Sleep Tight: Naps and Why Kids Need Them

Ask some New Jammies parents about naps, and you may see a longing in their eyes. They might be wishing for one themselves. Or daydreaming about the days when their children’s naps were as common as a diaper change. Often, as a child grows older, naps can become a distant memory. That doesn’t always mean parents should give up on them.

According to KidsHealth, the importance of naps is vital, as “sleep is a major requirement for good health, and for young kids to get enough of it, some daytime sleep is usually needed.”

“Crucial physical and mental development occurs in early childhood, and naps provide much-needed downtime for growth and rejuvenation,” KidsHealth says. “Naps also help keep kids from becoming overtired, which not only takes a toll on their moods but may also make it harder for them to fall asleep at night. And naptime gives parents a brief oasis during the day and time to tackle household chores or just unwind.”

Sleep Needs by Age

KidsHealth reminds parents that there’s no one-size-fits-all answer regarding how much daytime sleep kids need.

“It all depends on the age, the child, and the sleep total during a 24-hour period,” KidsHealth says. “For example, one toddler may sleep 13 hours at night with only some daytime catnapping, while another gets 9 hours at night but takes a solid 2-hour nap each afternoon.”

Though sleep needs are highly individual, these age-by-age guidelines give an idea of average daily sleep requirements:

Birth to 6 months: Infants require about 14 to 18 total hours of sleep per day. Younger infants tend to sleep on and off around the clock, waking every 1 to 3 hours to eat. As they approach 4 months of age, sleep rhythms become more established. Most babies sleep 9 to 12 hours at night, usually with an interruption for feeding, and have 2 to 3 daytime naps lasting about 30 minutes to 2 hours each.

6 to 12 months: Babies this age usually sleep about 14 hours total for the day. This usually includes two naps a day, which may last 20 minutes for some babies, for others a few hours. At this age, infants may not need to wake at night to feed, but may begin to experience separation anxiety, which can contribute to sleep disturbances.

Toddlers (1 to 3 years): Toddlers generally require 12 to 14 hours of sleep, including an afternoon nap of 1 to 3 hours. Young toddlers might still be taking two naps, but naps should not occur too close to bedtime, as they may make it harder for toddlers to fall asleep at night.

Preschoolers (3 to 5 years): Preschoolers average about 11 to 12 hours at night, plus an afternoon nap. Most give up this nap by 5 years of age.

School-age (5 to 12 years): School-age kids need about 10 to 11 hours at night. Some 5-year-olds might still need a nap, and if a regular nap isn’t possible, they might need an earlier bedtime.

To Nap Or Not to Nap?

The National Sleep Foundation reminds parents not to become discouraged, as naps, or the lack thereof, are a phase all kids go through.

“About half of all children stop napping by age four, and 70 percent are done with daytime sleep by age five,” the NSF reports.

What are some signs little ones are ready to drop the nap habit?

“Consistently taking 45 minutes or more to fall asleep for a daytime snooze or getting 11 to 12 hours of sleep overnight are two big ones,” the Foundation says. “If you think it’s time to give nap-less living a try, follow these steps to ease the transition.”

Nap as Needed

The National Sleep Foundation agrees that napping doesn’t have to be an “all-or-nothing proposition.”

“While some children might be fine quitting cold turkey, others may do better with a gradual approach. For instance, consider skipping naps for three days, then napping again on the fourth,” the NSF says.

“Alternately, you could shorten the naps by waking your child within the hour to keep daytime sleep from interfering with bedtime. Even a 20-minute nap can have benefits for a small child. There is no one-size-fits-all formula, so follow your child’s cues to figure out the right sleep strategy.”

Turn Naps into Quiet Time

“Skipping an afternoon nap doesn’t mean your child is ready for constant action from morning to night. An hour of quiet time in the afternoon can offer an important opportunity for a non-napping child to re-group (not to mention restoring the caregiver’s energy, too),” says the Fiundation. “Reading books, coloring quietly, and listening to calming music are all good ways to rest up for the evening ahead.”

Also, the National Sleep Foundation suggests moving bedtime to an earlier time.

“If your child is no longer napping, bedtime hours may need to be adjusted to be sure you still provide enough time for sleep,” the NSF says. “Preschoolers should get 10 to 13 hours of sleep a day, with or without naps, which could mean going to sleep as early as 6:30 PM depending on what time your child wakes up in the morning.”

For more information on naps, sleep and additional topics involving kids’ health, visit these helpful online resources:

American Academy of Family Physicians
http://familydoctor.org
This site, operated by the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), provides information on family physicians and health care, a directory of family physicians, and resources on health conditions.

National Sleep Foundation (NSF)
http://www.sleepfoundation.org
NSF is an independent nonprofit organization dedicated to improving public health and safety by achieving understanding of sleep and sleep disorders, and by supporting education, sleep-related research, and advocacy.

American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP)
http://www.aap.org
The AAP is committed to the health and well-being of infants, adolescents, and young adults. The website offers news articles and tips on health for families.

American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM)
http://www.aasmnet.org
AASM strives to increase awareness of sleep disorders in public and professional communities.

 

New Jammies was born as an environmentally responsible company offering 100% certified organic cotton and flame retardant-free children’s pajamas. Learn more at newjammies.com.

Sleep Tight: Infant Sleeping Best Practices

At New Jammies, we all know the old saying, “Babies don’t come with instructions.” Lucky for us, there are helpful organizations such as the American Academy of Pediatrics, among many others, to help us navigate child-rearing. Many of the first questions we have as parents has much to do about sleep.

