19 03, 2019

Baby & Toddler Sleep On Vacation; 8 Tips for Success

March 19th, 2019|Categories: Travel Tips|

How to Vacation with Your Baby or Toddler, Without Messing Up Their Sleep

Winter is almost over which means that summer vacation season will be here before you know it!

If you’re thinking about booking a trip away (or getting ready to take one final winter one), you’ve probably also been wondering how to take a successful family vacation without messing up your young child’s sleep pattern.

This is a common question I get this time of year, so here are some tips to consider when you plan your vacation with babies and toddlers joining you.

Vacation With A Baby and Toddler Go Better With Sleep

This seems like an obvious statement, right? But, many times in their haste to pack #allthethings, arrange accommodations and map out routes, parents miss this important detail.

If your baby or toddler is caught up on their sleep before you even leave, it makes travelling, and the vacation in general, much smoother. 

This means in the two to three weeks leading up to the trip, be strict about your baby or toddler’s sleep routine.

Need some help getting your child on a good sleep routine before you head out?

Grab your free Baby Sleep Basics Guide here.

Get your free Toddler and Preschooler Sleep Solutions Guide here.

Keep bedtime on the early side, especially if they have a sleep debt, and have very regularly scheduled naps that don’t widely fluctuate in starting time, each day.

Maintaining a healthy sleep schedule in the weeks leading up to the trip will not only make the travel day easier, but help your little one adjust to the inevitable routine changes while on the trip.

Travel Mode

By air or by land? That is the question.

Vacation travel with a baby or toddler presents different sleep challenges, depending on the mode of transportation.

Which is going to be easier for you and your child and what do you need to plan on doing for travel option?

How will you factor their sleep needs into the travel day?

Obviously, the distance to your vacation will play a big part in this decision. Just make sure you’re prepared for the demands of each travel option.

Travel By Air

If you’re planning to get to your vacation spot via air, then getting a baby to sleep on the way there usually helps the rest of the day go smoother.

For those little ones that will easily nap on the go, try to pick a flight that departs in the morning. This way, by the time you board, your baby will have accrued enough wake time, to nap during the flight.

The morning nap is also the easiest nap for a child to achieve on the go, so consider this when booking. And at this age, we use whatever works the best to achieve the nap. Whether that be in a car seat, holding in your arms or a sling. A well-rested baby is the priority.

Extra Tip: If your little one is breastfeeding, nursing them during take off and landing can help their ears quickly adjust to the pressure changes.

For toddlers and preschoolers on one nap, you have more options as there are larger chunks in the day without rest periods. However, usually, we have more time in the morning before the mid-day nap.

Keep in mind that there is a higher chance that your toddler may not sleep on the plane. Therefore, bring a lot of back up activities to keep them occupied if you will be flying over their regular nap time.

If you have options with flight times, also consider other factors;  travel time to the airport, the wait time before the flight, the flight time itself and then the time to get to your vacation accommodation.

Will there be enough time for your child to get some good rest between all the commotion?

No matter what time you are departing, there will always be pros and cons. Do the best you can with the options available. It will be ok!

Travel By Car

But what about car travel? Let’s look at babies under 12 months first.

How do we manage our baby sleep schedule while traveling to our vacation destination in a vehicle?

If you choose to travel by car and your baby tends to take short naps on the go, I would recommend leaving after they’ve had their morning nap. This should help you get off on your travels with a good start to the day.

If the car ride is only a couple of hours, baby should be able to nap well, when they need to in keeping with their usual routine. Driving gives you a lot more control compared to flying. You can stop when you need to, and you don’t have to worry about the noise and distractions from busy airports and flights.

For toddlers, they may still easily fall asleep in the car around their regular nap time. However, it is likely the nap will be shorter than usual. If this happens, don’t panic. Move bedtime up earlier that day if you can.

Depending on your car or van, sometimes parents can use portable blackout blinds on the side windows to block the mid-day sun. It won’t be perfect (after all, as the driver you still need to see!), but it may help cut down a little on the light.

