NHS in Sussex launches sleep game to help children
24 July 2018

Teaming up to help reduce the impact of poor sleep 

The NHS in Sussex has teamed up with West Sussex County Council and Focus Games to help reduce the impact of poor sleep on children across the county.

Sleep issues affect around 40% of children and young people, and an increasing number of children are being diagnosed with sleep disorders. In West Sussex, specialist health visitor Ruth Silverman is addressing this issue by looking at innovative ways to help professionals working with children and families to learn more about the importance of sleep for children.

Ruth, in partnership with Focus Games, has developed The Sleep Game, a board game training resource, designed to help professionals working with children and families improve their knowledge about sleep; such as health visitors, school nurses, nursery & early years staff and children’s centre staff.

SCFT's Ruth Silverman said: "In recent years, I’ve been focussing on improving sleep awareness and training for a range of professionals in West Sussex. The Sleep Game supports this training and is a fun way of learning new knowledge and skills for any professional working with children.”

In times of need and doubt, parents usually turn to a range of professionals for advice on their child’s health or sleep issues. Providing these groups with practical information and relevant training on children’s sleep will help them to improve their knowledge and confidence and ensure that children and their parents benefit from safe and useful advice on sleep.

Focus Games, West Sussex County Council and Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust are delighted to announce that The Sleep Game is now available for purchase by organisations or individuals interested in sleep training and hope that the game will help families across the country to get a good night’s sleep.

Stephen Hillier, West Sussex County Council Cabinet Member for Children and Young People, said:

"I think this is absolutely brilliant. A bad night's sleep stops any of us from being at our best and for children whose young minds are developing at a rapid rate, sleep is especially important. This is a fun and interactive way to learn about why sleep is so vital, and the game will give professionals better knowledge to then pass down to parents, carers and young people about the enormous lifelong value of healthy sleeping habits.”

About the game

The Sleep Game is designed to promote discussion, helping players talk about issues related to sleep and allowing them to learn from each other. Two teams of players compete against each other to reach the finish line, asking and answering questions about sleep as they move around the board. Games can be played a variety of ways as part of formal or informal training or supervision. Its flexibility allows it to be played in many settings such as nurseries, children and family centres, colleges, community events and health settings.

Players will learn about:

  • Why sleep is important
  • Sleep patterns and stages of sleep
  • Sleep recommendation
  • Safer sleeping tips
  • Monitoring sleep
  • Consequences of sleep deprivation
  • Techniques to encourage sleep
  • Sleep problems for children with additional needs

For more information on how to use the game and to order a copy, visit www.sleepgame.co.uk and follow @The_Sleep_Game on Twitter.