Baby Sleep Tips: Quick and Easy Fix for Combating Early Morning Wakings

Is your little one wanting to start their day far too early for your liking?

This week I’d like to share my first had experience with a tip I often give to my clients who are starting on their child sleep plan with their little one. When fostering and promoting great sleep for your child, whether they are an infant, toddler, preschooler or for years beyond, a common thread of great sleep skills is the environment in which the child sleeps.

One area I often touch on in my child sleep workshops and webinars is the fact that we as humans sleep better in complete darkness. In the absence of light, our naps or overnight sleep is more productive and restorative. That being said, a baby or child who is put to sleep in a darkened room is much more likely to fall asleep easier and stay asleep longer.

My own two daughters are great sleepers. Sure, we had our bumps with my oldest daughter after she was first born (read about my experience here), but we overcame her sleepless challenges and nurtured her to become a rock star sleeper. Gold star for us!

HOWEVER…just recently, we have encountered an early morning waking problem due to the fact that in these parts the sun comes up around 5:30 am and although our daughters room has black out curtains and blinds, a small amount of light was shining through around the edges of their windows. This was causing our dear sweet 2.5 year old (Katie) to wake at this far too early of an hour and want to start her day.

This mommy loves does not do a 5:30am wake up!!!

To solve this up with the roosters issue, I employed my own advice! Last Sunday afternoon after Katie’s nap, I took 4 large black trash bags and secured them over their windows with blue painters tape. I must admit that it wasn’t the most attractive job on the inside, but it was obscured from view via the white blinds and blackout drapes already in place. Once the hanging job was done I closed their door and turned out the lights. You know what I was met with? Complete darkness. Mission accomplished.

So that night we put the girls to bed at their normal 7:30pm and reminded them they needed to stay in bed and stay quiet until their clock told them it was time to wake up. Fast forward to the next morning, and although Katie did wake a her usual time, she did put herself back to sleep quite quickly on several occasions and then quietly chatted to herself until she announced that it was time to wake up. And our Lizzy, bless her heart, stayed quietly asleep until that point in the bed next to Katie.

So overall, a great first morning with complete darkness. Of course, to see the full benefit, we will needed to wait several more days to see if Katie’s sleep cycles corrected themselves and she stayed asleep until a more appropriate wake time (6:30am).   Well, I am happy to report that over the past 9 days, I have seen a great improvement in the duration of both of my daughters sleep.  BOTH are now sleeping to just about their appropriate wake up time and my oldest daughter has actually slept even longer.baby not sleeping
And here is an extra added benefit, Katie still takes an afternoon nap and her naps are now longer (almost 3 hours most days).
So SUCCESS!  It really was very easy to hang up the trash bags and now I am looking into a more attractive permanent solution to replace the trash bags and painters tape.
I LOVE when I can give first hand experiences with tips and share my successes.

Would you like to chat further about this tip or do you have another child sleep issue you know you need help with?  Please email me at info@giftofsleepconsulting.com and let’s set up a time to chat! 

Mention this blog for unpublished promotions.  I’d love to hear from you.
To HealthySleep!

Sleep Tips: Updating Toddler Bedtime Routines and Sleep Rules

Congratulations, you have made it through the first two years with your little one and now they have graduated from diapers and baby food and have leaped into (with gusto) the world of the Toddler/Preschooler.  If your son or daughter have settled into great sleep habits, congratulations to you on stressing the importance of sleep to your family. Updating Toddler Bedtime Routines

But as your rock star sleepers continue to grow mentally, physically and emotionally, you’ll most likely need to modify your bedtime routine to accommodate their growing skills and needs.  And a fantastic addition to the bedtime routine is introducing sleep rules sometime after the age of two (when the toddler and preschool years are in full swing).

Sleep Tip: Updating Toddler Bedtime Routines.

As I wrote about in a previous blog post, toddlers and preschoolers are born boundary pushers.  If they see an opportunity to rebel against the rules and possibly get away with it, they will try it.

It’s just part of what makes a toddler a toddler and can continue to be part of a preschooler’s bag of tricks if they have been able to push boundaries and succeed in the past. That is why consistency when it comes to bedtime and sleep is so important.