Extra Tip: If your child sleeps with white noise at home, bringing a portable sound machine or downloading white noise tracks on your phone, can be a great soothing aid for naps on the go.

Whether by plane or car, with a little extra planning, your baby or toddler will still be able to get some sleep.

Vacation and Baby Sleep and Time Zones, Oh My!

One of the most asked questions I get when clients are looking at traveling with their kids is; “how do I adjust their sleep schedule to the new time zone?”

My tip for the travel day and day after arrival is to just survive.

Don’t book any outings, or schedule any events. Everyone will be tired, and if there is a large time change, the whole family will need some time to reset their internal clocks.

Although a vacation is great, the reality is that a baby or toddler will need time to adjust to a new sleep schedule.

Use this day to unpack, explore the new accommodations and allow your child to nap as needed.

Depending on how far you’ve had to travel and how long the journey took you, it might be easier to simply stay on your regular time zone and schedule for the first day, if not the entire vacation. Sometimes, an hour or two isn’t worth fighting over.

If staying on your old time zone and schedule isn’t an option, adapt to the new local time as quickly as possible. I recommend getting out in the morning sun as this resets the internal circadian rhythms.

If you know that there will be a significant change in time zones, you can start to adjust your child’s schedule 15 minutes at a time, 1-2 weeks in advance. However this isn’t strictly necessary.

Usually you can get away with just jumping into the new local time. I would say that this is the best, and easiest, option. The sunlight and darkness will help your child to adjust naturally and prolonging the adjustment is no fun for anyone.

Location, Location, Location

The next most asked question?

“Where should my baby or toddler sleep while on vacation?”

Luckily, there are a variety of options for sleeping arrangements when you travel. My vote will be to always have little ones in their own separate space. In this instances, renting houses, condos, or cabins are great options for a ton of space and large families.

If staying in a hotel room, one option is to select suites that have separate kids spaces. Often these are billed as Kids’ Theme Rooms and provide a somewhat, if not completely separate, sleeping area.

Another option for larger families is to book adjoining rooms. Each parent can sleep in one room and depending on the age of the children, the youngest can be still be in a Pack and Play beside mom if nursing.

But what about those families that aren’t large, and/or don’t want to spend the extra money for separate sleeping areas?  Never fear, there are a variety of choices as well.

Rooms that come with a king-sized bed and pull out couches are good options for a variety of situations; especially toddlers and preschoolers who are too big for Pack N Plays.

If you are renting the average two queen bed hotel room, it can still be configured for families with little ones needing a separate space.

Pack and Plays can often be situated next to the entrance closet or bathroom and sometimes, if it’s big enough-in the bathroom itself!

If your toddler or preschooler is too big for Pack and Plays, and you decide to use the other queen bed, you do have to take safety into account.

Make sure that you build up the sides to prevent them from accidentally falling in the middle of a nap or night sleep. This can be accomplished with sticking foam pool noodles, extra pillows or a rolled up top sheet, under the fitted sheet.

If a parent will also be sharing the bed, sometimes you can also do this with a pillow in the middle of the bed to prevent little feet from kicking you in the back at night. 😉

So, as you see, regardless of your vacation space, your baby or toddler has a variety of sleep options!

Baby and Toddler Vacation Packing List

There are plenty of things you can bring on the vacation to help your child find the travelling, new place and slightly different routines, a little easier. 

For anyone past the exclusively breastfeeding/bottle feeding stage, I absolutely recommend a variety of snacks. Seriously, for the love of all things holy, don’t forget the snacks.

Other items to pack…

  • Car seat
  • Favourite baby carrier
  • Pacifier
  • Favourite stuffie
  • A few small toys that have never been played with
  • Pack and play
  • Unwashed sheets or pjs that have the scent of home on them
  • Noise machine
  • One or two favourite story books
  • Travel black out blinds

Extra Tip: When bringing new toys, I find it even better if you can wrap the small toys in wrapping paper like they’re presents. It adds an extra layer of fun and distraction that will make the stress of travel and change easier to cope with.

