The rollercoaster weather changes at the moment can affect our, and our child’s sleep significantly. As we enter another warm spell, here are some tips to help keep cool for sleep.
Temperature of the bedroom:
The ideal temperature of the bedroom should be 18 degrees. However in the heat, the bedroom is likely to be much warmer than this. To cool the bedroom down, keep the curtains or blinds closed during the day as this will help keep the heat of the sun out of the room.
Place a fan in the room before bedtime to cool the room down before bedtime. You can leave it on for the night but make sure it is not directly facing you or your child and if in your child’s room, always ensure it is out of your child’s reach.
Hanging wet towels over chairs and windows can also help with cooling the room down as the evaporating water cools the air.
Bedding & nightwear:
Use light cotton sheets on the cot or bed. Remove unnecessary bedding from the cot or bed.
Remove any padding from around the bed to allow the air to circulate.
Waterproof sheets on a bed can make it hotter. Either remove them or cover them with several layers of cotton sheets.
For babies who are swaddled, use a thin 100% cotton material.
For children in sleeping bags, use 0.5 tog.
Cooling down before bed:
A cool flannel or towel on the forehead or feet can cool the body down significantly.
A cool bath or shower before bed is good and ideally, a short period of relaxation afterwards when drying off helps to reduce body heat and induces sleepiness. Obviously with an overactive toddler, this may not always be achievable but it may be worth reading some extra stories straight after bath to encourage them to lie calmly.
While we all love a bright day, starting that day at 5am with the sun shining through the window is possibly not ideal. Use good blackout blinds on the window as any burst of light, even a small chink, can be enough to waken you or your child fully at this time when you are in a light sleep.
For children who are waking at this time, respond to them as you would a night wake up rather than starting their day. This can take a little while to crack, but keeping consistent with your responses at this time, and indicating to them that it’s not morning time will encourage them to start sleeping longer.
Sleeping on the go:
Please be aware that buggies can become hot and airless so if your child falls asleep in the buggy, keep a careful eye on him.
Never leave your baby to sleep in the car seat in the car. Even with windows open, temperatures inside a parked car can rise sharply so do transfer your child if he falls asleep in the car.
"Why Does My Child Wake Up In The Night?"
We are all wired to wake during the night as we transition between our sleep cycles. However, the problem is not the waking but not having the ability to settle back to sleep independently. Our child sleep guide can help you tackle the causes of these wake ups.
Maryanne established The Sleep Works in 2010. She is a qualified and experienced Sleep Consultant who has helped hundreds of parents with their children’s sleep problems. She also works with adults to educate, support and motivate them to improve their sleep. She gives many talks and workshops on child and adult sleep, has written numerous articles, and has appeared on Channel 4's 'Born Naughty?' show. Find out more about Maryanne and The Sleep Works.