The Ferber Method of sleep training babies, also known as Ferberizing or Ferberization, has been popular since the mid-80’s when Dr. Richard Ferber wrote his book, and for good reason. It is a very structured approach and provides a clear path for parents to follow. For those of us who need very specific guidelines, this can work very well, so if you choose to Ferberize your baby or toddler, you are in good company! When done correctly, Ferberization can be very effective, and often, many babies are able to make good strides in improving their sleep in just a few short days. Like with many sleep coaching methods, however, there is always a risk that things may not go smoothly. To help make sure you and your little one are set on the path for success, we are going over the 5 things to do before you Ferberize your baby:
Get a clean bill of health
Optimize your baby’s schedule
Develop consistent bedtime and naptime routines
Set the stage to Ferberize
Get support during Ferberization
1. Get a clean bill of health (for your baby AND for you!):
It is always best to get a clean bill of health from your child’s doctor before changing their routine in a big way, like starting sleep training. This will not only allow you to put your mind at rest and but also give you the chance to evaluate and have the opportunity to address any medical issues. Since there are some medical conditions that can cause, or at least contribute in part to, sleep issues, including food allergies, reflux and sleep apnea, it is always best to rule these out before embarking on sleep training. Your health is important too, and sleep training a baby is no easy task! So make sure that you are well enough to guide your baby through this incredible journey.
2. Optimize your baby’s schedule:
We do talk about baby sleep schedules A LOT, that is true. But, this is because they are very important! Trying to sleep train a baby who is not tired enough to sleep is no easy task, and sleep training an overtired baby may be even worse. So, it will be key to fine tune your baby’s schedule and make sure that you get as close to their “goldilocks zone” as possible. For some families, it can be really helpful to keep a sleep log for a week so you can track your little one’s sleep patterns. If you continue to keep the log during the coaching process you can also see where your little one’s sleep has improved!
3. Develop consistent bedtime and naptime routines:
If you haven’t developed a sleep routine already, this a great time to start! Babies and young children thrive on routines, and these predictable steps you do every time before sleep will go a long way towards building the consistency they need to learn to sleep independently. Routines don’t have to be a long, drawn-out process, and it’s perfectly fine to keep it simple. It is the predictability which will help to set their expectations. Check out this article for tips on creating your ideal sleep routine.
4. Set the stage to Ferberize:
Setting up the perfect sleep space won’t be a magic bullet to getting your baby to sleep, but it is important to plan out your strategy, and have some tools to help you along the way. For example, if you have older children and are worried that your little one may wake them or vice-versa, it would be helpful to consider white noise machines for everyone. If you may be worried about staying consistent when your little one is crying, investing in a video baby monitor can be helpful so you are able to see them during the coaching. If you are planning on adding a musical toy like an aquarium or mobile to your routine, this is the time to introduce it.
5. Get support during Ferberizing:
In our 10+ years of experience working directly with tens of thousands of families, we know consistency is the most difficult part of sleep coaching. I recently spoke with a mom who was able to make a lot of progress with her daughter’s sleep at bedtime using the Ferber method, but was not able to reach all of her goals because she was too tired to stay consistent during the rest of the night! I know that a lot of us don’t have family nearby, but this is the time to reach out to your support team – your village. Being able to stay consistent during the training process will determine whether you are able to succeed in reaching your goals. So, get your spouse or partner or dearest friend on board, and make sure everyone knows their parts. If you have a demanding job, consider taking a few days off, or if you have another child to take care of, see if grandparents or aunts can help for a day or two. This is the time to reach out to your village! And if you ever feel stuck or unsure, we have an amazing team of expert sleep consultants right here. We love each and every family we work with and feel privileged being an extension of your village.
Have you Ferberized your baby? Please share your experiences below – we love hearing from you!
This guest post was written by Isaac Atia, Founder of 10BestRanked, an authority blog where Isaac reviews the top home and outdoors products.
Having a baby is such a beautiful thing. However, it can be scary when you aren’t prepared. Being financially stable can be highly load mitigating.