Especially safety and sleep.

“The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends a safe sleep environment that can reduce the risk of all sleep-related infant deaths,” says the AAP. “Recommendations for a safe sleep environment include supine positioning, the use of a firm sleep surface, room-sharing without bed-sharing, and the avoidance of soft bedding and overheating.”

The APA reports approximately 3,500 infants die annually in the U.S. from sleep-related infant deaths, including sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). Recent updates to recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics for SIDS reduction include the avoidance of exposure to smoke, alcohol, and illicit drugs; breastfeeding; routine immunization; and use of a pacifier.

”New evidence is also presented for skin-to-skin care for newborn infants, use of bedside and in-bed sleepers, sleeping on couches/armchairs and in sitting devices, and use of soft bedding after 4 months of age,” the APA reports.

The American Academy of Pediatrics offers the following baby safety tips to keep in mind for parents:

• Place your baby to sleep on his or her back for all sleep times — including short naps

• Never place the baby on its side or stomach to sleep

• Use a safety-approved mattress and crib

• No pillows, blankets, bumper pads, stuffed toys or sleep positioners in the crib

• Feel free to share a room with your baby, but resist the temptation to bring them into your bed

• And remember, money should never be an issue when it comes to the safety of your child! KeepingBabiesSafe.org runs a donor-supported program that offers free safety-approved cribs to financially challenged parents.

Keeping Babies Safe has already donated thousands of safe cribs to those who need them most, since its founding in 2006 by Joyce Davis. She lost her four-month-old son, Garret, to a completely preventable circumstance: an unsafe sleeping condition that might have been avoided had the proper information been available. Keeping Babies Safe also serves as a dedicated resource for free information about reliable crib and sleep safety information, safety tips, and product recall information.

”We help parents, caregivers and hospital personnel stay vigilant about keeping babies safe in their nurseries,” says the nonprofit’s mission statement.

This noble cause is funded with the help of sponsors and donations from the general public. With every $125 donation, Keeping Babies Safe can purchase a new crib that complies with the federal crib standards.

”Project Safe Crib donation helps provide safe cribs to financially-challenged parents. Keeping Babies Safe will purchase safe cribs at an industry discount and offer them to human service organizations with proven training in safe crib practices,” KBS says. “Trained professionals then set up our donated cribs in homes according to the highest safety standards. Since 2007, Project Safe Crib has donated more than 8,000 safe cribs nationwide. With your help, we can raise this number over 10,000 – and more.”

Start out the new year helping others by donating online to here, or mail a check to:

Keeping Babies Safe
16 Mount Bethel Road
Suite #245
Warren, NJ 07059

If your employer has a gift matching program, your donation to Keeping Babies Safe can be doubled and in some cases tripled. Ask your employer and submit the necessary paperwork with your donation to KBS.

Here’s to helping sleeping babies stay safe in 2018, and beyond!

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How New Jammies Supports Safe Sleeping

New Jammies Sleep Sacks

Our cozy Sleep Sacks have babies safely sleeping in comfort. Our double-layered organic cotton design is warm and breathable. Our Sleep Sack fits perfectly over New Jammies footie pajamas for cool evenings or can be paired with a onesie for warmer nights. In addition, New Jammies Sleep Sacks encourage baby to sleep on their backs until they can comfortably roll over from their back or tummy, and eliminates loose crib blankets for the prevention of SIDS.

Shop here.

 

New Jammies was born as an environmentally responsible company offering 100% certified organic cotton and flame retardant-free children’s pajamas. Learn more at newjammies.com.

Sleep Tight: Transition from Toddler to Big Kid Beds

Toddlers. They‘re always on the move, and constantly learning new information and activities. So when it comes to bedtime, it seems like they would go right to sleep in their new toddler beds set up with cozy, new bed sheets and comforters, and New Jammies PJs.

If only it were that easy.

Toddlers can have habits that change on a dime. Adjusting from sleeping soundly in the crib as a baby to fighting nighttime rituals in the toddler bed can be tough. There may be tears — from both toddler and tired Mom — and frustration. But also sweet moments of bonding time over bedtime stories and snuggles before sleep finally comes. Each child is different, so the scenarios play out in a variety of ways. There’s always a chance the transition may not go as planned, so be prepared for anything and everything this change may bring.

With two young boys, one still in diapers and the other potty training, New Jammies founder Nicole Ludlow knows personally how the struggle is real.

“As for bedtime, I am wondering how that transistion is going to go for me with my second son. It seems like most parents struggle with this transition, especially if you have more than one child,” she says.

Nicole recalled a recent conversation shared with a mother of toddler twins, a boy and a girl, as she herself approaches her second child’s transition from crib to big kid bed.

“She was just telling me the tough time she’s having with her twins, particularly the little girl. I lucked out with Brandt (first born) because he was such a good sleeper. Landon might be a different story, and right now he still hasn’t tried to jump out of the crib so I’ve left him in there,” Nicole says. “I transitioned Brandt around 22 months so it’s coming soon!”

Nicole suggests including a child’s favorite stuffed animals, blankets and routine to help with bedtime. Dad is involved every night, says Nicole, and it’s usually a family affair.

”Our routine right now is story time (not always, but we try), potty or diaper change, putting on New Jammies, teeth brushing, singing a song in bed with all the lights out except night light and turtle with stars in Brandt’s room,” she says. “Then we take Landon and put him in his crib.”

”Last night, Landon was so upset he didn’t want to go to bed and I had skipped the routine because I thought he was tired. I took him out of the crib and we stayed up for about 20 minutes more playing and then I made both of them go through the routine together and no problem — off to bed!”

