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Myth Busting

7 Myths About Your Child's Sleep

 
  1. Myth: Keeping my baby up longer during the day will help him sleep longer at night
Truth: This will only cause your baby to get extremely overtired. Overtiredness causes difficulty falling asleep and staying asleep, therefore leading to catnapping, more night waking’s and early morning wake-ups. Remember the more sleep they get, the better they will sleep.
 
  1. Myth: Putting my baby to bed later at night will help him sleep later in the morning
Truth: Even though it may seem logical, in fact the opposite is likely to happen and your baby is likely to wake earlier in the morning. Keeping them up late at night will make them overtired, making it harder to fall asleep and get back to sleep when they wake in the early hours of the morning.
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  1. Myth: Never wake a sleeping baby

Myth
Truth: Whilst we do want our little ones to get as much sleep as possible, there are times it is helpful to wake them. During the newborn stage, newborns need to eat frequently to ensure they are gaining enough weight. By waking newborns every 2-3 hours during the day for feedings, this helps them gain the necessary weight, and also exposes them to more daylight, which can help with day/night confusion. Other reasons you may want to wake a sleeping baby is if they are sleeping too much in the day which may be leading to long wakeful periods in the night, or to protect their bedtime (so it’s not occurring too late – ideally we want it to be between 6-8pm).
 
  1. Myth:  Sleep Training is simply about letting your baby cry-it-out
Truth: The goal of sleep training is to help your baby develop healthy sleep habits and to have them fall asleep on their own. There are a number of different sleep training methods you can use, including more gentle/gradual methods, and more direct methods, all of which can be suited to your child and family needs. Here at Sweet Dreams we always discuss all the options and find the best solution for your family and the one you feel most comfortable implementing.
 
  1. Myth: My baby is simply a poor sleeper and there’s nothing I can do about it
Truth: Although some babies are naturally better sleepers than others, it’s often how we as parents respond and influence their sleep that can determine whether they are a poor sleeper or not. Even though some babies may be lighter sleepers, or have more difficulty shutting out the world in order to go to sleep and stay asleep, every baby has the ability to learn to sleep well.
 
  1. Myth: My baby doesn’t need as much sleep as others
Truth: All babies and toddlers (up to at least the age of 3) need on average of 11-12 hours of sleep overnight and anywhere between 1-4 hours of daytime sleep (depending on their age). Don’t make the mistake of thinking your baby needs less sleep than others – they may just simply have a harder time shutting out the world in order to get to sleep and stay asleep (and in most cases this means they are actually overtired).
 
  1. Myth: Moving my toddler from their cot to a bed will help resolve a sleep problem
Truth: If your toddler is having sleep issues in their cot, they are just as likely to have the same problem in a bed. If anything, the problem may get worse, as a bed offers you less control and they can easily climb out of bed complicating the issue further.
 
I hope you found these helpful. If you would like some more specific advice for your situation, feel free to contact me at sleep@sweetdreams.co.nz.

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Testimonial

After two weeks of implementing Emma’s Personalised Sleep Plan the feeding to sleep habit has been broken, day sleeps are lengthening and are now between 60 and 90 minutes long and he has started sleeping through the night!  

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sleep@sweetdreams.co.nz