Expert / 12 June, 2018 / Ellie Thompson

Sophie Wilkinson On Baby Sleep

Certified sleep consultant Sophie Wilkinson from Baby Sleep the Night. Sophie is a mental health practitioner for children and she has over a decade of experience of working with thousands of families to help solve their children’s sleeping difficulties, and on the show today we focus on baby sleep and the many issues surrounding routine. Hi, sophie, welcome to Parental Control. Thank you so much for joining us today. How are you?

we’ve got you on to share some wisdom and tips on sleeping routine, which is understandably a huge topic of interest when it comes to a new baby, isn’t it?

How important is it for baby to get into a good routine?

I have a five-year-old and a three-year-old and I can absolutely guarantee that all most will say to me I don’t want a routine, I want to be able to go about my day-to-day life. I want my baby to come with me, I want it to be quite flexible. And I was that person as well, and you know what, the baby usually dictates something different. Lots of babies love routine. They thrive off routine, and that’s where sometimes we can see sleep issues if we don’t have a routine in place.

But for me, the families I work with, routine is essential and babies need appropriate wake windows, They need day and night differentiation. 12 hours a day, 12 hours at night, just really reaffirming all those basic skills for sleep first bedtime routines, nap time routines. They’re really important to make your baby feel really safe and secure leading up to sleep time as well. So really important to have a routine for our little ones.

You can’t really get a newborn into any sort of routine, can you? Because you’re cluster feeding and you’re up and down. Routine is something you have to work towards. So how do we start?

Absolutely, absolutely right. Never put pressure on a newborn. Never put pressure on yourself with a newborn either. But you can put in some really good, healthy sleep habits from birth. So looking at the 12-hour day, 12-hour night, I remember with me I used to do before I got into this role, I was up till 10 o’clock, baby on me asleep. Only since I’ve been trained do I now know that if you try to aim for a 12-hour night, 8 pm bedtime, that doesn’t mean not holding your baby or not putting them up to bed in the cot or whatever it is. You can have them with you close, but aim for an 8 pm bedtime. So do your bath, do all of those things, do that routine that you’d like to keep from the very beginning, and aim for that 8 pm bedtime, whether it’s on you or in the cot.

I do newborn packages for families and families will say to me I really want to do this better this time. I cannot do another 7 months of my child waking up every hour during the night, taking me an hour to get them back to sleep. I can’t do it again next time. But I need to be more flexible because I’ve got another child, so you’ve got that element of it as well, and it’s looking at a family and saying how is this going to work best for you? it’s not a generic kind of “one rule” for everybody.


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How can you show baby the difference between night and day?

Maternal melatonin carries over with the baby and lasts for between 3 to 6 weeks, so they will be extra sleepy in those early days. They will probably sleep better at night time. Melatonin is our sleepy hormone, and it goes through the umbilical cord, other hormones go with it and it supports your baby’s circadian rhythm. When you get to the 3 to 6 weeks you might go, oh my goodness, my baby is no longer tired; oh my goodness, this is hard work.

That’s why establishing night and day is really important. We need to be looking at again the day and night darkness, darkness and light sets our circadian rhythm, which then supports our melatonin release. With the melatonin release, we are able to sleep through the night and then all of our wake-up hormones serotonin, adrenaline wakes us up in the morning and then we can go the whole day being awake –obviously with our naps for little ones – and then the melatonin really kicks in at bedtime, supporting that day and night sleep. So that’s really important, once that maternal melatonin wears off, that we’re concentrating on that 12-hour day and the 12-hour night.

And it’s things like changing their clothes when they wake. They need to get into a morning routine too. Set the tone, turn the light on, open the curtains. A little bit of like Mary Poppins moment, where everything is bright and breezy in the morning. If you’re working on a wake window, that’s the time that you’re gonna put your clock on for that wake window. Feeding upon waking is also a really lovely way to start the day.

With reflux babies, sleep and routine and be very hard. You may find that they’re always wanting to feed. They want to feel more comfortable with the feed. However, then they fall asleep and then they wake up and they’re uncomfortable because they’ve not digested it properly and it’s not relaxed down enough. So feeling, upon waking really helps, especially with those babies with reflux. This is where lots of families will say to me, “I can’t possibly do that. They need to feed to sleep,” and I’ve been there, absolutely. I was there every 45 minutes with mine at night time and I was feeding them every 45 minutes.

