Back-to-School Sleep Tips… for Mom & Dad!

August 21, 2012

Back-to-School Sleep Tips for Parents

 

The telltale signs that summer is coming to a close are here – Pre Season Football (go Bears!), Labor Day plans – and Back-to-School for the kids.  Much is written every year about how parents can ease back-to-school stress for their kids, which is a very important topic.  But in this post, we want to talk about how to ease that back-to-school stress for parents!

When your kids are transitioning from summer break to school, the stress doesn’t just impact them – it also impacts you.  The lazy days of summer are gone, and it’s back to the grind for everyone.  From juggling the morning breakfast routine to managing each kid’s after-school activities – while balancing everything else in life – you may find yourself a little more than frazzled once that first school bell of the year rings.

So, how can mom & dad manage their stress levels in order to help their kids ease back into the school routine, while also maintaining their own sanity?  One of the best ways to help manage daily stress is through better sleep.  Sure, it’s tempting to stay up a couple of extra hours to cross more off your “To Do” list.  But, with a good night’s sleep, you can get the energy and focus you need to accomplish more during the day, while helping your body to rejuvenate for better overall health.

Your kids thrive on routine, and so can you.  It’s easy as adults to forget to stop and take care of ourselves.  Often, we push our bodies past its limits by staying up too late or doing things that impact the quality of our sleep (such as watching TV in the hours before bed).  By establishing a nightly bedtime routine, you can improve your chances of falling asleep sooner and at the same time every night.  Choose nighttime activities that calm your body and mind, such as gentle yoga or a hot bath.  Repeat these activities every night, about one to two hours before your scheduled bedtime.

Shut down.  How many times do you find yourself telling the kids to turn off their computers or cell phones?  Well, it’s time to take the same advice yourself.  Activities such as surfing the Internet and watching TV can actually impact the quality of your sleep if done in the hour before bedtime.  Not only do these activities stimulate your mind, making it difficult to fall asleep, the light from these devices also impacts your body’s internal clock.  So, set a good example for your kids, and limit the use of electronics to the appropriate times of the day.

Family Time for Stress.  Your family is the center of your life and what motivates you to work hard each day.  Daily stresses are inevitable, whether it’s from an office job or from juggling the tasks of a stay-at-home parent.  It’s all too easy to get caught up in the stress and let your emotions get the best of you.  Why not make it a point to schedule family time each night, so the last thing you experience before you start your bedtime routine is completely positive?  If you start your bedtime routine feeling good about yourself, you may find that the day’s stress melts away, allowing you to fall asleep faster.

Invest in Yourself.  Back-to-School time means spending a lot of money on new clothes, shoes and school supplies.  By the time the shopping list is crossed off, there’s probably little spending money left for you for a little while.  That’s OK, because there are other ways to invest in taking care of yourself.  Take a daily walk with your significant other or best friend.  Dust off that old pilates DVD and make a point to get back on track.  Moms, plan a spa day with your girlfriends or daughters in the coming months and save up for the splurge.  Get creative and find ways to reward yourself for all you do.

If it’s time for a new mattress in the family this back-to-school season, check out these great offers from Serta going on now through Labor Day:

 

 

 

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