Tips For the Travel Day

When traveling with a young child, first and foremost, travel as light as you can. If you’re flying with your children, make the most of the curbside check in! And if they’re old enough, you can get them to help by carrying their own bag.

Individual snack bags and electronics (used sparingly) can be absolute life savers when traveling with young children too. 

For toddlers, make sure that you set boundaries and expectations ahead of time. However, keep in mind, they are little humans who will get tired and bored easily. 

While I am usually not a proponent of rewards and bribes, when travelling, sometimes we need to pull out all the stops. If it helps, reinforce good decent behaviour with praise, and then snacks and electronics.

But before you set off, accept that the travel day will be a challenge and keep your expectations low. Just know that you WILL survive!

Once Arrive at Your Vacation Destination

Once you arrive, set up the room like home as best you can. Bring all things (within reason) from home to recreate your baby or toddler’s sleep environment on vacation.

Bonus points if you can bring black out blinds and the same sheets from the crib without washing them! This will help to maintain smells of home, which can be a powerful trigger.

If you have changed time zones, the family will need a day to adjust, but after that, get onto the local time and enjoy the trip!

To the best of your ability, keep the same routine you had at home. Children on 1, 2 or 3 nap routines at home, still have those same sleep requirements on vacations.

Not only will this keep your child well-rested and prevent crankiness and overtired night wakings, but it will also make returning back home much easier.

How Do We Get Baby’s Sleep Back on Track After Vacation?

So now the trip is done, you’ve survived the travel and have a lifetime of memories-well done!

But perhaps your baby or toddler’s sleep got a bit off track though while on vacation. Don’t worry-it happens and it can be fixed!

For a start, adopt back to your local time after a day. Get back into a regular routine as soon as possible and let the natural sunlight help you with that.

Second; know what to expect.

It can take about a full week for your child to fully adjust, especially if there was a large time zone change. But they’ll be back to a normal routine before you know it.

Third, move bedtime up a bit earlier if some sleep debt accumulated. (Hint, it usually does.) You may need to do for 3-7 days.

Yes, Your Baby or Toddler Can Vacation and Sleep!

Remember, just because you have a child, doesn’t mean that you have to give up your yearly winter get-away or summer vacation! 

Just know what to expect and be prepared.

The travel days will be the hardest, but it’s all worth it for the fun and memories you’ll make together.

 

Back from your trip and need some help getting back on track? Book a mini-consultation that will help you devise a plan of action that you can use immediately!

 

6 06, 2018

Your Child’s Sleep and Summer; How to Enjoy Both

June 6th, 2018|Categories: Travel Tips, Uncategorized|

Sleep and summer; the two CAN co-exsist when you have kids!

Summer is approaching! Woohoo!

But wait, we have kids. 😉

And if your kids are like mine, they turn into hot (literally and figuratively) messes when their sleep routine is off.

So how do we mange to enjoy the summer, but still keep our little one’s sleep on track? Can our children’s sleep and summer both be enjoyed without sacrificing one for the other?

Why yes, yes they can.

Here are my top summertime sleep tips for families.

Create an Ideal Room Environment

Whether you’re traveling on the road or, enjoying a stay-cation, your child’s sleep environment can make or break a quality sleep session-especially naps. Since sleep is regulated by the brain, it is the brain that we need to pamper and work *with*, not against.

Therefore, you need to ensure three things are in place…

1) A dark room 
The master clock that regulates our sleep is called the Suprachiasmatic Nucleus which is located behind the optic nerves in the brain as seen in this diagram…

 

When the brain perceives darkness, it sends signals to your child’s brain to release melatonin into the bloodstream. Since melatonin is the hormone that makes your child feel sleepy and helps them fall asleep easily, we want to encourage this as much as possible.