Taking the time out to make sure your money is in order, will be well worth it.
With an immense life change such as this, comes with immense habit adjustments. Especially when it comes the way you look at money.
Revise the Budget
Being responsible for a human life. Means being responsible with your pocket-book. Revise or create a budget that is in tandem with adding new life to your life.
Understanding what is required of you, is a great first step to learning how to financially prepare for a baby.
New parents constantly state how the cost of having their child was a lot higher than anticipated. Delivery alone can cost you over $9,000. A caesarian section can run up a bill of over $12,000, according to the Kaisers family foundation. While many insurance policies will cover some or all of the actual delivery, there may be some costs you need to pay. Of course, we all know there are far more costs associated with having children.
Underestimating the cost spells trouble for your budget. Avoiding this mistake is easy if you are honest with your potential cost. Do your research and look for ways to cut costs.
Do you eat out every other day or night? Or, get a large cup of coffee from Starbucks every morning before work? That $5 or $20 you spend every day, will add up.
This is money you could be saving if you cooked at home more often or would invest in a coffee maker. Practices like this will help you save money for the long haul.
Data shows that about an average of Americans who regularly buy coffee throughout the week spend $1,092 a year. This is a substantial amount of money that can go toward savings.
Keeping a close eye on every penny can really pay off.
You should of course be saving your money. One of my top 5 rules to live by, is to save always. Especially when children are involved. There are all sorts of bills that will come up when caring for a child.
Prenatal, post pregnancy, and pediatric care are just some of the vital expenses necessary for your growing family’s health. The bills for the first year of your baby’s life will cost an average of about $12,980.
This number can be higher depending on a number of different circumstances. You always want to be prepared, by stashing extra money away for a rainy day.
Paternity and Maternity Leave
You need to be sure to get with your HR managers and figure out how much money and time you will have after the birth of your child.
Some employers will pay you for this time off. However, be sure to discuss this with them in depth. Your parental paid leave can be taken out of your sick time or vacation time. Just be sure you have clear understanding of their procedures.
Child Care Cost
Also, figure out if you’d like to return to work or stay home. Because child care cost can make or break the pockets. If your baby is fortunate enough to have an abled bodied grandmother or grandfather that is willing to watch them, that is great and you can just skim through this next section!
If you are like most of the average millennial parents, then child care cost is something you will truly need to consider. Child care is pretty pricey across the board.
It can be slightly more affordable in rural areas than it is in the Urban ones. According to U.S department of Health and human services, we can conclude that it costs an average of $4,325 a year for non-relative child care. Research this ahead of time.
When you factor in all of the child care cost, medical bills, furniture, food, diapers etc., you quickly realize that a new child requires a lot of money. Money you may not have at the time. Credit comes in handy when you don’t.
Being responsible for your money also means taking control of your credit. Continuously practice good habits by paying off your debts on time and not making outrageous, unnecessary purchases you may not be able to pay be back. Instead buy only what is needed and reconcile your charges as soon as possible.
Trust Fund for the Future
Like any loving parent, you are probably concerned about your child’s life and their future. Setting up a trust fund for them is a great way to help them out even when you’re no longer there.
A trust fund is a great option. And not just for the super wealthy. There are plenty of benefits that come along with this kind of insurance.
Even though the money no longer belongs to you. You get to decide exactly how you want it to be used. There are plenty of benefits in having a trust. I am specifically referring to the tax breaks.
However, if you aren’t too keen on a trust fund, a will works just as well. If at all possible, I suggest having a will in addition to a Trust. Wills are simple; however, you will need to make sure you look over it with an attorney so that your wishes are clear, concise and uncontradictory.
Both a will and trust fund can cost a substantial amount in legal fees. But are well worth securing your child’s future.
Speaking of the future. You will need to immediately consider life insurance. Life is unpredictable, but not Impractical. Take solace knowing that you have done all you can to ensure the longevity, and peace of mind for your family.
Look at as investment toward your child’s future, which if you do it right, is exactly what that is.