Using a pregnancy pillow to keep reflux babies upright after a feed

The Dreamgeenii is great for keeping your reflux baby upright after a feed. These pillows are made from beautiful fabrics and they’re so soft. They let you have your hands free a little bit more, whether you’re about to feed or breastfeeding. You can use it for both Keeping little ones upright for reflux as well as feeding upon waking.

So just being really engaging with little ones, that’s really helpful to keep them wide awake on a feed to prevent them from dozing off, obviously with the reflux being there as well, but also creating some associations with I need a feed to be able to fall asleep. Now, from a newborn, your baby’s going to fall asleep when they’re tired as well. There are some things we can do just to create a little bit of a longer nap for them, rather than just short little catnaps snacking snoozes, I call them and we can do something to help with that. That is one tool keeping them wide awake, engaging with them using an upright position, a pillow like the dream genie, to really support them to stay awake on that feed as well.

Pegnancy pillows also good for tummy time as well, which keeps them sort of alert when they’re supposed to be. Neither of mine were big fans of tummy time, but I know it’s something that is quite important for babies to do, and using a pregnancy pillow just meant that they weren’t so flat on the floor, so it’s quite a good tool for that as well. So what about keeping the house and room light and bright and then things like blackout blinds for when they are asleep, because I mean, we’re going into winter now so it’s darker in the mornings already, and but in the summer, when both of mine were kind of summer babies, it was quite bright in their bedrooms when they’re going for naps.

0:11:56 – Speaker 3
So things like that isn’t it to really distinguish between night and day, absolutely, and you know, as a little baby you don’t necessarily need to have the day sleep in pure darkness. I would say around eight weeks you might be wanting to look at really setting the scene for that environment as well, so they can be in dark, supporting that melatonin for those times as well, so the darkness is going to support their sleep. So with a blackout blind summer, i probably see a lot of my why is my child waking early in the summer rather than the winter? it’s absolutely driven by a circadian rhythm. Now, if you can make that better by blacking out a room, making it as dark as possible, even those little tiny little gaps that you get around the blackout blinds and I know I’m sounding really over the top, but that can make all the difference to some babies and toddlers.

0:12:53 – Speaker 2
It makes a difference to me because we’ve got like sunlight that comes right in under our curtain and as soon as that’s coming in the morning I’m awake.

0:13:00 – Speaker 3
Yeah, and if you’re finding it difficult to get back to sleep, just like some babies are, they’re relying on something from us to go. Can you just put the dummy back in, or can you give me another feed? I want to get back to sleep and there’s an association around falling back to sleep. You wake up at five o’clock in the morning and you go right, i need my I don’t know TV to get me back to sleep. Five o’clock in the morning, you’re up, you’re done.

0:13:22 – Speaker 1
Yeah, that’s it Game over.

0:13:25 – Speaker 3
Yeah, you might as well start the day, and it just gets really difficult for little ones. They’re in a lighter phase sleep, the sleep pressure has dropped, they see the sun come up, the melatonin drops, the wake up hormones come up, and there you go, done.

0:13:39 – Speaker 2
Oh, i remember that being up at like ungodly hours at the start thinking why is CBBs not even on?

0:13:46 – Speaker 3
yet this is too early.

0:13:48 – Speaker 2
Even CBBs doesn’t want to wake up yet And what about during the daytime naps? is it right that we should not be sort of extra quiet? they should get used to just noise.

0:14:03 – Speaker 3
Yeah again, if your baby got really good sleep skills, absolutely. If your baby is relying on something to get back to sleep, whether or not a newborn baby or six months, seven months, ten months, a year old, okay. If your child wakes up and then they go, please give me something else. Like I talked about in the morning, we need something Now. A short nap is often enough to see little ones go through and just go right, done my bit, time to wake up, and it’s really hard to get them back to sleep popping the dummy back in straight away or giving them a rock.

For lots of babies they find it hard to go back into that sleep cycle if they’ve already taken the edge off that tiredness by having a short nap. So a big, loud pots and pans or the dog barking in any part of that sleep cycle will. Then, once little ones come out of the sleep cycle, they’ll wake up and go. Something’s changed within that sleep cycle. So you might think, oh, baby hasn’t woken up, the dogs been barking, great. But when they come to the end of that sleep cycle they would have registered something to change, wake up. You’ll find it hard to get them back to sleep, or maybe you won’t at the early days in that first six weeks, and then you’ll find that, yeah, you wish you hadn’t made any noise. But if a baby’s a really good sleeper, they’ve got really good sleep skills and not relying on anything from you, they’ll wake up and go. I’m just going to go back to sleep because I’m still tired. It’s just easier.

