Many children will experience difficulties with sleep, nightmares and/or night terrors. Most children will grow out of them and they will not cause any long-term harm to your child.
In many cases there may be no obvious reason why a child experiences difficulties with sleep. However, sleep disturbances, nightmares and night terrors may all be more common in children following significant life events (e.g. loss of a loved one, parental separation, bullying, change of school/home etc.) traumatic experiences, or in children who are struggling with emotional difficulties (e.g. anxiety, low mood etc.).
There are a number of things you and your child can do to manage these difficulties and this guide contains many tips that you might find helpful. Not everything in here will work for every child, therefore it is important that you try things out and work together to find out what works. To help with this, there is a sleep diary and dream journal that you may like to use to keep track of your child’s progress.
If you are concerned that your child is continuing to experience difficulties, you may wish to discuss this with your GP. If you believe that your child’s difficulties with sleep are linked to other emotional difficulties, or started following a loss or other significant life event, you may wish to consider contacting us for further support or guidance.