How to Wake a Child From a Deep Sleep: Safe & Gentle Methods

Waking a child from a deep sleep can be necessary in certain situations, and doing so safely and gently is essential. Here is all you need.

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Is waking your child from a deep sleep a difficult task? Discover safe and gentle methods to wake your little one from a deep sleep without causing undue stress. 

You can start by doing simple activities such as talking, singing, and gently stimulating your baby.

With these proven techniques, your child will wake up refreshed and ready to start the day with a smile.

What is deep sleep in children?

Deep sleep is vital for every child's growth and development. However, waking a child from a deep sleep can be tricky for parents.

This blog aims to provide safe and gentle methods to help your child transition from sleep to wakefulness without causing distress.

“Non-REM sleep consists of deep sleep and light sleep. It’s harder to wake children in deep sleep, whereas light sleep wakes them up easily.”
💡Raising Children

How much deep sleep do children need?

Deep sleep, or non-REM sleep, consists of two stages: deep and light. During deep sleep, children are more challenging to wake up than during light sleep, where they can be awakened easily.

This is due to the therapeutic nature of deep sleep, where the body focuses on growth and development. 

You should know more about: how many hours should a kid sleep

Signs your child is a deep sleeper

The amount of deep sleep a child needs varies with age. Newborns spend about 50% of their sleep in the deep sleep stage, while teenagers require about 20%. 

Common reasons for a child's trouble waking up include:

  • Inadequate sleep duration
  • Irregular sleep schedule
  • Sleep disorders such as sleep apnea
  • Environmental factors such as noise or light
  • Certain medications or health conditions

Gentle wake-up techniques

Here are a few signs to identify if your child is a deep sleeper: Waking a child from deep sleep requires patience and gentle techniques. For a comprehensive guide on sleep training methods, you can refer to our blog, “sleep training methods”.

Gradual lightening 

Gradual lighting offers a natural and gentle method to ease your child into wakefulness, setting a soothing tone for the day ahead.

Playing soft music or shooting sounds

Play soft music or soothing sounds to immerse your child in a peaceful awakening, gently guiding them out of deep sleep and into a serene morning.

Listen now to this relaxation song in Storybook App
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Gentle physical touch

A gentle stroke or a soft kiss is a loving and nurturing way to rouse your child from slumber and ensure a gentle and affectionate start to the day.

The Storybook app offers specialized massages, affirmations, unique routines, and much more.

Using safe aromatherapy scents

Certain aromatherapy scents like lavender and chamomile help transition from sleep to wakefulness. Ensure the scents are safe and suitable for children.

Remember, every child is unique, and what works for one may not work for another. It is essential to be patient and considerate when waking your child from a deep sleep.

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Written By

Francisco Cornejo
CEO Storybook

Francisco Cornejo, a dynamic entrepreneur with a Masters in Communication from RMIT University in Australia, is the Co-Founder and CEO of Storybook. As a serial entrepreneur, he notably served as the Chief Marketing Officer at Honda Motors in Latin America, shaping the brand's regional presence. ‍ Passionate about family well-being and communication, Francisco leads Storybook in its mission to improve children's health globally, aiming to create positive impacts in both corporate and societal spheres.

Medically Reviewed by:

Lorena Koppel
Child Clinical Psychologist

Dr. Lorena Koppel is a distinguished Child Clinical Psychologist based in Azuay, Ecuador, with over 26 years of experience at Monte Sinaí Hospital. She specializes in treating emotional disorders in children and adolescents, providing family counseling, and integrating theoretical and practical approaches in clinical psychology.


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