Anyone who has had a baby can tell you about the times that the baby would not sleep, and kept them up at night. This is one of the more difficult periods for a parent to go through, and is especially hard on the younger parents with less experience. Sleep disturbances are so common in young children that surveys of parents with children under three report that a third were woken by the child the night before. The report of children over five dropping to a fifth.
Night terrors are when a person, usually a child awakes abruptly, screaming. The child is usually in a semi-conscious state and cannot be comforted. The child falls back asleep, generally not remembering the episode the next day.
Experts claim that sleep problems don’t cause any developmental delays, so parents are reassured by the doctor, and offered no more guidance. However, prolonged sleep disturbances can place a strain on the adults, which affects the entire family.
It is noted that night terrors usually start between the age of four and seven, and not indicative of any physical or mental issues. Nightmares might be caused by watching a scary movie, but night terrors seem to be a temporary disturbance in the nervous system, and are different in nature to nightmares.
Sleep disturbances might be caused by :
*urinary tract infections
*family dysfunctions (such as the fighting that leads to divorce)
*the arrival of a new baby
Social factors might include over stimulation from television or video games too close to bedtime, irregular bedtimes and becoming over tired.
Other factors occur at times, for example when the bedroom is too hot or too cold, and if the air is too dry.
For frequent night terrors, parents are advised to keep a diary to determine what time they occur, so that the child can be awakened about ten minutes before the occurrence.
Orthodox treatment for chronic sleep disturbances is doing the investigation necessary to get down to the root of the problem, which requires looking at the family as a whole. Once the problem is spotted, the solutions offered usually are:
*Behavioral therapy has been shown to substantially improve this condition for nine out of ten older babies and toddlers within a week.
*referral to a Pediatrician that specializes in sleep disorders, where the doctor treats the whole family.
*Sedatives may be given in the short term, in order to give relief to the parents but it is not a long term solution, and does not address the underlying issues.
Natural remedies for night terrors include:
*changing the color of the bedroom to more calming colors, such as a gentle blue shade.
*aromatherapy treatments such as rosewood oil placed in the child’s room.
Natural remedies for sleep disturbances include:
*calling aromatherapy such as rosewood, melissa and chamomile placed in a room pump dispenser. These oils should not be placed on the clothing or pillow of the child, as the smells could have the opposite affect.
*osteopathy and cranial osteopathy
The best natural food remedies for night terrors and chronic sleep disturbances are:
Both have known properties which help with insomnia, and other sleep disorders.
The healing herb is Amasake, Longan berries and Mugwort
Some other helpful foods are:
*Kava For a more comprehensive list go to:
Night terrors seem to be a harmless neurologic glitch that a child will outgrow, while Chronic sleep disturbances have underlying issues which need to be recognized as Physical, mental or emotional so that the problem can be solved. One of the greatest things we can do for our children is to provide a stable atmosphere by loving and caring for each other. Children thrive in a stable environment no matter what physical ailments may arise.