Until the children are old enough to take care of their own sleep health, it is advisable that the parents maintain a strict sleep schedule for their children.
The sleep requirements for every child varies according to their age group which is why parents need to be extra cautious about the sleep routine of their children who are sharing a room.
It’s true that sharing a bedroom with a sibling can be a blissful and warm experience but it can also lead to sleep disruption at times. Considering that sleep is one of the most important processes of the day when it comes to the proper growth of a child, no parent would want a shared bedroom to cause a lack of enough sleep for their child. Fortunately enough for you, we have compiled a list of certain measures that you can take to make their sleeping experience wholesome and uninterrupted.
#01 Maintaining an Appropriate Sleep Routine
It is rather beneficial for parents to set-up proper routines regarding all activities of their children so that they can learn the art of managing time and make time for the important activities of the day. Be it studying, taking meals, sleeping, swimming, or playing, among other things, a proper routine is key for a balanced and disciplined life. Therefore, it is key to know, first of all, the correct amount of time that your child should ideally be spending in the bed according to their age.
#02 Be Strict About the Routine
It is easy for the children to go wayward during bedtime because of engaging in activities like playing and chatting for long. It therefore becomes your role as a parent to draw a strict line regarding the time when the lights must go off and the children should be tucked into their bed. In order to ease the process of falling asleep, parents may adopt soothing methods that can calm the children and lull them to sleep such as reading a story or singing a lullaby to them.
#03 Difference in the Sleep Routines
Most often than not, the children have significant age difference between them which causes them to follow different sleep routines. It becomes crucial at times like these for the parents to make sure that each child is going to bed at their own designated sleeping time without disturbing the other children. While babies need to fall asleep by 7 P.M. at the latest, toddlers can stay awake till 8 P.M., and older kids can even set their bedtime at around 9 P.M. This gives the parents a window of at least an hour during which they can interact with each child and help them get habituated with the routine.
#04 Pay Heed to Comfort and Space
Even if the children are sharing a bedroom, it is advisable to get them their separate sleeping space. Not only is it a matter of mobility and comfort but also about a sense of privacy to have one’s own bed. Bunk beds can be a better option as they are considered excellent sleeping arrangement for a shared children’s room because of their ability to save space. The same goes for other furniture in the room such as cupboards, study tables, drawers, chairs, night lamps, etc., each of which need to be bought separately for each child. In fact, when the room is being shared by two children, it is not a bad idea to allot each of the child their own halves of the room so that they can learn to respect each other’s privacy, personal space, and of course, their sleep routines.
#05 The Wake-Up Schedule
In most cases, older children will have to leave the bed early because of school timings but smaller children can go on sleeping for long in the morning. It is equally important for the children to learn how to wake up without disturbing the other children so that they can complete their required amount of sleep. In such a setting, creating noise or drawing the curtains in the morning should be a strict no-no when the other children are asleep.
#06 Share Your Work
Make sure that you are not doing the entire labor of looking after the children on your own and your partner is doing their fair share of work. Make sure that you yourself are following the right ways to get quality sleep every night. You can even involve the oldest child to share some of your nighttime burden so that they can help you take care of the smaller children when they wake up at night. Although it is a great way to increase bonding between the siblings, it is advisable to wait until a child is at least a few months old before putting them in the same room as another child.
#07 In Case of an Illness
It is not uncommon for parents to fret over the risk of getting a child infected when another already has the illness. Not only is there the risk of contamination but also the risk of wakefulness is one child affecting another. At times like these, it is wise to a have a portable mattress or a sleeping bag handy which can be spread in a separate room to contain the illness.
Parenting is not an easy task, especially when you have multiple children to look after. Setting up proper sleep routines and maintaining them strictly can be a tough job but we assure that it gets easier every day and the children will gradually get accustomed to fall asleep at their prescribed bedtime.