Make your child’s sleeping location as dark as you can, especially for nap time so that Mother Nature does the work for you. At home, this is relatively easy to do, but when travelling, you may need to be a tad creative. I always travel with several king sized sheets for exactly this reason. 😉

2) A cool environment 
17-21 degrees Celsius is the recommended room temperature for sleeping. This isn’t just for kids, but for moms and dads as well. The cool environment mimics what the body wants to do naturally during the sleep process- lower its core temperature. And again, this helps your child to go to sleep quicker.

3. White noise
The birds are loud first thing in the morning, usually before the sun is even up! Since this corresponds with your child’s lightest stages of sleep, using white noise will help to mask this unwanted interruption.

White noise is also wonderful for camping or hotel stays. We
I prefer white noise to music as white noise blends all the sound frequencies together, whereas music does not, leaving the potential for an early wake up.

Plan Travel around Naps

I often get asked the question; “if we have a long day of travel ahead of us, how do we factor naps in”?

First, we need to understand that naps en route are not the same quality as a nap that is in a flat and motionless bassinet, crib or bed.

The brain isn’t able to descend into the deep stages of sleep (think of yourself trying to nap during a car ride) and thus produces a more shallow, less restorative or refreshing nap.

However, any sleep is preferable over NO sleep. If your child naps easily while travelling, then you can take advantage of that.

I do recommend to parents to try and leave after the first nap of the day. That way your child can start the day off with a fully restorative nap in their own environment.

If they should take a short second nap (many older babies are too stimulated by all the sights and sounds to nap for long periods), at least they had a good foundation at the beginning.

If they day is exceptionally long, and the naps are exceptionally short, an extra nap may sneak in, or, better yet, plan for an early bedtime to help recoup the lost daytime sleep.

For older toddlers and preschoolers, naps should end by 3pm to ensure that they will easily go down for bedtime.

If the older ones skip their nap entirely, plan for a super early bedtime to avoid a large sleep debt forming.

Encourage Quality Sleep in Different Locations

Whether your child is going to be napping in a hotel, tent or another house during summer vacation; we want them to be able to fall asleep quickly and sleep deeply. How do we do this?

1) Maintain Routine
Regardless of your child’s age, the first rule is to maintain a similar daytime napping schedule (as best as you can)(see previous tip) and wind down routine. By doing this, not only does it help your child to fall asleep quicker in the new location, but it also puts the biochemical reactions in motion and cues your child’s body that it’s time to sleep.

2) Recreate Home 
This isn’t the time to be creative, unless you like gambling with sleep. 😉 Bring your child’s lovey, white noise, night light-whatever they use at home, you should take on the road. It’s also helpful to use the same sheets and pajamas without washing them, so they have the familiar scents of home.

3) Give Them Time
Don’t just plop your toddler in a new Pack and Play and expect them to go to sleep. Give your child time to get acclimatized in the new location *before* you put them down to sleep. They will want to explore it, so let them! This allows the novelty to wear off, gives them play time without the stress of hoping they will fall asleep and allows you to troubleshoot while they do so.

Manage Bedtime During Summer Events

There are a few different options if you have an event that runs later into the evening. You can choose whatever feels right for your family.

1) Hire A Babysitter

This option is best for children that are already sleep trained and familiar with the babysitter. If your child doesn’t know the babysitter, then to ensure success (and less stress for you!), have the new caregiver do a few trial runs with you present in the days or weeks leading up to the event.

 

Want your child to sleep through the night before you head out for vacation? Download the FREE sleep guide; Help Your Child Sleep Through The Night

2) Half and Half

In this situation, everyone attends the event and then one parent leaves and takes the child home at bedtime. You can also then hire a babysitter to watch your kiddo once they are asleep and return to the event, or, that parent stays home for the rest of the evening.

3) Move Nap

If your child can handle it, you can move their nap a touch later in the day. Most kids need a short morning wake period, and if we move the morning nap too late, it will backfire and result in a super short nap.