When your son or daughter was a baby, you (hopefully) established an effective and enjoyable bedtime routine to set the tone and expectation that bedtime was near.  It was a great opportunity to wind down from the days events and spend some quiet special time together.

Some of the key elements of an infant bedtime routine usually includes a bath, possibly some infant massage, a feeding, maybe a story or song and then kisses and one last quick cuddle before being placed into the crib to drift off to dreamland.

When updating your toddler bedtime routines you do not need to totally reinvent the wheel, rather just rotate out the components that are not applicable such as the infant massage (because let’s face it, toddlers rarely have the ability to stay still long enough to offer a soothing massage) and the pre bed feeding as it is no longer a necessity to offer a breastfeeding or bottle just before bed at this age and stage.

However, let me take a moment to address breastfeeding into toddlerhood.    If you are a family that is still enjoying an active breastfeeding relationship past 12 months I wish to applaud you on your decision and commitment.  There is no reason to cease this bonding relationship until you are ready to.  But I will share that if you would still like offer an evening breastfeeding, a great time to do it is after dinner but before the bedtime routine.

So swap out the massage…check and swap out the feeding…check, check.  But I bet you are asking what to add in place of the massage and swaddle?  Great question, and I have the answer!  My suggestions are using the potty and brushing of the teeth.  With the addition of these two components, a toddler or bedtime routine can look similar to this:

  1. Bath
  2. Lotion and pajamas
  3. Brush teeth
  4. Use the potty one last time
  5. Story
  6. Song
  7. Sleep Rules (we will get to that in a minute)
  8. Kisses & hug and into the crib or bed (is it time to transition to a bed?)

Oh, and before I forget, a gentle reminder that a bedtime routine for any age should take no longer than 30 minutes start to finish (including bath).

Toddler Sleep Tips: Setting nighttime expectations via Sleep Rules

Now you may have noticed component #7 in the bedtime routine is SLEEP RULES.  This is something that I use with both of my daughters and suggest all of my families use with their toddlers and preschoolers.  It can be introduced once your little one is two years of age and at first you will be reciting them with the hopes and expectation that soon (usually after 6 months of nightly repetition) your son or daughter will start and continue to recite them back to you!  Sleep rules are great because they clearly define your expectations for your children from the time they are tucked in bed until it is time to wake up in the morning.

The rules should be simple to comprehend and easy to follow.  I should also add that they should be realistic in scope.  Sure, we would love for our children to stay in bed until 8:00 or 9:00am Saturday morning (and if yours do I am jealous), but reality is that toddlers and preschoolers are born early risers (anywhere between 6:00 – 7:00am).  That being said, asking your little one to stay in bed and remain quiet for an additional hour or two just isn’t going to happen.  Don’t give out hope though…one day they will be teens.  🙂

So, without further delay, I would love to share with you my 4 Easy Sleep Rules:

  1. Stay in bed
  2. Close your eyes
  3. Stay quiet
  4. Stay asleep or in bed until the clock says it’s morning.

And there you have it.  Easy ways to update your child bedtime routine to fit the needs of a toddler or preschooler while also incorporating simple to follow sleep rules that will help ensure that you all get a good night’s sleep.

As always, I welcome you to reach out to me to discuss this and all sleep related topics further.  Help getting your little one’s sleep back on track could only be a phone call away.

To Healthy Sleep!

click to schedule

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Healthy Sleep Habits for The Toddlers – The Tornado Known as Katie

Encouraging healthy sleep habits in a toddler leads to a child who is curious, engaging and ready to take on the world because the are well rested and able to learn.  The world is their Oyster!  Speaking of well a well rested toddler, would you like to see the latest work of art from my youngest daughter?  I speak of the little 2.5 year old Toddler Tornado that we affectionately call Katie (or Catherine Grace) if she’s really reaching F5 territory. Well, if you glace below, you’ll see the absolutely lovely purple sharpie creation that dear sweet child left for me on one of my kitchen cabinets and part of the wall while I stepped away for no more than 2 minutes to quickly get myself dressed so we could start our day.  Apparently, it was 2 minutes too many and just enough time for Katie to procure said purple sharpie from goodness only knows where and scribbles with a flourish that Picasso would be proud of.