These real-life scenarios are often experienced by parents transitioning young children from crib to toddler bed. For New Jammies blogger April Allford, her 2-year-old (approx. 28 months) son, Will, is experiencing a new type of bedtime routine that requires patience. He was no longer staying in his crib, and she and her husband felt it was time for the change.

She tries to make every night consistent after starting the transition from crib to “big boy” bed after WI’ll made a nightly habit of climbing out of his bed, and they were concerned for his safety. As well as their own sanity, as he would wander into their room in the middle of the night after climbing out of bed looking to go back to sleep.

“We gave it some time not knowing if he was being adventurous or he was just trying to see if he could climb out and what would happen. It became an every night thing, so we switched the bed from crib to toddler bed,” she recalls. “It’s the same bed, just a different configuration. The first night was probably the toughest, as we have a three in-one convertible bed that converts from crib to toddler bed to child’s bed and we didn’t know how he would adapt. It didn’t have a rail for the side, so I think maybe he didn’t feel as secure as the crib enclosure made him feel,” she says.

“It’s very low to the ground, but he still rolled on to the floor in his sleep the second night. That was a rookie mistake on my part. We made sure to go out the next day and buy a safety rail that attaches to the side of the bed. That made a big difference for him, as well as for our peace of mind.”

April says the bedtime routine of bath and New Jammies, then book reading or a little relaxing play, helps her son wind down for the night. As they transition to toddler bed, sometimes Will runs right into his room and climbs into bed.

”Other Times he wants to rock in the rocking chair and read a book first or have me sit in the room and tell stories about the nightlight that has animals that reflect on the ceiling,” she says. “We like to name and count the animals we see in the dark. He gets a kick out of that and it’s calming for him.”

April says consistency in bed times is key, but there are nights he is may be put into bed on time, then a few minutes later he‘s back up, then again and again after returning him to his bed a few more times.

“It’s hard, but sometimes he just seems more restless than other nights, and I give him the benefit of the doubt there. Not every day is the same … Sometimes he has more activity or stimulation during the daytime hours than others,” April says. “The transition takes patience, as about most everything a toddler brings to the table.”

”In having an 8-year-old brother in the room next door, he sometimes gets in his mind that he’s going to jump in bed with him, so that happens as well. I can probably see them in bunk beds next year because they have a close relationship and love being together. So far, he’s getting very used to his new bed and the sleeping transition that’s taking place.”

Along with advice from other parents and caregivers, there are many suggestions from experts on transitioning a child from crib to a toddler bed in his own room. We thought these tips from Dr. William Sears, in his Q&A for “Parenting” magazine, were a good start (Read the full article here.):

• Sell the idea. Make a special family trip to the “big boy bed” store. …
• Continue your usual bedtime routine for a while. …
• Try the “fade away” strategy. …
• Snuggle to sleep. …
• Move in and out. …

“Whatever sleep strategy you use, be sure to relieve your child’s nighttime anxiety by helping him develop a healthy attitude about sleep,” says Dr. Sears. “You want him to learn that sleep is not only a pleasant state to enter, but a safe one to remain in.”

These “8 Tips For Transitioning To A Big Kid Bed” by blogger Katie Hurley on the Scary Mommy site are also helpful. She begins by reminding parents there is no “best” time to move your toddler from a crib to a bed.

”While most little ones begin transitioning to a big kid bed somewhere between ages 2 -3 ½, there really are no rules about making the switch,” she says. “Moving from a crib to a bed is a huge transition for little ones that can result in night wandering, new fears, and new insecurities.”

As we said earlier, every child is different. And every life change during toddlerhood requires patience. Take your time and do what feels right for your child along the way. Everything will eventually fall into place.

Good luck, and happy holidays!

New Jammies was born as an environmentally responsible company offering 100% certified organic cotton and flame retardant-free children’s pajamas. Learn more at newjammies.com.

Sleep Tight: Clean Sleeping For Sleep Wellness


In 2017, the term “clean sleeping” has taken the spotlight as a trend that can help create a wellness routine to benefit the whole New Jammies family. Clean sleeping originated with Gwyneth Paltrow’s newest book, “Goop: Clean Beauty,” and her website, goop.com, which offers tips on improving sleep habits to help with your body’s dietary needs and energy levels.

According to Paltrow, sleep is a priority, and she has a goal of getting at least eight hours of good, quality sleep at night. Even nine and 10 are ideal for some. The idea behind clean sleeping is that your body repairs itself and detoxifies overnight. So, healthy skin and body are achieved with better sleep.

One way to achieve clean sleeping is to go to bed and wake up around the same time each day. The “Clean Beauty” book also suggests spending time outdoors during the day so your body can get in sync with the sun’s schedule. Avoid caffeine later in the day, nighttime snacking, and relying on sleep aids. Also try to make your bedroom completely dark during your sleep routine.

Read more from Goop.com on How to Get Better Sleep.

Good sleep hygiene is also achieved by unplugging at the end of the day. Turning off electronics before bedtime is strongly advised, especially by the National Sleep Foundation.

“Careful studies have shown that even our small electronic devices emit sufficient light to miscue the brain and promote wakefulness,” says the NSF. “As adults we are subject to these influences and our children are particularly susceptible.”

The National Sleep Foundation reminds us that we should give ourselves at least 30 minutes of gadget-free transition time before hitting the hay.

”Even better: Make your bedroom a technology-free zone — keep your electronics outside the room (that includes a TV!),” the Foundation adds.