So if your little one is on a two nap schedule, I recommend leaving the morning nap where it is, but pushing nap two out a little later in the afternoon. If they are down to a one nap routine, then this is the one you would move later.

Don’t do anything too drastic because again, it can result in a shorter nap, so stick around the fifteen to thirty minute mark.

When we move this nap later, the hope is that your child will still nap for their regular amount, but it now ends later in the afternoon. This will give you more breathing room for a slightly later bedtime, without making them overtired.

4) Put Them To Sleep at the Event

This is a wonderful option if you are at someone’s house, but would like to stay later without compromising your child’s sleep.

In this scenario, you would bring your child’s Pack and Play, lovey, white noise, etc., and put them to sleep in a quiet room in the house at bedtime. Do a regular bedtime routine at this new location-don’t panic or feel you need to extend it-just get them down at their regular bedtime.

When it’s time to transfer them to the car, keep all the lights off so the daytime hormones don’t start to interfere with things.

Once home, do the same thing; keep the house dark and get them into their crib or bed. Should they happen to wake up during the transfer, treat it like it’s a night waking at two in the morning and do a brief soothing session to help them go back down quickly and easily.

5) Later Bedtime

I’ll admit it, this isn’t my favourite option, but it *is* an option. 😉 If your child is an independent sleeper, already on a great routine, doesn’t have a sleep debt, then moving bedtime later once in awhile can likely won’t create chaos. It allows everyone to enjoy the summer nights without having to sacrifice family time or anyone’s participation.

If your child has a sensitive sleep temperament though, expect a few night wakings for up to three nights after. To help counter this, do a slightly earlier bedtime the next night or two.

Sleep and summer can go hand-in-hand. While it may not always be perfect, it doesn’t have to be a disaster, either. With a little planning and following the tips above, you can help to ensure that everyone has fun, but stays well-rested too.

Need help getting your child on a better sleep routine? Join and like the Baby Sleep 101 Facebook page and download your free sleep guide here. 

 

29 06, 2016

5 Tips to Help Kids Sleep Well While Travelling

June 29th, 2016|Categories: Travel Tips|Tags: , , |

5 Ways To Help Your Child Sleep Well On Summer Vacation

Summer’s almost here! Have you made any travel plans—maybe a trip to the beach or the lake? If you’ve been thinking of traveling this summer, you’ve probably also started to wonder how you’re supposed to accommodate your child’s sleep schedule along the way.

It can be challenging! But with a little planning that begins even before you leave for your trip, you can make life much easier for your little one—and for your whole family.

Here are 5 tips to keep your child’s sleep routines as seamless as possible, even during summer vacation.

#1. Arrange Nap time Around The Car Rides

Any child’s ideal sleep environment will be flat and motionless—in other words, the opposite of naps in the car.

But while sleeping on the road is not as restorative, it’s preferable to missing out on a nap completely. If your child falls asleep in the car easily, feel free to take advantage of it and drive while they sleep.

For many children though, it takes a while to unwind enough to go to sleep in the car. Try leaving at least 20-30 minutes before their nap would normally begin. Some children become too stimulated to fall asleep in the car at all. If that describes your child, try your best to arrive at your destination by nap time. If this isn’t possible, the next best option is to simply plan for an earlier bedtime that evening.

#2. Help Your Child Get Accustomed To New Sleeping Arrangements

Will your child be sleeping, for example, in their Pack ‘n Play during your summer trip? You might find it helpful to give your child the opportunity to practice by sleeping in the Pack ‘n Play at home, beginning a couple of days before you leave.

Once you’ve arrived at your summer vacation spot, try to recreate your child’s home sleep environment as best you can. Does your child normally use something to create white noise? Is he used to sleeping with a certain toy? Bring those items along! You might even want to bring the same sheets and room darkening shades to create a comfortable home-away-from-home for your child.

By bringing along items your child associates with a good night’s sleep, you’ll help his or her brain release natural sleep hormones into the bloodstream. You also won’t have to work as hard at helping your child fall asleep.