Katie's  Artwork

Beautiful isn’t it?  Katie was quite proud of it as well until she saw my reaction.  Mine was a Home Alone hands on either side of the face reaction while I was saying in quick succession, “Oh My Gosh!  OH. MY. GOSH!”  I’m  fairly certain that she thought I had lost my mind.  “Oh Katie what did you do?” I asked as I tried to reign in my emotions and not to sob like a baby cry.

Her response, now deflated of all confidence, “ I drawed for you.”  Well, obviously!  Rapid fire quick I started asking where did you find the marker…WHERE IS THE MARKER?  A clear panic in my voice as I thought what else she could have beautified.  Looking back, it wasn’t one of my best parenting moments.  But it was PURPLE PERMANENT MARKER!  And yes, you can get most of it off with rubbing alcohol and a little elbow grease, but alas, that cabinet and wall will need to be repainted.

 

It’s been a learning experience for all of us.  Now all markers have been gathered and stored on the top shelf of a kitchen cabinet.  Safe for only about a month or two max knowing Katie.   But lives are full of learning experiences aren’t they?  And while I have learned to never under estimate a highly intelligent and curious toddler, my dynamo of a toddler has learned quite a bit in her first 2.5 years.

Encouraging Healthy Sleep Habits: A New Beginning = A Second Chance

father holding newborn baby
father holding newborn baby

From the moment that my second daughter was born I vowed that I was going to do things differently and not fall into the painful, sleep deprived patterns that we found ourselves in with the birth of my first daughter whom we affectionately call Lizzy.  I’ve written about my sleep deprived experience with my first daughter in an earlier post (read all about it HERE) and how I found my way back to the land of the well rested.

So when Katie was born I knew I didn’t want to slide down that slippery slope again.  We were going to practice healthy sleep habits right from the start. Now that doesn’t mean that we jumped into sleep training a newborn.  That’s crazy talk!  But what it does mean is respecting Katie’s need for sleep and being sure to allow her the time to slowly learn how to self soothe and put herself to sleep unassisted.  As amazing as it may sound, often times I laid Katie down for her naps awake in her crib and gave her time to try and put herself to sleep.  And you know what…most of the time she was successful.

Of course, if ever she was having difficulty completing this task I would step in and help her along.  But from the first week of life (and after leaving the NICU at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia), we slowly introduced healthy sleeping and eating practices.  And, well, Katie thrived and grew fast.  During the day she took awesome naps and was happy and content.  At night, when she woke up to eat I made sure that I continued to foster healthy sleep and eating habits for a newborn and avoiding common nighttime feeding mistakes.  And slowly but surely over the course of the next 12 weeks,

Katie settled into a predictable nap time and bedtime routine and would drift off to sleep totally on her own.  Better yet, she also now was only waking once a night to feed.  Yay for longer nighttime stretches!

But that’s not to say that there weren’t some bumps along the way.  Of course with age, sleep migrates from that of a newborn to that of an infant and often that is when families will call me in a panic asking what happened to their awesome easy sleeper.

And our Katie was not immune to the sleep disruption during these changes. But that is a story for another day and I will continue with that part of the story in next week’s blog post. Until then…Sweet Dreams!

Transitioning Your Toddler From a Crib to a Big Bed

Moving your toddler to a “big bed” can be a big decision and some parents aren’t sure the right age or the best approach for making the switch.  Sometimes a toddler needs to move into a big bed because there is a sibling on the way and some need to move because they have discovered the joy of jumping out of the crib! No matter the reason, there are some ways to make it a little easier on everyone.

 Moving to a Big Bed…Don’t Jump When They Do!

Toddlers are often moved out of the crib too early. Jumping from the crib is usually the main reason.  If you have a toddler who is jumping, don’t rush to make the move.  If your toddler is “good” at jumping from the crib, meaning doesn’t hurt him or herself, you can try a few tricks of your own before deciding if a move is needed.  At bedtime, tell your little one that he must stay in the crib at bedtime.

