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Our house is reasonably cold (and try to keep it that way) and so I insist that aside from summer, the kids wear socks; including for sleep.

The problem is that they take the socks off - it seems like, in their sleep. BOTH of them. No matter what kinds of socks we get them - loose or tight. Short or longer.

Whatever we tried, didn't work:

  • Talking to them is useless. They seem to be kicking the socks off either while asleep or in dreamy state, not consciously.

  • Warming the room up isn't something we are willing to consider

  • We considered footed pajamas but they don't sell those for ages above toddler (they are in preschool/elementary school age range).

  • "simply keep their feet covered with a blanket" is a fantasy land proposition for us - they are both very active sleepers and rarely stay UNDER a blanket for longer than half the night.

What other approaches can I try to deal with that situation?

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Why do you insist the take their socks on? Your kids seem old enough to be intelligent about this. If they're more comfortable with them off, then let them take them off. It seems likely that is the case - I've always been happier sleeping with socks off, and while I don't have any real evidence, I've been taught that it is healthier to sleep with bare feet (various supposed reasons, including air flow and skin sloughing, avoiding sweat buildup, etc.) We keep our house reasonably cool (63F at night in the winter) and have active sleepers and they manage w/o socks. Just use warmer PJs. –  Joe May 23 '14 at 13:41
@DVK I question the premise because without knowing the reasoning, it's hard to supply valid solutions. Like Joe, I'm not really sure why this is an issue that needs to be solved unless I understand what the issue actually is. –  Doc May 23 '14 at 14:43
@DVK If the kids want their feet cold at night (some people sleep better when their feet are colder - I know I do) and no physical harm comes to them (I assume your place isn't so cold they're going to get frost bite - and even if it is, they'd get uncomfortable well before hand and wake up - probably put socks on themselves), then I don't see why it's a parent's problem. Now, if they complain of cold feet despite unconsciously taking off their own socks, then we've got issues to discuss. –  Doc May 23 '14 at 14:48
Related: Will getting your feet wet make you sick? on skeptics indicates that acute chilling of the feet may lead to cold-like symptoms. –  Beofett May 23 '14 at 15:00
Cold feet don't cause colds. A virus causes a cold. Since there is no orifice on your feet that leads directly into the respiratory system, your not going to contract a cold from them. I don't think comparing wearing socks to eating ice cream at every meal is at all similar. –  ChristopherW May 23 '14 at 15:11

3 Answers 3

up vote 3 down vote accepted

If you're insisting on the socks staying on no matter what, you might have to hack some footie pajamas of your own. Sew some thick long socks to the legs of the pj's; that should do it.

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I like that! Now that I recall, I think that's what my parents did when I was little - they didn't even have a concept of footie pajamas where I grew up. –  user3143 May 23 '14 at 14:00
You could also just try longer socks. If the socks came above the knees, they would take an awful lot of kicking to remove while sleeping. –  MJ6 May 25 '14 at 20:54
I like the phrasing. Here's another one "In spite of common sense, here is a solution." –  Dave Clarke May 27 '14 at 16:50

What other approaches can I try to deal with that situation?

I see five general options:

  1. Take Valkyrie's approach of hacking your own footie pajamas.

  2. Make the children's room colder, to encourage them to want socks on. This doesn't strike me as a great approach, since they may simply bundle up in more blankets, rather than put on socks.

  3. Make the children's room warmer, so that you feel more comfortable with them not wearing socks.

  4. Decide that trying to enforce a sock rule is not worth the effort, and simply drop the restriction.

  5. Come up with more comfortable footware aside from footie pajamas. Perhaps a loosely-knit crocheted set of socks might be more comfortable for them, resulting in them being left on. You may even be able to find some that secure with a draw-string, making it more difficult for them to be unconsciously removed. A more breathable mesh might provide some relief from the cold, without causing the feet to become too hot, if, in fact, that's what is prompting them to keep them on.

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"Make the children's room colder, to encourage them to want socks on." - since they don't seem to take them off consciously, that won't work (they took them off in pretty cold conditions - as in, they voluntarily put warmer extra cloths over pajamas those nights) –  user3143 May 23 '14 at 15:08
@DVK If they're taking them off because the socks aren't comfortable, no, it won't work, but if they're taking them off because their feet are too warm, it might work if you dropped the temperature even lower. Still, I realized I missed something key from my answer, so I'm editing it. –  Beofett May 23 '14 at 15:10

Garters are made for the express purpose of keeping socks pulled up. Might be worth a try.

Also, while somewhat hard to find, footed sleepers for bigger kids are totally available. My 5'4" 13-year-old has a set that he still wears; they're Cherokee, one of the Target house brands, though I don't see anything on their site right now. But Big Feet PJs seems to specialize in footed pajamas for warmth-seekers of all ages and sizes.

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