Sounds impossible, right? Getting your children to finally nod off the night before arguably the biggest day of the year is no mean feat, but we’re here to help. Christmas Eve might look a little bit different this year but it will still be a day full of excitement and anticipation for most of us, and knowing how to get the kids to wind down at the end of the day can be a challenge. With the help of our sleep expert, Dr Nerina Ramlakham, we’ve compiled our top tips to help you out…
Reassure them about Santa
“As beloved a character as Santa is, many children are actually frightened by the thought of the man in the red suit coming down the chimney and into their bedrooms. If your little one is apprehensive, I’d recommend leaving stockings and other treats out of the bedroom and letting kids know that Santa will put all the presents in the living room.” Putting their minds at ease about this will help them relax, and doze off no problem. If you need some extra help easing away any anxieties, our Kids Weighted Blanket acts as a big hug and helps them drift off.
Go easy on the chocolate
We all know sugar and sleep don’t mix. While the house will no doubt be filled with cookies, mince pies and other festive treats, avoid sugar-filled food in the evening. “Children need a good balance of the hormones serotonin and melatonin in their system to be able to drift off to sleep” says Dr. Nerina, so foods like chicken, cheese, tuna, eggs and milk are best.
A Christmas Eve walk is the perfect way to tire your kids out before bedtime. Physical activity combined with time outdoors makes for the perfect combination, “Not only will the fresh air wear them out, but having time away from screen will stop them being wired and unable to sleep in the evening.”
Create a calm sleep environment
“Bedrooms need to be sleep-friendly and this means a calm environment free from distractions. Keep the Christmas decorations, advent calendars and other reminders of the big day out of your little one’s room”. We know it’s unlikely they will forget what special day it is, but the more relaxing you can make their sleep space the better.
Trying some, or all of these steps should make Christmas Eve a more peaceful, restful night for you and your little ones. Stick to their normal bedtime and routine as much as possible, and they’ll nod off sooner than you think.