0:15:33 – Speaker 2
Yeah, that’s funny, isn’t it? and kids are all different. Babies are all different, like my five year old. Now she’s up, she’s learned how to turn Netflix on, so she’s down in the morning at about six. But then my three year old son You can’t get him out of bed. He just loves lying in and snoozing so lazy. But then he’ll tend to get to sleep later, where she hits the pillow about 20, past half past seven and she’s gone. That’s it till six.

0:16:00 – Speaker 3
So it’s funny how they’re all different. Every child is so different And you’ll probably come to know I’m not a big believer in generic sleep plans. No child is the same. Why are we trying to treat them the same? We need to absolutely look at your child, look at what they’re already doing, what they then do with the sleep skills built in, and then how do we adapt it for your family and for your child and their needs as well. So it’s really important. every child is completely different.

0:16:29 – Speaker 2
Yeah, and self settling, that’s a tough one, isn’t it? And you can use things like white noise and sort of those kind of aids. And then there’s the dummy. What are your thoughts on that? It’s great at the time.

Yes, absolutely, as I’m learning my five year old. She was so reflexy putting a dummy in her mouth Absolutely She would just spit it out and was like I don’t want this, i’m so angry. What are you doing? Whereas my three year old loved it and needed it and still does. And it’s just, we’re at the point where we’re like how do we get this done? Our dentist has recently said right, he’s three, now he’s got to get rid of it now because the dummy teeth are setting in.

0:17:09 – Speaker 3
Oh, yeah, absolutely. And that is the biggest thing I get is I didn’t think we were going to use a dummy, but we really needed it And it was a lifesaver Absolutely.

0:17:18 – Speaker 1
Use the dummy.

0:17:20 – Speaker 3
Use the dummy If it’s a lifesaver at that time. There’s no other tools that you’ve got to kind of help. Absolutely use it. Why would you not? It’s there for you. The difficulty comes is when they get older and they might sleep. Well, you’ve got the issues of potentially teeth The dummy teeth, as you’ve just mentioned but I usually always see early waking with dummy use. You’ve just said that You don’t. But I normally I normally see early, early waking or night waking, And it might mean night waking.

0:17:54 – Speaker 2
Yeah, it might mean he’s trying to find it.

0:17:56 – Speaker 3
Yes, Yeah, And you’ve got all these glow in the dark dummies. You know what? It’s often too late. So a baby’s woken up, or Todd has woken up and they’ve gone. I need my dummy. They’ve done find it and they try and suck on it and go. I was too late. now I need some more help. Come on, bring the big guns in. I need to go back to sleep right now And the dummy isn’t good enough.

0:18:16 – Speaker 2
It isn’t enough. Especially That’s when our three year old puts on Thomas the Tank Engine on his Tony box at full blast and we’re all then awake Going to watch the sky.

0:18:27 – Speaker 3
Oh yes, now, that is talent. I like that. One’s on Netflix, one’s on Thomas the Tank Engine. Oh no, what are you going to do? Oh, i love it, but yeah, there is a time and a place for a dummy reflux baby. Some love it. You’ve absolutely hit the nail on the head. Your youngest, for silent reflux, preferred it. Your older one, no, not so much Didn’t help, but it can be really helpful.

The dummy’s been proven to potentially help the SIDS, so prevents it. So it’s a case of balancing it all up. One will your baby even take a dummy? Two have they got reflux? Does it help? Sometimes it can hinder. Three they’re really finding it helpful to settle with a dummy And it could be a really good tool. What’s? they’ve woken up from short and up to quickly pop that dummy in, and for some babies that’s enough to get them back to sleep when they’re young enough. Yeah, as they get older too late. You often see the dummy is not good enough, it’s not effective enough to get little ones back to sleep, and that’s when I say right, if you’re seeing lots of wakes, if you’re seeing your toddler waking for the dummy and then still not been able to get back to sleep, ditch the dummy.

