Your child 1-3 years

Nightmares, night terrors: he wakes up at night


He screams, he is sweaty and slips into your bed ... Your little sleeper always has a good reason to wake you up. Nasty nightmare, night terror ... how to react? The advice of Helene Brunschwig, psychoanalyst, to help you get back to sleep.

The problem

  • When your child does not sleep well, the whole family life is turned upside down.

Who disturbs it?

  • Your child. He never seems reassured enough.
  • You. You dread the nights even before he wakes up and you run out of sleep.

He wakes up at night because he has a nightmare

Its nights are populated by ogres, wolves, aggressive animals ... Your child is afraid of being devoured. For him, all these monsters are real and terrifying.

  • What has to be done. Begin by comforting him, then let him tell his nightmare if he remembers it. Talk to him gently, reminding him that monsters do not exist. The next day, come back to his fears, have them draw him.
  • Read together Tom Thumb or Little Red Riding Hood. These tales are terrible? They allow to put words on the fear, to channel it. But choose versions that end well, of course! Tell yourself also that the nightmare is natural, that it allows to exorcise anxieties (new nanny, first days at school ...).
  • What to tell him. "You can call your daddy in your nightmare, he will kill the monster!", "That's good, you drew the monster ... it locks in the drawer, well done for him!"

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