Kids and Nightmares!
Some three to four your old children have trouble sleeping and begin to have nightmares. These nightmares are part of their normal development. Their imagination is beginning to fully develop and things that were never a problem are now scary. A bump in the night or a noise can terrify them. They may also be afraid of the dark.
Be patient with the children having nightmares and they will outgrow their fears. Do not change their night time routines and have them go to bed at about the same time each night. When they do have a nightmare, comfort them, give them a hug, and maybe spend some time with them in their room. Do not let them sleep with you after having a nightmare. If you do, you will really have a difficult time getting them to sleep in their own bed.
Watching television within a couple hours of bedtime may cause nightmares. Especially, if they watch something scary. Reading a scary book or listening to a scary story before bedtime may cause nightmares.
Discuss having nightmares with the children. Let them know that nightmares are not real and they will not hurt you. A nightmare is just a bad dream. Dreaming about something scary does not mean that it will happen in real life. A nightmare may be a way to relieve the pressures of the day.
A child may sleep with their favorite blanket or a stuffed toy in order to make them feel more secure. Don’t close the door to their room and also burn a dim light while they sleep.
Be patient and the child will usually outgrow having nightmares, even though some adults still have nightmares.