Become a Minimalist
Even though caring for your child can seem outrageously expensive, it does not have to be. You can cut costs in all aspects of you and your child’s life in order to help cushion your pockets by becoming a minimalist.
Things like breastfeeding, instead of buying formula or buying cloth diapers, instead of the disposable ones. These things may seem inconveniencing, however the benefits of these practices highly out way the cons.
Our Final Say
Having A baby doesn’t have to be scary. It can be all beauty. Only if you prepare yourself for the journey that is parenthood.
Finances is just a small part of what you’ll need learn. However, your money well-organized and in order helps make life a little easier.
How did you or will you prepare for your baby financially?
This guest post was written by Isaac Atia, Founder of 10BestRanked, an authority blog where Isaac reviews the top home and outdoors products. Read his latest post about car seats here.
One of the most common sleep problems we hear in our Helpdesk with clients is their toddler is getting out of bed at the “wrong” time, whether they are “jack in the box” at bedtime, in and out of their bed all night, or whether they are waking up too early in the morning. Today, I am sharing an intro to a day-by-day plan to follow to get your toddler or preschooler to stay in bed all night, using a toddler clock.
What is a toddler clock?
First, I should clarify what I mean by a toddler clock. A toddler clock is a special type of clock that changes colors or has some other visual clue that it is “okay” to wake up and get out of bed. Since toddlers generally can’t always understand the concept of a typical clock, it makes it easy for them. Here are a couple examples called the OK to Wake Clock and My Tot Clock (click the image to learn more):
Why can’t you just set up the clock and be done with it?
It’s just not that simple, unfortunately. We see numerous mistakes parents make when they start using a toddler clock. And, it highly depends on where you are in your sleep journey. If you are near the end where your toddler goes to sleep independently, sleeps most of the night independently, and is ONLY waking up too early, AND if they are fairly cooperative, in general, it may be as simple as setting up the toddler clock and telling her to stay in bed until it turns the right color. Voila! If only all toddlers were that easy!
Is a special toddler clock necessary?
No, not necessarily. Some families can set up a super simple digital clock with large numbers. You can cover up the minutes, if your toddler is younger, and if he or she knows her numbers, you can say something like “You need to stay in bed until the number is a 6 (or 7, if you dare!). Just be sure not to set the alarm – can you imagine that blaring at the wrong time of day…or night!?
How to Sleep Train Your Toddler Using a Toddler Clock
STEP 1: The first thing NOT to do with your toddler is show her how to work it or show him you CAN change it! You’d be surprised at how many smart toddlers there are who learn that it can and will be changed by human hands. Plan to have it already set when you introduce it.
STEP 2: If you haven’t already, establish a bedtime routine that will be consistent every day. Most parents with whom we work one-on-one have already implemented this step, but if you haven’t, it’s nothing to gloss over. You’d be surprised how effective a good routine is at setting expectations about what’s coming next.
STEP 3: You might want to consider a sticker chart for positive motivation. You will want this in place at least a few days before you start sleep training.
I hope this intro helps you get started using your toddler clocks to help your toddlers sleep better!
If you are interested in learning the last Step, #4, and read the day-by-day sleep coaching plan to get your toddler sleeping all night, you can find this article in our Members Area, the source for your premium baby sleep content. Already a member? Sign-in here. Not a member? Not a problem! To gain access to this and many other resources, including live chat with a sleep consultant, sign up today! Learn more here.
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An uncredited saying promises us that “babies smile in their sleep because they are listening to the whispering of angels.” That is a beautiful image, indeed, if only we could make them sleep! As parents, we know they need their rest – it is essential for their neurological development. But we can’t explain that to them, so we learn to use various tricks to help them get their vital repose.
I put together a short list with my favorite sleeping subterfuges for babies, after having tried most of them. Keep in mind, though, that babies are unique and you have to understand and respect their personalities; still, these notable gimmicks may do the job even in the case of the most tenacious little non-sleepers!
