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Childhood Sleep Disorders
“Jeremy’s not a morning person” is not really a personality type, it’s a sleep disorder!
Do you have a hard time waking up in the morning? Well you’re not alone. And, do your kids have a hard time getting up too? Being tired in the morning is so common that we’ve come to think of it as ”normal”. But, what I learned from doing sleep studies on the children in my practice was that even though Jeremy was sleeping he didn’t have the right amount deep sleep. Deep sleep is where we grow and learn and develop. And having less deep sleep than normal can lead to all sorts of problems.
Morning fatigue is the most common sleep disorder in children. It is related to a combination of low vitamin D and the accompanying abnormal intestinal bacteria. That combination adds up to a night of disrupted, inadequate deep sleep. In the morning when you’re trying to wake him, Jeremy’s brain is saying “no…. Jeremy stay in bed, I’m not finished”. In the winter months when the D is low, due to decreased sun exposure, the brain is designed to hibernate, to sleep longer. Now that we have very little sun exposure all year long due to sunscreen and fear of skin cancer, our kids have low vitamin D year-round. When our children are tired in the morning they have trouble learning during the day. When they have less time spent in deep sleep the development of their brain and body are delayed, and certain important parts of development, like socialization, may not happen properly.
Improve Your Child’s Sleep Using Vitamins for 3 Months
Fixing this problem is not that difficult. Using the RightSleep® program to get the vitamin D level into the ideal sleep range, in combination with B50 ( B25 for kids 2-12 yrs.) brings the intestinal bacteria back to normal in only three months. Keeping vitamin D in the ideal sleep range enables your child to complete all the work of deep sleep in 8 hours instead of 12. Supplying the right amount of vitamin D also keeps the belly bacteria happy. they play a role in keeping the sleep normal too. These two steps help supply the brain with the chemicals it needs to be able to complete all the tasks necessary to develop, learn, be happy and wake every morning ready to be silly and play.
Why Deep Sleep is so important:
Sleep is of two types: “light sleep”, and “deep sleep”. During the two phases of deep sleep we are paralyzed. Deep sleep can be either Slow Wave Sleep, (the brain waves are in a slow rhythm), or Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep. The “work” of sleep is done only in Deep Sleep!
We know that growth hormone is only secreted during slow wave sleep. This means that children only grow during that specific phase of sleep. If they don’t stay in slow wave sleep long enough they don’t grow normally. So growing is not just about having the right hormone, it’s also about spending enough time in the proper phase of sleep every night.
Brain Development and Autism are Linked to Sleep
Children also develop their brain while they sleep. If there’s not enough time spent in deep sleep the brain must decide what to put off until tomorrow night. If the deep sleep is shorter than normal, night after night, then some parts of brain development get postponed or delayed.
Based on the astounding increase in autism that has occurred in the last 20 years, it appears that when sleep is shortened the brain has to triage what gets done and it may put off some parts of development. Autism refers to social awkwardness, an inability to recognize social cues and interactions that are very important for humans. Humans, like all primates, survive best in groups and have specific behaviors that help us succeed or fail in a group. We can probably still survive without those skills but our ability to mate or interact in community will be limited without them.
There has been a significant rise in the incidence of autism during the same years that sleep disorders have become epidemic in children. Most authors think that the sleep disorder comes with autism, I think the sleep disorder produces “autism”. If that is true we might be able to improve autistic features by improving sleep! There is quite a bit of literature linking vitamin D deficiency to autism. Based on my patient experience the brain still remembers what it is supposed to do, we just need to give it more time in deep sleep to get it done. It is my belief that given back enough time in deep sleep and the necessary raw materials, (D and B vitamins) (endocannabinoids) the brain can make up for the deep sleep that it missed and develop normal social skills even into the teens and early 20’s.
Childhood Insomnia is Not a Choice
Children who can’t fall asleep or stay asleep have a severe sleep disorder and inevitably develop either physical or psychological illness due to this lack of deep sleep. Normal children (1-9 years old) with normal vitamin D levels, fall asleep easily at 8:00 pm and wake up at 6:00 am happy and ready to go! If that is not your child there is something you can do that can improve their life and your life! RightSleep® is the way to get your child back into better sleep every night.
Teen Insomnia is Not Just From Electronics Use
Blaming your teenager for staying up too late is a common theme. We blame them for using their electronic devices. But it turns out they have a sleep disorder too. After puberty, the kid who was tired every morning becomes a teen that can’t fall asleep. They can’t fall asleep so they go to their phone or their computer. Normal teens, with normal brain chemistry fall asleep at 9-10 pm and wake up easily at 6:00 am. If this is not your teenager check out the RightSleep® method and take the time to learn how to get your teenager sleeping normally.
Anxiety and Depression are related to Sleep:
Anxiety and depression are, unfortunately, very common in children now. They are both related to sleep. All of us who have experienced a few nights of bad sleep know that our emotional state, our level of patience and our ability to think clearly are all related to how well we’ve slept. Normalize your child’s sleep using RightSleep® and you can slowly improve these emotional issues without drugs.
Normal Sexual Development is linked to Sleep:
Over the last 10 years there has been a significant increase in gender dysphoria. This means feeling as though one’s “gender” does not match the sexual organs one was born with. Though babies are born with male or female genitalia the sexual development of the brain is dependent on the release of sex hormones during deep sleep every night. Sexualizing the brain to match the genitalia is a nightly, chemical event that is followed by the pubertal changes that make us recognizably male or female. My patient experience has shown that teen boys who still have a feminine body shape, once sleeping normally, can transition to a masculine body shape even in late teens early 20’s . The reason why this is so important is that changing one’s sexual organs to the organs of the opposite sex does not correct the feelings of “not fitting in” that are the result of not making the “happy, content” chemicals that normal sleepers make in their brain while they sleep. Dissatisfaction with oneself is a very common result of sleeping badly and it needs to be fixed as well!