For those who think they may have a screen addiction, commonplace in this tech-savvy Digital Age, and need a digital detox, Goop.com has suggestions. On Paltrow’s health and wellness site, Dr. Nicholas Kardaras advises unplugging from screens for 4 to 6 weeks (the extreme version also eliminates TV). Dr. Kardaras is an internationally renowned speaker, addiction expert, and author of “Glow Kids: How Screen Addiction Is Hijacking Our Kids-and How to Break the Trance.”

”This allows a person’s adrenal system to re-regulate itself and get back to baseline. One also should plan to replace screen time during the tech fast with meaningful and/or healthy recreational activities,” says Dr. Kardaras, executive director of The Dunes in East Hampton, NY — one of the world’s top rehab centers. “After the detox period, the person slowly reintegrates some screen usage, and sees what level they can tolerate without falling down the compulsion rabbit hole. Some can go back to some moderate level of screen time, others can’t.”

Other ways to detoxify mind and body from Goop is to engage in journaling and guided meditation prior to bedtime.

”Another great trick for calming the mind is journaling before bed. Order your thoughts and get your problems in perspective by focusing on positive things in your life,” says Lauren Roxburgh, a structural integration practitioner known as the “body whisperer.” “It’s simple, but studies show it improves sleep. In a similar vein, doing a guided meditation before bed can really help.”

Warch this 10-minute clip to help you deeply relax.

Roxburgh also recommends a Detoxifying Magnesium-Salt Bath via Goop, for a “relaxing and detoxifying spa treatment in your own bathtub.”

”Magnesium is nature’s anti-stress mineral and contributes to health in numerous ways, including fascia, muscle, and cellular relaxation. It’s a great bath addition at the end of the day to support optimal beautifying sleep, recovery, digestion, and overall vitality,” Roxburgh says.

“Magnesium baths are good for post-workout recovery, too, and as part of a relaxing meditation to complement yoga practice. Soothing music and candlelight helps as well.“

Order magnesium bath flakes online here.

Visit Goop.com for more tips on health and wellness, beauty, style, food and more. Goop helps raise awareness and donates a portion of its profits to great causes including The Edible Schoolyard, The David Lynch Foundation, and Pencils of Promise, all of whom have touched the world with their proven success in helping children, as well as the nonprofit DonorsChoose.org.

 

New Jammies was born as an environmentally responsible company offering 100% certified organic cotton and flame retardant-free children’s pajamas. Learn more at newjammies.com.

Eat Right: Healthy Fall Treats for Kids

Two+Two re-useable snack bags for fall treats.

Apples. Pumpkins. Mushrooms. Figs. Turnips. And pears. These are just a few of New Jammies’ favorite Fall fruits and vegetables, and we’re happy to share some healthy and quick recipes for treats this season for the kids.

Raw pumpkin provides food energy and is an excellent source of provitamin A beta-carotene and vitamin A. Figs are a great source of potassium, which helps control blood pressure. Pears are rich in antioxidants, flavonoids and dietary fiber, and packed with fat-free and cholesterol-free nutrients. And of course we are pleased to know that apples are high in fiber, vitamin C and various antioxidants, plus low-calorie as well.

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This cute recipe for Apple Sandwiches with Granola and Peanut Butter from Whole Foods Markte are perect for after-school snack time, can be added to kids’ lunchboxes, or will top off dinner right as a healthy option for dessert.

Ingredients

2 small apples, cored and cut crosswise into 1/2-inch thick rounds
1 teaspoon lemon juice (optional)
3 tablespoons peanut or almond butter
2 tablespoons semisweet chocolate chips
3 tablespoons granola

Directions

1. If you won’t be eating these tasty treats right away, start by brushing the apples slices with lemon juice to keep them from turning brown.

2. Spread one side of half of the apple slices with peanut or almond butter then sprinkle with chocolate chips and granola.

3. Top with remaining apple slices, pressing down gently to make the sandwiches.

4. Transfer to napkins or plates and serve.

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The Dr. Oz Show is great for bringing healthy lifestyles to the forefront, and offer light recipes on its website that incorporates various veggies, including turnips, in this case. These Paleo-centric Turnip Fries are crispy and light when baked to avoid frying. And they add nutritional value unique to the turnip that kids will love without knowing just how healthy they truly are. For the diet-conscious, they’re great for keeping calories low, too, at 56 calories for 10 servings.

“This healthy take on fries are nutritional and delectable,” says the show’s website at doctoroz.com. “The turnips have anti-cancer properties and the spices make the fries very flavorful.”

Ingredients

3 lbs turnips
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
1 tsp garlic salt
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp onion powder

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C). Line a baking sheet with a piece of aluminum foil and lightly grease.

2. Peel the turnips, and cut into French fry-sized sticks, about 1/3 by 4 inches. Place into a large bowl, and toss with the vegetable oil to coat.

3. Place the Parmesan cheese, garlic salt, paprika, onion powder in a resealable plastic bag, and shake to mix. Place the oiled turnips into the bag, and shake until evenly coated with the spices. Spread out onto the prepared baking sheet.

4. Bake in preheated oven until the outside is crispy, and the inside is tender, about 20 minutes. Serve immediately.

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According to Valley Fig Growers, figs are always “an excellent source of dietary fiber, a wealth of essential minerals such as potassium, iron and calcium, and rich in health-promoting antioxidants and complex carbohydrates.l

“Because figs are a whole food source of important nutrients and have no fat, cholesterol or sodium, they help you meet today’s Dietary Guidelines established by the US Department of Agriculture,” says Valley Fig Growers. “A daily lifestyle that focuses on balancing calories, making informed food choices, and being physically active can help you attain and maintain a healthy weight, reduce your risk of chronic disease, and promote overall health.”

