“I’m Scared of the Dark”: Easing Your Child’s Fears

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If your child is expressing a fear of the dark, here are some activities you can do to encourage him that his sleeping space is safe.

Fear of the dark can begin as early as two-years-old, due to the mind maturing, memory extending, and development of a child’s imagination.

The foundation to a good night’s sleep starts with a calming bedtime routine, but you can try these activities before beginning the routine or during the day. You can also try these activities if your child prefers to sleep in your room instead of theirs. This can help give them a fun, positive vibe in their bedroom to encourage sleep.

1. Flashlight scavenger hunt: Set up a little scavenger hunt in her bedroom with some hidden toys or objects. Turn off the lights, give her a flashlight and have her find them!

2. Glowsticks: Give your child a glowstick or two, head to their bedroom, turn out the lights, and enjoy! You can find a pack at the Dollar Store.

3. Hand shadow puppets: Turn off the lights, grab a flashlight, and hold one hand between the light and the wall to create a shadow (you can create a dog, butterfly, elephant, horse, snail, etc.). Pinterest has a bunch of ideas if you type in “hand shadow puppets”.

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