Baby Sleep and New Parents

father-sleeping-with-baby-photo-420x420-ts-80403090In a recent NBC News online report new parents and sleep woes are front and center.

According to this online article…

“While every baby is different, a recent survey found that new parents in the UK lose the equivalent of 44 days of sleep in a child’s first year, the Daily Mail reports. And of 13,000 moms and dads in’s Born TODAY poll, 65 percent of women and 37 percent of men said they’d rather get more sleep than more sex.

West Virginia University Professor of psychology and pediatrics, Hawley Montgomery Downs, studies the effect of sleep disruption on first-time mothers, and says research has shown that as sleep debt racks up, postpartum women can become as cognitively impaired as an intoxicated person. In 2008, researchers at Drexel University found symptoms can worsen in post-partum depression patients when their quality of sleep declines.”

Ten years ago when I started as a sleep consultant it was an almost non-existent niche. I think there were about 5 of us in the United States. That has all changed.

When I tell people what I do, I mostly hear…Wow I have never heard of that. I wish I had known you when my children were babies.

When parents call me I still often hear…I wish I had called you for our first child OR I wish I had called you a year ago when I first knew we were having trouble.

I hate to see families suffer from the affects of not enough sleep for longer than they need to. And the greatest reward of my job is that every day I hear from happy, well rested, and joyful clients. Because I assist families in restoring one of our most important basic needs. I am not shy in boasting that…

  • I am one of the first sleep consultants in the US…
  • With one of the longest track records.
  • And the first mindful approach that honors and respects the importance of the parent’s emotional regulation and experience of the entire process.

What could be some signs that it is time to call for help?

Here are a few questions that might help you assess your situation and know if you need additional help with sleep.

  1. Is your current sleep situation with your baby or toddler working?
    If you think it is working then it is. If you think it isn’t then it likely isn’t. If you don’t know then stay tuned and read on…

  2. Is your child getting enough sleep for his/ her developmental stage?

  • 0-3 months – 14 -16 1/2 hours in a 24-hour period including 4-5 naps a day.
  • 3-9 months – 14-15 hours in a 24-hour period including 2-3 / one hour (at least) naps a day.
  • 1 year – 13 3/4 – 14 hours of sleep in a 24-hour period that includes 1-2  naps a day that is approximately 2-3 hours but no less than 1.5 hours.
  • 2 years – 12 3/4 – 12 1/2 hours of sleep in a 24 hour period that includes at least one nap a day that is at least 1.5 hours.
  • 3 years – 12 – 12 1/2 hours of sleep in a 24 hour period that includes one nap….hopefully…or at least quiet time if your child has transitioned out of it.
  • 4-5 year old – 11 – 12 hours, one nap OR no naps and a good bedtime of no later than 7:30
  • 6-9 year old – 9-11 hours and a bedtime of no later than 8:00…7:30 still better and doable.
  • Tweens–  8-10 hours and a bedtime of no later than 8:30.
  • Teens – 8 – 9 hours and a bedtime of no later than 9:00 or 9:30…turn off electronics 1.5 to 2 hour before bed and the best of luck to us all at this stage.
  • YOU – 7-9 hours – YES you count. YOU are an integral part of this relationship and YOUR sleep counts.

    3. Is your child able to bridge the journey from sleepy to asleep without your assistance, interventions or presence? IF you answered “No” read on…

  • If your baby is a newborn this is normal. Enjoy it and know that in time you can change this if and when it becomes a problem.

  • If your baby is over 6 months, do not fret this skill can be learned and I can help you if you need help!

  • If your baby is over 9 months..

Call now for a free 15 minute consultation

If you think there is a problem…then there probably is a problem.

If there is a problem or issue with sleep in your household, how long has it been this way? Sleep regressions are normal and can last for a week or two. However, if you feel unable to affect a change after a  month  OR you do not know what to do to change the situation you may want to schedule a free 15 minute consultation with me following the link above.

Do you keep thinking that your child will grow out of it?

Is it now 6 months later and the problem is still the same?

Is it worse?

Some children do outgrow sleep issues. But statistically the numbers are not in favor of that hope. If you are fixing your child’s sleep by nursing, rocking, bouncing, walking, or facilitating their sleep in any way, then your child will become reliant on this. If your way of doing sleep  keeps you awake or present while your child falls asleep, then your child is developing a reliance on this  condition and requires the repetition of it in order to sleep. Doing it this way over and over again develops a habit.

We tend to grow INTO habits rather than OUT of them.

Good news…habits can be changed.

In the above article we see the following from the American Academy of Pediatrics.

“With all the clashing advice out there, this fall, the American Academy of Pediatrics released it’s official book  “Sleep: What Every Parent Needs To Know,” for kids of all ages.”

The golden “sleep training” rule for new parents? According to the book’s editor, pediatrician and child sleep expert, Dr. Rachel Moon, always put a baby down when they’re a “little awake.” An infant’s last memory before sleep, Dr. Moon explains, should be of feeling drowsy, alone, in their sleep environment, safe without you.”


 If the following picture looks like your dream night…then rock on!

If not…then click here and schedule now!



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *