We’re starting to realise today truly how important sleep is for everyone, not just children. It impacts your how you feel day-to-day, as well as your long-term health. It’s easy to feel that sleep is something that gets in the way of doing other things, but without those restorative zzz’s it’s almost impossible to function efficiently or effectively, in other words, everything else suffers. Sleep brand Zizzz know that sleep should be a priority for the whole family, not just your baby or young children and have devoted themselves to ensuring everyone has a good night’s sleep.
Here are some quick tips to makeover your sleep routine to improve the whole family’s health and wellbeing.
Understand the importance of sleep
Promote sleep to your family in the same way you would encourage eating healthily and exercising. A good rest each night will ward off health problems and bad moods. If your children are struggling to focus, it could be down to a lack of sleep.
Newborns can sleep for up to 18 hours each day, according to NHS England. This reduces as they get older, with toddlers needing around 13 hours, and school-age children ideally sleeping for 10-11 hours. For an adult, six to nine hours is sufficient.
Make some small changes
Snacks, particularly sugary ones, before bedtime can prevent you falling asleep. Make sure children eat a full meal in the evening so they’re less likely to ask for a little something before bed.
Know the activities that will help you to wind down. A warm bath will help to regulate your body temperature. Yoga will help to relax your muscles. Reading and listening to the radio will relax your mind by distracting it.
Get everyone into a routine
Decide a time when everyone turns off their gadgets. Ideally this should be an hour before sleeping, to give the brain and eyes a rest from screen stimulation. It also gives you an hour to work through the nighttime routine, rather than rushing to get the kids to bed on time.
The wind-down should be the same each night: a bath and teeth brushing, a book and a cuddle is a good example for a toddler or baby. Aim to stick to the same ritual at weekends or shift it back 30 minutes as a treat for older children.
Going to sleep and waking up at the same time regulates your body’s circadian rhythm. Having a fixed wake time has been shown to boost your immune system, improve alertness, and make it easier to sleep and wake up.
Create the optimal sleep environment
Build an environment in which you’ll want to relax and unwind in the evening. Remove any distractions from sleep areas; this means laptops, tablets and phones.
Ensure that your bedrooms are dark and quiet, the essential elements for a peaceful night’s sleep. It may be worth investing in some dark curtains or blinds. White noise can be useful if there are unavoidable noise distractions.
Your body temperature drops at night as your body prepares itself for sleep mode. This means it’s important to keep your room at a cool and comfortable level: NHS England recommends 18-24C.
Invest in the right bedding
When you’re asleep, it shouldn’t really matter what sort of covers are keeping you warm. Wrong! The type of bed sheets and duvets that you use can make a huge difference to a quality night’s sleep. Often, duvets and, in particular, baby sleeping bags, can be made from polyester, a plastic derived from petroleum. The problem with polyester is that it retains heat and moisture; this causes you or your baby to overheat and sweat during the night. Warm temperatures can be the culprit of an interrupted and uncomfortable night’s sleep.
Choose sleeping bags and duvets made from organic cotton and wool filling. These materials are breathable: wool allows heat and moisture to pass through it and this, in turn, helps to regulate body temperature, making sure you or baby aren’t too hot or too cold. The result of sleeping in wool bedding is better, deeper and more relaxed sleep.
The Swiss natural bedding brand Zizzz came about when a young father, Roel van Gasselt, decided to create his own baby sleeping bag for his daughter when he realised her trouble sleeping was because of the polyester in her sleeping bag causing her to overheat. Zizzz now produce a full line of bedding products for the whole family, including pyjamas, duvets, pillows, sheets, blankets and more. Zizzz only use the best organic cotton and pure virgin sheep’s wool from the Swiss Alps for their products.
Shop online on Zizzz.ch or check out our favourites from the range below
Baby Sleeping Bag, 0-6 months
Kids Duvet – 4 Seasons
Adult Duvet – 4 Seasons
Sponsored content in collaboration with Zizzz