"When your kids can't sleep it effects the whole family."
These are the experienced words from the MIA's latest published author and child psychologist Krysten Taprell.
The Dream Director is her debut, illustrated children's book for helping to guide children and parents through the emotional turmoil of childhood nightmares.
"When working with kids and families one thing that comes up a lot is kids with nightmares, which is fairly normal," Mrs Taprell said of her more than 20 years experience in the field.
"But I've always thought that these poor families would have to come and see a psychologist when the techniques are really quite simple and parents can do it."
The Dream Director is a children's story book that centres around techniques used in therapy to empower children to gain control of their dreams.
"I think every kid has bad dreams, I think that's a normal part of development and I think all kids go through a stage where they're scared to go to sleep or they're coming into their parents' beds," Mrs Taprell explained.
"Most of the time they just outgrow it but it's nice to have some ideas of some things they can do to manage it well."
Disrupted sleep can be frustrating for parents and devastating to children said Mrs Taprell. Sometimes parents can respond dismissively to what seems like a trivial dream to them, but can be a truly scary experience for their children.
"Parents in this situation are usually sleep deprived as well but I think if your kid wakes you up in the middle of the night and says they've had a dream about a purple monster your response is most likely: 'It's not real. Go back to sleep'," Mrs Taprell explained.
"But for the child it's really real. They've experienced it in their dream, their heart was racing they felt like they were there so it can be really terrifying for them.
"These techniques give control back to the child so they don't feel helpless, but also for the parents, so they don't feel like they are banging their head against a wall."
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