In our private Facebook Group, the most common request I hear, is the request for ADHD Sleep solutions.
Child’s ADHD racing mind makes it difficult for the child to go to sleep and stay asleep. Some people call this the “monkey mind.”
How do we help our child’s “monkey mind” to stop swinging and to start sleeping?
We all have had problems on and off with sleep. A teenager starts to drive and that certainly can keep a parent up at night. Stress and sleep are a poor mix. And sleep is one of the best things for stress, which creates an oxymoron.
Holistic ADHD Sleep Solutions
Natural sleep is the best remedy for stress.
Sleep medications are problematic because using them can be addictive. And, sleep is a vital physically restorative process. Mothers with ADHD children say that poor sleep manifests more restless children during the waking hours. There are other ways to help induce sleep.
A fabulous way to help your child sleep better is through mindfulness meditation. The beauty of it is that you can give the CD’s to your child and then walk out of the room. Your child will be able to help him/herself self-soothe.
We have teamed up with Mellisa Dormoy founder of Shambala to provide parents with some tools to help their children with impulse regulation. These will help to alter your child’s state of consciousness.
Regardless of what you have heard regarding ways to induce sleep, a silent and darkroom is not the most conducive environment to put a child to sleep.
A soft light can help. A flickering electric candle can have an amazing impact on the anxiety levels of children.
Those fake log setups with the backdrop of colored flames have been shown to be helpful.
Aromas are very powerful in helping the brain settle down.
Researchers report a little spray on the pillow of natural plant-based products of vanilla or lavender oil is most effective.
Holding a security object like a blanket or soft animal can help a child to feel secure.
Research also supports something with the aroma of the parents (or even the dog) works best, such as a used towel.
A research project once concluded that the scent of relaxation is transmitted through sweat glands, and it has shown similar results in researcher observations.
Low-volume drumbeats matching the frequency of the heart during sleep cycles helps to induce sleep for patients struggling with racing thoughts.
There are commercial tapes of sleep-wave sounds that are more subliminal than audible sounds and research has shown their effectiveness.
Other folks say childhood lullabies work well for them, perhaps because of the memories attached to them.
I just discovered that ADHD Lullaby has an album that helps children with ADHD fall asleep faster and have a better night’s sleep.
NOTE: We haven’t finalized our research on this album yet, and, if any of you would like to participate in research and submit reivews to share it worked for you, please contact me at email@example.com.
Anxiety Reduction is a Powerful ADHD Sleep Solution
When we are afraid, our minds go into fight/flight/freeze mode, which inhibits sleep.
With fear, sleep isn’t even on the program. Children are often afraid of going to sleep. For them, it is even a greater task to fall asleep.
Bedtime stories can work wonders in helping to reduce fears and promote sleep for our children.
I certainly wouldn’t recommend anything from the brothers Grimm, or tales of Frankenstein.
We need to use stories specifically designed to induce relaxation and sleep.
The book, The Rabbit Who Wants To Fall Asleep by author Carl-Johan Forssen Ehrlin may be a book that helps your child fall asleep.
The book helps to relax their feet, relax their legs, and then their entire upper body. The concepts in his book are based on the solid sleep-research ground.
When you help your child reach a relaxed, meditative state, the benefits of sleep are multiplied greatly.
Don’t ever put a wound-up child to bed in hopes that he or she will just wear out and go to sleep. That won’t help the child get high-quality rest.
Experts in sleep therapy make recommendations such as routine bedtimes, no heavy meals before bed, and heavy exercise is to be avoided late in the evening.
Sleep medication for children is usually a disturbing proposition.
There have been no clinical trials to determine correct dosages for children, and they have poor effects anyway.
Most of the time these medications have the reverse impact, making the child hyperactive. However, there are some food supplements that appear to be effective because of the imbalances in various vitamin and mineral levels related to hyperactivity.
I have compiled a list of vitamins and minerals and herbal supplements that are helpful for sleep issues.
Disclaimer: I am not a medical doctor and you should consult with a nutritionist, homeopathic doctor or your primary physician before implementing a supplement or herbal program.
This is not an all-or-nothing approach in which you are expected to do everything and more.
This is the time to assess whether or not a sleep issue is interfering with your child’s progress and if the resources available can change the course.
Regardless of an ADHD diagnosis, sleep is an important element of physical restoration. There are no medications or counseling that can cure the lack of the sleep restorative process. Sleep is vital to the natural cycle of healing.
Help can be found with a couple organizations. You may want to contact the National Sleep Foundation https://www.sleepfoundation.org or the American Sleep Association https://www.sleepassociation.org for more information or referrals.
It is possible that your child’s ADD stems from sleep disorders, especially if the symptoms have appeared recently. This may sound too easy, but it costs little to check it out.