Traveling With A Baby or Toddler: Your Holiday Sleep Guide

Traveling With Baby Toddler

The holidays are almost upon us, parents! And while the fun of holiday gifts and treats and parties and family time is certainly exciting, I know exactly what a lot of your are worrying over right about now: “How are all the late nights and schedule disruptions and long days spent at Grandma’s going to affect my little one’s sleep?”

Not to worry, parents – we have done a ton of writing on this very topic! And to make your holiday preparations even easier, we’ve compiled all of those past articles here. Think of this as your one-stop holiday sleep guide!

Traveling With A Baby or Toddler: Your Holiday Sleep Guide

Take a look at the articles below, and get insights on everything from how to help your baby nap in an unfamiliar place to info on dealing with jet lag to managing schedule disruptions due to special events. Take a look!

  • How The Holidays May Impact Your Baby’s Sleep
  • Learn how holiday traveling, special occasions, loads of treats, and different-than-usual daytime and nighttime schedules will impact your little one’s sleep.

  • How To Manage Naps During Holiday Traveling
  • Naps often go out the window during holiday travels. Learn tips to promote better nap sleep and ward off over tiredness during your holiday trips!

  • Traveling On Long Trips With A Baby Or Toddler
  • Read tips on how to promote sleep during long road or airplane trips, as well as info on how to make the trip go more smoothly for everyone!

  • 11 Holiday Sleep Tips
  • This one outlines info on both managing sleep during traveling, AND how to handle holiday visitors who may unintentionally ruin your little one’s sleep schedule.

  • Should You Keep Your Baby or Toddler Up Late For Holiday Events?
  • The title of this one says it all! Learn what we think about keeping your baby or toddler up late for special holiday parties and events.

  • Dealing With Jet Lag
  • No, this article doesn’t come from our site – but it’s written by a family that we just love! We did a sleep consultation with them awhile back, and totally admire their commitment to traveling with kids. Read info on how to deal with jet lag and time changes (along with a host of other things) when traveling with little ones.

    Prep For Holiday Sleep Challenges With The Baby Sleep Site®

    Sleep challenges do NOT have to make your holidays less merry – we can help! Let us create a Personalized Sleep Plan™ for you, which will outline exactly how you can preserve your little one’s sleep during your holiday travels. We’ll tell you exactly how to manage naps and bedtime, how to deal with schedule disruptions, and what to do when holiday fun starts to mess with your little one’s usual sleep patterns.

    Browse our list of consultation package options here.

    Once you make your choice and purchase, you will immediately receive an e-mail with your Helpdesk login information. You’ll be able to login and start your Family Sleep History form right away – it’s that simple!

    Want more information about how personalized help works? Check out our FAQ page here, and get answers. You can also take a tour of the Helpdesk.

    Ask your holiday sleep questions and share your holiday sleep tips below, and let’s get the conversation started!

     
    bss_email_featprod_memberspic-CROPPEDOur Members Area is packed with exclusive content and resources: e-Books, assessments, detailed case studies, expert advice, peer support, and more. It actually costs less to join than buying products separately! As a member, you’ll also enjoy a weekly chat with an expert sleep consultant. And the best part – members receive 20% off all sleep consultation services!
     
    bss_ebook_masteringnaps_leftIf you’re looking for ways to get your baby or toddler into a healthy sleeping routine during the day, I encourage you to explore Mastering Naps and Schedules, a comprehensive guide to napping routines, nap transitions, and all the other important “how-tos” of good baby sleep. With over 45 sample sleep schedules and planning worksheets, Mastering Naps and Schedules is a hands-on tool ideal for any parenting style.
     
    bss_ebook_3stepsystem_leftFor those persistent nighttime struggles, check out The 3 Step System to Help Your Baby Sleep. Using the same unique approach and practical tools for success, this e-book helps you and your baby sleep through the night.
     
     
    bss_ebook_5steptoddler_smalFor those persistent toddler sleep struggles, check out The 5 Step System to Help Your Toddler Sleep. Using the same unique approach and practical tools for success, this e-book helps you and your toddler sleep through the night and enjoy a better daytime schedule.
     

    It’s the 5th Annual 12 Days of Christmas Giveaway!

