The Evelina Children’s Hospital in London has launched a free app to improve children’s sleep
They are hoping Kids Sleep Dr will help the 2million parents who seek help for their children’s sleep problems and ease pressure on the NHS. The app gives parents tailored advice, such as dealing with night terrors or teenagers who stay up all night, based on their sleeping patterns.
Experts agree that good sleep is vital for development and behaviour but the pressure on the NHS means that many parents face a long wait to be seen.
Professor Gringras of the Eveline Children’s Hospital said “I think there’s a lot of people it could prevent needing to see a GP, parents can do a brilliant job”.
Parents of 0-16 year olds who access the free app will be given personalised advice to address various sleep problems that can occur at different ages.
Initial advice starts after entering details about bedtimes, where the child falls asleep, how much screen time they have, and caffeinated drinks consumption.
After five days of recording a child’s sleep habits, such as night-waking and bedtimes, the full personalised service kicks in.
Professor Gringras said “These are not annoying daily tips, it’s tailored advice.”
It is currently available free on iOS. Android and Windows versions will follow.
However, children with serious sleep disorders such as narcolepsy or obstructive sleep apnoea would still need to see a doctor.
Psychologist and child therapist Professor Tanya Byron commented: “We know parents know their children better than anyone, and I’m confident that the ‘Kids Sleep Dr’ app will help parents to understand and better manage their child’s sleep problems.”
Visit www.kidssleepdr.com for more information
This information appeared on the BBC website: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-32150528