So how do you deal with your child’s nightmares? One of the most important things you can do is be understanding. It may be natural to want to say, “None of this is real, go back to sleep.” But to a terrified child, a nightmare seems as real as anything, so it’s important to acknowledge their fear and listen to them talk through it. It can help a child to know that adults have nightmares, too.
Since nightmares sometimes come from restless sleep, having a stable bedtime routine can help prevent them. So can limiting exposure to TV, tablets, and other electronic devices; research shows that cell phones and other screens limit the body’s production of melatonin, which promotes restful sleep.