Play white noise
Experts say that white noise helps everyone go to sleep. Does this method work for babies as well? Some say it does. The explanation is simple: while being in the womb, babies hear the sound of blood rushing through the mother’s veins. Some white noises may have a similar tone. Thus, trying various kinds of white noises may lead to finding the one that calms the child. It can be random noise, such as vacuum, radio static or a coffee grinder or rhythmic sounds, like a heartbeat toy, a train or falling rain.
Play with light
An outspread theory suggests that total darkness helps inducing sleep. But some voices argue that belief, saying that babies are biologically adapted for sleeping outdoors. Thus, a lighting set-up that mimics the night sky may be more helpful than pitch dark. Projecting stars on the ceiling will give the babies something interesting to look at, while flickering lights imitating candles will help them relax. So don’t be afraid to experiment with lights. It may just be the right trick for your child.
Try a new bed
Sometimes, even if you do everything by the book, the baby just doesn’t seem to feel comfortable enough to go to sleep. Maybe he’s trying to tell you that he doesn’t like the bed. Remember that he can’t use words to let you know what the problem is, but refusing to go to sleep may be his way of telling you to make a change. Try something else than the current bedding situation: a hammock bed, a crib with a dedicated crib mattress or various other solutions, until you find the one which seems to please him.
Maintain the right temperature in the room
All sleep specialists recommend lowering the temperature in the room before going to sleep – and this stands for both children and grown-ups. You can turn down the thermostat (one or two degrees would be enough) or open a window, especially if it’s nice outside. The evening chill may calm down your hyperactive baby.
Any type of motion is beneficial when you struggle to put the baby to bed. One good exercise is to lie him down on the floor and let him stretch and discover his toes and fingers. When he’s a bit older, help him learn how to crawl, even if that means for you to do that along! If you usually bounce or rock him in your arms, alternate between those two: swing the baby back and forth (similar to the motion of a cradle) and then shift to a delicate up-and-down bounce. This change in action will distract and relax the baby, making it easier for sleep to kick in.
Avoid direct eye contact
Eye contact with the parent is stimulating for the baby, so looking straight into his eyes when trying to put him to bed will have the exact opposite effect. It’s best to avert your eyes from your little love, even if it feels wrong and hard to do so. Or you can try closing your eyes to show your child that you expect him to do the same.
A bedtime story and a massage
One of my favorite baby sleeping tricks is a rescuing combination consisting of a gentle massage and a bedtime story. Studies show that a tender 10 – 15 minutes massage will help the baby fall asleep faster. While massaging him, read or tell a story in a soothing voice. If the baby is older than six months, you can try adding fragrance to this evening moment: drip off one or two drops of lavender oil on a tissue and place it near the crib. All those combined will help the baby relax and go to sleep.
If your baby is up all night and is napping inconsistently, you might be starting to wonder if there’s any way to fix these sleep problems. Well, good news- there is! You can help your baby sleep through the night and take longer naps by sleep training (also known as sleep coaching). But what is sleep training? When (and, more importantly, HOW) should you do it? We have answers!
Baby Sleep Training: What, When, How?
Sleep training is the process of teaching your baby how to fall asleep without help from you. Sleep training can help your baby lengthen naps and sleep through the night.
You can begin “formal” sleep training when your baby is 4-6 months old.
There are a variety of sleep training methods you can try; some involve crying, while others are low-cry or no-cry.
Baby Sleep Training: What Is It?
Sleep training (also called sleep coaching) involves teaching your baby how to fall asleep without help from you. When you help your baby fall asleep at bedtime, or fall back to sleep after waking at night, your baby comes to associate the things you do with sleep – and he forms sleep associations. Sleep associations are not necessarily bad; for instance, a pacifier or a lovey can be a really useful sleep association. But any sleep associations that involve you (for example, nursing to sleep, or being rocked to sleep) may be difficult for you to sustain long-term, and they will likely prolong your baby’s nighttime waking and short naps. However, if your baby knows how to fall asleep without your help, then he can fall back to sleep when he wakes at night, or wakes too early from a nap – and this is a big step towards sleeping through the night!
