Posts Tagged "baby sleep"

A letter from a Father – at Christmas.

Posted by on Dec 14, 2015 in babble, Maternity Consultant | 0 comments

Hello Babble Readers: This lovely review was sent to me prior to a father wanting to post it on various mummy websites.  I asked if I could share it on my own website.  He said he’d be delighted if I did: “Let me start by saying this – I don’t regularly write posts (this is my first) and I’ve not been asked or paid to write this post. It will seem that way…but it’s not. Hattie isn’t a family member, and nor is she a friend. She is however, someone who I’m now very fond of – you get that way when lovely people make miraculous things happen. We first met Hattie nearly two years ago. We were recommended her by Kathryn Mewes (the three day nanny) as we were looking for someone to help get our 10 week old son to sleep. We couldn’t put him down without him crying. We’d not had a problem with our daughter when she was a baby, but it was a different story for our 2nd and we admitted we needed the help. Having him sleep in our arms was nice – but tiring and limiting. So Hattie arrived. We were dubious about whether she could make a difference in the 5 hours we had booked her for. I mean – how could she? We’d tried everything. Magic dust. That’s the answer. I’m convinced. I mean, Hattie did talk to us about our son’s daily routine, and she did give my wife some top tips to bear in mind when breastfeeding him. She also helped us to spot signs when he was getting tired so we knew when he should be put in his cot. She gave us a huge jolt of confidence too – that we were doing the right things and that our experience was quite common etc. Then, at some stage, without us seeing, she must have sprinkled a load of magic dust on our son’s head and for the first time he slept on his own, in his cot. That night, after she had left, we gingerly followed the same routine. The result? He slept….so long we had to wake him for his next feed. We had the whole evening to ourselves to cook, chat and eat. From that day, he has been a brilliant sleeper. No trouble. No fuss. No tears. Just an absolute delight. For the last two years. Genuinely, an incredible result. So it was an obvious decision to ask Hattie to come back when our 3rd child was 10 weeks old. The result? The same. Well – nearly. Baby number 3 is a bit more fussy and less chilled than our second. So he needed a couple more days to get used to the routine but he quickly picked it up and now sleeps well during the day and at night. Why did I bother writing this post? Well I know how much I debated whether we could afford to pay for Hattie and whether she would really make a difference. So I know what other parents will be thinking. My experience of using her twice? Do it. Book her up. You will not regret it. She is very experienced and knowledgeable, and she gets results. Not only that, she is a genuinely lovely person. (She also does as amazing impression of crying babies!). The benefit we have from three children sleeping from 7pm far far far outweighs Hattie’s costs. It is the best decision a tired parent can make! I would happily chat to anyone should they wish to get in touch.”  ...

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For Sanity’s Sake: The Need to Sleep!

Posted by on Oct 8, 2013 in babble | 0 comments

I returned from holiday a couple of weeks ago to a lovely email from an ex-mum of mine, Amanda, who lives over in Teddington.  She suffered badly with PND in the early weeks after the birth of her first baby and I was contacted by her concerned husband to offer her some support.  She sought help for Post Natal Depression and, after a comparatively short while, was firing on all 4 cylinders.  She told me that it was “like someone pulling back the curtains and letting the sun shine in”.   Since then, Amanda has enrolled to do a full course to become a PND counsellor and has become a volunteer with a super set up called For Sanity’s Sake – through whom Amanda started to venture out into the real world, when her little boy was very young.  A wonderful example of Paying It Forward!  This fantastic website is for mums in the Richmond Borough and offers visitors to the site details of events, groups and information for mums and their Littles.  Of course, if you live within striking distance of Richmond/Teddington, this site would also give you some great opportunities to get out and about with your Tiny Smalls.   Now, Amanda, along with the group’s co-founder Rachel, is starting a weekly group for mums who are struggling with PND/anxiety or just the day-to-day chaos of having a baby.   I am deeply flattered and feel very honoured that they have asked me to be their launch speaker on Monday 14th October and am delighted to have been able to say a resounding yes to the invitation.  This particular meet-up will be held at Bill’s Cafe, opposite the Richmond Odeon (near Richmond Bridge).  My topic will be – you guessed it – the importance of establishing good sleep habits!   The regular coffee & cake Monday meet ups will run on a weekly basis at with a different topic/speaker at each even, followed by a free chat session and/or support chat from Amanda.   For further details about FSS, my talk and the venues for the weekly meet-ups, please visit their website: photo credit: HeatherKaiser via photopin...

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Startle Reflex and the Art of Swaddling

Posted by on Aug 6, 2013 in babble, sleeping | 0 comments

Did you know that babies have almost no control of their limbs until they reach approximately 3 months of age? They have a very sudden and uncontrollable movement called a Startle Reflex, where their arms shoot out to the side, almost as though they were falling.  When babies get overtired, or sometimes as they are nodding off, this reflex can wake them up.   For this reason and for thousands of years, we have swaddled very young babies for the first few weeks of their life. This not only helps them feel snug and secure as they get used to life outside the womb, but also helps to prevent them thrashing and bashing themselves when they get over-tired.  There is a knack to swaddling, but you can follow this link to give you some guidance. I have used swaddling with every baby I’ve worked with and for many years I have used the Aiden & Anais swaddle.  It is super soft, huge and very pretty.  Our young Prince George was bought home from hospital in one, so I am sure the Duchess of Cambridge took a leaf out of my book! There are several techniques which you could use to swaddle your baby, including a clever method where you simply secure baby’s arms, leaving the body uncovered.  This is particularly useful for babies born at the height of a heatwave, although this is hardly a common occurrence on our soggy little island. Once your baby reaches an age where his limbs are more controllable, he will gradually leave the swaddle behind and begin finding self reassurance in other things such as his fist, a thumb or a little comfort blanket or toy.  This can be anywhere from 2- 4 months.  Some of my babies have loved it so much, they have continued being half swaddled at bedtime until they are 5 months old! Once they are happy to have their arms out, you can progress your baby to a sleeping bag, using different Tog Ratings according to the season.  Some excellent and very pretty sleeping bags can be found here. Whatever you choose to use, Night Night and Sleep...

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