Try this recipe for Whole Wheat California Fig Muffins:

Ingredients

1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup wheat germ
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup margarine, softened
1/2 cup honey
1 egg
1/2 cup nonfat milk
2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
1 cup Blue Ribbon Orchard Choice or Sun-Maid California Golden Figs, coarsely chopped

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Stir together flours, wheat germ, baking powder and salt; set aside.

2. Cream together margarine and honey; beat in egg. Stir in milk, lemon peel and figs.

3. Add to dry ingredients and mix just enough to blend.

4. Evenly distribute batter among 12 (2 1/2-inch) greased muffin cups. Bake about 20 minutes or until muffins are lightly browned and test done.

5. Carefully remove muffins from pan and serve warm.

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Look no further for a simple, sweet, kid-friendly treat featuring pears, which we previously mentioned are great for fiber, vitamin C and antioxidants. These easy Pear Clouds, courtesy of USA Pears, are made for you and the kids, served hot or cool, depending on the mood or weather.

“You can put these into the oven at 350 degrees for 15 minutes or until toasted and bubbly — very yummy,” says USA Pears.

Ingredients

2 Anjou pears, cut in half and cored
1 cup frozen whipped topping, thawed
⅔ cup sweetened coconut flakes
1 cup mini marshmallows

Directions

1. Place pear halves on serving platter.

2. In bowl, combine whipped topping, coconut, and marshmallows.

3. Top pear halves with whipped topping mixture and serve.

 

New Jammies was born as an environmentally responsible company offering 100% certified organic cotton and flame retardant-free children’s pajamas. Learn more at newjammies.com.

Sleep Tight: Tech and How We’re Sacrificing Sleep

At New Jammies, we’re always cognizant of how electronics are affecting us and our children. Especially with kids headed back to school. The National Sleep Foundation’s latest Sleep Health Index (SHI) shows significant associations between technology use in bed and sleep health.

“Forty-eight percent of American adults reported using a device like a computer, tablet, or smartphone in bed before trying to go to sleep,” the NSF reports. “These people averaged two points lower on the overall SHI (75 vs. 77, on a 1 to 100 scale) and five points lower on the sleep quality subindex (65 vs. 70) than those who refrained from technology use in bed.”

Even more eye-opening, the Foundation found that 21% of American adults (52 million people) reported awakening from sleep and using an electronic device before trying to go back to sleep at least once in the past seven days.

“These individuals averaged 10 points lower for overall sleep health and 13 points lower on the sleep quality subindex than others (68 vs. 78, and 57 vs. 70, respectively),” according to the NSF. “Additionally, about 43% of these people reported sending a text or email after awakening. This means that 9% of American adults made the decision to engage with technology when awakening in the middle of the night, rather than trying to fall back asleep.

In short, electronics are changing our sleep patterns, and not necessarily in a positive way.

“The Sleep Health Index shows that bedtime electronics use is a problem. We can’t know if this use of tech is a cause of poor sleep health or a result of it,” says David Cloud, CEO of the National Sleep Foundation. “It is clear, however, that if you are having trouble sleeping, you should stay away from using technology while in bed.”

According to the American Sleep Association, sleep loss from using electronic devices before bed occurs from light coming from the screen of your device that interferes with circadian rhythms and melatonin production.

“The circadian rhythm is the internal clock that controls our biological patterns such as body temperature, blood pressure, and hormone release, and has a lot to do with how we sleep,” the Association says, in its report on sleep and electronics by Kristina Diaz, a Registered Respiratory Therapist and a health and wellness enthusiast and writer. “Circadian rhythm is affected by light, time, and melatonin production. Light and darkness tell us when to feel awake or sleepy.”

Diaz notes that time affects this cycle because we are clock readers and follow schedules to which our bodies have become adapted.

“Melatonin, a hormone secreted in the brain by the pineal gland, induces the tired feeling. This hormone helps keep our sleep-wake cycles on track,” Diaz says. “The light emitted from our devices, even just from a cell phone, passes through the retina of the eye, causing a delay in the release of melatonin making it harder to fall asleep.”

In regards to children and technology, kids are especially susceptible to having difficulty failing sleep wit’s electronics.

“Many children are now given an electronic device, such as an iPad or television to soothe and relax them before bed, but this is actually doing more harm than good,” the American Sleep Association says. “Children need sufficient sleep for growth, learning, mood, creativity, and weight control. But children who use electronics before bed tend to have later bedtimes, get fewer hours of sleep, and because of this suffer from daytime sleepiness more than children that do not use these devices before bed.”

This is also true for adolescents and teenagers, who not only use these devices for entertainment purposes, but also for homework, says the ASA.

“Using electronics before bed also stimulates our mind by getting our brains ‘fired up,'” the ASA says. “Electrical activity then increases and neurons start to race, making it difficult to sleep”

With electronics becoming such as big part of our daily lives, this begs the question of how we can improve sleep. Diaz advises just unplugging or turning off.

“Even going just 15-30 minutes electronic free before bedtime can make a difference. Make your bedroom completely device-free, including the television,” she suggests. “For children, refrain from giving them the iPad or letting them watch their T.V. shows, and have them read a book instead. It may not be easy at first to make this change since we have become so dependent on technology, but you will be happy when you are waking up feeling much more rested.”

For bedtime reading ideas, see our blog on New Children’s Books Perfect for Bedtime.