Want to learn more about sleep training? In our Members Area, we have more than 60 separate resources designed to help you learn all you can about sleep training, including our wildly popular e-book, The 3-Step System to Help Your Baby Sleep. This e-book offers a basic overview of sleep training as well as tips on creating and implementing your own sleep coaching plan. We also offer a series of recorded seminars (featuring Nicole Johnson) designed to give you the information you need to sleep coach successfully.
Baby Sleep Training: When Should You Try It?
Here’s the good news: you can start gently sleep coaching your baby when she’s 8-10 weeks old! The gentle sleep training techniques we use with clients are gentle enough to accommodate a newborn’s or a very young baby’s needs, but they can also be incredibly effective. While you obviously can’t expect a baby this age to sleep through the night, starting gentle sleep coaching at 8-10 weeks can lay a great foundation for future healthy sleep habits. Of course, you can always choose to sleep train later, when your baby is older; just be sure you’re choosing an ideal sleep training window of time. And remember, age isn’t the only factor you’ll need to consider when deciding if it’s time to start sleep training; see this sleep training checklist to determine if you and your baby are ready to start sleep coaching.
Wondering if it’s time to get started with sleep training your baby? One easy way to begin (or to get your baby ready for sleep training if she’s still too young to officially start) is to establish a consistent baby sleep and feeding schedule. We even offer a custom baby schedule-maker designed to help you establish an appropriate nap schedule based on your baby’s age and usual morning wake-up time!
Baby Sleep Training: How To Sleep Train?
We’ve literally written the book (numerous books, actually!) on how to sleep train, and we offer a wide array of sleep consulting services designed to support parents through the sleep training process…so this is not a question we can fully answer in a blog post. That said, we can offer an overview of sleep training basics. First, an easy way to start sleep training is to develop a consistent bedtime and naptime routine. You’ll also want to establish your sleep training plan and choose a sleep training method. There are many ways to sleep train, and while people often assume that sleep training equals lots of crying, this isn’t the case; in fact, we often recommend gentle, low-cry or no-cry sleep training solutions to our families. No matter which method you use, however, the key to successful sleep training is consistency.
Think you might be ready to sleep train, but not sure how to get started? Our popular free guide, 5 Ways To Help Your Child Sleep Through the Night, can help you do just that! Download now, and you can start sleep coaching as early as your baby’s next nap. For additional sleep training help, check out the resources below:
Designing a nursery is an exciting time. An essential part of the design is storage. Take the time to plan and pick pieces of furniture that will give you longevity and maximize space with storage.
Dresser Choose a larger dresser with multi draw sets, one that can be used beyond the baby years. The drawers should be deep and be able to hold plenty of clothes.
Use draw organizers to help separate socks, clothing, wraps etc from each other, will be an amazing help, especially when you’re rushing. Draw organizers will help to keep your draws neat and clutter free, making it easy to find what you want easily.
Shelves Utilize the wall space. Put up multiple shelves and store trinkets, photos and other special memories.
Shelves are a great way to decorate and store beautiful things you might collect along the way too.
Keep a good-sized laundry basket in the nursery and place it close to your baby changing table. This way used clothing can be put away immediately keeping the space neat.
Laundry baskets don’t need to be boring. They come in all sorts of shapes, sizes and colors and can be themed to your room.
Standing shelf unit
Shelf units are very useful should you have the space.
Choose a large one that fits neatly up against a wall. Sort books and games and place them into easy accessible shelves.
Keep books organized into age appropriate sections. As baby grows you can progress onto the next section where favorites can also be found easily.
Invest in storage baskets that fit nicely into the cavities. Store multiple items such as Lego and other toys and keep separated for easy finding.
Store babies toys on the lower shelves. This way he or she can help themselves to their toys, especially as they get older.
Hangers Hang some items of clothing in the wardrobe to avoid over cluttering draws. Use pegs to attach the smaller items of clothing to the hangers.
