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natural remedies for getting kids to sleep

(7 Posts)
pigletmania Tue 13-Sep-11 23:02:13

My dd 4.5 (dev delay AS traits) has just started school, her sleeping has always been not good, easy to get to sleep , but does not sleep through the night and wakes up chatting for a few hours. This then impacts on her behaviour in the day. She has just started at MS school on half days, and would love a natural remedy to help her sleep in the night. Any recommendations? The night when she did not sleep well, meant that her behaviour at school was not good. I gave her Calpol last night to help her sleep and she slept really well and her behaviour was fantastic at school. Obviously I don't want to resort to medication, so any help appreciated smile

Claw3 Tue 13-Sep-11 23:08:42

I typed up the recommendations from CAMHS for relaxation techs on another thread a couple of days ago. It was quite long, if i can find it i will copy and paste. Takes 20 minutes to do, but it has helped ds to sleep.

Claw3 Tue 13-Sep-11 23:22:05

Here you go found it copy and pasted. Not sure if this was the kind of thing you had in mind.

Relaxation exercises

After a couple of weeks daily practice under your supervision, your child will have developed enough skill to use these excercises to get rid of unwanted body tension.

Set aside 20 minutes a day to do these relaxation exercises with your child.

Try to arrange to be on good terms with your child when you do these exercises so your child looks forward to them.

Do them at the same time and in the same place every day.

Before you begin, remove all distractions (by turning off bright lights, the radio etc) and ask your child to loosen any tight clothes (like belts, ties, shoes)

Ask your child to lie on a bed or recline in a comfortable chair with the eyes lightly closed.

Before and after each exercises ask your child to breathe in deeply and exhalf slowly three times while saying the word 'relax' to themself.

At the end of each exercise praise your child by saying 'well done;' or 'you did that exercise well' or some other form of praise.

Repeat each exercise twice.

Throughout the exercises speak in a calm, relaxed, quiet voice.


Close your hands into fists. Then allow them to open slowly. Notice the change from tension to relaxation in your hands and allow this change to continue further and further still, so the muscles of your hands become more and more relaxed.


Bend your arms at the elbow and touch your shoulders with your hands. Then allow them to return to the resting position. Notice the change from tension to relaxation in your hands and allow this change to continue further and further still, so the muscles of your arms become more and more relaxed.


Hunch your shoulders up to your ears. Then allow them to return to the resting position. same as above about notice the change etc


Point your toes downwards. Then allow then to return to the resting position. Then same as above.

Point your toes upwards. same as above.


Take a deep breath and hold it for 3 seconds, tensing the muscles in your stomach as you do so. Then breathe out slowly. Same as above.


Clench your teeth tightly together. Then relax. Same as above.

Wrinkle your nose up, then relax. Same as above.

Shut your eyes tightly, then relax. Same as above.


Now that youve done all your muscle exercises check that all areas of your body are as relaxed as can be. Think of your hands and allow them to relax a little more. Think of your arms, shoulders etc, etc, etc.


Breathe and out slowly one, two three, four, five, six and again. Repeat 3 times.


Imagine you are lying on a beautiful sandy beach and you feel the sun warm your body.

Make a picture in your mind of the golden sand and the warm sun.
As the sun warms your body you feel more and more relaxed. Repeat this 3 times.

The sky is clear, clear blue, above you can see a small white cloud drifting away into the distance.

As the cloud drifts away you feel more and more relaxed. Repeat this 3 times.

As the sun warms your warms your body, you feel more and more relaxed. As the clouds drift away, you etc, etc, etc.

Wait 30 seconds, open your eyes, ready to face the rest of the day, relaxed and calm.

pigletmania Tue 13-Sep-11 23:25:07

Thanks claw smile the thing is my dd concentration is not good, and she does not always listen to what I say, she is 4.5 btw. I could try to see what happens.

Claw3 Tue 13-Sep-11 23:41:21

Ds is the same, he finds it very difficult to stay still and doesnt always understand what is being asked of him, we started just doing the visualisation, then added a bit at a time. He quite liked the visualisation, we changed it to whatever he wanted to visualise (within reason, as long as it was calm) and it became a bit like a in your head bedtime story. You could make it about your dd's favourtie thing or even an obsession if she has one. Really helped to take his mind off of his worries and going to bed with happy thoughts, really helped to stop nightmares too.

I had to demonstrate the exercises to him, far too complicated for him to follow, so we kind of did it together. We also had quite a few fits of the giggles to start with smile

You can pick and mix and adapt to your dd's understanding and what you feel best suits her. Start with a coupe of minutes and build up etc, etc.

Anyhow other than that, a dim light is something that has helped ds to sleep, he is scared of the dark.

unpa1dcar3r Wed 14-Sep-11 08:32:57

Piglet have u tried massaging her with lavender oil after her bath at night, telly off, soft music, dim the lights etc...also rubbing her skin with a brush- like a bath brush (lot cheaper than the proper ones!)
My eldest has never slept well- the melatonin don't help as he also wakes thru the night, always has done...maybe it's just the way she is.
I think this is how his adhd manifests whereas my other DS sleeps quite well (although lightly) but is constantly on the go!

chocjunkie Wed 14-Sep-11 09:28:27

piglet, not sure this falls under 'natural remedy' - we used a cranial osteopath (we had 3 sessions all together). DD's sleep was awful before (3h struggle to fall asleep, constantly waking up at night). after seeing the osteopath her sleep improved very much. she goes to sleep much easier and night wakenings have been much reduced. she even sleeps through quite a bit now smile

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