Nightmares are always upsetting, regardless of the dreamer’s age. Children begin to understand that scary dreams aren’t real around age four or five, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t still frightened by what they imagined.
If your child has had a nightmare, reassure her, listen carefully to her fears, and use your love and imagination to help banish the monsters and guide your child back to sleep. But what can you do to help prevent your child from experiencing nightmares in the future?
Here are four key ways to make your son or daughter’s sleeping environment so ideal, the boogie monster won’t even make an appearance!
1. Create a regular sleep routine for your child. Develop a routine that encourages your child to slow down, and to feel safe and secure. Some possible ideas are a warm bubble bath before bed, reading a favorite book, or cuddling with the family pet or a favorite toy.
Do avoid letting your child stay up too late past her established bedtime, and avoid any scary stories, movies, or television shows right before bed. A significant change in routine or exposure to triggers, like scary movies, may result in nightmares.
2. Emphasize the power of imagination. Imagination can cause nightmares, but it can also be used to ward them off. Encourage your child to use her creativity and imagination to fight her imaginary fears. The magical power of love combined with creativity can work wonders. So, help your child defeat her fears with a dose of make-believe “monster spray” or “fairy dust” spread throughout her bedroom.
3. Practice relaxation skills. Give your child the coping skills she needs to put herself in the right frame of mind for a quiet, restful night’s sleep. A calm body and mind will have an easier time falling asleep. Ask your child to envision a peaceful, relaxing scene in her mind, such as a sunset or a beach or a beautiful field. This exercise can distract your child from thinking scary thoughts, and she will fall asleep quickly.
4. Design a cozy bedroom environment. Consider adding a nightlight to your child’s room as long as it isn’t so bright it prevents your child from sleeping. A stuffed animal, favorite toy, or other security objects can help make the room a safer place.
Make sure the bed is a comfy, peaceful place to lie down. Here is where Privacy Pop can help by giving your child a comfortable, protective, quiet night’s sleep.
Our tents can easily fit your child’s mattress, and the Privacy Pop comes in a variety of colors sure to please your little one. Empower your child to make her bed a palace that no boogie monster can withstand, and watch the nightmares disappear.