Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child
131
Healthy Sleep Produces Healthy Brain Development
May 15, 2023

Found in age groups

Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child

5th Edition: 
A Step-by-Step Program for a Good Night's Sleep

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Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child

5th Edition: 
Chapter 1 (only 16 pages!) outlines everything you need to know about your child's sleep.

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Introduction

A Healthy Child Needs a Healthy Brain, A Healthy Brain Needs Healthy Sleep

If you have not already done so, please read Blog Posts 1 through 5 that describe how sleep is important and beneficial. I will post specific information for parents and children based on my book, “Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child.” Please do not be put off by my book’s length. This is a reference book. Read only the topic of interest to you.

Blog 131Healthy Sleep Produces Healthy Brain Development

FOOD

How we feed our child affects their physical health.

Parents choose what to feed their child.  Different choices produce different outcomes.

  • Proteins
  • Fats
  • Carbs/sugars
  • Minerals
  • Vitamins
  • Liquids
  • Size of servings

Outcomes: Height, weight, strength, physical health

Deficiencies: Short stature, underweight, muscle weakness, anemia, soft bones, 

SLEEP

How we sleep our child affects their brain health.

Parents choose bedtimes* (Blog Post 123) and nap opportunities that affect the elements listed below. Different choices produce different outcomes.

Electrical elements (from EEG recordings):

  • Slow wave activity is linked to daytime sleep habits (Blog Posts 5356)
  • Spindle density is linked to sleep consolidation/fragmentation (Blog Post 125).  At 6 months, this predicts behavioral status at 12 and 24 months.
  • Delta-coherence is linked to neurophysiological connectivity and early bedtimes* (Blog Posts 129 and 130). At 6 months, this predicts sleep duration (Blog Post 6) at 12 months.
  • Day sleep/Night sleep
  • REM sleep/Non-Rem Sleep (Blog Post 15)
  • Circadian sleep rhythm (Blog Post 112)

Components of sleep.  All 5 components are interrelated, changing one may change the others.  For example, earlier bedtimes* produce longer night sleep durations and fewer night awakenings.

  1. Sleep Activity (movement and awakenings at night)
  2. Sleep Timing (clock time of bedtimes* and sleep times)
  3. Sleep Night (nighttime sleep opportunity and duration)
  4. Sleep Day (duration and number of naps and their regularity)
  5. Sleep Variability (day-to-day stability of timing and duration) (Blog Post 12)

Regional differences of the brain (Blog Post 126)

Critical periods: This is a maturational stage during which some aspects of the nervous system, for example, vision, are especially sensitive to certain stimuli, such as light or healthy sleep. If, for some reason, the brain does not receive the appropriate stimulus during this “critical period”, it may be difficult or even impossible, to develop later in life. (Blog Posts 131 and 132)

Outcomes: Brain development (Blog Posts 72 and 73), cognition (Blog Post 121), coordination, balance, mental health (Blog Post 75).

Deficiencies: Academic, social, emotional, and mental health problems (Blog Post 127).

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