There’s a chill in the air, football’s on, and it’s (finally) getting dark before 8 p.m. Hooray for fall! With Halloween right around the corner, it seems appropriate that I’ve been fielding plenty of parent questions about nightmares. Since my own daughter has hit the age—five—when bad dreams start bubbling up, many parents of her friends and classmates are asking how to squelch nightmares. One reason recurring nightmares are such bad news is that they disrupt nighttime sleep patterns just as kids are leaving toddlerhood sleep problems behind and settling into their snooze groove.
After researching and writing “Fright Night: Eight Ways to Beat Nightmares,” in this month’s Calgary’s Child magazine, I know that it’s not necessarily possible or even desirable to get rid of all nightmares; unsettling as they are, they may serve a developmental role. But parents can take action to help minimize and prevent many scary dreams. Check out the article to learn more.
And, bonus: if you’re wondering about the difference between nightmares and night terrors—two very distinct states that are often confused—check out this post from my archives: Night Terror Myths and Facts.
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Need more sleep? My e-book Ready, Set, Sleep: 50 Ways to Help Your Child Sleep So You Can Sleep Too is chock-full of mom-tested solutions to help babies and toddlers start sleeping well, tonight!