When he jumps out (which he will!), calmly return him to his crib and remind him that he must stay in the crib.  You can repeat the rules the first 4-5 times that he jumps out, after that, return him to the crib without saying a word.  For many toddlers, after a few nights of this, it becomes boring and they stop.toddlers from crib to a big bed

Now, if your toddler is jumping from the crib and getting hurt, then it is likely time to make the switch.  Crib tents are no longer recommended, so it would be better to move to a big bed if your toddler is jumping out and getting hurt.  If you are moving a toddler because you have another baby on the way, wait as long as possible to make the move. Many parents want to have the new baby’s room ready in advance, so would like to have the crib prepared.  However, newborn babies very rarely sleep in a crib, so hold off on transitioning your toddler unless you plan to put the baby in the crib immediately.

If none of the above are concerns for your family,  then it is best to wait until your child is closer to three years old to make the move to a big bed.  There are a lot of new responsibilities that come with a new bed, and a three year old has a better ability to understand what will happen if they don’t follow the “rules” at bedtime.  When you have decided to move your child, make it a fun experience. Let your child pick out new sheets or help make the bed.  Tell a bedtime story about a child moving to a big bed and in the story, include rules about staying in bed all night long.

Once the move is complete, many children will stay in their bed for the first few nights or even weeks, but at some point, will realize that they can get out of the bed and even the room! Once this happens, quietly and calmly return your child to the bed and remind him that it’s bedtime and he must stay in the bed all night.  Do this the first three times each night and then return him to the bed without saying a word.  It may take several nights for your child to stop coming out of the room, but if you remain consistent and don’t allow it to become a game, your child will stay in bed for the night.

 

An Account from a Once Frazzled Sleep Deprived Mommy

An Account from a Once Frazzled Sleep Deprived Mommy

This week’s blog post comes courtesy of guest blogger Lauren, The Median Mommy (www.TheMedianMommy.com), And one of my wonderful clients.

 

One year ago, I was a frazzled mom, prone to tears, constantly overwhelmed, forgetful and fatigued.  My 8 month old son was not a napper, and was up multiple times during the night.  Thankfully, I was at home with my son, but after eight months, I was completely drained and in desperate need of some help.

My son, Declan, was not a napper.  This kiddo would stay up all day if you let him (and is still the same way).  At the point when we finally sought help from Jennifer, from Gift of Sleep Consulting, D was napping in 20-30 minute clips, three times a day.  I was unable to get anything done, and I constantly felt stressed and under great strain to get even the smallest of tasks done.  No naps during the day, and waking every two hours at night, meant that if I actually remembered to bring my grocery list when I went to the store, I would still forget items, due to my inability to concentrate.

Enter Jennifer from Gift of Sleep Consulting.  After posting about our sleep troubles on my blog’s Facebook page, Jennifer reached out to me.  Admittedly, I was wary at first.  Pay someone to teach us sleep habits?  It seemed so…strange.  Who does that?  We did, that’s who.  Money was tight for us at that time, but my husband and myself (most especially me) were prepared to do whatever it took to get D into healthy sleep habits.  Apart from buying our ERGObaby, hiring Jennifer’s expertise was the best investment we made in our son’s first year.

We immediately began adopting healthy sleep practices & routines, I became better at reading D’s cues, and I transformed into a bonafide Sleep Nazi.  For us, healthy sleep habits for D were an investment and a commitment.  We kept a rigid schedule around D’s naps and bedtime, which meant sacrificing some of our needs/wants to ensure that we were home in time to follow sleep routines.  In fact, D didn’t attend his first story time until he was over a year old, because story times, both bookstore and library, were all held during D’s morning nap time.

Admittedly, having such a rigid schedule made scheduling social time difficult.  D’s tight nap schedule also only gave me a very small window for me to run household errands.  But, the trade-off, well, wasn’t a trade-off at all.

Today, we have an 18 month-old who knows what to do when we begin his nap or bedtime routine.  We’ve traveled for weekend and week-long trips, and the only bumps we’ve encountered were due to us having blown off a nap(s) (MommyCon was one particular instance of that).

