Bedtime routine gets kids ready to recharge

Posted March 3, 2015

Keep electronics out of the bedroom, doctors say.

Establishing a consistent bedtime routine is a prelude to a great night’s sleep, which is critical for young bodies and brains.

Here are some great ways to create healthy bedtime habits for you and your family.

Screen-Free Down Time

Our electronic devices are an integral part of our lives. Even young children may spend a portion of time each day using tablets, mobile phones and e-readers. However, the light emitted from these devices can hinder sleep, so make sure you incorporate some screen-free down time before bed.

Great substitutes for these electronics are good old-fashioned books, storytelling time, board games and puzzles.

Brush Up

Children and parents should learn more about preventive dental care and the importance of a healthy oral care routine. They can also give back and help other children in the community who may not have access to dental care.

A free downloadable coloring book called “Brushing Fun,” is available to help introduce kids to healthy habits. Each free download will trigger a donation of 10 tubes of Tom’s of Maine Wicked Cool! natural toothpaste to Oral Health America (OHA), a non-profit dedicated to increasing access to oral health care, education and advocacy for all Americans. The coloring book, which can be personalized with a child’s name, offers games, puzzles, tips and facts about oral care, as well as a story that encourages kids to appreciate nature.

“Brushing twice a day is a fundamental healthy habit. Kids are never too young to learn how to take care of their smile,” says Susan Dewhirst, goodness programs manager at Tom’s of Maine.

More than 200,000 annual patient visits have been made possible and more than a million tubes of free toothpaste have been distributed by the Tom’s of Maine Dental Health for All program. To learn more, visit

Set a Schedule

Sticking to a set bedtime for kids may be difficult at first for both you and your children. But once everyone adjusts to the schedule, the benefits will be made clear.

A consistent bedtime policy will be easier to enforce, and kids’ internal clocks will likely adjust to the schedule over time. To determine an appropriate bedtime for your school-age kids, factor in the Mayo Clinic recommendation of nine to 11 hours of sleep per night.

For better sleep and healthy smiles, create bedtime routines for you and your family that are easy to follow.


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