1) Take a look at your child’s diet and limit sugar and carbs in the evening. Even if the sugar comes from fruit or fruit juice, it is still sugar and this can cause hyperactivity which won’t help your child get into a relaxed state before bed. Also it’s important to not give them lots and lots of fluids at least an hour before your preferred bedtime for them. The less liquid they have in their system, the less likelihood of them wanting to get up and go to the bathroom.
2) Some children have very severe sensory challenges and would benefit from complimentary therapies to The Son-Rise Program, such as HANDLE and the Alert program. A Mom I spoke to recently described her son as literally having the sensation that he was “Floating in space” when he was in his bed and he craved sleeping in her bed so that he could have a greater awareness of propreoception (where his body was in space). If your child is constantly moving or needing impact or pressure on his body, throughout the day, it is a sign that sensory issues come into play.
3) Be a detective! If your child seems to need the feeling of you lying next to him then give him stimulation on his body such as deep pressure squeezes or a pillow filled with dried beans that can lay on his body or next to him/her as you help him/her drift off to sleep. Try changing the laundry detergent you use or his/her bedsheets, perhaps the texture feels a certain way on your child’s body.
4) Keep your energy low at bedtime. This is the one time of day when we recommend that you don’t use energy, excitement and enthusiasm. The more slow and boring we can make our actions and responses to our children the better. We are trying to help them switch off and by wildly chasing them around or reading a story in our best cookie monster voice we can add to their challenges. This is the time to be the quiet centered calm in their storm.
More coming soon!