Jump to content

Sleeping in a dark room
Is it a really bad idea?


  • Please log in to reply
27 replies to this topic

#1 Guest_LILLIANA1_*

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:45 AM

My 15 month old DD is a terrible sleeper, typically waking hourly overnight. Her day sleeps were bad too, but are improving. A few months ago I put blockout fabric over her bedroom windows and I think it helped improve her sleep a bit, allowing her to sleep in a bit later in the morning and to sleep better during the day.

We have just got back from a few days away and the bedroom where we stayed wasn't very dark, consequently she only got 8 hours sleep overnight (with multiple wakeups as usual), rather than her usual 12 hours.

Am I creating a long term problem for myself / her by darkening her room? Perhaps she'll always have trouble sleeping anywhere that's not completely dark. What are your thoughts / experiences?





#2 Lolpigs

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:00 AM

QUOTE (Madame Protart @ 24/01/2013, 10:50 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I honestly would not worry about it.  Whatever works.  Hell I'd swing naked from the chandeliers if I thought I could get 12 hours out of my kids.


LMAO!

This totally, who cares so long as they sleep? original.gif

#3 Therese

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:00 AM

I am in the whatever works camp. Sleep is precious.

#4 Guest_LILLIANA1_*

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:11 AM

QUOTE (Lolpigs @ 24/01/2013, 11:00 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
who cares so long as they sleep? original.gif


Sure she sleeps, but it is extremely hard for her to get to sleep. Given that she typically wakes anywhere between 6 and 12 times a night, sleep is something I think about a lot. And if I'm potentially causing future sleep problems for her (i.e. if, even when she's older, she finds it really hard to sleep anywhere away from home because the room isn't completely dark), then I care.

ETA I am particularly interested in hearing from anyone who might have older kids who slept in completely dark rooms when little - can they sleep anywhere now?

Edited by LILLIANA1, 24 January 2013 - 10:13 AM.


#5 Liz75

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:27 AM

Please dont worry about it. I have always put my kids to sleep in a darkened room and admittedly we did have problems sleeping elsewhere when they were little for their day naps ie they would go to sleep but not sleep as long as at home, but now they are 18months and three and it makes no difference.

We just got back from a camping trip, so think light in the tent until the sun goes down, and it was difficult to get the kids to go to sleep but once they were asleep they slept in till 7/7:30 which is normal wake time.


#6 Z-girls rock

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:36 AM

QUOTE (LILLIANA1 @ 24/01/2013, 11:11 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Sure she sleeps, but it is extremely hard for her to get to sleep. Given that she typically wakes anywhere between 6 and 12 times a night, sleep is something I think about a lot. And if I'm potentially causing future sleep problems for her (i.e. if, even when she's older, she finds it really hard to sleep anywhere away from home because the room isn't completely dark), then I care.

ETA I am particularly interested in hearing from anyone who might have older kids who slept in completely dark rooms when little - can they sleep anywhere now?


maybe this is not helpful but I just want to say - maybe she is just like that?

I STILL wake up several times a night. always have. always will.

there is nothing that can be done about it.

I dont sleep in a darkened room. in fact I prefer a light room because I can tell what time it is without waking myself up more by checking a clock.
Ever since I was little I have been a very light sleeper. I would rarely get more then 7 hrs per night. Very early riser.

I am just 'sayn. everyone is different...

#7 Guest_LILLIANA1_*

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:36 AM

QUOTE (Liz75 @ 24/01/2013, 11:27 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Please dont worry about it. I have always put my kids to sleep in a darkened room and admittedly we did have problems sleeping elsewhere when they were little for their day naps ie they would go to sleep but not sleep as long as at home, but now they are 18months and three and it makes no difference.

We just got back from a camping trip, so think light in the tent until the sun goes down, and it was difficult to get the kids to go to sleep but once they were asleep they slept in till 7/7:30 which is normal wake time.


Thanks Liz.  original.gif

#8 Guest_LILLIANA1_*

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:37 AM

QUOTE (Z-girls rock @ 24/01/2013, 11:36 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
maybe this is not helpful but I just want to say - maybe she is just like that?

I STILL wake up several times a night. always have. always will.

there is nothing that can be done about it.

I dont sleep in a darkened room. in fact I prefer a light room because I can tell what time it is without waking myself up more by checking a clock.
Ever since I was little I have been a very light sleeper. I would rarely get more then 7 hrs per night. Very early riser.

I am just 'sayn. everyone is different...


I hadn't thought of this possibility - thanks.