New Jammies was born as an environmentally responsible company offering 100% certified organic cotton and flame retardant-free children’s pajamas. Learn more at newjammies.com.

Sleep Tight: Back-to-School Sleep Habits

 

New Jammies is getting ready for back to school, helping kids with nighttime gear in our fun, 100% organic cotton pajamas. Plus we have some great tips on a good night’s sleep for back to school.

This school year features updates on sleep recommendations for kids by the American Academy of Pediatrics, through recommendations developed by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine. The consensus group of 13 sleep medicine experts and researchers recommend:

• Infants 4 to 12 months – 12 to 16 hours of sleep every 24 hours (including naps).*

• Children 1 to 2 years – 11 to 14 hours of sleep every 24 hours (including naps).

• Children 3 to 5 years – 10 to 13 hours of sleep every 24 hours (including naps).

• Children 6 to 12 years – 9 to 12 hours of sleep every 24 hours.

• Teens 13 to 18 years – 8 to 10 hours of sleep every 24 hours.

*Recommendations for babies younger than 4 months not reported because of the wide range normalcy in sleep patterns in newborns, and there isn’t enough research to back up guidance in the youngest of infants.

Other sleep recommendations that remain consistent as kids return to school is to go to sleep and wake up at the same time every day, and avoid blue light emitted from phones, tablets, and computers at night. That can be said for kids as well as adults.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that babies, toddlers, and younger children should have a regular, structured bedtime routine, including reading books together and brushing teeth, as well as going to bed at the same time every evening.

The academy also suggests the 4 B’s of Bedtime to best prepare for a proper night’s sleep. ​​​

“The reality of habits is that (a) they can be hard to break and (b) they are not always bad. Take away one habit and you often need to find something to take its place,” says the AAP. In the case of the bedtime breast or bottle, be reassured that we don’t intend to leave you empty-handed once you take away your baby’s primary source of bedtime comfort.”

These 4 B’s of Bedtime offer a soothing substitute proven to be one of the AAP’s most tried-and-true routines for bedtime success — both for babies and older children.

• Bathing. Baths are a soothing, hygienic, and decisive way of separating the evening’s eating activities from sleeping. No way around it — only the unbelievably fatigued child will sleep his way through a bath. That means that when feeding time is over, your child will get the message that eating is not in any way, shape, or form a cue to go to sleep.

• Brushing. Whether you choose to brush your child’s teeth (or gums) right after the last feeding or just before the actual bedtime itself, we strongly encourage you to get in the habit of having a toothbrush (or washcloth or gauze) be the last thing in your baby’s mouth at night (other than, perhaps, a clean pacifier during the first year as an added method of sudden infant death syndrome prevention).

• Books. We’ve found nothing more suitable as a breast/bottle stand-in than books at bedtime. Since you don’t want food or drink to become your child’s bedtime source of comfort, books can serve as the perfect cue that it’s time to cuddle up and go to sleep. Think about what happens when you’re tired and you try to read?

• Bingo—you fall asleep. When it comes to lifelong healthy habits, we can’t think of a better one.
Bedtime. Short of drugging kids (which we don’t condone, no matter how tired or tempted you might be), it’s mighty hard to force a child to fall asleep. We suggest you stop trying and instead stick to implementing a routine time for your child to get ready for and get into bed. Once you’ve set the stage so that bathing, brushing, and books signal bedtime, you should just let your child fall asleep independently. Sure, this may involve some additional challenges, protests, and even the need to consult additional parenting resources (of which, we can assure you, there are many), but in the end we have always found that if you do a good job of making the bed, your child will learn to lie in it.

New Jammies Sleep Sacks

New Jammies Sleep Sacks

Sleep Tight to Summer’s End

Gearing up for back to school takes plenty of rest, so help those little ones sleep tight through the night while their big brothers and sisters make the most of the end-of-summer sun. Through August 15, enjoy 20% off Sleep Sacks and Toddler Footies for a great night’s sleep. Our Classic Stripes sleep sacks, seen here, are a popular print this season. Shop online for Sleep Sacks and Toddler Footies today and receive 20% off (code? DREAM056).

Sleep Tight: Sleep Tips for Mom and Dad

Parents and SleepNew Jammies knows it’s just as important for parents to have a proper night’s sleep as their kids and babies. And we’re here to help make that happen.

The Mayo Clinic has suggestions for the weary, those parents still waking in the middle of the night for early morning feedings, coping with teething, or just feeling overall sleep-deprived.

“While there’s no magical formula for getting enough sleep, these strategies can help,” the clinic says.

New Jammies Butterfly Magic Sleep Sack• Sleep when your baby sleeps. Silence your phone, hide the laundry basket and ignore dishes in the kitchen sink. Calls and chores can wait.

• Set aside social graces. When friends and loved ones visit, don’t offer to be the host. Instead, ask if they could watch the baby while you nap.

• Don’t ‘bed share’ during sleep. It’s OK to bring baby into your bed for nursing or comforting — but return baby to the crib or bassinet when you’re ready to go back to sleep.

• Split up nighttime duties. Work out a schedule with your partner that allows both of you to rest and care for the baby. If you’re breastfeeding, perhaps your partner could bring you the baby and handle nighttime diaper changes. If you’re using a bottle, take turns feeding the baby.

• Give watchful waiting a try. Sometimes, middle-of-the-night fussing or crying is simply a sign baby is settling down. Unless you suspect baby is hungry or uncomfortable, it’s OK to wait a few minutes to see what happens.

