Articles 2018-06-11T08:59:04+00:00

Long Days Short Years- A Message

To all of the Mums with your new babies who are finding things challenging, I wanted to share my own story as my oldest baby now has turned 17 Nothing could ever have prepared me to be a parent, but being a parent to a teenager is something else entirely. When our children are young, yes it is so hard, frustrating and tiring, but at least they are safely with you all the time and you can entirely call

Christmas Proof Your Child’s Sleep

“It’s Christmas time....there’s no need to be afraid...”.... unless of course you are a parent with a toddler or preschooler, whose sleep could be entirely knocked off course due to the travel, late nights and excitement that comes at this time of year. As the wonderful Christmas period approaches some parents will start to worry about how to maintain a well rested child and still enjoy the festive period. As it is a time of travel for some and

Helping you to sleep during pregnancy

Pregnancy sleep : Achieving good sleep when you are pregnant can really be a challenge. It is usual in the first trimester to experience extreme tiredness but then you do have the promise of the second trimester when you may hopefully feel energetic and mostly well. However this isn’t always the case and as your pregnancy progresses and your body increases in size, sleep can be elusive. Unfortunately lack of sleep can prevent mums- to-be from operating at their

What do you do when your child has a parent preference?

Very often when parents are preparing to improve their child’s sleep, one goal that they set out to achieve is that either parent, and not just exclusively one parent, may attend to them at bedtime and in the overnight period as needed, with ease- as it is quite typical that many children appear to have a parent preference for one parent/caregiver around sleep, essentially locking out the others parents’ efforts to attend to their child. Encouraging inter-changeability around bedtime

Clocks Go Back Oct 27th…here’s how to manage

In advance of the clocks going back on Sunday October 27th it is a good idea for parents of young children to be aware of a few strategies that can be considered so that your established sleeper continues to sleep well or at the very least that sleep is minimally disturbed at this time. It can take a few days and as long as a week for the body, both adults and children alike, to adjust to a different

Naps on the GO

Naps can be hard to master. Achieving day sleep for your child is potentially one of the biggest sleep challenges that parent’s experience. The best place for your child to sleep beyond 4/5 months of age is in their cot, in a suitable sleep environment. This also helps your child have good quality sleep and this has a positive implication for consolidated restoring sleep. However, this is not always possible and although I would recommend that about 80% of

Multiples and sleep

Over the years I have been in the privileged position to help many many families with multiples. It is hard not to be in awe of this particular group of parents, as they seem to manage with relative ease their family unit that involves a set or more of infants born at the same time and that will need the exact amount of parenting that we singleton families bestow on our children. That means at least 2 times the

We just want to say a huge thank you for all your help over the last month. You have literally been a life saver.

We just want to say a huge thank you for all your help over the last month. You have literally been a life saver. When we initially met I honestly believed that nothing could improve the disastrous sleep cycle that we were in. Our daughter had just turned 13 months and had never slept through the night. Eventhough she was in her own room she still woke up to 2-3 times a night and for one of those wakeups

A Volunteer Family Search is On

Hello everyone, I am looking for a volunteer family to work with for a "Not for broadcast television segment" on sleep challenges.  The criteria is quite specific so if you feel that you are suitable please complete the form below and forward to assistant@sleepmatters.ie for consideration.   You must have a child age 6 months or over with ongoing sleep issues You must be based in Dublin and available for filming in your home (ca. 4 hours) on Thursday

Sleep Challenges in Older Children

Sleep problem can linger well into the school-going age bracket. Sleep issues are not reserved for infants and toddlers, but if parents have reached the stage when their older child doesn’t sleep well you may also be resigned to the situation. Obviously the older the child is, the more difficult it can be to change long ingrained habits and expectations. With age, the emotional landscape shifts as well, however the principles of healthy sleep hygiene still apply and your

Sleep expectations-what babies can and can’t do

  When it comes to your child’s sleep it can often be challenging to sift through all the information that is out there-different schools of thought, approaches and expectations therein. As a practitioner, I really try to modify parental expectations where amounts of sleep and capability are concerned as I feel that it is very individual. Whilst we can aim for certain amounts of sleep per age range, as prescribed by either the American Academy of Sleep Medicine or

Sleep Regression

4-6 months Sleep Regressions & Developmental Stages There is a lot going on developmentally between 4-6 months, it is undeniably tricky territory. It is will be less tricky, if you have been establishing the positive foundations, but if you have not been, then along with the “4 month regression”, you may find that your sleep is worse than ever, and there is little scope to make changes outside of the feeding and sleeping suggestions. Don’t despair- you can be