    Baby Sleep Site 12 Days of Christmas Giveaway‘Tis the season, dear readers — the season for FREE STUFF! We are beyond excited to kick off The Baby Sleep Site’s 5th annual 12 Days of Christmas Giveaway. Of all the giveaways we do each year, this is by far one of our favorites. That’s why we load it up with so many awesome prizes — including a $250 Amazon Gift Card! We can’t think of a better way to kick off the holiday season, and (more importantly) to say a big ‘thank you’ to our you, our fabulous readers and clients!

    So, here’s how it works…

    Interested yet? Here’s what you need to know: you can enter the giveaway via the widget below (and also on our Facebook page). We will be accepting entries from today through 8:59 pm EST, December 12, 2014. Starting on Monday, December 1st, we will draw a winner per day with the Grand Prize winner being drawn on December 13th. Obviously, the earlier you enter the better chance you have of winning a prize. Oh, and this is important: there are several ways to earn more than one entry. So be sure to read through all of the options! Want to know what you could win? Scroll through the list below to see the list of awesome prizes we’re offering this year!

    (*Note: Shipped prizes available to US Residents only, unless otherwise specified. In instances in which international shipping is not included, international winners will be offered an alternative Baby Sleep Site prize that does not require shipping. Prizes listed below are not necessarily in the order that they will be awarded).

    Grand Prize – $250 Gift Card to Amazon.com

    amazon-GCThis year’s Grand Prize winner will receive an Amazon.com gift card worth $250. Order virtually anything quickly and easily online, using your Amazon gift card, and receive your shipment quickly.

    One grand prize winner will receive a $250 Amazon Gift Card.

    Baby Shusher

    Babyshusher-web


    The Baby Shusher™ has been called a “Sleep Miracle” and was created by real parents with a genuine passion to help babies sleep. This is a doctor-approved and thoroughly tested technique designed to break a baby’s cry spell and engage their natural calming reflex. The rhythmic shush reminds baby of being inside mom, where they were inundated 24 hours a day with loud sounds of blood flow and other in utero noises (up to 85 dBs, or the sound of a very loud vacuum cleaner). What may sound harsh at first is actually very calming to a baby. The Baby Shusher™ has two timer options, 15 and 30 minutes. It also easily attaches to car seat, stroller, swing or crib and works for newborns and up.

    You can read more on the Baby Shusher website, or you can purchase one directly if you don’t want to wait to see if you’ve won!

    12 lucky winners – one for each day of the giveaway- will receive a Baby Shusher. *This prize is available to U.S. and International entrants.

    365 Sleepybag

    Sleepybag115The 365 Sleepybag is a revolutionary new baby and toddler sleep sack, designed to be everything you need in a wearable blanket. The 365 Sleepybag is actually three wearable blankets in one – you get a summer-weight bag, an autumn-weight bag, and you can zip the two together to form your winter-weight bag! With its generous sizing, the 365 Sleepybag is designed to fit your child twice as long as traditional sleep bags, and because it’s made from only the finest organic cotton and crafted with precision and care, your high-quality 365 Sleepybag is certain to be a product that lasts you for years to come – meaning you can hand it down from one child to the next!

    Excited yet? Check out our in-depth review of the 365 Sleepybag here, and see what our very own Amber, an expert sleep consultant, had to say about it!

    Due to a very successful Kickstarter campaign, the 365 Sleepybag creators are now taking pre-orders for bags, and delivery can be expected in mid-January.

    One lucky winner will receive a 365 Sleepybag in the size of his/her choice, with guaranteed delivery in January of 2015. The winner will be mailed a special card in the meantime, in case this is meant to be given as a Christmas gift. *This prize is available to U.S. and International entrants.

    Essential Keys To Your Newborn’s Sleep E-Book

    Essential Keys to Your Newborn's SleepUnderstanding newborn sleep can be simple, as long as you keep one basic principle in mind: everything about a newborn is connected. Many factors influence a newborn’s sleep, including feeding patterns, routines, temperament, and overall health. In Essential Keys to Your Newborn’s Sleep, Baby Sleep Site® founder Nicole Johnson and sleep consultant Miriam Chickering discuss at length each factor that influences sleep. They also offer practical, hands-on tips about how you can influence some of these factors and set the stage for better newborn sleep, both now and throughout the first year. Nicole and Miriam also explain what to expect at each stage of growth, and how to cope with difficulties and challenges that will arise. Essential Keys to Your Newborn’s Sleep is a complete toolkit of tips, advice, and sample schedules to help your baby establish healthy sleep habits today and throughout the first year.