I’ve had a year of good sleep, and now groan inwardly on those rare occasions that D wakes in the night (usually during teething episodes).  While we want to add to our family, I find myself wondering how I will function without getting a good night’s sleep!

Eighteen months in, I’m proud to have a toddler that sleeps when he’s supposed to!  Sleep is one of the most discussed topics in my parenting circles, yet many of the parents I see don’t want to change their routines(?!).

If you find that you’re struggling to get your little one to sleep well, you should consider hiring Jennifer to guide you.  As I said, it was the best investment we made that first year.  Sleep is incredibly important to your little one’s overall health, and I wish that we hadn’t waited so long to ask for help.

 You can read about our experience HERE.

Fostering Healthy Sleep Habits for Your Baby

 Fostering healthy child or infant sleep habits is extremely important for their overall health and well being. The path to developing healthy soothing skills can start very shortly after birth and the best way to begin reinforcing these very important skills is the environment in which your baby learns how to sleep independently (with the help of some Rock Star self soothing skills).

Promoting healthy sleep for infants and small children has become my passion and goal for every family I come in contact with.  Including The Median Mommy!

Encouraging healthy sleep habits: The temperature of the room does matter!

Did you know that most little ones prefer to sleep in a room that is on the cool side rather than warm? Studies have shown that a too warm sleep environment can actually be very detrimental to infant sleep. Just like for most of us grownups, a too warm sleeping environment can make it very difficult for your child to go to sleep. It is also suggested that it may be one of the contributors to SIDS.

I recommend to all of my clients whether their child is a newborn or well into their preschool years to make sure their little one’s room temperature falls somewhere between 68 and 72 degrees Fahrenheit. Also, the clothing your little one is dressed in for bed should be right along the same lines of what you would wear to bed. And a great addition to a baby or toddler’s bed is a baby sleep sack instead of a blanket (see last week’s post regarding my love for this wonderful invention). Remember cool and comfy and not warm and stuffy.Mistakes to Avoid When Feeding Your Newborn at Night

Encouraging healthy sleep habits: Although a bedding set is super cute, it can also be super dangerous.

I encourage all of my clients of infants to remove all items from their child’s crib that are non essential for safe and healthy sleep. This includes, crib quits, blankets, bumpers that are not breathable and see through as well as pillows and stuffed animals. Although a “Lovey” can be introduced around 7 months of age. All your baby needs in their crib for safe sleep is a mattress, sheet, secure swaddle (up until 3 months) or a sleep sack. That’s it!

Encouraging healthy sleep habits: The darker the better

A very dark room during all sleep periods (daytime naps included) actually helps your little one want to sleep. If the nursery or bedroom is too bright via natural sunlight streaming through an uncovered window or blinds, your little one will find it much harder to settle to sleep. As sunlight hits our skin and is absorbed, our body naturally releases chemicals to cue our bodies to be awake. The more we can do as parents to block light from getting in the room the better to stop this from happening.

Also, darkness is a fantastic clue or indicator that one should be sleeping and with help and consistency, your baby can begin to pick up on this clue. A dark room = sweet dreams for little ones if you want to get your baby to sleep through the night

Encouraging healthy baby sleep habits: White noise, the soothing static lulling your little one to sleep.

Using some sort of white noise in your baby or toddler’s room can help them sleep longer and more soundly by blocking out environmental noise. You would be surprised at how the slightest outside noise can arouse a baby in a light sleep state.

A favorite among many of my clients is a box fan or portable white noise machine. I’ve seen some pretty expensive models sold in baby stores but have to admit that if you can find one that is under $30.00 and can easily be taken with you on family vacations or overnight trips you’ll be all set. Oh and if it can also be battery operated…BONUS. You never know when you will lose power during a pretty noisy thunder storm.

In closing, if your little one is having trouble falling or staying asleep, please be sure you have evaluated their sleep space for the tips above and make adjustments where necessary. As always, I welcome your questions or comments concerning this week’s topic.

Jennifer Schindele is a Certified Child Sleep Consultant and President and Founder of Gift of Sleep Consulting located in Philadelphia, PA.  Jennifer’s mission is to help parents give the gift of sleep to both their children and in turn, themselves. Her mission is executed by Jennifer Schindelepersonalizing a step-by-step program to gently help teach the child to independently fall asleep, and stay asleep, the whole night through (and nap peacefully during the day).  

