Welcome to Kira's Blog

Welcome to My Blog

Life with young children can be challenging, but with the support and advice of friends, we can feel empowered and thankful for the blessing of being a Mom.

My musings are those of a self-proclaimed attachment-parenting Tiger mom, who juggles full-time mommying with a small (but growing!) baby-related business. I hope some of my thoughts help you
Enjoy your day, Enjoy your night, and Enjoy your kids!!!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Sleep Aids

This is one of multiple blogs on the issue of sleep.

Sleep can change dramatically after having children. Some people are blessed and the concept of interrupted sleep is a quick, short-term problem. Others have sleep issues that continue for months, years, and beyond. It invades our psychology, our well-being, and in fact our entire lifestyle.

I'll write more about some sleep issues later, but for now I have some simple, practical advice on how to help a sleepless baby get some rest (and you too).

1. Blackout curtains - Investing in curtains can be a major help in getting baby to sleep. If she can't see anything, there is less distraction. You can buy blackout curtains at places like Target, Walmart, Bed Bath & Beyond... these days they are quite popular and easy to find. *See link of an example, attached* An added benefit to having these curtains is they can save a lot of energy by keeping heat in during the winter and blocking out sunlight in the summer. For those who want to try a plan B first, you can drape a dark towel or bedsheet over your curtain rod, even over your curtain or shades. On vacation, this can also work - if you bring dark sheets with you, you can drape them over curtains or tuck them in between the top of the window and its frame.

2. Sound machine - The sound machine will block out distracting noises the same way dark curtains will block out light & sight. Cheap sound machines are widely available, at many of the same stores as blackout curtains. Be careful of combination sound machines / radios, since some of them may have interference from PDAs - I recommend just straight sound machines, without combination clocks/radios, etc. *See link of my model, attached* Fans can also create a similar sound buffer, as will noisier humidifiers or dehumidifiers. The key is a constant shushing sound of some sort that will muffle other sounds.

3. Comfortable temperature - I'm not sure if there have been studies on this (comments, anyone?), but it seems to me people sleep better when it's moderately chilly in the room and with a nice cozy blanket. Indeed, it's possible to even find weighted blankets to help encourage many children to sleep or sit still. In the summer, keep a fan on in baby's room to make it feel 1-2 degrees cooler than the rest of the house. Or splurge on the A/C, especially as baby is falling asleep, and make sure he isn't too warm to be comfortable.

4. Water - I believe that some children may get thirsty during the night. Until babies are big enough to be in their own bed, taking care of their own thirst by going to the bathroom for a cup of water (around age 5-6), it's smart to leave a sippy-cup with water (NOT juice or milk) in bed with them. They can learn quickly that if they need to suck on something or if they are parched, then they just reach for their cups instead of waking up their parents. Some children end up using the cup as a security, reaching for it in a hug as they go to sleep - that's even better! Another source of self-comfort!

So that's it - these methods will help block out senses of sight, sound, touch and taste, so it's MORE likely baby will fall asleep and quickly. (Note: I hear lavender will work to help with smell too, but I haven't tried it myself) Of course, there are no guarantees, but I find that the combination of these methods WILL make a difference. And for those of us who are sleep-deprived enough, even an extra hour in the morning or 15 minutes less of crying in the evening is a HUGE relief! Good night & sweet dreams!

1 comment:

  1. i'm enjoying your blog. Keep up the good blogging :)

    ReplyDelete