It’s one of mom and dad’s worries: how to reconcile the sleep of the little ones and guarantee them the ‘crucial’ rest for a growing brain? The first rule, warns the pediatrician Italo Farnetani, is: “Avoid ‘Cyber insomnia'”, one of the major factors disturbing the nights of modern children. An appeal that the expert launches to parents on the occasion of World Sleep Day which is celebrated today, 17 March. Also because, he points out to Adnkronos Salute, there are not a few under 18s who have to deal with sleep problems: “From an age of 4 to 18, there are more than 2 million – reports Farnatani – and the most insomnia is frequent. While in the first 4 years of age the sleep-wake rhythm is not yet well acquired, even if real sleep disorders are also present in this range”.
The doctor therefore proposes a small handbook with some golden rules. First point: “To save bedtime, after the age of 4 children no longer have to take an afternoon nap”, explains the full professor of Pediatrics at the Ludes-United Campus of Malta University. Children, he continues, “should be sent to bed when, as they say, ‘their eyes are closed’, not before, to avoid insomnia”.
Then there is a ‘bon ton’ of technological devices in which to educate them: “Before sleeping, no smartphones, TVs, PCs, video games – lists Farnetani – better something relaxing”. As a conciliatory activity, the pediatrician therefore proposes “a few games, a chat or cuddles with the parents. All to be practiced in any case in a relaxing environment”. A warning to parents: “Before bedtime, no teaching or educational moments”, this is because the pre-sleep phase must be based on “relaxation”. These are “little pieces of advice that parents can start following”, a good resolution “starting today”, exhorts the expert.
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