Can a Sleep tracker printable help me?
When you’re a parent, your sleep patterns can be easily disturbed as your kids wake you in the night. In the morning, you feel as if you have not had enough sleep and your energy levels may be low.
The sleep behavior of your kids directly affects the quality of your sleep and your own mental health as all parents know only too well!
Why is good quality sleep important for kids?
According to the Sleep Foundation, getting proper sleep is one of the best ways to support the development of young minds. It also has a direct effect on happiness, attentiveness, brain performance, mood, learning and memory.
How much sleep do kids need?
Children aged 6-12 need 9-12 hours of sleep per night.
Teenagers need 8-12 hours of sleep per night.
What to do with a child who doesn’t sleep?
There are lots of reasons why kids’ sleep cycles become disturbed including bedtime fears, night terrors and bed wetting.
If your child is not getting consistent sleep they will be irritable and cranky. They may have trouble concentrating at school or they may fall asleep in the daytime, especially during car trips.
To improve your kids’ sleep quality, try the following:
- Keep stress to a minimum if you can. Consider if there has been any change in circumstances at home or school and talk this through with your child to help reduce any stress they might be feeling.
- Think about your kid’s caffeine intake. Many sodas and energy drinks contain caffeine so try to limit these drinks to the morning only or, better still, eliminate them or keep as an occasional treat.
- Medication side effects can affect the amount of sleep that your child gets. Check the information you are given with the medication and discuss this with a medical practitioner if you feel it is having a big influence on your child.
- Encourage your child to use their bed at bedtime for sleep and not during the day. Develop a bedtime sleep routine that you stick to each night such as bath, pajamas and a bedtime story. Do not use screens within an hour of bedtime or let them watch a TV show as the blue light from the screens makes the brain alert and awake.
- Help your kids to get some exercise during the day. Encourage them by making it fun and something that appeals to them eg dancing, karate, trampolining or swimming. Try a fun treasure hunt to get them running around outside!
- Let the daylight in as soon as your child wakes up in the morning to help the brain fall into a natural sleep and wake rhythm.
As the quality of your sleep is impacted by the sleeping patterns of your kids, understanding what is impacting the number of hours that they sleep is crucial. When you find out the simple ways to reduce your kid’s wake times then ALL of the family gets a good night’s sleep.
Keeping a sleep tracker
A great way to improve your kid’s quality of sleep is to keep a sleep journal so that you can understand what factors are causing a lack of sleep in your kids and help them to get better sleep.
Keep a monthly sleep log for both your kids and yourself to identify trends and set new sleep goals.
Are there certain days of the week or times of the month when your kids don’t get enough hours of sleep? Do any foods trigger sleepiness or keep your kids awake?
GET YOUR FREE PRINTABLE SLEEP TRACKER HERE
- Print in full color on standard US letter paper (UK A4 paper)
- Write on the name of the person you are tracking
- Add dates to the left hand column
- Color in the squares to track sleep patterns
- This is a digital file and NO physical product will be shipped
- For personal use only
- You will get PDF files as a digital download to print on standard paper at home
- Print one sleep diary for each person
7 Tips for using this sleep tracker printable
- Keep records for at least one whole month so that you can identify which days of the week are better for sleep quality than others.
- Track any daytimes naps as well as night time sleep duration
- For older children, get them to color in the sleeping hours to indicate the importance of sleep
- For older kids, discuss how they feel each day and how this is related to the amount of sleep they had the night before
- If your child sleeps elsewhere eg at another relative’s house, ask them to fill in the sleep tracker for the nights that the child sleeps there.
- Check with the school to see if you kids nap in the day or sleep on the bus home.
- Keep the sleep tracker in the child’s bedroom with a pen so that you are reminded to complete each daily entry
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