You’ll also want to have a soothing and calming wind-down routine in place before you travel—preferably one that’s easy to recreate when you’re on vacation.

Regardless of where you are, these familiar routines will help your child relax and drift off peacefully.

#3. Maintain Your Child’s Regular Schedule (As Much As Possible).

It’s no secret that kids thrive on routine. It’s comforting, and can help them handle the sensory overload that often comes along with traveling to a new environment.

As much as possible, start the day at the same time, keep meals and naps the same each day, and don’t let your little one stay up too late.

#4. Be sensitive to your child becoming overtired.

When your child is overtired, you’ll find they’re often even more resistant to sleeping somewhere new, going along with new routines, and interacting with new people. If you do your best to ensure your child is caught up on sleep before heading out on the road, you can avoid a lot of frustration. The best way to do this? Keep a regular nap schedule and an age-appropriate bedtime for at least 1-2 weeks before you leave for your trip.

Even though it might be convenient for your travel schedule, don’t force your child to skip naps. It’s very hard on a child’s body, and you’ll likely see the negative effects that night as they wake up more often. The stress can also show up during the daytime hours with temper tantrums and crankiness. It’s definitely not what you had in mind while trying to enjoy your summer vacation.

#5. Keep your child’s temperament in mind

Typically, babies and toddlers have sensitive temperaments. They can sense all the excitement (and sometimes stress) that a summer vacation can bring. It’s common to become easily overwhelmed with too many activities, so build in some “down time,” whether you’re visiting a relative’s house or spending time at the lake or beach. This extra bit of planning can lead to longer, deeper, and more restorative sleep.

Did you know most children have a sleep temperament? It also plays a part in how they’ll adjust to a new sleep routine.

Over the years I’ve found two categories of sleep temperaments in children: sensitive and flexible.

  • The Sensitive Sleepers: Babies and children who are highly affected by even small changes in their routines. They’ll require recovery time to get back on track. As much as possible, their routines need to stay rigid.
  • The Flexible Sleepers: These little ones are able to adjust and adapt to a disrupted sleep environment more easily. A shorter nap or a later bedtime doesn’t throw their system off, and they won’t need a lot of recovery time.

Don’t be afraid to give it a try!

It absolutely takes planning and plenty of patience to head out on a summer vacation with an infant or toddler. But you can do this! 

It’s never too early to start making family memories with your little one. Enjoy your summer!

Need more sleep tips? Download the Baby Sleep 101 Free Sleep Guide.

Have a question about your child’s sleep? Join the Baby Sleep 101 on Facebook for weekly live Q & A sessions.

 

This article originally appeared in Canadian Family.

21 12, 2015

Holiday Sleep Tips for Babies and Toddlers

December 21st, 2015|Categories: Travel Tips|

Silent night, holy night,

All is calm, all is bright

Although this is a line from one of my favourite Christmas carols, it can also double as the wish of worried parents through the holiday season.

If you have a baby or toddler who has a great sleep routine, (or even a mediocre one) 😉 ; multiple family suppers, seasonal travel plans and visiting in-laws can quickly throw your child’s schedule off course, leading to a not so silent night.

It can be a challenge to help your child sleep in a different locations, but even if you’re at home, family visits may run late, making it difficult to get your baby to sleep on time. Stress levels can run high during the holidays at the best of times, and struggling to get your child to sleep while trying to entertain company doesn’t help.

So here are a few holiday sleep tips to assist with managing your baby or child’s routine, while helping to keep your stress level low.

Holiday Sleep Tips #1: Be Consistent

Now, I know that the holidays are the prime time for disruptions to a family’s daily life. There can be travel and extra outings that are exciting for everyone. However, children thrive on routine and it can help counter the overstimulation and sensory overload this time of year tends to bring.

Maintain your child’s regular schedule as best as possible. This means start the day at the same time each morning, keep meal and nap times the same from day to day, and make sure bedtime doesn’t wander too late.

