Any mother will tell you that losing sleep is an unfortunate side effect of parenthood. We expect newborns to be up all hours of the night, but what about when your family struggles with sleep later on? Little kids, big kids, and even parents don’t always get the shut-eye we need. There are tons of gadgets on the market to help with sleep, but families on a budget can’t spend a fortune on the latest thing. You may simply need to try some new rituals and make your bedrooms extra cozy. Thankfully, these changes are affordable and easy.

Routines and Rituals

Many parents set a bedtime routine for small children, but for smaller and bigger kids alike, rituals can be just as important. Fatherly describes routines as being about when you do something, whereas rituals are more about what you do. Both are important, but when you add special rituals to your child’s bedtime routine (and your own), you help calm their mind while giving them cues that it’s almost time for sleep.

Grownups and kids can benefit from a sound machine, yoga, or sipping tea before bed. Save money on necessities for bedtime rituals by hunting down deals from retailers like Amazon. Reading and singing before bed are great rituals for small children. Some creative ritual ideas for bigger kids from Parenting include stargazing or journaling together.

Create a Soothing Sleep Space

 Once your child knows it’s time for sleep, make sure they aren’t getting mixed signals. Having toys all over the room can distract kids from what they’re supposed to do at night — sleep! A simple solution is to have adequate storage for toys so they’re out of sight and out of mind. Search for affordable toy storage online by finding sales and discounts for stores like Walmart and by using Walmart coupons. Large retailers frequently have money-saving opportunities and will ship items directly to your home.

It’s also important to be aware of how light and color affect your sleep too. Blue light emitted by electronics has been shown to interfere with your body’s natural sleep cycles, which is why kids and adults should limit the use of electronics before bedtime. You may also want to dim lights about an hour before bedtime so you’re exposed to less blue light from your lamps and light fixtures. Warm light doesn’t have the same effect on your brain as blue light, so if your child uses a nightlight, getting a red bulb for it is an inexpensive way to reduce sleep disruption.

You also want your bedrooms to exude a relaxing and soothing vibe. Painting is a budget-friendly home improvement project, and upgrading to a soft, cool paint color in your bedroom will transform it into a more relaxing place. Many people find muted blue to be very calming, but it’s also important to go with your personal preferences. Since painting isn’t always cheap, look for sales at stores such as Sherwin-Williams to help you keep the cost of this project on the low end.

Invest in Comfort Wisely

 Even in a soothing environment, you may not realize that your bed isn’t as comfortable as it could be. You may need a new mattress that’s more supportive, or you may simply need softer linens and pillows. Bedding can get expensive, but you can save money with some smart buys. One idea that we love from HGTV is to make your own duvet cover. Doing this is much less expensive than buying bedding sets, and you can invest the money you save on a good quality comforter. Along with cozy linens, make your floors soft too by adding a rug next to your bed. This way, you won’t get cold feet when you wake up at night..

Life as a parent is hectic, and we often get caught up in the hustle and bustle of raising children. With all of that going on, it’s no wonder that we need a calm space and soothing rituals to sleep. Even if this means investing in new bedding or a sound machine, shopping online for ways to fit these into your budget is worthwhile for your family’s well-being.

Credit to Dana Brown of Health Conditions | dana@healthconditions.info