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Banish Fear of the Dark with a Night Light

13/08/2013 | Bedtime, Health | by Catherine Godiva

Most parents will appreciate how important it is to get a good night’s sleep – and that’s just the adults in the house!  We need all the energy we have sometimes just to deal with our little ones throughout the day – we all know how hard life can seem when we’ve had a disturbed night.  This is just as true of children, if not more so.  Sleep is such an important part of our daily lives that it’s recommended that we spend about a third of the hours in the day enjoying the benefits of sleep.  Fear of the dark can keep kids awake for hours, but this can easily be solved with the use of a nightlight.

Benefits of Sleep on Body and Brain

Our bodies need sleep so that our muscles, bones and skin can grow and develop properly – a really important aspect of child development.  Growing is a major activity for children, so getting a good night’s sleep is more important for kids than it is for us adults.  If they’ve been sick or under the weather then lots of sleep makes for a speedier recovery.  Children often have accidents – cuts, grazes and broken bones all take advantage of sleep time to heal.  It’s a proven fact that the body heals quicker during sleep time.

Kids brains need sleep – they need a bright and active mind so that they can concentrate properly and pay attention during the day.  Kids have a lot of learning to do whether this is in school or at home – learning is going on all day, every day.  We all know that it’s easier to take things in and learn when we’re feeling bright eyed and bushy tailed after a great night’s sleep – this is even truer for kids.  During sleep, the brain carries on working, solving problems and thinking up new ideas.

Light the Way (to the Loo)

Your child will sleep best when he/she feels secure, confident of his surroundings and able to relax and fall asleep in the knowledge that he’s cosy and safe in his bed.  Many children wake in the night for some reason or another.  Whether it’s for a quick trip to the loo or a drink of water, kids don’t usually like to wake in total darkness.  It can be scary and that jolt of fear can wake them right up and make it hard to get back off to sleep quickly. 

This is where a night light comes in.  A little one waking up to a room bathed in the soft glow of a night light will feel much more confident about getting up to go for a wee.  The ambient light means that they know where they are straight away and can see the familiar surroundings of their room.  They can see the way to the door and back to bed again – this is vitally important if you want to encourage your little one to be independent about going to the loo.  No need to lie there in the dark, scared of what they can’t see (and maybe staying there until they wet the bed).

Lloyd’s Pharmacy have a great selectionof nightlights as do Mothercare.  Nightlights come in all sorts of styles – some shaped like toys – teddies, balls, ducks; some even have a colour change function for extra fun.  Some of the most useful nightlights are the type with a detachable light that a child can pick up and take with him to light the way to the bathroom – usually a bit more expensive than other models, but well worth the extra for the practicality.  Putting a night light in your little ones room means that he/she never has to wake up in the dark – there will be a welcome friendly glow to give your little one confidence and chase away any fears of the dark.

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