Naps Through The Ages

Your child will generally require a day time nap for the first 3 years of life. This would typically be considered a biological need for sleep that evolves from birth. Without necessary daytime sleep, you may find that your night-time sleep is fractured, due to overtiredness, and you may also observe compromised mood, behaviour and appetite. Although day time sleep can often be challenging to establish and is ever- changing within the first 18 months; achieving adequate naps can

Clocks Go Forward March 31st-How To Survive

With a recent online survey in America indicating that 77% of parents are concerned with the effect of daylight saving will have on their child’s sleeping pattern and a whopping 59% of parents dreading the potential disruption to their baby’s schedule more than tax return season, I thought you might like some helpful tips to alleviate your concerns, with top tips for Spring Forward 2019. The clocks go forward overnight in for Daylight Savings – GMT on Sat/Sun 31st

Blowing the lid on Bath, Bottle and Bed For many years experts have been promoting the concept of the B’s..that is Bath, Bottle and Bed. However, this ideal may only be suitable for a certain percentage of families and for the rest of us-in fact the majority of us, this approach could be one of the largest contributory factors to the sleep issues that you experience. If your child is 6 months of age or older, then what you

Is your toddler done napping?

We read a lot about napping with young children but there is a void of information about when your child no longer needs a nap, so I thought we might spend some time on this topic. Firstly, although all children are different it would be usual for a child to nap until at least 3 years old and some closer to 4. Some children will “give up” napping really early and some may cling on for dear life. Very

7 things that you should never say to a parent who bed-shares

Discussing children’s sleep can sometimes be controversial with lots of different schools of thought of what makes for good sleep or what is the “right “ way. For me, the decisions that parents make are deeply personal and an entirely in-house decision. When asked how you can help a child to sleep better, I am always willing to share some suggestions that can help nudge your current sleep practises closer to your goals and your child's sleep ability. However,

Using the Dummy

Using the Dummy   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=drgehgT1t3k If you find that you are routinely re-plugging your baby’s dummy, then lot’s parents feel that they must simply get rid of the dummy to help this to improve, and the thought of this can seem quite daunting. It’s not always the case that removing the dummy will help your child sleep better, in fact, finding yourself replacing the dummy for your baby can indicate that they are not well rested and the

What can you do when you feel you have tried everything?

What can you do when you feel like you have already tried everything to help your child sleep? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oZ-Ng0RXHLc   Sleep can be a substantial challenge for many parents, you are not alone! Although it is common for parents to feel like they are the only ones, the reality is that some 40-70% of families report sleeping issues and challenges within their home within the first 3 years and sometimes even longer! Common sleep complaints with children over

Should you wake a sleeping Baby?

You may have heard it said on many occasions that you should never wake a sleeping baby and on the whole I would tend to agree that if you have managed to get your child to sleep, then let them be. However, there are a few exceptions that I will always suggest: In the morning: 1. I always recommend that you wake your child no later than 0730 am, to press start on the day. Even if you have

Helping your child transition to the crèche

Helping your child transition to the crèche A lot of our children will be in day care when we return to work. I always suggest that you work on your sleep about 6 weeks or so before your return to work date so that you don’t have any issues that could be avoided. To have a smooth (ish) transition to crèche, then try to ensure that your child is well rested and capable of sleeping without parental input before

Nap Transitions-when?

Nap transitions Your child has a need to nap-in fact; Mama’s have a need to nap too! But the child nap can be a hard one to master! Your child goes through so many nap transitions in the first 18 months that I thought you might like to know what we might consider to be typical in most instances. The early days and months and filled with multiple naps, some long ( if you are lucky) some short-which is

Beat Early Rising

BEAT early rising Waking too soon to start the day can be a viscous cycle and one that can affect almost any age range. There are certain cause factors that generally need to be addressed and there are also some instances when the early rising represents something else that may be going on with your child. Early rising proper is when your child routinely wakes before 6am to start the day. Many parents describe their child who wakes at

Big Bed ready?

The transition from the cot to a big bed can happen at any stage, but many families may start thinking about it from about 2 years of age plus. It is not unusual for this decision to be prompted by the arrival of a new baby and the existing tenant may need to be evicted. I typically encourage parents to think this one through very carefully in order to establish whether their child is ready for this change despite