#9 crocodilessnap

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:41 AM

My DD sleeps in a completely dark room as well and has done since she was a few months old. We are away at present and the room is in is anything but dark (ie she keeps telling me to turn out the light) Its been a bit harder to get her to sleep during the day and she is waking a little earlier which is a pain but I'd prefer a few issues on holidays than issues constantly at home but that's just our personal preference

#10 MintyBiscuit

Posted 24 January 2013 - 10:45 AM

Ds has been a shocking sleeper, and generally sleeps in a darkened room. But he will also fall asleep sometimes in the car driving around in the sun, and happily sleeps in a room that's lighter and warmer when we're at FIL's.

I think unfortunately some kids aren't fall asleep anywhere kids, and some are. DS needs his routines even if he's utterly exhausted - he's never gonna be that kid who falls asleep in adorable places because without his routine it's like he just doesn't realise he's tired. And I honestly think a darkened room is something that can be achieved most of the time, so it's not something that's likely to cause a lot of problems.

#11 Alina0210

Posted 24 January 2013 - 11:05 AM

My kids have never slept in completely dark rooms, ways light coming in from somewhere, well until we go to bed.... But they can sleep with all the lights on, sunlight streaming in, of even pitch darkness...  Pretty easy going... Never had a problem with either....

#12 PoshMosh

Posted 24 January 2013 - 11:12 AM

QUOTE (Madame Protart @ 24/01/2013, 10:50 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I honestly would not worry about it.  Whatever works.  Hell I'd swing naked from the chandeliers if I thought I could get 12 hours out of my kids.


roll2.gif


#13 JustBeige

Posted 24 January 2013 - 11:17 AM

I have always needed a dark room to sleep.   DH could sleep tacked up to the clothesline by his toes.

We (as you do) had a discussion about this many many years ago. It was actually prompted by something his mum said in genuine surprise.

Anyway, the moral of the story is my skin is more translucent than his and in particular over our eye areas.   So I need dark as I can actually detect the changes in the light.  I just manage by taking a face mask with me.   My DD is the same and she has been taking a face mask to camp or sleepovers for years.


So no, I dont think you are setting your child up for anything.

Also, I'm pretty sure that sleep studies tell you that you should be in a darkened room - something to do with REM sleep.

#14 FeralZombieMum

Posted 24 January 2013 - 11:21 AM

QUOTE (Z-girls rock @ 24/01/2013, 11:36 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
maybe this is not helpful but I just want to say - maybe she is just like that?

I STILL wake up several times a night. always have. always will.

there is nothing that can be done about it.

I dont sleep in a darkened room. in fact I prefer a light room because I can tell what time it is without waking myself up more by checking a clock.
Ever since I was little I have been a very light sleeper. I would rarely get more then 7 hrs per night. Very early riser.

I am just 'sayn. everyone is different...

You might want to do some research on melatonin, how the body produces it, and how sleep is affected by low levels.

You might also want to read up about how light during the night time sleep cycle can affect the production, and also research melatonin's link with cancer.

Also look into how to improve melatonin production (can be done naturally), and maybe you might want to chat to your GP about trialling a melatonin supplement to see if it improves your sleep quality and stops your night wakings.

#15 mollybot

Posted 24 January 2013 - 12:32 PM

My kids sleep in a darkened room. Have had many surprised comments from friends that they go down at 7pm, even during summer.

When we travel I take a big blanket and bulldog clips to deal with inadequate window coverings biggrin.gif

I think a rock-solid bedtime routine and consistency is what makes the most difference ie: if you have a darkened room, then do that, if a light room, then do that, but don't swap them up....

#16 mmuc83

Posted 24 January 2013 - 12:43 PM

My kids sleep in a dark room - and we have no trouble with them falling asleep if we are out.

When they were younger (say up to 18 months old) they wouldn't sleep anywhere else during the day but at home... now they don't really care!





EFS

Edited by mmuc83, 24 January 2013 - 12:43 PM.


#17 unicycle

Posted 24 January 2013 - 12:49 PM

My son from birth, in the hospital even, could only sleep in the dark. His older sister slept anywhere, anytime from birth. He hated sleeping away without blockout curtains, but managed it. Much like your daughter. Fast forward ten years and We now are in a rental without blockouts and he adapted within a month. So, based on one person's experience, i would keep using the blockout curtains as we still prefer them.

#18 Chazonator

Posted 24 January 2013 - 12:54 PM

Our boys have always slept in a fully darkened room since they were newborns/ 6wk mark as they would continue to wake up during their day naps and early mornings. I decided to block out the windows and they've slept so much better since. I think when they start school ill gradually wean them off the blockout as i hope school will make them exhausted enough to go straight to sleep without mucking around til all hours of the night.



