Ideas for helping kids sleep during our hot summer nights!


One of my clearest childhood memories is lying in bed on hot summer nights with daylight streaming through my curtains (no such thing as blackout back then!) listening to dad mowing the lawns, being hot and sticky and madly trying to get to sleep. Now that summer is officially here the circle of life continues with my own kids struggling to sleep in the heat and daylight. With a few weeks of school left I’m not quite ready to use “just let them go until they crash” philosophy – that one is used for camping holidays because we have no choice!

Effect of hot nights on kids sleep

Kids rely heavily on environmental cues when getting to sleep – like light and temperature.  On hot summer nights their bodies have trouble cycling through the phases of sleep. Add in daylight savings and you’ve got the perfect recipe for an overtired winey kid the next day! A good night's sleep is important for kids and also us as parents!!

Ideas to help kids get to sleep

  • What your kids bed sheets are made out of is key. Cotton bed sheets are perfect for summer because they are breathable and cool. During the night body temperatures do drop so it is important that they have a top sheet that stays in place and also a blanket handy. 
  • Make sure their pj’s and made out of fabric that’s light and breathable. Think loose, light cotton singlets.
  • A dark room is a cooler room.  So if their bedroom gets a lot of afternoon sun, pull the curtains in the afternoon to keep the room cooler.  Also open the windows to let some fresh air in.
  • Use a little desk fan beside their bed. This has worked really well for my kids as it helps circulate the air and cools them down. Just turn off when you head to bed.
  • Making sure they are well hydrated is also important. A good idea is to leave a cup or sippy cup filled with water and ice beside the bed.
  • Heat rises – Bunk beds are awesome, but if you have a child on the top bunk it can get quite hot up there.  A fan pointed up can help, but it might be needed for them to camp out on the floor. 
  • On those really hot nights putting the pillowcase in the freezer for a bit before bed can do wonders or even just having a cold flannel beside the bed.

These are just some ideas and would love to hear from you if you have any others that have worked for your family!

Happy balmy summer nights!

This entry was posted on Dec, 03, 2015