While getting a good night’s rest is a vital part of everyone’s routine, in order to maintain a healthy lifestyle, it’s recognized that babies require a greater amount of sleep than adults. Research has suggested that children 6 months-1 year sleep can range from 12-16 hours while toddlers ages 1-3 years old range from to 11-14 hours.
There have been various studies that prove regular sleep schedules make a significant impact on children’s behavior, learning ability, memory, attention span and overall mental and physical health. Getting your baby to sleep through the night is not always an easy task. There are unique factors and situations that make this a different experience from family to family. Creating a safe sleeping environment with a consistent routine is one of the best strategies to establish a healthy sleeping schedule for your child, however, there are many families that find this to simply not be enough.
There are average expectations when it comes to a baby’s sleep schedule. If your child is healthy and your pediatrician has “signed off” by age 6 months, they can typically begin sleeping through the night. At this point, they may also be capable of falling back asleep if they wake up on their own by self-soothing. While these are typical standards, it’s important to remember that every baby is unique. What works for one baby may not work for yours. If your baby is reaching that age and is still having trouble with sleep, it may be time to consider other alternatives that will not only be beneficial for your child, but for your own health as well.
Read on to learn if a baby sleep coach may be a good fit for your family, and the various physical and mental health benefits that come with sleep training.
What is a sleep coach?
A sleep coach, also called a sleep consultant, is your “wing man” when it comes to deciphering how to help your little one fall asleep. There is endless information out there from books, to the internet to social media, and it can become extremely overwhelming to decide which path to take. A sleep coach has you fill out a very detailed intake form and then assists you in deciding what method best suits your child and your family. From there we create a personalized plan and help you implement the strategies by coaching you.
These techniques and strategies are commonly referred to as sleep training. No matter your circumstances, the overall goal of sleep training is to get your child to fall asleep and sleep throughout the night without needing constant assistance. For example, your baby should be able to be put down for bed and fall asleep on their own without the need of driving in a car, a parent to sit with them, or being held/touched.
As you probably guessed, sleep training is a process that takes dedication and trial and error, but will also deliver you the benefit of having a child capable of falling asleep and transitioning themselves between sleep cycles to sleep through the night.
How do I know if I need a sleep coach?
- Are you unable to lay your child down awake without them screaming?
- Are you sneaking out of their room praying you don’t make a sound?
- Are you constantly up every hour or two rocking them back to sleep?
- Does your little person wake you up each night with their face in yours?
- Are you waking up in the middle of the night in the toddler bed?
If you have tried various methods and techniques on your own and have not seen any improvement after months and months, a sleep coach may be necessary to help you set up some effective sleeping habits in order to get your baby on a healthy routine.
When it comes to deciding what is the appropriate age to getting a sleep coach, this answer will again vary from family to family. You ultimately will know your child better than anyone, and can therefore determine when the time is right to get extra help.
How long does it take to sleep train a baby?
This will all depend on the temperament of your baby. There are some children who may adapt better to certain methods than others. Remember that it’s tough to have the same expectations for every baby. Successful sleep training could take as little as a few days, but could also potentially take a little longer depending on how long it will take to find techniques that work for your baby specifically. The good news is, there is always a way as long as you are consistent with your training.
Benefits of sleep training
1. Brain growth and maturation
Brain development is crucial during infancy and childhood because it happens so rapidly. Sleep has been scientifically proven to improve learning capabilities and brain growth. Babies are doing a significant amount of learning each day by processing things that they hear and see constantly. A healthy sleep routine is critical when it comes to optimal development.
2. Prevents behavioral problems
This is true for just about everybody no matter what age you are! Without a proper amount of sleep each night, it can cause us to be groggy, forgetful and irritable. The same goes for children. Babies who have gotten a good night’s rest are often much more pleasant to be around throughout the day while they are awake.
3. Helps with stress and anxiety
This is a benefit for all you parents suffering from endless nights without sleep. Having a baby is hard work, and you need to be sure you are getting enough sleep as well in order to give the best care for your child. Maternal depression can result from a lack of sleep, and it is proven that when a baby’s sleep improves so does maternal mental health.
The bottom line is, sleep is very important and plays a major role in a person’s overall well-being no matter how old or young they may be. Finding a professional sleep coach for your baby will not only improve their mental and physical health, but also your own.
Sleepably provides caring guidance and support to help your baby sleep and nap soundly. If you are interested in learning more, you may schedule a free consultation or contact us directly by visiting our website or calling 720-487-ZZZZ.