    One winner will receive an instant download of Essential Keys To Your Newborn’s Sleep.

    Zipadee-Zip Slumber Sack

    SleepbabyThe Zipadee-Zip is the next big thing in Baby Sleep! Zipadee-Zip was recently featured on Shark Tank and we’re thrilled that they were able to score a deal with Daymond John. This wearable blanket was designed by a mom, like you, specifically to help transition a baby off of the swaddle and teach them to sleep freely! It prevents a baby’s hands from getting cold at night and is also designed to help babies who scratch their faces while sleeping (perfect for babies with eczema!). The cozy, enclosed environment teaches babies to self-soothe and learn to fall asleep on their own! Zipadee-Zip…Taking babies from swaddle-time to sleep time in no time!

    The Baby Sleep Site® Reader Special: Baby Sleep Site® Readers can receive $2 off the purchase of a Zipadee-Zip. Visit the Zipadee-Zip website and enter promo code ‘SLEEP’ at checkout. (A reply of their Shark Tank episode will show on November 28 in case you missed it the first time!)

    Find out more and watch a video on how the Zipadee-Zip works on the Zipadee-Zip website. One winner will receive a Zipadee-Zip of their choice.

    Basic E-Mail Baby Sleep Consultation

    babysleepingWhat better way for Mom to pamper herself than to get more sleep! Your baby’s sleep shouldn’t be stressful and The Baby Sleep Site® strives to provide a strong, non-judgmental, support network to help you and your family sleep better. Our website has helped countless families through free online articles, step-by-step e-Books, and private and personalized sleep consulting services.

    One winner will win the Basic E-mail Consultation Package (Personalized Sleep Plan™ Plus One Follow-Up) to help with your sleep struggles. You’d be surprised how far you can get in just two e-mails! If you already have an account, your account will be credited.

    The 3-Step System To Help Your Baby Sleep

    bss_ebook_3stepsystem_leftThis ebook helps you design a step by step a sleep coaching plan that works for you and your family. It also includes a quick reference guide with age-specific sleep guidelines and sleep log for tracking your child’s sleep patterns. Whether you are interested in co-sleeping, crying it out, setting schedules, night weaning or feeding at night, this book covers it all!

    One winner will receive a copy of The 3-Step System to Help Your Baby Sleep.

    3-Month Baby Sleep Site Membership

    bss_email_featprod_memberspic-CROPPEDOur Members Area is a do-it-yourself sleep coach’s dream come true! Baby Sleep Sit members receive unlimited product access – read all our e-Books at no additional charge, access special members-only articles, enjoy a large library of recorded tele-seminars, browse our selection of case studies…it’s like having your own sleep resource library! This is truly a resource that grows with your child. What’s more, members enjoy weekly chats with expert sleep consultants (which provides the perfect chance to ask your pressing sleep questions and get answers from a pro. And the icing on the cake? Members receive 20% off all personalized consulting services!

    One winner will receive a 3-month membership to The Baby sleep Site’s Members Area. This prize is available to international entrants.

    Mastering Naps and Schedules e-Book

    baby napsIf naps are a struggle or if you have questions about how much and how often your baby or toddler should be napping, then this is the book for you. This book covers how to help your child learn to nap longer, why naps are so important for nighttime sleep, how to break baby’s dependence on you to fall asleep, how to help your early riser learn to sleep later, and includes over 40 sample schedules…plus much more!

    One reader will receive an instant download of the Mastering Naps and Schedules e-Book.

    The 5 Step System to Better Toddler Sleep

    Toddler sleep help Many parents are surprised to learn that it is not that uncommon for a toddler to not be sleeping through the night or have other sleep related issues. With this toddler sleep book, you can learn how to get back in control with this comprehensive toddler sleep guide. This ebook includes a toolkit of strategies, sample schedules, and sleep logs will put your toddler on the right sleep track.

    One winner will receive an instant download of The 5-Step System to Better Toddler Sleep

    Swanling Slumber Sheet and Slumber Swaddle

    MySlumberSleeperThe Swanling Slumber Sheet® provides tired parents with a hassle-free, safe sleep solution. It is designed to help babies feel comforted while learning to self-soothe and sleep through the night on their own, and meets the AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics) recommendations for a safe sleep environment. The Slumber Sheet® is the only 3-in-one product to offer solutions to the many concerns and needs surrounding infant and toddler sleep that would normally require multiple products, including a mattress protector, a fitted sheet and a sleep sack. Without compromising quality or effectiveness the Slumber Sheet® delivers amazing versatility, ease of use and functionality. The Slumber Sheet® also offers longevity in a way that is rarely seen in baby products. From 3 months to 3 years old it continues to solve common concerns and frustrations that arise as the child grows and transitions from being used with the Slumber Swaddle attachment to no swaddle and from crib to bed. It is not limited to just one stage of a child’s development.

    Add to it the Slumber Swaddle, and you have an ideal sleep system for young babies! The Slumber Swaddle snaps securely to your Slumber Sheet, ensuring that baby stays positioned on her back and doesn’t roll over. And the Slumber Swaddle’s easy wrap-and-tie design takes the guess-work out of safe swaddling.

    One winner will receive a crib-sized cotton blend Slumber Sheet with Slumber Swaddle Attachment *This prize is available to US and International entrants.

    Fisher Price Soothe-And-Glow Giraffe

    Soothe and Glow GiraffeSo many of our Baby Sleep Site clients and readers tell us that they are constantly on the lookout for great bedtime soothers – toys and comfort objects that will help soothe their little ones and promote peaceful, independent sleep. Well, look no further! We think the Fisher Price Soothe-And-Glow Giraffe is a perfect bedtime toy for babies and toddlers. With a simple squeeze, your kiddo activates the giraffe, which glows softly and plays 8 different soothing lullabies, for 15 minutes total. This toy would make an awesome addition to your bedtime routine!

    One winner will receive a Fisher Price Soothe-And-Glow Giraffe.

    *************************************************************************************

    Remember, the deadline to enter is Friday, December 12, 2014, 8:59 p.m. EST. So don’t wait – enter today!

    MOBILE FRIENDLY LINK FOR THE ENTRY WIDGET: http://is.gd/RYXwwW

    (*Please note that all shipped prizes, unless otherwise specified, are available to US residents only.)

    Bedtime: Everything You Ever Wanted To Know

    Bedtime
    Bedtime – depending on your situation, this word either sounds like music to your ears or sends a shiver down your spine! Most of us know from experience just how tough bedtime can be. Far from a calm, gentle wind-down before sleep, for some families, bedtime is alternately a battle of wills, a scream-fest, a marathon hours-long affair, or an eternal game of whack-a-mole in which you’re constantly fetching glasses of water and making trips to the potty.

    So how do we get from nightmare bedtime to a peaceful bedtime? As they say, knowledge is power – and a solid understanding about the when, where, and how of bedtime will really help make bedtime a relaxing, happy affair for everyone in your home!

    When Should Bedtime Happen?

    When exactly you should put your baby or toddler to bed depends on a lot of unique factors, like age and daytime nap schedule, to name a few. In general, though, you can stick to this rule: for babies, stick to an early bedtime. Why? Because babies tend to wake early, AND because later bedtimes lead to overtiredness, which leads to less overall sleep (weird, yes, but true).

    Toddlers, however, may actually need a later bedtime. Why? Because toddlers can handle more wake time than babies, and if your toddler is taking two naps, or if your toddler is down to one nap, but the nap extends into the late afternoon, then you may be looking at a later bedtime (say, 8 p.m. or 8:30 p.m. instead of 7 p.m.)

    You can see bedtime by age suggestions on our bedtime by age chart (it includes a downloadable, printable PDF!)

    Or, for sample schedule templates, view our sample sleep and feeding schedules by age. Even better – take a look at our custom schedule-maker! Simply enter your child’s age and usual wake-time, and you’ll get a sample nap schedule, complete with suggested bedtime.

    What Does A Good Bedtime Routine Look Like?

    A key element to a peaceful, sleep-inducing bedtime is a solid bedtime routine. But what does a great bedtime routine look like? Great question! For starters, watch the length of your routine. It should be on the short side, especially for young babies – a routine that’s longer than 5 or 10 minutes may very well stretch past a young baby’s wake time window, and may push bedtime too late, to the point where they become overtired. Older babies and toddlers can handle longer routines, but still, your routine shouldn’t take more than maybe 10 or 15 minutes.

    As for what’s in the routine itself – that’s totally up to you! There’s no script. In general, jammies, a bedtime story, and a lullaby work great for all ages. For toddlers, you’ll want to include teeth-brushing and a potty visit. You’ll also want to include a feeding as part of the bedtime routine, for babies – just make sure you’re not feeding your baby to sleep, as that may create negative sleep associations. (Note – feeding a newborn to sleep can be a great way to get longer, deeper sleep, but once your baby is a few months old, you’ll want to work on falling asleep independently.

    A bath may or may not work in your routine – some children find a bath calming, while others get really excited at bath time! So use your judgement on this – if your child gets wound up at bath time, try moving the bath to an earlier point in the day.

    Finally, no matter what you include in your routine, try to make sure that the routine itself has a definitive end. Maybe say the same phrase each time before turning off the light, or maybe play the same lullaby song before you leave. You just need something that will signal to your child that the routine is done, and that it’s time to fall asleep. If you do this consistently, and for long enough, the end of your routine will eventually become like an “off” switch for your kiddo, and will really help you avoid the long, drawn-out bedtime ordeal!

    For more bedtime routine help, you can read our bedtime routine article, as well as our tips on 5 common bedtime routine mistakes to avoid. You may also want to check out our article on whether or not a rigid bedtime routine is right for your situation.

    How Does Your Baby Fall Asleep At Bedtime?

    Believe it or not, HOW your baby or toddler falls asleep at bedtime has a lot to do with your bedtime successes of failures. Long story short, once your baby is past the newborn stage, the goal is for your baby or toddler to learn to fall asleep independently, without assistance from you. (Don’t worry about this in the newborn stage, though – when you have a newborn at home, you do what you have to do to get some sleep!) Now, “independently” doesn’t mean “in a room by himself/herself” – you can co-sleep or room-share and still work towards independent sleep. Independent sleep means that you are not actively doing something (rocking, nursing, holding, etc.) in an effort to make your baby or toddler fall asleep.

    Why does this matter? Because if your child gets used to being rocked/fed/held to sleep, then that’s going to become a habit. And that means that when your child wakes at night (which is 100% normal, and something all of us do at various points during the night), she’s going to need you to help her fall back to sleep.

    Sleep associations like rocking/feeding/holding to sleep can also make for what seems like an eternal bedtime routine! You may find yourself rocking/feeding/holding for an hour, only to gently set your child in her sleep space and have her wail. So frustrating!

    So this is really the last step in creating the best, most sleep-inducing bedtime possible – work on helping your child go to sleep without your help. Do that, and you’ll be creating a strong foundation of healthy sleep habits that will lead to sleeping through the night…and who couldn’t use a little more of that in their lives? ;)

    Banish Bedtime Drama, With The Baby Sleep Site®

    Bedtime stalling, never-ending bedtime, bedtime tears (from mom AND baby!)…whatever your bedtime dilemma, we can help. Our team of expertly-trained, compassionate sleep consultants has dealt with just about every sleep issue under the sun, so they are well-equipped to help you! Start the consultation process today, and your consultant will craft a sleep plan that’s 100% personalized to your unique sleep situation, and that fits with your parenting philosophy and goals.
     
    Browse our list of consultation package options here.

    Once you make your choice and purchase, you will immediately receive an e-mail with your Helpdesk login information. You’ll be able to login and start your Family Sleep History form right away – it’s that simple!

    Want more information about how personalized help works? Check out our FAQ page here, and get answers. You can also take a tour of the Helpdesk.

    Bedtime questions or tips? We love hearing from you – share below!

     
    bss_email_featprod_memberspic-CROPPEDOur Members Area is packed with exclusive content and resources: e-Books, assessments, detailed case studies, expert advice, peer support, and more. It actually costs less to join than buying products separately! As a member, you’ll also enjoy a weekly chat with an expert sleep consultant. And the best part – members receive 20% off all sleep consultation services!
     
    bss_ebook_3stepsystem_leftFor those persistent nighttime struggles, check out The 3 Step System to Help Your Baby Sleep. Using the same unique approach and practical tools for success, this e-book helps you and your baby sleep through the night.
     
     
    bss_ebook_5steptoddler_smalFor those persistent toddler sleep struggles, check out The 5 Step System to Help Your Toddler Sleep. Using the same unique approach and practical tools for success, this e-book helps you and your toddler sleep through the night and enjoy a better daytime schedule.
     

    Can’t decide which product or service is right for you? Visit our Getting Started Page for help.