#19 Leggy

Posted 24 January 2013 - 03:35 PM

I'm another one who needs a dark place to sleep well - some of us are just like that. Your munchkin might be too. DN doesn't have blackout curtains, but she sleeps in noticably longer on cloudy mornings. I think we're just a bit more sensitive to stimuli than some others.

#20 *melrose*

Posted 24 January 2013 - 04:45 PM

Agree, I think it's a good idea.

#21 Lucrezia Borgia

Posted 24 January 2013 - 04:50 PM

I have always put my kids in completely pitch black rooms.....IME it is better for day sleeps and helped occasionally (I'll admit not always) with combatting the early morning wake ups.....it does pose some problems when travelling, they do find it difficult to sleep in a room which is bright......I have some travel black out blinds which I take with me, together with some clips (or pegs!) ...I can generally find something to darken a room....

#22 ~~HappyMummy~~

Posted 24 January 2013 - 04:58 PM

OP, do you know why your child wakes so much at night?  May e it isn't connected to the amount of light.

#23 msro82

Posted 24 January 2013 - 05:03 PM

QUOTE (LILLIANA1 @ 24/01/2013, 11:11 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Sure she sleeps, but it is extremely hard for her to get to sleep. Given that she typically wakes anywhere between 6 and 12 times a night, sleep is something I think about a lot. And if I'm potentially causing future sleep problems for her (i.e. if, even when she's older, she finds it really hard to sleep anywhere away from home because the room isn't completely dark), then I care.

ETA I am particularly interested in hearing from anyone who might have older kids who slept in completely dark rooms when little - can they sleep anywhere now?


Yes DD had block out curtains. She now goes to bed when it's light and sleeps with a lamp on! She is 5.

I would keep it up for now. Down the track for day naps make the room a bit lighter if you are concerned, but for now I would keep going.

#24 babychacha

Posted 24 January 2013 - 05:51 PM

I love black out curtains. Our bedrooms can be totally dark in the middle of the day. I had them installed when we moved in here. If I can't afford them when we move from here, I will go to spotlight and do the cheaper version.

DS has always slept in a darkened room. He has no problem falling asleep when on holidays but (of course) wakes earlier as the room is lighter.

I 2nd the eye mask.

#25 Alacritous~Andy

Posted 24 January 2013 - 09:16 PM

DS slept in our bedroom (which has dark blinds - though not complete blackout) until he was nearly 2.

Now he is in his own room, which has a skylight! I was worried about how he would sleep, but he has transitioned fine. He definitely has been waking up earlier over summer, but after a few talks about it being early etc, he has started going back to sleep, and if anything is sleeping better.  He is now 2yrs 7m.




1 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users

 

Trying to speed up the inevitable

As the waiting game of late pregnancy continues, this mum considers a few things that might hurry things up a little.

One month later: where is William Tyrell?

It has been a little over a month since William Tyrell disappeared from his grandmother's home, 33 long sleepless nights for his family as they mourn the absence of their cheeky young boy.

Winter's child less likely to be moody: study

Babies born in the summer are much more likely to suffer from mood swings when they grow up, while those born in the winter are less likely to become irritable adults, scientists claim.

Single mum of two creates award-winning baby app

Suddenly single with a baby and an 11-year-old son, Tara O?Connell developed an app to improve the lives of mothers who were similarly overwhelmed.

Food for thought: looking after yourself as a new mum

As soon as your baby enters the world, everything else takes a back seat - even the necessities of daily life such as eating are severely compromised, right when you need energy the most.

'Grabbable guts' campaign aims to cut toxic fat

The Live Lighter campaign will take people inside the human body to show the internal dangers of being overweight.

The best and worst month of my life

A new mum's first month of motherhood didn't pan out as expected when she lost a family member weeks after her baby's birth.

Facebook and Apple offer to pay female staff to freeze their eggs

Facebook and Apple are hoping to provide women with the freedom to build their careers without the added pressure of having children at or by a certain age.

How a pregnancy contract could work for you and your partner

The idea of making a 'pregnancy contract' with your partner may sound a bit silly at first, but it can help make the transition to parenthood a lot smoother.

Finding a mum-friendly personal trainer

Burping babies vs burpees – yes, new mums and personal trainers live in different worlds. But they can work together - once you find the right match for you and your lifestyle.

Ambulance service under fire: baby seats to go, response times 'worse than ever'

The NSW Ambulance Service is removing child-safety seats from ambulances, while the Victorian service is facing criticism over lengthy response times following the death of a three-year-old.

