Illness and Sleep


At the end of our work together, a lot of my clients ask me about sleep during travel and illness.  I covered sleep and travel in my uniquely titled blog, “Traveling and Sleep”, but I will address illness and sleep in this blog. 

Though your child may be on an amazing sleep schedule when healthy, illness can throw everything off.  I’m here to tell you that that’s OKAY!  I am a strong believer in letting sick babies and kids sleep when they need to sleep, and getting back on track when they are healthy again.

Yes, things may get a bit funky for a few days while your child is sick.  You may have a few terrible nights, some epically long naps, but if a child is well rested before an illness and keeps up on sleep while ill (even if it’s at odd hours of the day), getting back on track will be easier than if you allow them to get overtired.

Honestly, the last thing that you want to do is wake a sick child when their body needs the rest to get healthy.  If you do that, you run the risk of the allowing the child to get more ill or extending the illness longer than it would have been if they were just able to sleep when they needed the sleep. 

Below are a few things that you can do to make sleep more comfortable for a sick child.  By doing these simple things you can at least provide them with the best soothing routine and sleep environment possible.

  1. Use A Humidifier!
  2. Provide an extra pillow for older kids who are in a bed
  3. Use VICS vapor rub on chest and feet with socks. (check with your pediatrician first)
  4. Use a few drops of Eucalyptus oil in their bath
  5. Talk to Pediatrician about over-the-counter medication that they can have. Some of them are life changers when it comes to illness.