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Are the Holidays Interfering With Your Sleep

With work parties, school plays, family commitments and shopping trips, many parents and their children find themselves running on overload during the holiday season, leaving little time for sleep.

With work parties, school plays, family commitments and shopping trips, many parents and their children find themselves running on overload during the holiday season, leaving little time for sleep. As people across the country prepare to celebrate the holidays, the National Sleep Foundation (NSF) and The Sleep Disorders Center at Sioux Valley Hospital are sending out an important reminder - sleep deprivation can take the fun out these festive gatherings, whereas getting adequate sleep will help make holidays merrier for every member of your family.

"Parents and their children are happier after a good night’s sleep," says Dr. Richard Hardie, Sleep Center Medical Director at Sioux Valley Hospital. "Trying to fit in so many activities around the holidays can interfere with sleep for people of all ages. The excitement and stress of the holidays may mean that children and their parents have difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep."

Even without the holiday activities, a recent National Sleep Foundation/Pampers® Baby-Dry™ survey found that many infants, toddlers and their parents don’t get the amount of sleep the experts recommend. Sixty-four percent of infants and toddlers experience a sleep problem that interferes with them sleeping through the night or results in daytime sleepiness at least a few days a week, according to the survey. When children wake during the night, the sleep of their parents, and even other family members, is directly affected.

"Try to maintain usual bed times for the entire family to make the holidays merrier," adds Dr. Matthew Lundien, Sioux Valley Clinic – Pediatric Pulmonary Medicine and Pediatric Sleep Specialist.

NSF and The Sleep Disorders Center at Sioux Valley Hospital make the following recommendations for parents and caregivers to recognize the importance of sleep during this holiday season and throughout the year:

· Make sufficient sleep a family priority. Understanding the importance of getting enough sleep and how sleep affects the overall health of parents and children is the first step towards making sleep a family priority.

· Embrace good sleep habits. Regular bedtime routines, creating a quiet and comfortable bedroom, and adhering to appropriate bedtime and wake times can go a long way to better sleep. Televisions and computers need to be out of the bedroom and caffeine should not be part of a child's diet.

· Know when to limit activities. Parents/caregivers need to determine the amount of sleep each family member needs and take steps to ensure their individual needs are met. Every family member must make a good night’s sleep a regular part of his/her daily schedule and that includes around the holidays.


NSF and The Sleep Disorders Center at Sioux Valley Hospital also remind parents that if your child experiences difficulty falling asleep, nighttime awakenings, snoring or has trouble breathing, they should discuss these problems with their child’s doctor. Many sleep problems in children are treatable. For more information visit NSF on the web at www.sleepfoundation.org or the Sioux Valley Sleep Disorders Center.



The National Sleep Foundation is an independent nonprofit organization dedicated to improving pubic health and safety by achieving understanding of sleep and sleep disorders, and by supporting sleep-related education, research, and advocacy.


The Sleep Disorders Center at Sioux Valley Hospital works with the National Sleep Foundation as a Community Sleep Awareness Partner, to educate people in the Sioux Falls region about the importance of sleep and the treatment of sleep disorders. The Sleep Disorders Center at Sioux Valley Hospital is accredited by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine.