The amazing benefit of sunshine & toxic-fresh-air for kids & parents. by Susie E. Caron © 5/3/15
Did you know that fresh air can be ‘toxic’? That’s right! When kids or adults are outdoors and enjoying exercise, sunshine and fresh air, it can have one very toxic effect.
Here it is:
Fresh air, exercise and sunlight help your children fall asleep and sleep much better.
My husband and I joke about this effect on ourselves and we call it "toxic-fresh-air". Of course, I certainly hope the fresh air your kids are breathing is NOT toxic. Instead I want you to know that it has several benefits – sleeping well is one of them. Isn’t that something you want too?
It’s amazing how a little sunshine and fresh air makes everyone feel better. Even kids respond to more time outdoors. If you are a busy parent, working, grocery shopping, running errands, getting kids to sports and other events, you probably don’t have much energy left to keep kids off electronics and out doors. However, as I stated, there are some really good reasons you’ll want to.
Fresh air, exercise and sunlight help your children fall asleep and sleep better, plus other benefits.
Oxygen, and the exercise that causes more of it to be inhaled, has its own medicinal qualities. It clears their heads. It reduces stress and releases Endorphins, which is the body's natural 'feel good chemical.' Oxygen cleanses their bodies of toxins and chemicals that can make them sick. The running, and sweating and heavy breathing is also what contributes to feeling sleepy after they cool down and have a bath or shower. It works this way on adults too.
Sunlight is another sleep helper. When children and adults get enough sunlight in their vision, their bodies produce natural Melatonin. Pediatricians often recommend Melatonin for kids who have trouble falling asleep. This is also the same effect kids can get from drinking milk or eating turkey. However, they don’t have to eat anything, it just happens when ‘sun gets in their eyes.’ About 30 minutes every day is the right amount for Melatonin to develop in their bodies when the sun goes down.
Maybe you think, “That’s great. But how do I get them away from their gidgets and gadgets and outside to play?” The simple answer is to make a rule. For example: Every kid goes outdoors to play after supper. Or better yet “Everyone in this family goes for a walk or bike ride every evening at 6 pm.” Of course, if evenings are too difficult, then shoot for an hour or more playing outdoors on each weekend day. But first, make certain that all the electronics get dropped into a kitchen basket, (even the adults’ cel phones etc.) and go outdoors together. The time you spend out there together will be worth it. You will notice improved relationships and bonding. Time together in outdoor activities helps family members get to know and understand each other better. Furthermore, the quality of sleep you and your children experience will improve as well.
May all your ZZZZZ’s be sweet from fun times in 'toxic fresh air.'
Twee’ means you and me.
Susie E. Caron MA,
Author, Blogger, Podcaster,
Christian, Wife, & Mother, helps build parent-child relationships, 1 blog, book & podcast at a time.
Welcome! I recently retired from combined careers in teaching, psychotherapy, and parent coaching to spend more time writing.
When I'm not busy creating books or articles, you might find me looking for dark chocolate or riding my beautiful horse Apple in the woods and fields of Vermont.
These articles are for educational and self-help purposes only and are not intended as psychotherapy.
If you experience unusual symptoms or discomfort please see your medical or mental health practitioner.
No patent liability is assumed for use of the information contained. The author disclaims any responsibility for loss or risk for use or application of this material.
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Blog Reviews & Thank You!
July 13 at 7:17pm ·
Just wanted to say that I love your posts about the different ways to connect/relate/understand your child. It has given me a new approach towards understanding my daughter and allowing HER to tell me how she feels instead of me suggesting to her how she should feel. Thanks Susie!