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Bad Dreams and Nightmares

 

 

You are probably used to having your preschool child coming to you in the middle of the night because of monsters under the bed or a nightmare. Some psychologists believe that bad dreams are an interpretation of what your child goes through during his waking hours. Try to avoid these bad dreams by following and implementing these tips.

Television and Bedtime

Turn off the television when it gets close to bedtime. Programs like the news may not be age appropriate especially if children end up catching an update about a murder, disaster, robbery, kidnapping or war. If you cannot turn off the TV, change to a program that relaxes your child, not agitate him.

Bedtime Tone

Hurrying your preschool child from playtime to bed is probably not a good idea. Give him sufficient time to unwind before bedtime. Give him about an hour so he can slowly unwind and get into the correct mood for bed. Talk to your child when he is getting changed or when he is packing his school bag. Bring in happy snippets of conversation like a friend’s part that is coming up, going to a grandparent’s house rather than having a deep discussion that may trouble him before bedtime or getting his mind over active at bedtime.

Signs of Trouble

Sometimes, continuous bad dreams may hint at something more serious. It could be something wrong with school or friends or a host of other things. If your child has nightmares after going to a particular friend’s house, if he has nightmares on the day before a swimming class, you know that his anxiety is because of something he is not happy with. Kids, particularly those of a daycare or preschool age, react very strongly to situations and people who make them uncomfortable. Talk to your child if you think this is the case and help him overcome fears that you think are harmless.

Whatever you do, having a healthy communication and bond with your child is the best bolster he needs for a good night sleep.