Holiday Sleep Tips #2: Take Sleep on the Road

If you will be travelling during Christmas and staying the night either in a hotel or with family, help your child fall asleep easily with memories of home. This means recreating  your child’s regular sleep environment in the new location.

By bringing along anything you use to help your little one drift off at home such as white noise, lovey, same sheets, room darkening shades, you help your child’s brain to release natural sleep hormones into the bloodstream. This saves you from having to work extra hard at soothing and helping your child to fall asleep.

Extra tip; have a soothing and calming wind down routine before a sleep period already in place before you travel. This way, regardless of where you are, this familiar routine will help your child relax and drift off with little fuss.

Holiday Sleep Tips #3: Respect Your Child’s Sleep Needs

Imagine the reaction a parent would get if they said “I’m not going to feed my toddler today so we can get to grandma’s house on time”. Likely the parent would gets some “looks”, at the very least. It’s obvious to us-children need to eat.

What is not so obvious though, is a child’s need to sleep, especially during the day. It can seem as if naps aren’t important, like they are just an extra bonus.

But I would encourage you to view sleep needs through the same lens as you view food. Sleep is essential for our bodies, some say even more than food!

So respect your child’s need to sleep; don’t force them to skip their nap. It will be very hard on their body and you will likely see the repercussions that night or the next with more wakings. It can even transfer into the daytime with temper tantrums and crankiness. Definitely NOT what we want to happen while trying to visit with family and friends.

Holidays have you stressing about your child’s sleep?

Get your FREE copy of “Help Your Child Sleep Through the Night

Also, keep in mind that a bedtime that is more than 30 minutes later than a young child is used to, will create a sleep debt, especially if it happens consecutively.

So, in order for your child to sleep well, and therefore for *you* to get a good night’s rest, consider how much sleep your child needs and work around their nap and bedtimes.

If you’re not sure how much sleep your baby or toddler should be getting, click here for sleep needs in a 24 hour period, and here for nap needs in a 24 hour period.

Holiday Sleep Tips #4: Temperament Counts

It can be hard to resist the urge to soak up all festivities of the season, but trust me when I say that your child absolutely loves just being with you. Remember that when making arrangements throughout the holidays. Too many activities crammed into a day can be hard on a little one and can effect their sleep.

If your baby or toddler is like many young children, they have sensitive temperaments. They will pick up on all the excitement (and stress) this time of year can bring. They can get easily overwhelmed and overtired with too many activities, causing night wakings and short naps. Plan for some “down time” whether you’re visiting at relatives house, travelling or just staying home. It will lead to longer, deeper and more restorative sleep.

Holiday Sleep Tips #5: Early Bedtime Cures All

If your child has had a busy week and is becoming increasingly overtired, then putting them to bed early for a few nights is a simple way to help them get back on track.

The first half of a child’s sleep is filled with many cycles of deep sleep. Later, as the night wears on into the wee hours of morning, the quality of sleep changes into lighter sleep. (Click here to see an illustration of this.)

However, it’s the deep sleep cycles that are the most restorative to the body and brain and can help your little one feel refreshed in the morning. So by putting an overtired child to bed early, you help them have more cycles of the deep sleep, thus helping to pull them out of the sleep debt.

Once the holidays are over, the travelling is done and you are home, expect your child to need about a week to get their routine back on track.

If after this time your baby is still having sleep issues, join me on my weekly Facebook Q and A sessions or book a consultation for more in-depth and personalized help.

 

 

 

 

7 08, 2014

Travelling with Kids: 6 Tips For Keeping Your Children Well-Rested on the Road

August 7th, 2014|Categories: Travel Tips|

 

Are you heading out on the open road this summer with kids? Are you filled with dread at the possibility of listening to your overtired child crying and complaining the whole time?
Relax! That doesn’t have to be the case!

Read Baby Sleep 101’s 6 tips for managing your children’s sleep while travelling on Modern Mama here.