Separate the various sizes with section dividers for visibility.
As baby grows out of clothes they can be taken down and stored away in a labeled storage tub for the next baby. This will free up space for more clothes too.
Changing Station Create separate areas in the nursery i.e. sleep, play, feeding and changing. Keep the changing table and other relevant items close by. Use baskets, draws etc. to store items used.
Some changing stations come with drawers. A great idea if you want to keep the nursery looking neat and tidy as nappies, creams and wipes can be kept close by and hidden.
Stackable storage containers
Invest in multiple clear storage containers with lids that stack on top of each other. You are likely to have hand me downs and other items of clothing they currently do not fit. Label each box and stack neatly in the closet for easy access as needed.
Hooks are not only decorative but are very useful for hanging towels, jackets, bags etc. Position the hooks in a location for easy access.
IMPORTANT: Be sure to hang your hooks high, well out of reach from your toddler. Hooks positioned too low can be dangerous as toddlers are often in a hurry and do not always look where they are going.
Crib When investing in a crib keep in mind the size of the nursery and if extra storage is required, cribs can be purchased with built in drawers. This solution is great for small nurseries that have little storage space available.
Attachable hanging pocket storage bags can also be purchased and attached to the side of the crib. Spare nappies, a change of clothes, spare pacifiers, blankets and wraps can all be kept in these handy storage solutions, for easy reach should you need to do a quick change in the night.
The space under the crib can also be put to great use. Baskets and or storage boxes can be used to store excess clothes and other items that are not in immediate use.
Keep your baby bag well organized with spare wipes, nappies, and a change of clothes, changing mat, snacks and bottles if needed.
If you use items when out replace them when you get home and hang bag up for next time. This will help to ensure you never leave home unprepared.
________________________________________________________________________ Like many women out there, Tracey Montford is an exceptional multi-tasker! Apart from steering a global business, managing 2 young boys & keeping the clan clean and fed, Tracey still finds time to provide creative inspiration and direction to the exceptional designs of Cake Maternity. From the branding, presentation and delivery, creativity is a big part of what Tracey does so naturally and effectively. Find out more at https://www.cakematernity.com/ or catch up with her on social @cakematernity.
We all know sleep is important — but as a new mom, do you worry that you’re not getting enough?
Is your baby or toddler regularly waking you up throughout the night?
If so, you’re not alone, and it’s important to take notice.
Not only may you be hindering your level of cognitive function (and in turn, ability to care for your family and yourself), but you may also increase your risk of postpartum depression (PPD).
This is a serious claim, so let’s explore what the research has to say about this connection — and better yet, how you can protect yourself against the symptoms of PPD.
New Mothers Are Exhausted
There have been numerous studies conducted which have focused on new moms and the effects of sleep deprivation. Moms are feeling overwhelmed, tired, and worried — it’s a real concern.
Within one study, it was found that even after 18 weeks, postpartum mothers were registering at medically-significant levels of tiredness. In fact, over 50 percent of these mothers were still experiencing excessive daytime sleepiness four months after giving birth.
Chronic sleep deprivation can lead to some devastating physical and mental effects, including the onset of PPD — which is not only triggered by hormonal and psychological changes, but also fatigue. Combine this with restless nights due to the needs of growing babies and toddlers, and an unfortunate cycle can develop.
The point of this article is to reach out to those who are in need. Those who feel ashamed to seek the help that they deserve. It’s important that we ban together, instead of creating unnecessary stigmas — especially since PPD affects between 6.5% and 12.9% of all childbearing women.
Mothers who struggle with sleep deprivation and PPD understand that the struggle is not only real — it’s frightening. There is, however, a light at the end of the tunnel — you just need to get yourself on the right path.
The Connection Between Sleep Deprivation and PPD
Before we dive into potential solutions, it’s important that we address what may be going on within your body and mind. After all, understanding what you’re experiencing is half the battle.
Knowledge is power, and if you’re already seeking this type of information, you should be proud of yourself.
