As challenging as this process can be, there are many ways in which we can help our kids relax and be more calm before bed.
Firstly, we need to have a calm environment leading into bedtime. Dim lights, calm and quieter voices, and playing calming music are all good ways to promote calmness.
Essential oils can help immensely in helping children feel more relaxed. Being an aromatherapist, I have many magic potions around our home for all sorts of ‘ailments’, ‘pains’, or just for feeling good.
I spray my girls with a relaxing blend of oils like lavender, rose and geranium before bedtime. Once they have laid down, I ask them to close their eyes, and as they take a deep breath in, I gently spray the relaxing mist above them. The sensation of the spray falling upon their faces is heavenly – like a gentle soft rain. Then the smell is like ‘Ahh’. It’s such a sensory experience which kids love. It’s a ritual they look forward to and they really enjoy it.
If your kids don’t like the sensation of ‘getting wet’, then you can burn a few drops of essential oils with water in an oil burner for around 10-20 minutes in their bedroom before they go to bed. By the time your kids enter their room, the oils have been dispersed into the air and they have instantly created a beautiful calming and aromatic space. Be sure to remember to extinguish the tea light candle!! If you have an electric burner, remember to switch it off.
Another good technique is to very lightly run your fingertips down over their body. Most kids are very sensory and love the feel of this sensation. While they are laying in bed, start from the head and lightly run your fingers over their face and shoulders, chest and arms, torso and legs down to their feet. You can gently and calmly speak to them while you do this, encouraging them to let go of the day, washing away all their thoughts or worries of the day. Your fingers will be like rain washing down over their body. My girls call this process doing a rainbow, because it feels like a rainbow is running down over their body. It’s a visual and tactile process which works on their level wonderfully.