0:19:45 – Speaker 2
Yeah, but how to ditch the dummy? Because we’ve never found the right time And it’s. I just think we should have done it when he was younger And it just been like I don’t know where your dummy is. And now we’re saying the sleep fairy, the dummy fairy, wants to come and take your dummies and he’s an abit, she’ll bring her prize. I don’t want a prize, we want my dummy. So we’re in that position where but don’t get me wrong he was so sick as a newborn, he had a UTI and a staff infection And in hospital it was just me and him And we were in a room together and I just couldn’t settle him. And that was when the dummy, the dummy was my best friend And I don’t regret it, but it’s. I think you do have to have a plan and stick to it.

0:20:31 – Speaker 3
Yes, And unfortunately the room is a true cold turkey, because you give them some time and then not another time. Well, what do you expect? He’s going to be really cross at the time.

0:20:43 – Speaker 2
Yeah, why can’t I have it now?

0:20:45 – Speaker 3
And why can I not have it now? Some somebody I worked with put loads of dummies around the tree outside, showed the little one and then walked away and then went back to the tree and loads of toys around it. I mean that might be helpful for a three-year-old as well. The older maybe a bit more incentive for the drop. Yeah, definitely needs some incentives but the sticker might not do it. No stickers.

0:21:15 – Speaker 2
No, bribery is a big thing in our house and stickers are not going to cut it.

0:21:21 – Speaker 3
Oh dear, it’s when you go back to the dentist, isn’t it? And you go and they say why is his teeth just black? You think, well, i’ve been given him a chocolate briary every morning instead of the dummy. Yeah.

0:21:31 – Speaker 2
I know you actually can’t win Exactly. So, going back to, i guess, sort of the fourth trimester, when you bought your baby home, you’re trying to get into a routine. If you’ve got an upset baby that won’t sleep and you’re asleep to a prior mum, how do you deal with that? What are the best things to do?

0:21:54 – Speaker 3
Without sound and patronising, and I wish I’d done it more myself. Getting help from others. You need some time. That’s not always possible for some people. I know it wasn’t for me. I didn’t live anywhere near family or relatives, but I did have a neighbour and I just kept saying to myself do you think I could just pop him over Now? I know she would have loved it. Yeah, over the garden fence, Absolutely, and the dog go, But we don’t. Everyone says can I help? Can I do this? Please let me know if I can help, But we don’t use it.

And it’s only when you come through it, you go oh, i wish I did. I know that it’d been fine, But when you’re in it, you don’t want to put that pressure on other people And also some people don’t want to leave their baby as well. So if you can get some time, absolutely if you’ve got a partner that is around, say to them I need half an hour, i need an hour, especially if you’ve got a colicky reflux, your baby that’s crying a lot, it’s draining and it is tiring and you’re up all night. Where is your time? You need time. As patronising as that might be, and people are probably shouting well, i can’t do it, i can’t do this. If you can even find five minutes, please do. That is going to be the most helpful thing that you can do for a baby that’s just always settled all the time and you sleep deprived.

0:23:17 – Speaker 2
It’s so hard though, isn’t it? I remember with Maddie she was probably four months and we were in like pure reflux, how we still on. I don’t think we’d gone on to neocate at that point, so she was still. she was on. Renita Dean We tried to met Prasul and I was there, i remember, all day on my own at home, and she was kicking off about quarter to 10 in the morning and she was still screaming at quarter to five in the afternoon, and it was only then. I was just at my wits and I rang my mum and I was like, please, come around, please. And they were like, why didn’t you ring us earlier? And they came around, they took her away and she stopped crying. So sometimes the baby sort of needs a bit of a change of scene as well and it’s good for you both to just be like step away and then reset.

0:24:03 – Speaker 3
Yeah, and the one best bit of advice I’ve taken is it’s very uncommon for there ever to be an emergency with a baby and you know what or a child. It’s very rarely an emergency. And looking back now, I think I probably just look like a headless chicken sometimes, just running around.

Oh my god, my baby’s crying, oh my god, And you just build up, build up, build up, build up, and that anxiety goes through the roof. So, if you can save yourself, look there’s no emergency. And if you really need a breather, put your baby in a safe space. Put them in their cot. You know that they can’t get out, they’re safe. They’re crying on you. Pop them down a bit, get a breather. Also, looking objectively at the reasons why your little ones crying, are they crying because they’re hungry? well, it’s just been fed, so unlikely to be hunger. Are they crying because they’re tired? potentially they’ve not slept for a while? are they crying because they’ve got a dirty nappy? objectively, work it out rather than just panicking and this is absolutely coming from my personal experience, because I did.

