7 Budget Friendly Tips To Transform Your Teens Room Into A Sleep Haven

create a sleep haven

Over the school holidays bedtimes get later and it’s easy to forget how important sleep is.  The boys are more active and social, and with the warm weather comes a stream of friends passing through the house. It can feel hard to maintain a sense of calm at bedtime after the frenetic activity of the day! So the concept of creating a sleep haven is very appealing and may help us maintain a bedtime routine while school is out.

The boys bedrooms get messier and messier as the weeks go on; some nights I take one look at the state of Berry’s bed and turn around and go straight back out again! I know he gets this bad habit from me; as I pile all my clothes up on my bed then transfer them between bed and chair for about a week month, before I put them away! This is certainly not the mental picture I create when I think sleep haven!

I visualise a sleep haven as the epitome of tranquility and calm, and often despair at how to bring that to my own bedroom, let alone the boys! But these 7 simple budget friendly tips, allow you to transform any bedroom without creating a DIY nightmare in the process!

7 simple Tips To Creating A Sleep Haven:

  1. Cover up – both the boys do their homework in their bedrooms, which means that they have books, pencil cases and school work spread all over their desks. This is something I can change very easily with a simple piece of fabric (duvet cover, sheet or table cloths are perfect) and cover it all up before bed!
  2. Burn the midnight oil – adding an essential oil diffuser into the room before bedtime with a sleep blend will help to create that sleep haven. Find out more from Kristy at Beach Life Essentials who can recommend a sleep enhancing blend and stocks oils & diffusers from doTerra.
  3. Hide and seek – I’m a big fan of hiding things you don’t want to see! It’s only  a temporary solution, but ideal for a sleep haven transformation. Hide school bags, uniform and general clutter in the bottom of a wardrobe or cupboard – out of sight out of mind while you sleep!
  4. Let there be light – adding a reading lamp next to the bed provides the opportunity to read a book in bed, and adding some mood lighting to the room works a treat for creating sleep appeal. I use a lava lamp for mood lighting, a clip on spot light on the bed for reading and I love the look of fairy lights draped across the curtain pole, (although my boys would ban this from their rooms!).
  5. Tell me a story – I’m a big fan of audio books, if you use Audible you can set a sleep timer and go off to sleep while someone is reading you a story! If your teen finds reading laborious then audio books are a perfect way to engage effortlessly with a story.
  6. Bedtime tunes – create a playlist of gentle and relaxing music and only put this on before bed, it will create an association between.
  7. Cool down time – light bedding, comfortable cushions and a room temperature of 21 oC (70F) are a must to create an inviting  sleep haven. The body naturally cools down during the night so encouraging teens to wear light pyjamas (or even no pyjamas) can lead to better quality sleep.

I hope you enjoy experimenting with some of these tips to create a sleep haven for your teen. I’m going to be implementing some of these tips into my own bedroom, as it suffers from being a duel sleep and office space too! Might have to invest in a couple more sheets to hide all my mess under though!

 

Image Attribution

Sleeping Cat – Mashael Al-Mehmadi from Albumarium

Other images sourced from Pixabay

Is Your teen Getting Enough Sleep?

is your teen get enough sleepIt’s back to school for us this week, and as holiday bed-times draw to a close, I’m starting the conversation with the boys about what a school night bed time looks like!

My goal is to keep bed-times in single digits, but is that realistic?

For a 12 and 14 year old am I being too restrictive?

 

Bed-time Negotiations

I regularly re-negotiate the boundaries on bed-times, and I thought I’d cracked it at the beginning of the year when I proclaimed that the boys would go to bed at the same time as the school year they’re in!

This seemed so simple and worked beautifully for 14 year old Biscuit who’s in year 9, but is less achievable for 12 year old Berry in year 7!

Good Sleep Habits

The key to drama free bed-times lies in establishing good habits early on, and anticipating the potential challenges to come:

The earlier parents can start helping their children with good sleep habits, the easier it will be to sustain them through the teen years.

