Night terrors. Why the heck do they happen?
I'm a mom of two and recently starting to dive into the WHY my daughter may be having night terrors.
I'm not a professional on this topic but simply a mom who has experienced it over the last two years, been concerned over it, and looked at finding the root cause of it.
With the wonderful world wide web, I couldn't nail down a specific reason to night terrors. There was so many things that COULD set them off but no real definite reason as to why.
I decided to really sit down and think about her behavior, her daily activities, what happened during them and so on...and I've figured out what has been the reasons for my daughters.
What I have realized throughout this is that every child is completely different. That the web really couldn't give me an answer because we get stuck in this thought that, every child, every person, has to fit in this box. That stepping outside of the box, makes us feel as though something is wrong. That something is out of the norm.
What I want to tell you, is that there really is no normal. I mean, what the hell is “normal” anyways? There truly is no fine definition of that.
Each person has their own unique talents, abilities to do something, personality, the list goes on. We are not created the same. We have different genetic makeup. We are all unique.
What I've come to find is that we aren't paying enough attention to ourselves.
We are paying attention to what everyone else is doing around us.
We need to start looking at the way we are feeling, the patterns that are happening with our bodies, and pay attention to our own self. To what our bodies are telling us.
As I'm writing this, my oldest is 6. She was around 4 when night terrors started to happen.
They aren't a nightly occurrence but they seem to happen on a weekly basis.
For those of you who aren't really sure what a night terror is, I'll explain how we typically see it.
In our world of night terrors, my daughter looks like she is awake, eyes open, dark and almost demon-like. She has fear, calling for her sister, her father, her mother...telling them “no, don’t go there...come back”...almost as if something dangerous is about to happen.
I assure her. I sit there and tell her mommy is here, that everything is ok.
That is truly all you can do during a night terror. Just be there and assure the person that it's ok.
Every single time she has a night terror something happens...this is the part where being aware is so important because you'll notice patterns...she lets out the biggest, loudest rumble.....
I know, you didn't expect that. But it never fails. This is the pattern I have seen with every single night terror.
It's GAS! Build up of gas.
She releases all the gas and then she's fine. Lays back down and goes back to sleep as if nothing happened. Without a doubt. Every single time.
So if night terrors have been a struggle with you and your child as they have with us...really sit down and make it a priority to figure out the root cause.
Like I said, every child is different. What may be gas causing night terrors for my child may be something different for yours.
Look for that pattern.
Grab a journal...write down the foods they are eating each day, what activities they are doing at what time, how much electronics they are getting, what shows they are watching...you will, without a doubt see a pattern start to form.
So my next step as a parent, knowing it's a gas issue is to start tracking her food.. Figure out what food she's eating that's causing her the discomfort. I'll notice a pattern.
Then I can make the decision, as her parent, to cut said food out. It's going to take time and effort, but it's about being mindful, listening to your body and teaching your kids to do the same.
This will help give HER the lifelong ability to listen to her body and help figure out the root cause in any situation.
In the meantime, one of the things I've been doing that has been super helpful is massaging her belly before bed.
I've learned different techniques on how to get “the bubbles out”, moving the gas and stretching their little bodies.
So I grab my kit, my essentials and I utilize the tools that I've learned over the years to help my daughter to achieve comfort.
Remember, every child is different. Remove the narrative in your mind that they need to fit in a box, hit certain milestones at certain times, be certain people. Every child is unique and you need to roll with the punches.
Take the time to figure out their own patterns in life, their own needs and quirks. Do the work now as a parent so you can see what sets them off, what changes their behavior, etc.. Your going to notice patterns and you'll be glad you did the footwork.
Stuffed Breakfast Peppers
- 4 Bell Peppers, cut in half
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 1/2 cup mushrooms, chopped
- 1/2 cup spinach, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 8-10 slices of bacon, cooked and diced
- 4-5 eggs
- 1/4 cup shredded cheese
- salt and pepper to taste
Dairy Free Chocolate Peppermint Ice-cream
- 1 can coconut cream
- 1/4 cup cocoa powder
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 3 drops YL peppermint + oil
Old Fashioned Bread and Butter Pickles
- 4 Qts cucumbers, sliced
- 3 medium white onions, sliced
- 3 cloves garlic, diced
- 2 peppers, diced (I like to use red for the color and flavor)
- 1/3 cup pickling salt
- 3 cup white vinegar
- 5 cups sugar
- 1 1/2 tsp turmeric
- 1 1/2 tsp celery seed
- 2 tbs mustard seed
- crushed ice
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies- Dairy free & Refined Sugar Free
- 1 cup coconut oil (grapeseed oil will work as well)
- 1 cup coconut sugar
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2 cup flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp nutmeg
- 3/4 cup sugar free chocolate chips