Sleep is necessary for the brain. The brain works hard during the ‘night shift’, though you won’t be aware of it. During the night, the brain gets cleaned, fuelled up and repaired. Having little or no sleep causes tiredness and other difficulties the next day. You may have mood swings and problems with concentration and coping in general. Your appetite control won’t work properly, and there will be more cravings for fatty foods and carbohydrates, in particular.
You can talk about the importance of sleep with children of pre-school and school age. The need for sleep and sleeping hours vary between children even in the same family. For some children 8 hours is enough, but others need 10 hours or more.
You can colour the sleep tree together with your child and use it to talk about the factors affecting sleep. Regular evening routines and spending a nice evening with parents are important for children of all ages. You can also practise relaxation and calming down together.