One of the soothing activities I suggest to parents before bedtime is a timeless classic—reading a book. But let’s take things one step further. With the convenience of being able to download a new book for bedtime any time you like, more parents are reading to their kids from an eBook—but this could be part of what is making sleep more difficult to achieve.
LED Lights Are A Stimulant
Even if you have the screen set on a low setting, the LED lights used for the screen, text, and colorful images that create the eBook you are reading to your child, prove to be a stimulant before bedtime. LED lighting suppresses melatonin, meaning that not only eBooks—but all computerized toys and educational games should be eliminated at least 2 hours before bedtime. Instead, opt for a book on your bookshelf and leave eBooks for daytime reading.
Other Electronic Books
eBooks may not be the only electronic reading options you turn to at bedtime. Many books are designed to “read along” and contain fun-filled music and animated voices that can be played while turning the page or when pushing a button at various points throughout the story. This music and character voice is often designed to be upbeat, which is the opposite of what your little one needs at bedtime.
Tips For Keeping Your Reading Selection Bedtime Friendly
Many kids have a favorite book they like to have read to them at bedtime, but as they grow older, their interest in books will continue to evolve. Turn to the tips below to keep your reading selection bedtime friendly.
• Select short books that your kids won’t be struggling to stay awake to hear.
• For longer books, read a chapter or set number of pages each night.
• Even if you are reading in character, read your bedtime books in a soothing voice.
• Consider playing soothing music in the background—such as sounds of nature or instrumental music.
• Set up a book exchange with family and friends, so that you always have a nice selection of age-appropriate bedtime books from which to choose.
Don’t forget that a bedtime story doesn’t have to come from a book. It can be a story you make up. Also, consider your computer and LED exposure for bedtime—so that you can get a good night’s sleep too!
Want to know more about what could be keeping your little one up at night? Contact Erin Anderson, The SleepyTimeTeacher today!
©The Sleepytime Teacher, LLC All Rights Reserved
Image courtesy of nenetus at FreeDigitalPhotos.net