I just ran around the place going oh, it’s just crying all the time, the same as you, yeah. And then you do, somebody else has them, and you think I’ve been trying to get you to sleep for an hour and then my mom would come in and we’ll just gently rock and look at the birds and then we’d be asleep and I was like, great, well done, yeah.

0:25:28 – Speaker 2
I’ve always left me feeling like such a rubbish mom. Yeah, when my parents came in that day, oh hello. Took her off my lap and she stopped crying. They went out and looked around the garden and yeah, i was just left there, shell shocked, like she’s been crying all day.

0:25:43 – Speaker 3
honestly, she’s not been this good for me, yeah but it’s tough and when you’re in it and you do think your anxiety is so high your baby’s been crying for so long and you need some time and don’t be afraid to put your baby in a safe space for you just to come out and just collect your thoughts a little bit, take a breath, absolutely. You’ve got your um the tiger in the tree pose as well. That was a lifesaver for me. I remember that that brings back memories.

Yes, it’s just a cradle position that absolutely relieves any discomfort as well. So me and you would have had discomfort with our babies to do with as well, and a lot of families I work with have that that tiger in the tree position really helpful as well, so do like look that up anybody that’s listening, because that’s really helpful.

0:26:28 – Speaker 2
We found our rocker was invaluable as well, but didn’t really help with sleep because then they would go to sleep in that, which isn’t ideal, but it is a. It’s a good tool to have if you can afford to get one.

0:26:42 – Speaker 3
Yeah, absolutely, and something just away from you for a bit as well. If you’re feeling like all day that’s all you’ve done and they’re not settling. That was the worst thing for me my baby crying and I felt and I’m not saying other people feel like this, but I felt like a failure. I felt like I couldn’t get my child to settle, i couldn’t get my child to sleep and I was feeding and everyone said oh, just feed him sleep, just cuddle him to sleep. I am, but he’s still crying.

0:27:06 – Speaker 2
Yeah, it’s tough reflux. babies are really tough. Yeah, absolutely So. where should baby sleep? so we know the first six months the rules are you’re with them all the time. Yes, so what’s what’s the what’s what’s an ideal sleeping situation?

0:27:22 – Speaker 3
So the ideal sleep situation is to have a little one up to six months in your room or in a room together. I would suggest naps in that room. In an ideal world, parents would stay in that room and they would do their own thing while it once sleeps. That is going to bring about some really good, healthy sleep habits, some nice long naps, some less protests, some less tears in the day, because your baby’s going to be well rested and we’ve met the need for sleep. So absolutely I would suggest that in an ideal world Now, if you’ve got older children, the family, you’re going to have to do naps on the go and things like that. but ideally that’s what I would suggest you do together until six months and then into the separate room post six months.

0:28:09 – Speaker 2
I think some parents find that transition quite hard don’t they. I didn’t. I was like because we’d made such a nice bedroom and it was all quite exciting. It is a bit strange, though, when they’re next to you and then they’re not in their room, you think an end of an era.

0:28:26 – Speaker 3
Six months is a long time as well, isn’t it? Yeah?

0:28:28 – Speaker 2
to have a little person next to you all night. Yeah, but by six months as well, you would hope. They’re sort of well, mine were both sleeping through, you were lucky, but yeah. So have you got any tips for doing that transition, making that transition a bit easier on moms that might be worried about it?

0:28:48 – Speaker 3
Well, just because you reach six months doesn’t mean that you have to go and put them in the nursery and that’s it. You don’t have to do that. If you want to do a little bit more of a transition, gentle approach, where you don’t want to be without them, maybe at night time or for naps, you could either put them in at night time or just for naps if you wanted to, like you say, make your nursery really lovely. Have a monitor. There are so many amazing products, as you know, out there. You can use monitors to make sure your baby’s safe under the mattress.

There’s so many things that you can say that don’t everything to make sure that my baby’s okay. If it’s a connection thing, you want your baby really close, just keep them in your bedroom. There’s no reason why you can’t turn the white noise up though, because from four months it’s very little ones just get very distracted by any noise. So if you’ve got a resident snorer in the room, just crank up the white noise. But there’s no reason at six months you have to just cart them off. Put them in their own room. You don’t have to do that at all if you’re not ready.

