Rise of the 'iTods'
Gone are the days of just a simple
bedtime story to get our latest generation of toddlers to sleep.
Research has revealed that one in ten toddlers are hypnotised by a
mobile device or tablet screen whilst laying in bed at night. The
researchers have also found that most of these 'iTods' actually own
their own tablet, whilst the others use one of their parents to
access their games and apps.
Child health experts, Childwise who carried out
the research claimed that parents must make changes because
'bedrooms have become electronic entertainment zones as opposed to
a place to wind down and fall asleep'.
Most of our toddlers are using the devices to
play on apps and games and to watch TV programmes and video clips,
with the average session lasting 1.5 hours.
Seattle Children's Institute found that
toddlers who watch TV after 7pm could have problems getting to
sleep and have nightmares or tiredness in the morning when they
Are you struggling to get your little ones to
Our sleep expert Dr Nerina Ramlakhan, a
physiologist, sleep therapist, author and consultant for more than
20 years, has listed her top sleep tips to help your child drift
1. Start to introduce technology-free time in
As stated earlier research has shown that by
having a constant stream of light enter our eyes before we go to
sleep, we are actually telling our brains that we want to be awake.
An hour or so before children go to bed, rule out any blue light.
This means no TV, tablets or mobile phones. The bedroom should be a
technology free environment.
2. Create a sleep friendly
Bedrooms need to be sleep friendly and this
means a cool environment. Freshly laundered bedding, possibly
lavender fragranced, can make the room feel very calming and
relaxing. Again, technology free bedrooms are a must!
3. A calming pre-sleep
The few hours before bed can be just as
important as actual bedtime. Relaxing baths with lavender, a milky
drink or reading are great ways to help children wind down and feel
ready for bed.
For more advice and sleep tips, visit the
Silentnight website for Dr Nerina's Sleep Toolkit: /sleep-matters/dr-nerinas-sleep-toolkit/#22663