    QUICK TIP: When To Stop Swaddling

    When To Stop Swaddling

    Ahhh, swaddling – for many parents, it’s a miracle of a technique that helps babies sleep longer and better.

    That is, it’s a miracle tool…until it’s not. ;)

    All good things come to an end, and that includes swaddling your baby. But when should you stop swaddling, exactly? Some babies seem like they’re totally over the swaddle within a month or two of birth, while others seem to really like the swaddle for months and months.

    And, of course, as Baby Sleep Site® readers, we know you are no doubt working to build healthy sleep habits with your baby, so you may also be wondering when it’s best to to stop swaddling, in order to avoid creating sleep associations.

    Lucky for you, this is exactly the question we are tackling in today’s topic! Keep reading for our top tips on when to stop swaddling your baby.

    When To Stop Swaddling Your Baby

    The first question many parents have is, “When can I (or should I) stop swaddling my baby?” The good news is that there is no hard-and-fast answer to this. You “can” stop swaddling your baby whenever you feel it’s best. You know your baby best, after all!

    Remember that while most people use swaddling as a soothing technique during the newborn stage, and then start to phase it out around 3 or 4 months, it’s not uncommon for babies to be swaddled when they are 6, 7, 8, even 9 months old. Most older babies will eventually start to reject swaddling, but that’s not true for all older babies; some will continue to sleep better while swaddled well past 6 months.

    That said, here are some general guidelines you can use to help determine when to stop swaddling your baby:

    • The average age to stop swaddling baby is around 3 or 4 months of age.
    • Newborns are born with a startle reflex, called the Moro reflex, and most babies don’t outgrow it until 4 or 5 months of age. So be careful about stopping the swaddle too early; if your baby’s Moro reflex is still strong, she may startle herself awake at night and during naps.
    • If your baby is able to break free of his swaddle, this isn’t necessarily a sign that it’s time to stop swaddling. However, if your baby is consistently breaking free of his swaddle every night, and if that means you have loose blankets in the crib, then it’s time to either stop swaddling or to switch to a safer swaddling blanket. We recommend the Miracle Blanket.
    • Swaddled babies should NEVER sleep face-down. So if your baby is starting to roll over on to her tummy while she sleeps, that is a strong sign that it’s time to stop swaddling your baby. Remember, when it comes to swaddling, safety first! You can use a sleep sack instead, or a product like the Zipadee-Zip that still provides a swaddle-like feel while leaving baby’s arms free (which is key when they start rolling over).
    • Make sure that your baby is not swaddled all day long. While swaddling for sleep is fine, especially during the newborn stage, babies need time to move freely as well, so that they can grow stronger and develop their gross motor skills. If your baby spends all of his sleep AND awake time swaddled, it might be time to gradually stop swaddling during his awake time.
    • If you are getting ready to sleep train, or sleep coach, you will likely want to stop swaddling first, before you begin sleep training. Part of the sleep training process involves helping your child learn to self-soothe, and babies need to be unswaddled and have access to their hands and fingers in order to learn to self-soothe.

    So there you go, parents! If your baby is older than about 5 months of age, is routinely breaking free of the swaddle, or is rolling over onto his/her tummy, it’s time to start weaning away from the swaddle blanket and to go with something like a sleep sack instead. And remember, if sleep training is in your future, you will probably want to wean your baby off the swaddle before you start the sleep training process.

    As for HOW to stop swaddling – we have tips on that, too! Check out this article, When and How To Stop Swaddling Your Baby, for step-by-step instructions on transitioning away from swaddling.

    Soothing and Swaddling and Sleep Training – Oh My!

    It can be tough to figure out your baby’s sleep…just when you think you’ve got it nailed, your baby changes, and boom! Whole new schedule, whole new set of needs, and whole new sleep problems. But remember, you don’t have to do this alone. We can help! Connect with one of our expert sleep consultants today, and she will craft a Personalized Sleep Plan™ just for you, that accounts for your baby’s sleep needs and personality, and your own parenting philosophies and goals.

    Browse our list of consultation package options here.

    Once you make your choice and purchase, you will immediately receive an e-mail with your Helpdesk login information. You’ll be able to login and start your Family Sleep History form right away – it’s that simple!

    Want more information about how personalized help works? Check out our FAQ page here, and get answers. You can also take a tour of the Helpdesk.