Alleged baby snatch incident a ?misunderstanding?, say police

Police say that an incident in which a man pulled on a woman?s pram while walking a popular Sydney route late last month was a misunderstanding.

Ebola killed my aunt and is shutting down my country

Three weeks ago, my auntie, a midwife, developed a fever. Sitting here in Sydney basked in Australian sunshine, that shouldn't be big news.

The night my ovary burst

One mum shares her frightening experience and vows to never take her health for granted again.

Is e-reading to your toddler story time or just screen time?

When reading increasingly means swiping pages on a device, and we're advised to read to their children early and often, should parents be turning to e-readers for storytime?

Community mourns inspiring young dad

A young dad who fought a five-year battle with cancer has been remembered for his inspiring legacy at a funeral service attended by hundreds of family and friends this week.

Meningococcal kills Queensland toddler

Public health authorities say the death of a toddler in north Queensland from meningococcal disease highlights the danger the illness poses.

Nicole Kidman: 'I hope every month that I'm pregnant'

Nicole Kidman is hoping to add to her family, but says she's doubtful it will happen.

Recall: Aldi Wooden London Bus play set

Aldi has announced a recall of their popular Wooden London Bus play set.

Great gift ideas for first birthdays

From soft toys to balance bikes, here are some great ideas for first birthday gifts.

Mum learnt she was pregnant hours before giving birth

Kim Walsh arrived at the doctor with abdominal cramps. Hours later, she was cradling the baby experts told her she could never have.

How cancer has made me a better, happier person

I'm a far better person post-cancer than I ever was before. The goal now is to stay around long enough to find out who I can become, and what I can achieve.

Download now: Essential Kids Activity Finder app

Got bored kids? Quickly find the best activities for kids wherever you are in Australia with the Essential Kids app.

 
Advertisement
 
Advertisement
 
 
 

What's hot on EB

16 parenting truths you won't find in the baby books

I am five years into this parenting gig and I’ve learnt that sleepless nights and changing dirty nappies are child’s play.

Win 1 of 5 Canon Powershot D30 cameras

Capture life more easily with the Canon Powershot D30. Shockproof, waterproof and dustproof, you can take it almost anywhere and shoot beautiful images, time after time. Enter now!

Best and worst potty party cakes

It's nice to celebrate a child making the shift from nappies to 'big kid' undies, but do we really need a semi-realistic used toilet cake to do it? Here are some of the best and worst cakes parents have used at 'potty parties' around the world.

7 tips for a financially festive Christmas

Plan ahead - and do it now - to ensure festive season expenses don't break the bank.

'Go the F*** to Sleep' author's new book for frustrated parents

A sequel is coming soon to the 2011 hit book 'Go the F*** to Sleep' - and this time, it's about mealtimes.

Great birthday party buys from Etsy

Handmade crafts to decorate and personalise your child's next birthday - from banners to cake decorations, we've got gorgeous party finds from Etsy.

Creative storage ideas for the kids' rooms

Creative and practical storage ideas for the kids' toys and books can also add some stylish decor to your home. Visit babyology.com.au for more stylish modern finds for hip kids & parents.

Why I don't breastfeed

The truth was, when it came to feeding my baby son, I didn't want to see milk coming from anywhere but the shops.

To the mum in the doctor's waiting room

Maybe the mum I saw in that waiting room, seemingly disconnected from her baby, doesn’t have the support she needs.

10 space-saving nursery ideas

Starting a family doesn't always mean moving into a bigger house - not yet, anyway.

 

What's in a name?

Baby Names

Looking for a classic name, or an unusual name? Our Baby Name Finder is for you, search or browse to refine your shortlist.

 
Advertisement
 
 
Essential Baby and Essential Kids is the place to find parenting information and parenting support relating to conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids, maternity, family budgeting, family travel, nutrition and wellbeing, family entertainment, kids entertainment, tips for the family home, child-friendly recipes and parenting. Try our pregnancy due date calculator to determine your due date, or our ovulation calculator to predict ovulation and your fertile period. Our pregnancy week by week guide shows your baby's stages of development. Access our very active mum's discussion groups in the Essential Baby forums or the Essential Kids forums to talk to mums about conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids and parenting lifestyle. Essential Baby also offers a baby names database of more than 22,000 baby names, popular baby names, boys' names, girls' names and baby names advice in our baby names forum. Essential Kids features a range of free printable worksheets for kids from preschool years through to primary school years. For the latest baby clothes, maternity clothes, maternity accessories, toddler products, kids toys and kids clothing, breastfeeding and other parenting resources, check out Essential Baby and Essential Kids.