seem to agree on this point: there are kids who don’t need to be taken out of bed, quite the contrary – they are the ones who drag their parents out of a deep sleep, indifferent to the idea that there are better ways to wake up than others.
Before waking up, what should falling asleep be like?
To talk about a good wake-up call, it is inevitable to talk about the time to go to sleep. Each case is unique, which is why the fundamental thing is to comply with the recommended hours of sleep.
And it is not the lullaby that tells the adventures of princes and princesses, or that the big bad wolf is actually Little Red Riding Hood’s grandmother, that makes sleep come. However, this is not a bad practice. Telling a story doesn’t mean that the child won’t fall asleep on his own. But we can be present, offer company, and not intervene in the process of falling asleep. And that is not a negative habit.
It is, in fact, a way for them to feel more secure and fall asleep peacefully. We know that anxiety is one of the main inhibiting factors in the process of inducing sleep.
What is the best way of waking up?
The child should wake up in the most natural way possible, without any unnecessary artifices. The human body is programmed to wake up with daylight and nothing else. It works that way, simple. It is enough to let the sunlight in through a small crack in the bedroom window to signal to the organism that it is time to open the eyes and start the day.
However, this is an ideal scenario. This is because the timetable of the weekly routine often requires that children have to wake up before there is even any natural daylight. In this case, the alternative is to simulate it by switching on soft light, such as a lamp, and waiting a few minutes for the child to wake up.
If this is not enough, then we should make soft circular movements with our fingers around the child’s eyes and mouth, which are sensitive areas and easily allow the child to wake up in a very instinctive way.
Even without natural light, there is another natural way of waking up and that takes up the initial point: falling asleep. A good awakening is always the result of a good night’s sleep and rest. That is why we have to ensure that the child goes to bed at the appropriate time, so that he gets a good night’s sleep – adding that when this does not happen, it leads to bad moods and irritability (which adults also experience), which lasts throughout the day.
So what is the best way to wake children up? It depends. First, you first need to know the child’s temperament and whether they have a slow awakening or wake up quickly. In the case of slow-wakening children, we already know that we must call them 15 minutes before the set time to get up and not use strong stimuli (lots of light, harsh noises, and aggressive tone of voice). The faster children also don’t need many gimmicks and, with ease and a little natural light, they are up within five minutes. There is, therefore, no formula, but we leave you with four tips you can follow:
- Going to bed at suitable times and falling asleep peacefully;
- Have a restful sleep, sleeping without noise and without any kind of light;
- Sleep the number of hours necessary for their age group;
- Wake up with natural light and at a regular time (without great variations between weekdays and weekends).
The benefits of waking up early for children
It is common for children not to like waking up early when they are at home or even to go to school. But getting out of bed and having a daytime routine is very beneficial for little ones! Of course, it is important that children get the optimal amount of sleep, so it is essential to go to bed early as well. During the day, children can take the opportunity to practice physical activities, avoiding overweight, for example. Do you want to know other benefits that waking up early brings to children?
The ideal hours
Children between 1 and 3 years of age should sleep 12 to 14 hours a day; pre-schoolers, from 3 to 5 years, 11 to 12 hours; and children from 6 to 12 years, 10 to 11 hours. It is important to sleep well in these phases of life, because sleep influences behaviour and intellectual development, besides improving family relationships.
Even if the little ones do not want to go to bed or find it difficult to sleep, it is important to create the habit of going to bed early to wake up early. Parents have a fundamental role in educating their children to have good sleep habits to prevent and treat future difficulties as well. Waking up early keeps children more active and healthier compared to children who do not.
Decreases anxiety and irritability
When children do not sleep well or when they do not follow a sleep routine, they become more anxious and irritable. They also don’t get as much done during the day and may want to sleep later, missing the time to do activities beneficial to their learning and development or even to play, for example. Therefore, it is necessary to create a discipline with the timetable!
Improves school performance
Regulated sleep helps memory and improves the capacity to learn and concentration. Children should have a set bedtime and wake-up time, even on weekends, so as not to have difficulties getting back into the routine on Mondays. For example, if the child is used to going to bed at 9pm and waking up at 6am, but extends his sleep to 9am on Saturday and Sunday, he will probably find it difficult to go to bed early on Sunday as he woke up later.
Having good growth
Waking up early is also a sign that the child is going to bed at the right time, which helps in the production of the growth hormone. This is produced at night, from 9 to 4 in the morning. So, if the child is not in bed at this time, the production of the hormone falls and he or she may grow less. In addition, waking up early means being in more sunlight, important for the production of vitamin D, which improves the absorption of calcium, strengthening the bones.
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