So, does PPD cause sleep deprivation — or is it a lack of sleep that causes PPD?
Although there is no simple answer here, specialists believe that poor sleep quality and difficulty falling asleep may be an early warning sign of PPD. After all, those who struggle to sleep can suffer from all kinds of symptoms, including anxiety, weakness, lack of concentration, mood swings, and even hallucinations.
Within another study, published in the Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic & Neonatal Nursing. The researchers studied women who were 6 to 26 weeks postpartum. It was found that women who were suffering from PPD, not only experienced poorer sleep quality in comparison to women with PPD — but sleep quality also worsened as PPD symptoms became more severe.
Since there are numerous biological and social factors that can exacerbate PPD, your onset will likely not develop overnight. In terms of prolonged sleep deprivation, you will likely experience gradual symptoms — so be mindful of how you feel on a day-to-day basis.
What Can I Do?
If you have any inclination that PPD may be affecting your life, know that you no longer need to feel this way. Beginning with issues surrounding sleep deprivation, it’s critical that you implement some of the following suggestions:
Create a family plan that assists you during nighttime care. Whether that means getting your partner more involved, having your sister stay with you, or visiting with your mom — good sleep hygiene is an important area to begin your recovery. Also, do not nap, exercise, or drink caffeine/alcohol 3-4 hours before bed. Having a family member nearby will also ensure that your symptoms are being properly monitored.
Get outside during the day, helping your body’s internal clock reset. This is especially the case for mothers who have been up every night, exposing themselves to bright lights. Avoid using any technology that emits bright light two hours before heading to bed as well. There may also be a linked between PPD and a vitamin D deficiency, so motivate yourself to spend more time outdoors.
Teach your baby to sleep through the night. How, you ask? Well, in the first few weeks there is not much you can do. That’s when you have to sleep when the baby sleeps. But after that you need to be consistent and maintain a regular routine. Make sure that the daytime hours are packed with lively stimuli, in comparison to nighttime hours, which will focus on a calm, quiet environment. This includes approximately half hour before you put your baby down, when your baby is sleepy but still awake. Gradually encourage your baby to fall asleep on their own, as their natural circadian rhythms begin to develop (around six weeks). If you have a toddler, provide them with a comfort object — their favorite stuffed animal or blanket; helping them fall back asleep on their own. If that doesn’t help, consider getting a baby sleep consultant.
Seek a professional opinion. At this point, if you’re having any doubts, it’s important to speak to a professional. There are plenty of non-medication treatments available, including cognitive-behavioral therapy.
Just remember, although sleep loss is both common and normal after the new arrival of a baby, tackling these problems early on could help reduce your risk of PPD. Allow yourself to feel — it’s okay, not to be okay. It’s what you do next, that will make all the difference.
Admit to yourself that you require some level of support. In doing so, the last thing you should feel is embarrassment or weakness — because asking for help is the bravest thing you can do.
Krista Hillis is a psychology expert at Parenting Pod. She loves writing and explaining complex scientific principles in simple terms that all parents can understand.
February is the month for love. For those of you who haven’t gotten a full night’s sleep in quite some time, then we’re guessing what you might love most right now is MORE SLEEP! That’s why in addition to our personalized sleep consultation packages, we are also giving away FIVE Express Sleep Plans®. Our Express Sleep Plans® have been very popular with families who are seeking baby or toddler sleep help. The Express Sleep Plan® is a customized, step-by-step sleep coaching plan that is available for easy and immediate download.
Here’s How to Enter:
(earn up to three entries)
1. Post a comment below telling us what is the biggest sleep issue you’re currently struggling with.
2. Post a link to an article from our blog that you’ve found helpful in your sleep coaching journey.
3. Tweet about the giveaway and tag us @babysleepsite.
How much do you love your sleep? Get more sleep by entering @babysleepsite’s Love Your Sleep #giveaway and you could win one of 5 Express Sleep Plans! http://bit.ly/2DRhBqH
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It’s that time of year when everyone sets goals for a brand spanking new year. If you are a newbie to the parenting rodeo, your goals probably include attempting to shower more regularly, climbing out from under a mountain of laundry that never seems to be done, and getting some SLEEP! Sleep makes the world go around. If you can get your little cherubs to get some shut-eye so that you can snag some rest yourself, you are much more likely to actually get to the business of achieving your own goals (gym anyone?).
