Certain moms might have nightmares daily with their kids, when the little ones suddenly wake up in the middle of night screaming and crying.. Don’t worry, you are not alone!
Each night, your toddlers go through several phases of sleep. These include light sleep, deep sleep and REM (rapid eye mvement) sleep, which is when they dream.
Night terrors, sometimes also known as sleep terrors, happen when your toddler partially wakes up during the deep, non-REM sleep. This is relatively common, affecting up to six per cent of children. This usually happens early in the night and can last several minutes. They’re unlikely to last longer than about 15 minutes.
This can happen if your little one is ill, overtired, overexcited or anxious, or if something disturbed the sleep, for example a loud noise or taking certain medications that affect the brain.
According to experts at Baby Center, the signs of a night terror are as follows:
- seem scared and panicky, or confused and disoriented
- scream, shout or cry
- babble or talk nonsense
- hit or throw things
- wet the bed (if it usually dry at night)
- get up and move around
- not recognise you when you try to comfort them
- not be able to remember what happened the next day
Worth noting that night terrors are different from nightmares which happen during rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, otherwise known as dream sleep. They also usually happen later in the night.
One of the other main differences is that your toddler will probably be able to remember nightmares, unlike night terrors.
According to baby experts, there are certain advice for you to may help at reducing these things which happen to your kids.
- If your toddlers can talk, have a chat with them to see if anything in particular is bothering them
- Following a consistent bedtime routine may help your toddlers to relax in the evening. This is a great way to encourage good sleep habits in general, and may also help with night terrors.
- If your toddlers’ night terrors usually happen at a particular time, try gently waking them about 15 minutes beforehand. This will take them out of the deep sleep phase where night terrors happen. If you do this every night for a week, it may reset heir sleeping pattern enough to prevent the night terrors.
During a night terror, make sure your toddlers are safe and can’t hurt themselves, then stay nearby until it ends. Remember that intervening could make them more agitated. So it’s best to wait for it to pass. Once your toddler’s calmed down, you can step in for comfort and cuddles.
Try to wake your kids up a bit by changing nappies or taking them to toilet before tucking them back in. Usually, almost all children who experience night terrors will naturally grow out of them on their own.