I’m a sleep expert here’s the 8 best ways to prepare your child for school | The Sun

AS kids begin to head back to classrooms, it's time to get that all important school routine in check.

Later bedtimes, lie-ins and taking nice naps in front of the TV over the summer holidays may have thrown their sleep routine a bit off kilter.

As kids head back to school this could cause some issues for both parents and teachers alike.

Sleep expert, Sammy Margo, has revealed her best hacks for getting your kids back into that all-important daily routine.

1. Have an early night

"It may seem obvious, but starting your children’s bedtime routine earlier will help you and your family establish a stress-free evening," Sammy explained.

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Sammy, who is working with Dreams suggested trying to bring your child's routine forward by 15 minutes each day, so that they gradually get used to the change in time.

2. Pack your bag the night before

"Completing tasks such as preparing packed lunches, laying out uniforms, and cleaning school shoes will help to ensure both you and your children can get a nice, relaxed night’s sleep," she said.

3. Read or listen to an audio book

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Kids of all ages enjoy a story, so it's worth trying to incorporate books into their night-time routine.

"If you’ve got little ones, send them off to sleep by reading or playing a nice and calming story," she said.

"If your children are a little older send them to bed with a book, reading also has other advantages.

"Not only can it improve their overall vocabulary, but it will also ignite their imagination," Sammy added.

4. Meditate or practice breathing exercises the night before

Meditation, yoga and stretching are all gentle and restorative exercises that can be done just before bedtime.

"It can be an exercise the whole family enjoy as progressive muscle relaxation is a great way to ease children into a relaxing state," she said.

5. Create a comfy & calm environment 

The guru suggests making sure your kids have a good sleep set up.

"Having the best pillows and mattress will create the ideal sleeping environment for your kids that in turn, will help them fall asleep before going back to school," she said.

6. Turn off screens

Phones, laptops, iPads can be saviours during the day when providing kids with hours of education, fun and can importantly give parents some respite.

But at night, technology can become a bit of a nightmare for families, as blue light can actually keep kids awake for longer.

"Make sure your children try to turn off all sources of blue light 60 to 90 minutes before bedtime as this can help them to fall asleep faster," Sammy explained.

"This includes electronic devices such as televisions, tablets, and mobile phones.

"Light emitting from screens upsets our natural circadian rhythms by tricking the brain into thinking it’s still daytime".

She added: "This prevents us from feeling naturally tired and can as a result, make it hard to switch off immediately after the devices have been too. A cooling-off period is needed to help this."

7. Unwind with a relaxing shower or bath

Sammy also suggested running your child a warm bath or telling your teenager to have a quick shower before bed.

"This can help calm them down and will relax their muscles before starting the next school term," she said.

8. Activities for sleep

Trying to get to sleep after exciting activities is difficult.

"The heart rate is still high, and the body is full of adrenaline so try to avoid stimulating activities after dinnertime like rough play or TV programmes," she explained.

"Instead take an hour before trying to sleep by doing something quiet to help re-centre. The calmer your kids feel towards bedtime, the sooner they’ll start to feel sleepy," Sammy added.

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Meanwhile, parents were also told that children could be significantly more at risk of a deadly condition this month.

New analysis revealed that children returning to school are four times more likely to being hospitalised for asthma in September compared to the previous month.

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