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10 Common Causes For Sleep Disturbances In Children

How you and your baby can enjoy a full night's sleep

Does your child wake up frequently during the night? This can be distressing for the whole family, particularly Mom!

In Dr. Denmark Said It! you'll discover how to overcome 10 common causes for sleep disturbances in children. Dr. Leila Denmark, the world’s most experienced Pediatrician, gives you what you need to identify and deal with these sleep disturbances so you can all enjoy a full night’s sleep

baby sleeping

Hi, I’m Madia. I have eleven children and one of the greatest privileges of my life was to know Dr. Leila Denmark. She practiced pediatrics for over 75 years and was my mentor for 32 years.

I can hardly express how much she helped me, both with the children’s medical issues and family life challenges. I would love to share what she taught me with you.


10 Common Causes for Sleep Disturbances

Sometimes a young child’s sleep will be disturbed for no apparent reason. He may wake repeatedly, cry out, or grit his teeth. A parent should explore the cause. Dr. Denmark always said to “Look for the obvious!”


1. Is my child sick ( fever, congestion, stomach upset)?

2. Is my child getting enough nourishment during the day, so he is not hungry at night? Is he getting a good dose of protein at dinner?

3. Is my child getting too much sleep during the day. Sometimes eliminating an afternoon nap will help a child sleep better at night or go to bed earlier.

4. Does my child have a consistent bedtime? Children do best on a consistent routine of eating and sleeping. They know what to expect and their bodies adjust.

5. Is my infant positioned properly for peaceful sleep (refer to Dr. Denmark Said It!”)

6. Is his bedroom quiet, darkened and a comfortable temperature?

7. Does my baby have a stinging alkaline urine often accompanied by diaper rash? Don’t give him anything to drink other than water. Soda, juice and too much fruit can cause alkaline urine.

8. Does he have pinworms? If your child has passed his second birthday and especially if he sucks fingers or thumbs, check for pinworms.

9. Some children cannot settle down to sleep peacefully after overly rough play, especially if they have been tossed in the air.

10. Disturbing screen images are a frequent culprit. Children are emotionally vulnerable and need their parents to protect them from confusing, emotionally tense, fast-paced or frightening images.

A consistent evening routine is wonderful for young children. Bedtime is a great time for a song, story and prayers. A little one who is ushered off to bed this way is much more likely to enjoy a sound night’s sleep!


For more information on common sense parenting, read Dr. Denmark Said It!

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