 

Main Line Sleep Tips and Training Workshop For New Parents

 Sleep Tips Workshop For New Parents

help i need sleep

Is Your Child’s Sleep Keeping You Awake?

Wondering how you can get your little one to sleep through the night?

Tired of being exhausted and unable to function every day?

If your baby, toddler, or preschooler isn’t sleeping through the night, neither are you.  And that means you’re probably feeling physically and mentally exhausted stressed and irritable like you’ll never have a solid night’s sleep again.
Date: Wednesday, October 23rdbellypilatescom-logo
Time: 6 pm to 7:30pm
Cost: $10 per person $15 per couple
Who: Parents and pre-crawlers welcomed
Where:  Belly Pilates, 100 Chetwynd, Bryn Mawr, PA 19010. Located on the Main Line.
Presented by: Jennifer Schindele Gift of Sleep Consulting
To register contact: Jennifer Schindele –  info@giftofsleepconsulting.com or call (267) 382-0826

If your baby, toddler, or preschooler isn’t sleeping through the night, neither are you. And that means you’re probably feeling physically and mentally exhausted stressed and irritable like you’ll never have a solid night’s sleep again.

Child sleep expert Jennifer Schindele, will discuss what’s most effective when it comes to getting your child to sleep…and stay asleep. Quickly. Easily. Independently! Jennifer works with children ages 4 months-6 years old to address common sleep challenges including:

  • Your child only falls asleep while nursing or bottle feeding.
  • Your child depends on a pacifier, parent, rocking or other motion to fall asleep.
  • You are waking up with your child multiple times a night.
  • Your own lack of sleep is starting to take a toll on your family.
 

When Babies Start Teething – Sleep Training During This Time.

Teething Babies: The good, the bad and the ugly

Is your baby not sleeping through the night because of teething?

You see, the good news is – your little one is getting teeth!  Hooray…he won’t be the only baby that’s sporting the all gum smile.  The bad news is, it might come with some sleeping problems and the ugliness of it may be that you will use your teething baby as an excuse for everything that has ever gone wrong in your life!  Okay, I admit…that might just be a tad on the dramatic side.

When Babies Start Teething and Sleep Training – Could it actually work together?

Now the question remains whether your little teething bundle of saliva can actually sleep, sleep train, be trained for to sleep and/or sleep better while teething.  The answer is a resounding YES!  If you are going to wait for your baby to stop teething before you actually train or teach him or her how to sleep, you are going to wait well over 2.5 years. Since sleep is a skill that we need to teach our children, the faster we give them the Gift of Sleep the better.

When Do Babies Start Teething? Sleep Training During This Time.
When Do Babies Start Teething? Sleep Training During This Time.

Helping Your Baby Sleep Through the Night

If you want to help your baby sleep through the night, take restful naps, be healthy, happy and still have teeth, you can help your baby or toddler by teaching him or her how to sleep unassisted (sleep training your baby).  Think about it, if your little one can put herself to sleep without you help she won’t wake you up during the night the 5 times he wakes at night due to sore gums.  In my experience as a sleep consultant, I have found that children who have learned the skill of self soothing and sleeping handles teething and illnesses much better.

Teething Causing Baby Sleep Problems

Teething can cause a slight regression in tour child’s sleeping habits.  HOWEVER, be careful that YOU are not the one regressing, using “teething” as an excuse.  If your child wakes during the night due to teething, go to him or her, provide some comfort (soothing words or careful touch), administer the necessary medication and  then allow your little one to fall back asleep without any props or assistance (no pacifier, no bottle and no rocking).  And as a side note, I have found Ibuprofen to be a very effective pain reliever in babies over 6 months of age.  Just be certain to carefully read the dosing instructions on the package and consult your pediatrician to double check before administering.

Lastly, a good way to test whether your child is fussy due to teething, is to think about whether they are showing other signs of teething, and whether or not it is also bothering them during the day.  If it truly is teething, it won’t be bothering your little one just at night.

