Most children do not have an actual sleep problem and are not predisposed to being a ‘bad sleeper’. What children develop is a ‘sleep association’ that interferes with their normal sleep cycle. A sleep association can range from being rocked, cuddled, having a drink or sung too in order to fall asleep. The child requires this same stimulus when they wake in the night, this often requires a parent or guardian to intervene, therefore disturbing their own sleep and the ‘no sleep’ cycle continues to spiral.
There are several techniques that can be implemented in order to help children eliminate nighttime wakings for many of the associations that they develop. It is important to keep a baby or toddler on a daily schedule; what they eat and drink during the day as well as the amount of sleep they acquire and at what time all have a major impact on the child’s as well as the parent’s nighttime sleep.
If your child is experiencing any sleep problems at bedtime or during the night and you are drained from lack of sleep it may be time to contact a sleep consultant. Dawnn Whittaker of Cheeky Chops is a Baby Contentment & Sleep Consultant and has successfully helped numerous parents solve baby and toddler bedtime battles.
A Tip from Dawnn Whittaker: Keep a log of the amount your child eats sleeps and drinks over a 24 hour period and at what time. Study this information over a period of time and it may help you eliminate night feeding or indicate what is causing them.