Our 7-year-old daughter has nightmares that wake her up. Should
we be worried?
Amy & Josh
Nightmares are pretty common in childhood, especially in kids
younger than 10. Aside from making for a restless night's sleep
for everyone involved, the occasional nightmare is generally not a
cause for concern. And though there's no proven way to prevent
the occasional nightmare, you might try having your child avoid
scary books, movies, and video games before sleep. Using a
nightlight and sleeping with the bedroom door open can help kids
feel safer. Some kids even like to keep a flashlight next to their
Recurring nightmares may signal fear or anxiety worth exploring
through discussions with your child or with the help of your doctor
or a behavioral health professional.
For more information, check out these articles:
Anxiety, Fears, and Phobias
How Much Sleep Is Enough for My Child?
Larissa Hirsch, MD
Date reviewed: January 2007
Originally reviewed by:
Neil Izenberg, MD
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