Jennifer Scott is a single mom who writes about the ups and downs of her mental illness on SpiritFinder.org. The blog serves as both a source of information for people with mental illness and a forum where those living with anxiety and depression can come together to discuss their experiences. Based in Philadelphia, she enjoys traveling, working with animals, and seeking out new friendships and adventures.
Better sleep, better mornings
Other ways to improve sleep for every family member include:
● Make sure all electronics are turned off at least an hour before children’s bedtimes. Electronics like TVs, computers, and tablets emit blue light that tricks the brain into thinking it is still day, making it harder to wind down and fall asleep at night.
● A colder environment is more conducive to sleep, so turn down the thermostat as family members get ready for bed. The optimal temperature for sleep is between 60 to 67 degrees Fahrenheit.
● Family members young and old can suffer from sleeplessness. To help your loved ones enter a healthy state of drowsiness before bed, try soothing herbal teas that induce sleep, like chamomile, valerian root, lavender, and lemon balm.
● Last but not least, try to keep your home as quiet as possible at bedtime. While this is something that homeowners can control (for the most part, anyway), foster parents who live in a noisy rental may struggle. If you discover your environment is constantly noisy, start looking for a neighborhood that’s a little quieter.
Stick to a regular wake-up time
Warm them up with breakfast
The holidays can be a difficult time for foster families, as rates of depression and anxiety tend to go up this time of year. To make it easier on the whole household, make sure to adhere to a steady morning routine that sets up each and every family member for a productive day. A successful morning routine starts off with a great night’s rest, so ensure your household catches enough healthy ZZZs with an environment that is conducive to sleep. While the holidays may mean time off from school, that doesn’t mean it’s time to sleep in late. Waking up at the same time every day anchors the body’s circadian rhythm so children are focused, happy, and healthy. Finally, a warming breakfast feeds the body while showing children that you care. This holiday season, experiment with cold-weather recipes that kids will love.
David B. Younger, Ph.D. is the creator of Love After Kids, for couples that have grown apart since having children. He is a clinical psychologist and couples therapist with a web-based private practice and lives in Austin, Texas with his wife, 17-year-old son, 7-year-old daughter and 9-year-old toy poodle.