0:29:51 – Speaker 2
No, that’s true, isn’t it? and in terms of a sleep schedule from newborn up to a year, how much should they be sleeping and when? are there any hard and fast rules on how much sleep they should be getting a day?

0:30:07 – Speaker 3
Again, every child is completely different. I would work on wake windows up until about six months and then usually from six months you’d be looking at a bit more of a set schedule to support that night time sleep for most babies. I go straight in past six months with a 9.30 and a 2 o’clock nap. That distribution works lovely for little ones and at six months you might be looking at two two-hour naps. As they get older, of course, you’re going to get to nine months, ten months an hour Each nap might be enough And you might need to shift the timings a little bit to suit your baby. usually around the 10 and the 2.30 ish mark And ideally a 12 hour night. so 7 pm to 7 am wake up. So those timings would support that bed timing there as well. I think we’d be here literally all day if we went through the wake windows for every age. but absolutely a wake window up until six months at least and then usually over to that two nap schedule from around six months.

0:31:12 – Speaker 2
What about bad habits? We did get into a few nap habits with our first child, which was pretty more easy going, although in the end she kept that afternoon nap for longer, whereas he dropped it quite quickly. So it’s quite strange. But what about parents that have got themselves into bad habits with sleep and naps? Is there? how can you change things? Is the cry it out that is so controversial? Would you recommend anything like that, or is that just a no-no?

0:31:48 – Speaker 3
I wouldn’t recommend cry it out. There are so many ways you can do it Better, kinder gentler, without seeing so much protest Abandoning this? Yeah, and you know what? There are studies to suggest out there that there’s absolutely no change in cortisol, which is our stress level, when undertaking the cry it out method. Now, i’m a children’s mental health practitioner as well. I like to see a balance between the attachment part of things, that I don’t want to abandon my child. You don’t want to do that as a parent, but we are talking about families that are at breaking point. Something needs to change.

There is absolutely no evidence to suggest that cry it out, as I said, is detrimental to health, only positive to health. However, for parents, they don’t want to walk out and just go see a lady So hard. Okay, we need to do a bit more of a gentle approach. I need you in there with the baby. I want you to know that you’re there. You can touch them, you can respond to them, but ultimately we are getting them to fall asleep. Okay, i don’t think sleep training is for everyone. Yes, babies are fine. They are fine sleepers.

You had babies from six months that slept through. Yeah, what do I say? sleep training a child. No, i’d say maybe we could tweak the naps. If you’re seeing early wakes, maybe we can look at a different routine. If you’re seeing bedtime battles, if your child is sleeping through, why bother doing anything? You don’t need to do anything If your baby is up every 45 minutes, if they are up every two hours, if they are up and you’re thinking I don’t want them to be up there a year now and I’m still having to do a feed in the night and it’s upsetting them in the day, they’re really tired That’s when I’d be saying let’s do something about it.

Then I think it’s very personal to each family, but I wouldn’t go in and say, no, just walk out. Okay, that’s not what you’re paying me for, otherwise, you’re absolutely going to do that. That’s fine, but it’s a very gentle approach keeping you with them, making sure you feel happy with the process that you’re going through as well And ultimately seeing them self settling, and then they will naturally give you the sleep that they need, which is just a lovely place to be. I did it myself. I was at the lowest ebb. I even thought I saw a snake eating the dog when I was half asleep, so I hallucinated. I won’t do that. Yeah, and it’s that horrible feeling, isn’t it, when you kind of hold your baby and then you wake up and go oh, where are you, where are?

0:34:32 – Speaker 2
you. You’re searching the bed.

0:34:34 – Speaker 3
Yes, Oh yeah, it’s scary Oh that’s freaky, isn’t it?

It’s really scary and you’re sleep deprived at that moment. Early sleep deprivation is tough. Chronic sleep deprivation actually is debilitating and we can’t cope. So if you’re there, if anybody’s here listening and you’re thinking, oh people tell me not to Sleep train or not to do this, and absolutely I’ve been there and family members said to me you can’t sleep train, and you know what? there was nothing else I could have tried and I would have. I would have, and I’m a sleep consultant and I’m saying that I would have tried something else. Nobody wants to go through that process.