Sleep Aids For Children

Hi there!  And welcome to this week’s blog post!  This week I wanted to talk about questions I am often asked during different social type settings (parties, networking events and activities for my girls) once I have shared that I am an infant and toddler sleep consultant.  The top two questions are; what exactly is a sleep consultant and who would need to hire one?

Now, I know some of you are already thinking that you know the answer to that question, but for those who are not entirely in the know (or a bit fuzzy due to extreme sleep deprivation), I’ve decided to give you some insight into who I am and what offer to exhausted parents everywhere.

What is a Sleep Consultant?

As acertified child sleep consultant I work directly with families who are struggling with their infant, toddler, preschooler or young adolescent who have not yet learned the skill of being able to soothe themselves to sleep and stay asleep all night long.  Together with the parents, I create an in depth and personalized sleep plan that is easy to follow while also providing step by step guidance. I am effectively holding my client’s hand while they are implementing the strategies in their plan.  I am there to celebrate their successes, discuss questions and concerns and deal with setbacks.

I work to educate new parents about the sleep needs of a newborn and how best to gently begin teaching healthy sleep skills from day one.   Or offer assistance in helping create a great daytime and nighttime schedule for the new family to work with as well as sleep aids for children.  It is amazing how just making a few changes in the daily lives of a newborn can dramatically affect their ability to sleep.

Sleep Aids For Children

Why would a family consider a sleep consultant?

If your baby, toddler or preschooler isn’t sleeping through the night, then neither are you.  This lack of sleep will leave you feeling exhausted, overwhelmed, frustrated and mentally and physically stressed.  I understand the feelings of helplessness, exhaustion, and confusion of being a new parent who isn’t getting the sleep they need to be the best parent they can be.

This sleep deprived state also makes it extremely difficult for parents to solve their little one’s sleep issues on their own.  And I am uniquely positioned to help these families for several reasons.  I’ve been where they are…having struggled with my own child’s sleep problems, so I know exactly how these parents are feeling!  I know strategies that will help teach your child how to fall asleep without any assistance from you and stay asleep until morning.  It’s because of my knowledge and training that I am able to create personalized plans for all of my clients based upon the child’s needs and what the parents are most comfortable with.

I think Dr. Marc Weissbluth puts it best, “Sleep is the power source that keeps your mind alert and calm. Every night and at every nap, sleep recharges the brain’s battery. Sleeping well increases brainpower just as weight lifting builds stronger muscles, because sleeping well increases your attention span and allows you to be physically relaxed and mentally alert at the same time. Then you are at your personal best.”

Sleep is so important to our well being and our health that parents should make it a priority to ensure that their children are taught the skills needed to fall asleep independently.  The foundation for this skill can be taught as soon as the baby is born.  This is my mission and my passion.  I have made it my career to help as many families as I can get the sleep they need to be healthy and happy.  A well rested baby is happy, curious, engaging and ready to take on the world.

If you had the opportunity to ensure that you are giving your little one the best possible start in life, wouldn’t you do everything in your power to make that happen?

The bottom line is that my job is to help families be as happy and healthy as they can be.  And one of the most important ingredients in that equation is a good night’s sleep for everyone in the family.  This is my mission, passion and my job within the community.

 

 

Recipe for All Natural Cough Syrup for Children

I thought I would share the homemade cough syrup that my daughters pediatrician told me about today during a sick visit for my Katie (16 mos):
What you will need:
  • 1 cup of honey
  • 3 tablespoons of lemon juice (fresh if possible)
  • 1/4 cup of warm water

How to Prepare:

  1. Pour the honey in a glass container
  2. Mix in the lemon juice Slowly
  3. Add in the warm water until the mixture is well mixed.

For use at bedtime:

  • 1 tsp for children 1 year to about 4 years of age
  • 2 tsp for children over 4 years

*****NOTE:  DO NOT use this with children who are under 1 year of age.

Place the remaining liquid covered in the refrigerator and discard when you would normally discard of the honey. If the mixture becomes a bit thick, warm slightly to decrease the viscosity.

I will be trying this tonight with Katie.  Sweet Dreams!

~ Jenn