How can sleep help my kids?
Sleep can often be elusive for new parents, but as various studies have shown over recent weeks, it is essential for the wellbeing of children. From pregnancy right through to the child becoming a toddler, rest is crucial to overall wellbeing both in the short to long term.
Get active while pregnant
Trying to get comfortable while heavily pregnant can be especially tough, but one expert has recommended in recent days that every effort should be made to get some rest. Louise Whyte, founder of Penelope Fitstar and a personal trainer specialising in pregnancy and post-natal exercise, highlighted that mild exercise is great for helping the body to wind down. For women who just simply can't get comfortable, she advised getting hold of specially-shaped cushions that will help improve their position.
Is breast really best?
Experts from the Medical Research Council have argued in recent days that breast-fed infants tend to demand more attention, therefore making them more difficult to settle. This behaviour is normal, however, and should be tolerated by parents rather than reaching for a formula alternative. Study lead author Dr Ken Ong suggested that this could be why so many mothers give up breastfeeding so quickly.
Don't expect sleeplessness to subside
A team from the Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center in Ohio believe that sleep problems encountered by kids in early life might not get any better when they become a toddler. Common issues include suffering from nightmares, waking up throughout the night and struggling to fall asleep in the first place. The scientists found that as many as one in three youngsters has a problem that affects their ability to sleep.
Sleep can improve school grades
Children who have a regular sleep schedule often find their grades are much better at school, research from the Prince's Trust shows. Youngsters with a lack of structure to their days were found to struggle the most academically.