Sweet Dreams?

Your bundle of joy has arrived … and you’re in love like never before.

You knew you’d be tired, but nothing could prepare you for how exhausted you’d be, all of the time.  

You’re doing everything by the book – and there are countless books, blogs, apps and gadgets that promise to help you and your baby sleep.

The thing is, we’ve learned to rely on external knowledge to answer all of our questions and concerns
rather than rely on our intuition, instinct and trusted sources, to include women within your family and groups.

But you can change that in a heartbeat.  We’ve been led to believe that our bodies don’t know what to do. We’ve forgotten that when we cut ourselves, our body heals all by itself. We have not been taught that our body has an inner intelligence, an innate life force of its own, that element within all of us that takes care of things for us 24/7, 365 days per year, without us even thinking about it. Well, the same applies to childbirth and motherhood (and just about any named condition or dis-ease you can think of).

Time to take back your power and trust yourself.

For the moment, just imagine that it is your thinking about the problem that creates your worries, doubts, vulnerabilities, etc., that inner critic, all of which undermines any trust we have in ourselves. I’ll leave you to ponder that for now and talk more on this in my blog (coming soon) but, in the meantime, check my recommended reading here

 

Time to pause, be still and breathe. Motherhood is nothing new but the infodemic around motherhood is! There is a whole industry around this wonderful yet vulnerable time of your life. That’s not to say that it’s all bad – there’s some truly amazing help out there but you can helping yourself and your baby sleep when you relearn to trust your instinct and be more discerning of what’s ‘out there’.

You and your baby are unique, so what works for others may not work for you both. And know that it’s not your fault, there’s nothing wrong with you, you’re not failing, you’re just learning how to communicate with this brand new person. You’ll get there!

Your Wellbeing

Look after yourself.  Your baby needs you – every hour of every day – no pressure then!  So, from today:

Reasons why your baby isn’t sleeping

Birth trauma. Think about it – being born into the world must be a shock, more so if the birth was complicated or perhaps a C-section

Medication. The effects of medication used in pregnancy and birth can disrupt baby’s sleep/wake cycle. Pain medication and antibiotics have can have a dire affect your baby’s gut health – and a healthy gut = healthy sleep! See my blog here

 

Hunger. Getting to know your baby’s hunger cry is crucial to helping you manage your baby’s appetite and sleep. As a rule of thumb, babies need feeding every couple of hours. Try and give baby a full feed so that they are not kept awake by hunger and, this way, you’ll soon learn your baby’s hunger cry.

Poor sleep/wake cycle. Help your baby learn the difference between night and day. Humans are wired to sleep at night so start as you mean to go on!

  • keep the bedroom for night time sleep. Other areas of your home can be used for play and daytime naps
  • ensure the bedroom is dark at night – perhaps have a hall light on with a dim bulb (not LED) but no bright or direct light in the bedroom. Invest in blackout curtains if necessary
  • Ensure the bedroom is quiet & warm (not too warm). Use background noise, e.g. a quiet radio for soft voice or soothing music
  • Spend time with your baby in the bedroom – rock, snuggle, read and communicate to help them drift off to sleep.

Swaddling. Swaddling is really useful to help your baby learn the sleep routine. Swaddle your baby at night to signal sleep time and unswaddle during the day so they are free to play, feed and wriggle. This routine becomes an association with the sleep/wake cycle which will bring comfort to your baby

Babies who are not swaddled wake frequently and sleep lightly because the startle (Moro) Reflex causes their arms to rise up and they appear startled. If they aren’t in a deep sleep cycle this might be enough to wake them and disrupt the normal sleep cycle for your baby. For more tips see Swaddling | NCT

Melatonin. Your baby relies on your Melatonin levels in the run up to birth and in the first month after birth. Top up on sleep friendly foods and try and sleep with baby at least part of the day.   Tune into my ‘Eat to Sleep’ webinar (30 mins) here.  Getting outdoors will also help boost yours and baby’s Melatonin level

Colic & Reflux.

  • Colic occurs in newborns and usually ceases around 6 months. It is thought to be a problem digesting food. Colic occurs in breastfed and bottle fed babies. The main keynote for colic is frequent crying, say, more than 3 hours per day, more than 3 days per week for at least a week. Colic crying tends to be more prominent in the afternoon and evening. Your baby is hard to soothe and settle with clear signs of pain (clenched fists, reddened face, knees to chest, arched back, windy).
  • Reflux. This is the name for a condition when a baby brings regurgitates milk, or is sick, during or shortly after feeding. It is common and usually resolves itself. I believe that gut health once again plays a vital part in managing reflux. Symptoms of reflux in babies are always around feeding – coughing, hiccoughing, being unsettled, swallowing, gulping and burping after feeding, crying, not settling and not gaining weight. Another variation of Reflux is Silent Reflux. The signs of reflux are there but the baby does not actually regurgitate or vomit milk.

Teething. Babies begin to teeth as young as 4-6 months these days. Keynote signs are a change in nappy/diaper contents, red or pink cheeks, chewing fingers and anything they can get their little hands on and, of course crying and screaming!

Health problems. If you’ve tried all the above, and crying or sleep problems persist, you should let your GP know as soon as possible to rule out any medical problems.

We are creatures of habit

Routine will bring a sense of security and comfort to your baby, and that sets the scene for good sleep. This means regular times for waking, feeding, nappy changes, wind down routines and bedtime.

Gut Health

The gut is the biggest producer of the sleep hormone, Melatonin. So, keeping your babies gut healthy is vital to help establish a healthy sleep cycle. Once again, breast is best for this as your colostrum will help lay the foundations for health gut flora. Be aware that medication – particularly antibiotics – either taken in late pregnancy and/or given to baby will disrupt gut flora.  Tune into my ‘Eat to Sleep’ webinar (30 mins) here for sleep friendly foods.

What makes Sleepability different?

Sleepability combines the best of practical sleep tips and natural remedies. This unique combination is the culmination of my 20 years’ experience as a Natural Health Consultant and Homeopath , during which time I’ve helped hundreds of people with sleep and associated health problems.

Expert case taking identifies any causative factors and your unique experience of insomnia, and is how we arrive at a bespoke remedy for you. The use of safe, effective natural remedies proven to help symptoms similar to yours are prescribed, along with stress management and relaxation techniques and nutritional advice. This ‘roots & branch’ approach is completely different to the ‘one size fits all’ approach of conventional medicine.

Research has shown that sleep hygiene – a series of practical sleep tips recommended by conventional medicine’s sleep experts – is not enough to help people sleep – which makes sense because, if an underlying trauma, event or illness remains unaddressed, the insomnia will continue. Because your symptoms are only the messenger versus the actual problem.

Sleepability acknowledges the safety of your baby is paramount and recommends you update your GP and always seek medical help if you have any concerns.

Contact me today for expert guidance and treatment to help you and your baby to sleep again, naturally.

When you become a Sleepability subscriber, you will enjoy discounted SleepBundle packages.

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