Causes of children’s nightmares and how to deal with them
Do you get scared at night when your baby screams in his sleep and struggles to get him back to sleep? Find out why children’s nightmares occur and how you can rid your child of this problem.
It is normal for children to have disturbing dreams about real things that they fear, such as wild animals and insects, or imaginary things such as monsters or even traumatic events they have experienced; The brain activates and occurs in the second half of the sleep phase, after which the child finds it difficult to fall asleep again.
Signs that a child is having a nightmare
When a child is going through a nightmare, depending on their age and language development, they may tell their parents about the dreams they see and what they are feeling around them and often remember to speak or not remember, the child may scream and kick his legs with a step and signs of fear appear on his face.
Causes of nightmares in children
“Why do nightmares happen to my child?” The answer to this question depends on the following:
- The events your child may have been through or the fears he has that his brain is storing and expressing while he sleeps.
- A change in a child’s life or a mentally stressful situation, such as going to school, moving to a new home, the birth of a brother or sister, problems between parents.
- Children’s nightmares can be a normal reaction to a child’s PTSD as a result of catastrophic events such as car accidents, earthquakes, and fires.
- Children with a fertile imagination can also suffer from nightmares, especially those who read horror stories or watch scary movies on TV.
- A child may have a nightmare about ordinary things or ordinary people in their daily life, but their mind turns those ordinary things and people into terrible things and people they see in a dream.
How do I deal with children’s nightmares?
If your child is having a nightmare, there are several steps you can take to get rid of his anxiety and get back to sleep:
- Emphasizing to your child that you are always by his side, and that being around your child during this time gives him a feeling of safety and protection.
- Explain to your child that it was just a bad dream that didn’t happen and that the nightmare is over.
- Show that you understand your child’s concerns and tell him that you know how he feels and that all people always have bad dreams and are naturally afraid of them.
- If your child is very young and has a great imagination, here are some tricks that your child may find useful, for example using an empty aerosol can as a spray to disguise monsters and spraying the vacuum in the closets and under the mattress, be surprised how quickly your child will believe this trick.
- Now is the time to help your baby sleep, look for things that help him feel comfortable, like his favorite toy, pillow or blanket, or talk to him about fun and sweet things like memories and sweet stories to talk about too.
- When your child wakes up the next day, ask him if something is bothering him, listen to him and give him confidence that he can always talk to you.
Treating nightmares in children
It is possible to get rid of children’s nightmares and treat them by stimulating your child’s mind with happy dreams such as:
- Regulating sleeping and waking times.
- Establish a bedtime routine that you can use to get your child comfortable before bed, such as going to bed.
- Arrange the baby’s bed and sleeping area so they can be comfortable and quiet with their favorite toys.
- Don’t let him watch scary movies or read scary stories before he sleeps or even during the day when he has a great imagination.
When should you worry about children’s nightmares?
In these cases, it is important to go to the doctor and seek help from a specialist:
- If your child’s nightmares get worse or occur more than once.
- When your child’s concerns interfere with his daily activities.
- When nightmares turn into psychological stress on your child and are accompanied by other mental disorders.
Finally , children’s nightmares , don’t worry, most children always have bad dreams, and over time they will begin to realize their fears and understand the nature of nightmares and you will not find it difficult to deal with them over time, and if in case you have any questions,