For parents who have trouble going back to sleep after a sleep cycle is interrupted, or find themselves staying up thinking of all they need to do the next day as baby sleeps, organic solutions are often a safe approach. Hot teas with chamomile, honey and lemon, and foods with melatonin, the hormone that helps send us to sleep each night – including oats, banana and tart cherries – can help at bedtime.

The inconsistent sleep struggle for moms and dads can sometimes become all-too real when parents look for help from over-the-counter sleep aids or alcohol to alleviate problems associated with interrupted schedules. While the FDA reports OTC sleep aids are non-habit-forming and do not present the risk of allergic reactions and complex sleep-related behaviors, child caregivers may want to proceed with their doctor’s advisement.

“Just because they’re available over-the-counter doesn’t mean they don’t have side effects,” says Marina Chang, R.Ph., pharmacist and team leader in FDA’s Division of Nonprescription Regulation Development. “They don’t have the same level of precision as the prescription drugs. They don’t completely stop working after 8 hours—many people feel drowsy for longer than 8 hours after taking them.”

Chang advises reading product labels and exercising caution when taking OTC sleep aids until learning their effects. “They affect people differently,” she says. “They are not for everybody.”

The FDA suggests parents, especially nursing mothers, consult healthcare providers with questions before starting medications. Read patient information before taking a product. Do not increase the dose prescribed, and do not drink alcohol or take other drugs that depress the nervous system.

Alcohol and SleepAlthough it can seem like a chance to relax and unwind, consuming alcohol can make important sleeptime for parents less valuable. Paul Clarke, an addiction therapist in the UK, has researched many studies focusing on how alcohol consumption affects sleep. His blog article, “The Comprehensive Guide to Alcohol and Sleep,” is an useful resource to explain how alcohol consumption negatively impacts sleep.

“You may wonder why alcohol weakens the quality of your sleep,” he reports. “Here is why: Alcohol reduces the quality of your sleep because it induces your body to fall into a state of ‘deep sleep’, also known as Slow Wave Sleep (SWS).”

Clarke says SWS helps the body regenerate cells located in all tissues and bones, as well strengthens the immune system.

“However, skipping to SWS means you miss out on rapid eye movement (REM) sleep during the initial part of the night (first 3-4 hours),” he reports. “When you don’t drink alcohol, your body goes through around 5-6 cycles of REM over the course of the night. Each cycle lasts for around 5 to 30 minutes. REM is also associated with vivid dreaming and powers up your concentration and memory forming abilities the following day.”

“Scientists believe when the effect of alcohol wears off as you continue to sleep, the body slips out of deep sleep (SWS) and reverts to REM sleep (known as REM rebound) to compensate for a loss of REM,” he says.

See more at: http://www.cassioburycourt.com/article/77/the-comprehensive-guide-to-alcohol-and-sleep#sthash.FIBoLquE.dpuf

Sleep Tight: Family Sleep Goals for the New Year

New Jammies Sleep SackAs New Jammies winds down after the holidays, we welcome a new year of learning, adventure, discovery and fun.

Not to mention plenty of sleep to get us through our busy days.

As the calendar advances to 2016, we’ve set some goals we think might be easier to achieve if our New Jammies friends are joining in the challenge. From infants to adults, we all appreciate a good night’s sleep. These New Year’s resolutions will help sleep dream’s come true in 2016, friends!

Tune Out to Zone Out at Night

Young and old, beware of the effects of electronics use at nighttime. According to the National Sleep Foundation (NSF), robust scientific data documenting the role of light in promoting wakefulness is stressing the point that electronics and sleep really don’t mix.

“Signaling of light and dark helps us to be alert in the morning and be able to fall asleep at the appropriate time at night,” reports the NSF. “Careful studies have shown that even our small electronic devices emit sufficient light to miscue the brain and promote wakefulness. As adults we are subject to these influences and our children are particularly susceptible.”

The Foundation suggests that many children are not fulfilling basic sleep requirements and adequate sleep is essential for growth, learning, mood, creativity and weight control. Solutions, and in this case new year’s resolutions, include less TV in the bedroom and electronic media, including watching Internet videos and using social media, before bedtime.

“Understanding the influence of light and evening engagement on sleep is the first step in helping parents address the dilemma of electronics in the bedroom,” according to the NSF.

Eat Right to Sleep Tight

Studies consistently prove that better nutrition equals better overall health. Including how well we sleep. So it only makes sense to eat foods that help us get some proper ZZZs. The website health.com suggests including these nutrients in your diet for better sleep each night:

GrapefruitLycopene, found in grapefruit, tomatoes, papaya and watermelon.

Selenium, in fish such as halibut, tuna and cod, as well as shellfish, barley, turkey and nuts.

Vitamin C, from fruits such as pineapple, strawberries, papaya, and citrus, and veggies such as bell peppers, broccoli, and kale.

Carbohydrates, in cereal, rice, potatoes or white bread. Health.com reports that a study in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition said eating easily digested carbs four hours before bedtime led people to fall asleep faster.

Quit Bad Habits to Improve Sleep Hygiene

Losing weight. Eating better. Quitting smoking. New Year’s resolutions can sound like a broken record, but for many adults who can’t shake their bad habits, and even kids battling childhood obesity, the struggle is real. And many bad habits lead to poor sleep hygiene, which the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) defines as the promotion of good sleep habits and regular sleep. We encourage kids and adults to get outside and play for a healthy exercise regimen that encourages best sleep practices. Both the CDC and the National Sleep Foundation agree that the following sleep hygiene tips can be used to improve sleep:

New Jammies Football• Go to bed at the same time each night and rise at the same time each morning.

• Avoid large meals before bedtime.