Dr Mary Carskadon (Director of Sleep Research)

So before you address the issue of bed-times with your emerging teen know the facts, and reflect on what you want and why!

I Just want Some Peace & Quiet!

There are times that I want the kids to go to bed for my sake not theirs!

I just want a bit of peace and quiet to watch something inappropriate on TV, (Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead etc) all by myself!

In this instance I’m setting a bed time to suit me, and there’s nothing wrong with that!

Except that it might be a bit too early for them!

But knowing that the bed-time I set is about creating an adult space, rather than their need for sleep, means I can bring something alternative to the discussion. If my aim is not sleep, I can ask them to go to their rooms to read, listen to music or watch TV in another area.

This gives me the adult space I need, whilst allowing them a bit more time to wind-down before bed.

 

So How Much Sleep Does A Teenager Need?

The optimum amount of sleep teens need is 9-10 hours per night!

That’s more than the amount an adult or child needs, so it’s no wonder they may not be getting enough; they need more than everyone else in the family!

Many teens aren’t getting enough sleep, and that might be because we assume that 8 hours is enough, but hormone & attitude changes and social/sporting commitments are often the number one offenders!

I know that my boys schedule is packed out with soccer training, after school clubs and homework, so getting to bed at the ideal time can be a challenge. Recently they were both training for cross country before school; we were leaving the house before 6.45am!

Did they want to go to bed earlier to compensate? No way!

Does Less Sleep Really Make A Difference?

The National Sleep Foundation and Better Health Channel report that lack of sleep in teens can contribute to:

  • Poor school grades
  • Reduced concentration
  • Pimples and poor skin
  • Grumpy and aggressive outbursts
  • Over eating sugary and fatty foods
  • Increased susceptibility to illness

Although I don’t get too hung up on a short period of sleep deprivation (as in the cross-country training),  I am focused on helping them become the best that they can be, and in the long term that means getting enough sleep.

Been Here Before; establishing sleep routines

Sleeping: when they were babies that was the only word that mattered!

Day time sleeps, sleeping through the night, soothers and controlled crying were some of the torments of establishing that nebulous sleep routine.

During the toddler years it all started to fall into place and I used routines like bath-time and bedtime stories to cue my children into sleep routines.

Now, at 12 and 14,  I don’t feel as if I do much in the way of a sleep routine! But you’d be surprised!

When you start to actually think about what you do to promote healthy sleeping habits it’s amazing what you’re not giving yourself credit for!

Here’s a list of what I do most nights:

  • I get dinner on the table at least an hour before bedtime
  • I get them to turn off their devices about an hour before bed
  • I negotiate a time for bed
  • I police and enforce that time
  • I encourage them to shower each night (not always successfully)
  • I build-in 10 minutes reading time in bed
  • I say goodnight (sometimes I’m even allowed to put them to bed)
  • I check that devices are not in their rooms
  • I check-in on them before I go to bed

Lets Talk Sleep Hygiene

Promoting sleep as a priority in your house is a key thing to establishing ‘sleep hygiene’.

I love this buzz word, it makes me feel very important: ‘Sorry I can’t take your call right now as I’m attending to some sleep hygiene issues!’ 

What it refers to is actually very simple, common sense, healthy habits that promote sleep:

A series of habits and rituals that can improve your ability to fall asleep and stay asleep’.

How awesome that we can make sleep more hygienic!

So clean sleep is what teens need; a series of patterns that help them wind-down to bed-time. Simple bed-time routines send the message that sleep is a precious resource that your family values.

Sleep is a balm to the mind, body and soul

  • What are your teens bed-time routines?
  • Do you need to reflect on your own sleep hygiene before addressing your teens?
  • How do you promote healthy bed-time routines in your family?

I’d love to hear your thoughts on these issues.

Don’t miss next weeks post where I’ll explore how you can create a sleep haven for you and your teen.