How did these parents gain confidence, down time, and a happier baby?
We all expect to be struggling sleep-wise in the first few months of our baby’s lives.
But for mum Tierney, this year’s lockdowns made getting any help in those early days even more difficult and she wasn’t sure how to support her daughter Alva to sleep.
“We were having a hard time and were all really struggling,” Tierney recalls.
“Alva was a terrible sleeper right from the start. We were constantly up and down rocking her, and she didn’t like being put down, so any slightest movement to do so would wake her up.”
Getting the timings right
Struggling for options during lockdown, Tierney came across our online sleep programmes and purchased the newborn guide.
“Alva was already doing only short stretches of sleep, so we were able to use the catnapping version of the routine,” Tierney explains.
“The main thing was around understanding timing – the set times for her naps and awake times – that were age-appropriate but still started to give us some structure and we were able to get her into her cot more for sleeps – even if we were supporting her with side-settling or rocking first. We started seeing a difference really quickly.”
The other change was the move towards starting a bedtime routine. Originally Alva had been going down at 10 or 11pm, but we were able to bring that forward significantly and, importantly, signal to and prepare Alva that it was bedtime.”
Building on progress
Starting to regain their evenings and slowly stretching out some of the timings made a huge difference in Alva’s household, however there were still to be some hurdles.
“From 12 weeks, until the time Alva was 4 and a half months old, I was really just winging it. Then that dreaded sleep regression hit and Alva was resisting going down for naps and waking two hourly – or sometimes even more frequently! – overnight. In survival mode, I started feeding to sleep more at night-time, but knew I was forming a habit I didn’t want to maintain.”
“I bought the next online sleep programme and read it in two hours, before being ready to start implementing the next steps for Alva the next day.”
Although Alva’s sleep routine had improved from when she was a newborn, she still wasn’t self-settling, however she was responding to the techniques that Tierney was trying.
“My friends were definitely having a harder time teaching self-settling and working to establish good naps having not done anything in the newborn days,” Tierney admits.
“The foundation we already had with Alva made a big difference.”
Armed with some new techniques, Tierney worked to make Alva’s room darker, and worked first on supporting her to consolidate her midday nap.
That first day, Alva did her first ever 90 minute day sleep. “Alva cried a little to go down, but I managed to get her settled in her cot. She slept for 45 minutes and work at the end of her sleep cycle, grizzling a bit. Because I purposely took a couple of minutes to go in to her, she went back to sleep for another full 45 minutes,” Tierney marvels.
With guidance comes greater confidence
Now, at almost six months old, Alva goes down fully awake and puts herself to sleep.
If she does get upset, and needs Tierney to go in, Alva’s able to settle quickly with just a little reassurance.
“I think that’s the major thing that the guides helped with – confidence,” Tierney shares.
“The main thing for me was knowing not to interfere too soon and understanding the timings in the guide really helped with that. The guide talks about staying calm and being confident in what you’re doing, and I believe Alva really responded to that – it’s helped her feel more confident too.”
“I also found it really helpful to understand the when, why and how of baby sleep – their sleep structure, sleep drive and hormones. That knowledge totally helped me to get Alva sleeping well,” Tierney adds.
“We started taking her outside for her to get some serotonin before her naps, so that this converted to melatonin to help her sleep. Before I had Alva I thought I was going to be really flexible and easygoing, but having read the guides and implemented them, life is so much easier.”
Life made so much easier
“It’s a lot happier in our house now,” says Tierney.
“I can plan things better and have some downtime during the day, and my husband and I have more time together in the evenings. It’s changed our whole mood and we’ve both been able to relax so much more. Alva’s happier too – she can self-soothe and get herself to sleep. She’s down to just one feed overnight and feeding much better during the day too.”
The online sleep guides gave Tierney and her husband the autonomy to support Alva themselves – something that was important to them considering all that’s gone on this year!
“When I first looked at the Baby Sleep guides, I thought – ‘oh heck!’ but as soon as we started implementing it, I was really surprised by how quickly Alva’s sleep improved,” Tierney adds.
“She’s an almost unrecognisable sleeper to the one she was as a newborn.”
Our Baby Sleep Program helps tired parents TO DEVELOP HEALTHY SLEEP HABITS BY FOCUSING ON NAPS, SETTLING AND NIGHT SLEEP.
- Empowered: Feel empowered as a Mum as you learn to understand your growing baby's needs and cues.
- Simple effective settling: Gentle, proven self settling, evidence based techniques.
- Content happy baby and parents: Better sleep creates content babies & happy parents.
- Freedom: Predictable routines and longer nights creates freedom. Solve your sleep problems for more freedom.
- Work with your babies circadian rhythm: Work with your babies biological clock for faster easier results.
- Awesome naps & nights: You'll create consistent naps and nights with our support.
Try our online sleep program, complete with FREE email support.
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