Insomnia can drain away one’s energy and make them frustrated. While insomnia is uncommon in adults, even toddlers can suffer from sleepless nights because of it. It is rather an important health issue in toddlers and must be tackled carefully.
What Is Insomnia?
Insomnia means inability to sleep. There are various types of insomnia and specialists believe there are two major types. Sleep onset insomnia is the most common among toddlers. It means that the sleep of toddlers keeps getting interrupted during the night. Such toddlers keep waking up during their sleep and then falling back asleep.
Another type of insomnia is limit setting insomnia. This type of insomnia is observed in children over five years of age. In such kind of insomnia, children tend to prolong their bedtime by making different excuses because they are unable to sleep early.
Common Causes Of Insomnia In Toddlers:
Even toddlers can be stressed out, especially those who have recently started playschool. Since they are starting to adapt to a new environment, they find it difficult and thus are stressed out. Stress can also be because of different family problems, shifting of places, death in the family, having a new sibling or something else.
If the sleeping conditions of the toddler are not comfortable or the atmosphere is not suitable to the toddler’s sleeping needs, then he will not be able to sleep. There are many environmental factors that need to be considered like light, noise, heat, softness of the pillow or mattress.
If the toddler has some allergies, stuffy nose or any medical issues, even that may cause insomnia. Psychiatric conditions are often mostly responsible for insomnia in toddlers whether it is autism, OCD, depression, bipolar disorder or mental retardation. Physical problems like asthma, cold etc can also cause sleeping issues.
Signs And Symptoms Of Insomnia In Toddlers:
You need to observe your toddler closely to see the signs of insomnia. Is he having difficulty falling asleep after being in bed?
See if your toddler is chronically tired and groggy when awake. If your toddler is distracted or shows sign of erratic behaviour like moodiness, waking up early in the morning or getting up in the night itself then you need to consider insomnia as a possibility.
How to manage Insomnia in toddlers?
There are things that you can try like:
- Establishing a routine and putting your toddler to bed same time every day to create a sleeping schedule.
- Don’t let your kid nap during daytime.
- Do not let your kid take caffeinated beverages.
- While it is bedtime, restrict recreational activities.
- Ensure that the sleeping environment of your toddler is soothing.
- No gadgets to be allowed in the bedroom.