0:35:11 – Speaker 2
No, we I admit that we did do a bit of cry out with Maddie, because you know, when you know your babies cry, yeah, and she just would cry from anger, not because she was upset, because she was so angry, yeah, and that was when we would know, know, you’re having a nap, and we just we just be outside the door, yeah, and just let her be angry for a bit, and then she would get, she’d go to sleep for three hours, yeah, and I know some people wouldn’t agree with that, but we’ve given them both we feel like we’ve given them both the gift of sleep. We didn’t have to do that with our son because he was just his default sort of Disposition is is quite happy, quite happy, go lucky baby. I used to just like tickle him a bit and he’d laugh and then I’d walk out the room and he’d go to sleep, whereas Maddie it would be like, yeah, and it’s just different kids, different, totally different personalities and you’re managing.

0:36:06 – Speaker 3
That personality is absolutely, and I never do one thing with one family and one thing with another. We have to understand the personality of that child. If we’re going right, i want you to stay in the room and the child is going ballistic because you’re in the room, the next night I might say, right, let’s come out and we’ll do a different approach. Yeah, because sometimes it’s just not helpful to keep touching a child. They’re going get off me If you’re not going to put me to sleep, get away. Yeah, that’s last. Yeah, absolutely, and there’s always children out there that I like it. Some children actually cried for asleep. They’re so overwhelmed by the day. What are they communicating? They’ve been fed. I’m talking about toddlers. They’ve been fed. There’s nothing wrong with them.

0:36:46 – Speaker 1
They have no pain.

0:36:47 – Speaker 3
They’ve been running around all day and then they just needed Explode with tears just before they go to bed. Might be a minute, might be a couple of minutes, but then they fought to sleep and go. Oh Great, that’s what I needed. They were communicating that they’re tired, yeah, so it’s really important to see what exactly our little ones are communicating.

0:37:07 – Speaker 2
And my last question on the list is why do babies wake up more frequently as they get older, when in you would actually think they’d be sleeping better at that point? Is that quite a common thing?

0:37:19 – Speaker 3
Yes, and that’s when people come to me and say, oh, I’m so frustrated.

0:37:23 – Speaker 2
My little this work. And now what’s going on?

0:37:24 – Speaker 3
Yeah well my little ones, i know sleeping through at six months And I’m nine months and they’re waking up five times. Wise this. So firstly I would go What’s happening with day sleep? Are you giving them too much or too little day sleep? If that looks okay, i’ll be looking at the bedtime routine and then I’ll go right. Nothing obvious here. What are you doing to get your child back to sleep in the middle of the night, the four times that they’re waking up, or however many times? yes, i’ve got a feeding again now.

Okay, so we’ve created this new association with sleep And actually it’s not helpful and it’s called so add, and I don’t like this very much It’s sleep onset association disorder. Just ignore disorder. I think it’s too much. But basically is when a child says I associate something to fall asleep. So if you’re associating a feed, a rock, the dummy, whatever it is, and All of a sudden your baby’s waking up and they’re needing something from you, they are reliant on that and that is causing them to wake up frequently. So we need to remove that reliance to make sure that they are self-settling again. Then they won’t be waking up more frequently.

So, yes, babies can be sleeping through, lovely. Maybe an illness is struck Maybe they’ve been on holiday, something’s coming, yeah, something’s coming to support the little one. And then they’ve ran with it and go Oh no, i really need it now. It’s not, it’s not unnecessary a behavior which is purposeful. But they’re saying, actually, i don’t know how to sleep now, and every time you feed me back to sleep, you’re reaffirming that I need to feed to sleep. Not, it’s not purposeful, purposeful, it’s not manipulative, absolutely not. It’s just a new way of doing it. So we need to teach them how not to do it that way so they sleep better.

0:39:15 – Speaker 2
Yeah, yeah, so interesting. I could talk all day about babies sleeping, especially reflux. So, yeah, it is funny how you you went through it, both of yours as well exactly the same as what you said as well.

0:39:33 – Speaker 3
Um, first was yeah, i wouldn’t take a dummy. Literally everything you said Yeah, really odd. A lot of families again that I speak to my own purse experiences You go with your first and they turn around and they say, was it your first? Yes, it is, but my baby shouldn’t be projectile vomiting.