Sleep is one of the most difficult issues that new parents face, and when you are trying to master a sleep schedule for not one but TWO babies, it can feel like an insurmountable task. Friends. It can be done. It can. You can. Trust yourself. With a little bit of patience and perseverance, you can achieve a sleep schedule. Here are some encouraging tips to help you win at the sleep schedule game.
1. Set the Stage
The first thing you want to do when you are trying to implement a master schedule for your twins is to provide them with an environment that is conducive to sleep. Once you have carved out what you want your ideal daytime and nighttime age-appropriate sleep schedule is, make sure that their sleep zone is helping and not hindering their sleep success. Placing your twins in a comfortably cool space that has soft lighting and white noise will increase the odds that they nod off into peaceful bliss. Appropriate attire will also keep them cozy and relaxed.
It may also be helpful to add some environmental flexibility. Some twins do very well in a synchronized schedule, eating and sleeping together. You may find, even if it is just for certain ages and stages, that some separation may help you in your sleep pursuits. Who knows? Separate nap areas may be the missing link to get over the sleep hump.
2. Play Detective: The Little Things Add Up
Like any area of life, making small changes can have a big impact. Every baby, even a twin, is a unique individual. You are the parent of your sweet ones, and you know them better than anyone else. If you take some time to hone in on what is working or not working for your littles, you will likely to able to make small adjustments that can lead to huge changes. Grab a notebook and a cup of coffee, and jot down some details about your dynamic duo. You will likely notice little corrections that can be made that you never noticed before.
One mom told us that after a few days of close observation, she noticed that one of her cuddle monkeys needed to nap for about 20 to 30 minutes longer than her other one to be fully rested in the afternoon. She then was able to whisk in at the first sign of stirring for Baby A and let Baby B get a few more minutes. This led to a happier wake up for Baby B, and better nighttime sleep because he didn’t start out his evening routine overtired. Having flexibility to stagger schedules worked for her and may be something worth considering for some families.
3. Think Two Steps Ahead
Staying two steps ahead is another key to winning the game. When you are evaluating your schedule, be sure to look at not just the here and now, but the here and ten hours from now. If your twinzies woke up earlier than normal and fussy, you can plan for a course correction later in the day. Perhaps settling into a slightly earlier nap to ensure that they don’t begin nap in the overtired state thereby forfeiting needed sleep and setting you up for a fussy evening. This kind of parenting agility allows you to ride through the bumps in the road and make it to your end goal of good sleep for all.
4. Consistency is Key
Just like with a healthy diet or successful budget, consistency is the key to success. Create a workable routine and try your best to stick with it. Things aren’t always going to be perfect. Life happens. Travel, sickness, and seasonal changes to name a few issues can throw you and your twins off your game. Follow the 80/20 rule (aiming to keep your schedule 80% of the time). If you start everyday with the intention of sticking to your sleep schedule and getting back on course when you are inevitably derailed, you will succeed in the long run. It may feel difficult to get ahead on the sleeping game, but we are confident that with a little effort and patience, you can achieve sleep success.
About the Author Out-of-the-box thinker, Krystal Workman, gets creative under stress…and life with twins happens to be full of it! In order to soothe her crying babies while alone, Krystal invented the first ergonomic twin baby carrier—TwinGo Carrier (www.TwinGoCarrier.com)—to cuddle both her babies at the same time. TwinGo now empowers thousands of parents worldwide to keep their babies close. As former President of one of the largest twins clubs in the USA, Krystal assists new parents with babywearing, breastfeeding, sleep coaching, healthy routines, positive discipline, and couple’s therapy. You can get more twin-related information on the TwinGo Blog.
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