Children with Special Needs: Tips to Improve Sleep
Unless you have experienced it, it is very difficult for other to understand and make others understand the problem that you face while trying to provide normal sleep to your special child. It is a pain in the heart, a pit in the stomach and might feel like a nightmare to get through. When your special child goes sleepless, even you go sleepless, not one, but nights after nights. This takes a toll on your life and on the whole family. The general routine breaks up and things look muggy. It is really a great deal of pain as such special children are different and the orientation of their life is different from a normal child. Thus, sleeping is a problem in such children, which can be hard to come into and can create huge health issues. Just as your body and mind give up the tensions of the day for a few hours of rest, the crying and jolting of your child can set the fuse again and make things look weary and dreadful to handle. It is a stern and difficult job for such parents and no one else can understand this as long as not experienced.
What can be done then?
- What actually happens: - Children with special needs have severe disorders and their sleep cycle is totally different from everyone else. The body is not at all adjusted to sleeping and this is due to the disorder that they face. It has been reported that people with autism face the gravest problems in terms of sleeping. The term can change from infant to childhood to adulthood. Some carry this disorder till the adulthood and it may even persist for the rest of their lives.
- Disturbed ability: - A disturbed sleep results in disturbed ability to do simple stuffs and hence the disorder. Chronic disorders arise and subsequent problems follow.
- Nature and problems with sleep: - Parents in the first scenario need to identify the nature of the sleep disorder. This is really very important as this can help to get to the root of the symptoms and thus the problem. Nature may vary from timing of sleep, amount of sleep, etc. Parents need to note the problems that are associated with sleep. Many disorders cause muscular pain, pain in the abdomen, neck pain, and leg pull symptom, nausea that drive sleep away and cause sleep problems.
- Assessment of the problem: - Maintaining a sleep diary is one thing that the psychiatrists prescribe a lot. This is used to keep a log on the sleep timings, the timings of best sleep and no sleep.
- Working on strategies: - It is important to develop a process to study the whole schedule in details and then working along with a psycho analyser to help the child with problem and changing your schedule according to the child to stay with him during his/her best sleeping times. A through routine and care along with staying with them can help to bring them to a normal sleep routine.
Sleeping problem is a problem in normal life, useless to say it is nothing short of a nightmare when this happens with special children. Thus, a constant training needs to be done by the parents maintaining a mental strength of the child concerned.