I might have a hernia massive hernia and he was straining all the time and They just kept sending me back and I kept going back saying this isn’t right. Look at him. Yeah, no. And it was when I went to hospital with him and one of the nurses said he needs to stay, there’s something really wrong with him. And another Pediatrician came along said, no, he’s just got allergies and reflux. And I said, well, i’ve been asking, i’ve been asking about this for five months, and he was five months and that is my biggest regret with my first Yeah, i didn’t fight louder because somebody in authority turn around to me and say No, this is your first, it worry about it’s. All babies do this. Yeah. And the crying, the, that response between the hippocampus and The amygdala just firing off each other. He was stressed all the time, he was uncomfortable.

0:40:46 – Speaker 2
So I think you have to actually go to the GP three times before they’ll refer you. So if anyone’s listening to this in the same situation, keep going back. Don’t be fobbed off if you believe there are certain steps They have to follow, and then they’ll refer you. But it is tough and you know it’s just is what it is. But, yeah, but it does make you feel a bit rubbish that you’ve been pumping your baby with, with dairy formulas and I was a big one.

0:41:16 – Speaker 3
The wine didn’t know you could have wine.

0:41:22 – Speaker 1
Onions or any like so many things Yeah all my favorite Right.

0:41:30 – Speaker 2
well, thank you so much for coming on today, and where can our listeners follow you and Getting contact? Do you do like one-on-ones and things like that?

0:41:40 – Speaker 3
Yeah, absolutely So I am. I do 30 minute consultations. I do one-to-one in-house, i do online. Everything I said as I do, as I said, is one-to-one stuff, so it’ll be me that you talk to. I don’t do any generic support or just send you out anything, and that’s not how I work. Don’t find it helpful? So, yeah, you can find me at baby sleep the night underscore Sophie. The link in the bio there takes you everywhere that you need to go. You can DM me. I do Q&A’s on my Instagram. It’s a platform to make sure people are aware of sleep. And if there’s more issues that you need one-to-one, absolutely, yeah, drop me a line and we can look something in and we’ll put that info in our show notes In case you have missed that.

0:42:26 – Speaker 2
And also a massive Thank you to our sponsor. This episode is sponsored by dream genie Brilliant pregnancy pillows, and if you do have a reflux baby, it’s definitely something to invest in. If you haven’t had it from From pregnancy, they’re so useful from sort of Second trimester onwards, we’ve still got ours. The kids just love lounging on it.

0:42:49 – Speaker 3
Yeah, yeah, yeah, don’t go buy one. Yeah, don’t buy one.

0:42:52 – Speaker 2
Yeah. I know It’s one of those things that I feel sad giving it away because we’ve been through so much with that pillow.

0:42:57 – Speaker 3
Yeah, don’t go and buy one of those big, slouchy ones to go on your bed to look all glamorous.

0:43:01 – Speaker 2
Absolutely use the one that you’ve already got your pregnancy pillow and yeah we’re talking to um Ely Morrison, the midwife, about The pregnancy pillows, and the first one I did buy was I don’t know what make it was, but it was a big V-shaped one But it was huge, it was bigger than me and I thought this is gonna be so nice, but it was absolute disaster. It was too big, no room for me. You can’t even get it under the duvet really and then my husband was like what is this?

Cats loved it. But in the end I had to sell it or I gave it away and thinking, oh god, i’m glad I didn’t have to take that to the tip. Just massive landfill. But yeah, it was. It was too big, it was just not fit for that.

0:43:40 – Speaker 3
Yeah, that’s such a shame as well. There’s so many people out there trying to sell different things and they don’t see everybody. I must admit that the dream dream you was. We. I’ve had raves review for so yeah.

0:43:56 – Speaker 2
Yeah, oh, thank you so much. It’s been a brilliant episode. I think one that a lot of people will find helpful good good, that is it.

0:44:05 – Speaker 3
That’s the main aim here. Just get the awareness out for sleep. There’s not enough of it.

0:44:08 – Speaker 2
No, you’re so right. Well, thank you so much for coming on.

0:44:12 – Speaker 1
Thank you, thank you. Thank you so much for listening. I hope you enjoyed it. Don’t forget to click subscribe and leave us a rating or review, as it really does help get the word out there about the podcast. If you’ve got any questions about the topics that we discussed in this episode, or if there are any subjects that you would like to hear about, please email us at input, my bubbacom, or send me a message on Instagram at my bubba Instagram.


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