Daughter having trouble sleeping

Megan Venturella
Megan Venturella Posts: 678 ✭✭✭✭

Help! Suggestions needed! My daughter is 13 years old and not sleeping well at night. She says she woke up 5-6 times last night and she’s been like a zombie lately. I’m certain I slept like a log at that age and I’m at a bit of a loss.


  • Torey
    Torey Posts: 5,502 admin

    Puberty can affect us all differently. Changes in sleep patterns are common as teens release melatonin at different times than children or adults. Certain hormones can affect sleep patterns, too.

    I would try something mild at bedtime, like chamomile tea. A bit of lavender could be added. Or maybe a bit of passionflower. Linden tea is another good option. Celestial Seasonings makes a Sleepytime blend. Traditional Medicines has a Nighty-night blend that looks even better.

    The old remedy of "warm milk before bed" isn't just an "old wives tale". Milk contains tryptophan and melatonin.

    I hope you can find something to assist her. A teenager who is suffering from lack of sleep can be a challenge to deal with.

  • vickeym
    vickeym Posts: 2,019 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Another idea, (mainly because we are dealing with it for my husband), That may or may not apply to her. Does she possibly have sleep apnea? If she snores a lot you may want to watch (or listen to) her sleep for a little while and make sure she does not stop breathing or kind of snort herself partially or fully awake.

    They just did a sleep study on my husband and found he stops breathing an average of 42 times an hour. Now we know why we are both so tired all the time. Listening to him stop breathing keep me from sleeping as well.

    They are going to put him on a CPAP machine as the second sleep study with one, he slept much better and his breathing was much better with it.

  • Michelle D
    Michelle D Posts: 1,415 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I can share another idea from my own experience. I started having problems with insomnia when I was 9 years old. I suffered off and on for over 20 years. Nothing helped until I started experimenting with my diet. I made a few tweaks to amounts of certain foods that I was eating and the times that I was eating. Now unless I eat things that I know will affect me I never have problems sleeping.

  • Megan Venturella
    Megan Venturella Posts: 678 ✭✭✭✭

    Thank you, I will try a warm tea drink with milk before bed. I think she might really enjoy the ritual. It has been very challenging!

    @vickeym My husband has the WORST sleep apnea, so that was a good suggestion. I don’t believe she has those issues but it’s good for me to be aware because I hadn’t even thought of that. I need to put my ear to her door tonight- challenging since I sleep like a log.

    @Michelle D Another really food point. How did you know the food was affecting you? Was it indigestion? Just trying to figure out what I should be looking for.

    Thank you!!

  • Michelle D
    Michelle D Posts: 1,415 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Megan Venturella I found out later in life that I had several food allergies most of them were very mild. As I got older they grew in intensity which is how we figured it out. When I started changing my diet to compensate for that I noticed it also affected my sleep. That is when I started experimenting with what affected it most.

  • dipat2005
    dipat2005 Posts: 1,225 ✭✭✭✭

    Something else to think about is screen time. Maybe limit screen time for an hour or two before bedtime.

  • Karon
    Karon Posts: 16 ✭✭✭

    could she be worrying about something? Has there been a change in her life, or anticipating a change....new school, someone sick, someone moving? Children's worries may seem small to an adult with the historical experiences to put things in perspective but to a child, it can seem insurmountable.

    Also have her blood sugars checked, child onset diabetes can manifest in weird ways.

  • JodieDownUnder
    JodieDownUnder Posts: 1,482 admin

    @Megan Venturella lots of good info on this thread. I know life is busy & you probably juggle lots of things + teenagers can be a handful. Knowing that hormones are in play, pressure of school, behaviour of school friends etc. A night time ritual might be just what she needs. No screen time at least an hour before bed, a nice herbal bath to relax in (if you have a bath & plenty of water) then a nice hot milk drink, maybe with Ashwaghanda, honey, cinnamon etc. you could make a chai honey mix, so that all she or you need to do is heat up the milk & had a spoonful of the herbal honey mix, which saves time etc. then to top it off, a lavender pillow, it could be warmed up & placed over her eyes or the odd drop of lavender EO on her pillow or handkerchief. Good luck, you both need your sleep.

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,356 admin
    edited July 25

    @Megan Venturella To take a spin off of @JodieDownUnder's post, you could have her make a beautiful dream pillow with a mix of herbs that promote sleep (lavender is one, hops is another... there are many that would be lovely). While she's at it, get her to make some extras as Christmas gifts for special friends & family!

  • marjstratton
    marjstratton Posts: 1,132 ✭✭✭✭

    My husband and I have been having sleep difficulties with all that we have been through lately. Trying some of these sleep suggestions could help us too.

  • Megan Venturella
    Megan Venturella Posts: 678 ✭✭✭✭

    Good to know, that is certainly possible. I need to look into that. Thank you!

  • Megan Venturella
    Megan Venturella Posts: 678 ✭✭✭✭

    I’m so grateful for all the thoughtful replies. Thank you! We’re going to start a nighttime routine tonight. I got completely derailed last week because she came down with a terrible case of pinkeye out of nowhere, but now we’ve gotten through that and we can focus on getting this poor girl a good night’s sleep!

  • dipat2005
    dipat2005 Posts: 1,225 ✭✭✭✭

    @Megan Venturella I have been sleeping with a smaller square pillow which I am using because the last time I fell I hurt my shoulder. Now my shoulder doesn't hurt at all.

    Your daughter might like sleeping with something soft-pillow or plush toy.

  • nicksamanda11
    nicksamanda11 Posts: 721 ✭✭✭✭

    I used to give my daughter valerian capsules when she had trouble sleeping. They were effective. A bit groggy in morning but it wore off quickly.

    She took benadryl sometimes too.

  • Megan Venturella
    Megan Venturella Posts: 678 ✭✭✭✭

    @nicksamanda11 I never thought of valerian in a capsule! Ok can do that. Thank you