For most of human history, our nights were very dark. While light by fire has been with us for millennia, only very recently have we had access to electric light that brightens our cities and homes 24 hours a day. Many sleep researchers argue that this modern light saturation disrupts our natural sleep-wake cycles, making it harder to fall asleep, stay asleep, and wake up. Because of this, many sleep researchers recommend that parents return children’s rooms to that old-fashioned state of relative darkness.
Does this mean we need to banish night lights as well? Not at all. The same sleep researchers recommend night lights as a perfectly safe, healthy and effective way to create a positive sleep environment for young children. The best use of night lights, they say, is at bedtime, when anxiety around sleep is greatest. The right nightlight can make bedtime a relaxing and positive experience.
Positive Sleep Associations
Infants and children are much more likely to have optimally healthy sleep if they relate bedtime to positive emotions. This is what researchers call positive sleep association. One of the most important obstacles to creating positive emotions is the fear of darkness. Several studies have shown how intimidating darkness can be for most children. And this fear is shown to last until adolescence. Because of this widespread anxiety at bedtime, and because creating positive sleep associations are so crucial to healthy sleep, most sleep experts recommend a nightlight.
Every family needs its own bedtime routine. Sleep researchers say that the specifics of the routine are much less important than simply having a routine. A nightlight like the Twilight Turtle® is a perfect part of any “lights-out” routine. When the bright lights turn off, the soft, soothing lights of the turtle come on. In our products these comforting lights automatically turn off after 45 minutes, creating an ideal dark room to promote the best sleep.
Sleep researchers have found that if parents put their children to bed when they are tired, not asleep, they are much more likely to stay asleep and go back to sleep when they wake up. This is because children who fall asleep by themselves must learn to self-sooth and use other nighttime coping strategies. If they wake up in the middle of the night they won’t be as afraid of their surroundings and will more quickly fall back to sleep. Cloud b’s night lights are perfect for independent sleeping because children have full control over their use: they can be moved, turned on and off, and their colors can be changed. This makes Cloud b sight products ideal transitional objects to ease children into independent sleeping.
Cloud b: A Better Nightlight
While advice from sleep experts can sometimes conflict, there is a widespread consensus on the need for creating positive sleep associations, sticking to a routine, and encouraging independent sleep. This is why most experts recommend a nightlight and other transitional objects that children enjoy using to self-soothe. Cloud b sight products are ideal for this because they combine several functions into one product along with features such as automatic shut-off that ensure your child gets the healthiest sleep possible.