Calm bedtime for a child with sensory processing issues

Very often children who suffer from sensory processing issues, be it SPD or a condition accompanying autism or ADHD, are overstimulated at the end of the day. Falling asleep in this condition may be hard. Here are some tips on what you can do to help your child fall asleep faster.

Routine is key

Take special care to set up a routine for bedtime. It will help your child prepare for what’s coming and feel safer. Make sure that this time doesn’t trigger any of your child’s sensory integration problems. If they are oversensitive to light, dim the lights at least an hour before bedtime. If they can’t bear loud noises, turn off the TV and radio. Actually, this is a good idea for everyone, because the artificial TV light keeps your brain from producing melatonin, a hormone which is necessary for falling asleep.

Do the same things at the same times every evening. Have supper at the same time. Then, for example, a bath, and reading time in bed. Construct your own routine and turn it into a ritual. It will work like a charm.

Use a weighted blanket

You may let your child into your bed and sleep together. This will help your child feel safer and sleep better. But if you’d rather do something in the evening, have time for yourself or for your spouse, this is not a perfect solution.

Instead, you can try a weighted blanket. It will work similarly to you hugging your child to sleep. It is a heavy blanket which tricks your child’s body into thinking it’s being hugged. It calms the nerves and helps him or her sleep better.