Help your child sleep for longer
Is your little one waking up shortly after you put them down to bed? Or sleeps for a block of time to start with and then starts to wake quite frequently after midnight?
This is what we call frequent night waking, which is when a child wakes and needs your help to get back to sleep, any time after you have put them to bed and before 6am. Unfortunately, any time from 6am is classed as a reasonable time for a child to sleep through the night and then naturally wake to start their day.
Why is this happening?
This can happen for a variety of reasons, ·which include overtiredness, not enough daytime sleep, wakeful windows being exceeded, heavily reliant on a crutch or sleep onset association and finally they have not mastered their self-settling and resettling skills.
This means the first thing you need to identify is which of these could be causing your little one to wake frequently during the night. It could be one, but likely to be a couple of these reasons, as some of them do go hand in hand.
For example, overtiredness is likely to be caused by not enough daytime sleep, and also potentially their wakeful windows therefore being exceeded.
If you are unsure how much sleep your little one should be getting and what their awake windows should be, use this link to download a free copy of my sleep chart, which will help you identify what your child’s requirements are, according to their age.
And if you think that you also have a sleep onset association and therefore your child hasn’t fully mastered their settling skills, then you want to ensure you are working on the overtiredness too. Otherwise, when it comes to trying to wean away that sleep ‘crutch’ and helping them progress their settling skills, if they are already overtired, the last thing they will want is to try to learn something new. This is when you see total meltdowns, or children getting really upset to the point of hysterical, because of course, if you were exhausted and then I tried to teach you something new when you are about to go to sleep, you would not be in the best mindset either!
So, as you can see, when trying to solve this, it can mean working on a few different areas at the same time, in order to see positive results.
The other key point is once you implement a change, do it for at least a week and be completely consistent. Our response is how children learn, so if we are consistent, it keeps the message clear and makes it easier for them to understand what to expect and learn.
To get more information, download my book on ‘How to end Frequent Night Waking’ for just £10.00 – this also includes a complimentary sleep strategy call with me, to answer any questions you may have.