• Avoid caffeine and alcohol close to bedtime.

• Avoid nicotine.

These all sound like achievable New Year’s resolutions that can lead to better sleep and a healthy 2016.

Happy New Year from New Jammies!

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New Jammies Butterfly Magic Sleep SackSleep sacks are where it’s at!

Keep your little ones crib safe while they snooze with our study and comfortable New Jammies double-layered sleep sacks. They’re great over footies in the winter months and onesies in warmer weather. New Jammies sleep sacks promote safety while encouraging infants to sleep on their backs and keep babies warm without loose blankets in the crib for the prevention of SIDS. Offered in a plethora of colors and age-appropriate sizes, our 100% organic cotton sleep sacks are breathable to prevent overheating. A great way to start off the new year in comfort and safety!

Click here to shop online

Sleep Tight: Meditation for a Better Sleep

New JammiesAt New Jammies, we all know how important sleep is for a healthy lifestyle. Without it, sleep can be a detriment to how we function at home, work, and school. With it, sleep can improve our moods, stress levels, and productivity.

In short, bring on the sleep.

Sleep isn’t always easy for parents, and especially kids, to achieve at bedtime, though. For some, a good night’s sleep takes work. A diet rich with Vitamin B6, calcium, potassium and less caffeine can help. Meditation and relaxation exercises also aid in achieving healthy sleep.

“One of the most powerful techniques for quieting the mind is meditation, which allows you to go beyond the mind’s noisy internal dialog into a space of silence and stillness,” says Deepak Chopra, M.D., on his Chopra Centered Lifestyle website www.chopra.com.

The Chopra Center suggests committing to a consistent sleep ritual by creating a soothing evening routine. Take a light walk shortly after dinnertime and minimize intense mental activity in the evening. Prepare for bed about an hour before sleep by running a hot bath and performing a slow, oil massage on your body.

“Put a few drops of lavender oil in the bath water and play some soothing music. Have the intention to allow the stress of the day to leave your body,” Chopra says. “Once you’ve completed your bath, try drinking a warm herbal tea or heated milk with a pinch of nutmeg.”

The Chopra Centered Lifestyle says the ideal bedtime is 10 p.m. Once in bed, try and avoid watching television or reading mentally stimulating material and spiritual or inspirational literature to help shift your awareness away from the usual demands of your life to a more expanded perspective.

“Avoid work on your taxes, balance your checkbook, or watch a violent thriller on television right before bedtime – all of these activities can over stimulate the Vata dosha and make it hard to fall asleep. Turn off the lights, close your eyes and just lie comfortably on your back observing your breath. Allow your attention to float through your body. If you notice areas of tension, consciously release the pressure,” Chopra says.

See more at: http://www.chopra.com/ccl/5-tips-to-end-insomnia-and-get-restful-sleep#sthash.cdkF6kwd.dpuf

Sleep Meditations for KidsKids can also benefit from sleep mediation, especially in today’s age of apps available to help soothe them to sleep. The free Sleep Meditations for Kids Android app on Google Play, created by leading yoga teacher and Montessori teacher Christiane Kerr for children of all ages, helps guides kids to the creative part of their minds through a number of carefully scripted story meditations.

“Each meditation story has an underlay of subtle sound effects and gentle music which combined with Christiane’s calming voice make them irresistible and a deeply relaxing. This recording will help children to relax and will enhance feelings of contentment. It can be used for a general relaxation, or as a teaching resource and is suitable for children up to the age of 12,” says the app’s description.

The app features a deeply relaxing 13-minute audio track and Kerr’s calm, reassuring voice that guides children, as well as adults, into a completely relaxed state of mind and body. She founded Calm For Kids children’s yoga and mindfulness training in 1999. She has has been practicing and teaching yoga for over 15 years in the UK and offers training, CDs and free mp3s on her website at calmforkids.com.

The Rabbit Who Wants To Fall AsleepIn August, fortune.com featured a children’s sleep aid in the form of a book by Swedish author and psychologist Carl-Johan Forssen Ehrlin that’s on the top Amazon’s best-selling book. The article says “The Rabbit Who Wants To Fall Asleep” is like hypnosis for children, and “will put your kid to sleep in minutes.” In the kid’s book, Roger the Rabbit and friends Sleep Snail and Uncle Yawn try to help him find sleep.

“This is a new safe and innovative way to help your child fall asleep and is recommended by psychologists and therapists,” says the review on Amazon. “‘The Rabbit Who Wants To Fall Asleep’ will help you accomplish the task of getting your child to have its beauty sleep and sleep well all night.”

The book is available in five formats: Hardcover, Paperback, Kindle, Audible or Audio CD.

New Jammies sleep fashions for fall help kids rest easy

Space Cadets

This fall, New Jammies is helping kids relax right and sleep tight at bedtime with comfortable, all-organic new designs that reflect the changing season.

Fashionable fall collections for girls and boys include Unicorns, Bicycles, Ballerinas, Elephants, Trains, Monster Trucks, Space Cadets, Moose Tracks, Rainbow Unicorns, and Ranching Cowboys. New Jammies are 100% organic cotton, are not treated with flame retardants, and feature tagless labels for comfort.

For example, nature-loving boys or girls can be ready for bedtime in the popular Moose Tracks prints, back this season in soft sage green with stretchy rib knit. Our Space Cadets collection explores the galaxy in this whimsical organic cotton footie pajamas. The whimsical Elephant Kites organic cotton pajama set will send girls off to dreamland in cozy, comfort.

Visit newjammies.com here to shop online this fall.