Weekly Message: 3/9/2018

Hello Marvista Families!

This is Andrew Ritsema, your School Counselor, with some information this week on our students’ sleep. First, it is important to note that the National Institute of Health (NIH) states that poor sleep can cause or exacerbate myriad problems:

“Your ability to function and feel well while you’re awake depends on whether you’re getting enough total sleep and enough of each type of sleep [e.g., rapid eye movement, deep sleep]. It also depends on whether you’re sleeping at a time when your body is prepared and ready to sleep. … Sleep deficiency can interfere with work, school, driving and social functioning.

“You might have trouble learning, focusing and reacting. Also, you might find it hard to judge other people’s emotions and reactions. Sleep deficiency also can make you feel frustrated, cranky or worried in social situations. … Children who are sleep deficient might be overly active and have problems paying attention. They also might misbehave, and their school performance can suffer.”

Does this sound like any of your children? Sleep is sometimes referred to as the best cognitive enhancer on the market, meaning it beats all the drugs hands down. Here are some tips for boosting quality sleep for kids (and us adults!):

  1. Go to bed and wake up at the same time each day
  2. Exercise daily, preferably in the morning
  3. Set your bedroom temperature between 61-and-66 degrees Fahrenheit
  4. Darken your bedroom and eliminate all extraneous sounds
  5. Avoid blue light devices, such as tablets, computers, smart phones and flat-screen TVs three hours before bedtime

If, despite all of this, your child continues to have poor sleep quality, it is important to seek help from your pediatrician and/or the school. The sooner the issue is addressed, the healthier, happier and more successful your child will be in school. Remember, if sleep truly is an issue, nothing will solve it other than sleep!

Sweet Dreams,
Andrew Ritsema
School Counselor