    Have swaddling questions or tips? Leave them below – we love hearing from you!

     
    bss_email_featprod_memberspic-CROPPEDJoin our Members Area packed with exclusive content and resources: e-Books, assessments, detailed case studies, expert advice, peer support, and more. It actually costs less to join than buying products separately! As a member, you’ll also enjoy a weekly chat with an expert sleep consultant. And the best part – members receive 20% off all sleep consultation services!
     

    Essential Keys to Newborn SleepNewborns really can sleep long stretches during the day and at night – you simply have to use appropriate, gentle techniques to get there! Our newborn e-book, Essential Keys to Your Newborn’s Sleep, outlines a number of gentle, baby-centered ways you can encourage better sleep from your newborn. Learn how to create sleep-inducing routines and schedules, how to bond and communicate with your newborn, and more!
     

    bss_ebook_3stepsystem_leftPersistent nighttime struggles demand a more intensive approach. Check out The 3 Step System to Help Your Baby Sleep. Using the same unique approach and practical tools for success, this e-book helps you and your baby sleep through the night.
     

    Baby Teething and Sleep: 3 Proven Tips

    Baby Teething and Sleep
    As if sleep regressions, growth spurts, sleep associations, changing nap schedules, and feeding struggles aren’t enough – a parent has to deal with baby and toddler teething pain, too!

    Truly, teething can be a tough issue for parents to deal with. While some babies and toddlers seem to just sail through the teething process with minimal pain and fuss, other babies spend days in discomfort and pain. And, of course, discomfort and pain usually translates to NO SLEEP FOR ANYONE.

    No wonder, then, that we get so many questions about how to manage teething and sleep disturbances in our Helpdesk!

    Not to worry, though – you don’t have to suffer through teething drama alone. Today, we’re looking at 3 tips to help manage your baby’s teething discomfort and sleep disturbances, as well as info on how you can offer comfort without undoing any sleep training progress you’ve made up to this point.

    Baby Teething Symptoms

    First, though, let’s examine some common teething symptoms, so that you can watch for signs of teething and be proactive. Teething symptoms include the following:

    • Drooling
    • Teething rash (a chapped, red chin from drool, and possibly a diaper rash due to watery stools from swallowing so much extra saliva)
    • Diarrhea (swallowing extra saliva can make your baby’s poop runnier than usual)
    • Refusal to feed (tender gums make it tough to nurse and eat comfortably)
    • Biting (your baby may chew on hands, toys, or – if you’re breastfeeding – on you!)
    • Ear-pulling and/or cheek-rubbing
    • Increased night waking
    • More fussing/crying than usual

    Baby Teething and Sleep: 3 Tips To Comfort Your Baby and Promote Sleep

    If your baby is teething, and is really uncomfortable, it will almost certainly mess with his usual sleep schedule, at least for a bit. Fortunately, there are ways you can provide comfort while still preserving good sleep habits, and ensuring you don’t inadvertently help your baby form new sleep associations.

    • Try teething objects during non-sleep times to alleviate pain. There are zillions of teething toys and rings out there, that can help minimize some of your child’s pain. Many of them are designed to be refrigerated or frozen – the added cold can help numb your kiddo’s gums. But remember, you don’t have to be high-tech with your teething tools…a “homemade” option, like a frozen washcloth, can work wonders, too!
    • Use Tylenol or Ibuprofen for sleep times, to promote longer sleep. Teething toys won’t exactly work during times when your child is sleeping (or, rather, is supposed to be sleeping!). If the pain is bad, and is keeping your child awake, then try offering medicine like Tylenol or Ibuprofen to help alleviate your little one’s discomfort. Just be sure to check with your healthcare provider before offering any medication. You may want to try and time up when you offer medicine with when you know your baby or toddler will need to feed. So, for example, try offering a dose of medicine with right after the bedtime feeding – the medication will last 4-6 hours, and that will maximize the chances that your baby will give you a good, long stretch of sleep at the start of the night. Also – no benzocaine! That’s the ingredient found in Baby Orajel, and it’s not safe for little ones.
    • Provide comfort without undoing progress. Figure out how you can provide comfort without creating new bad sleep habits, or undoing sleep training progress. For instance, if you want to reinforce the habit of sleeping in the crib, avoid bringing you baby into bed with you during bouts of teething pain – instead, hold your baby until she’s calm, but put her back down in her crib to fall back to sleep. You will definitely want to comfort your baby during teething pain, and when the pain is at its worst, you may need to have a night or two when you break all your “rules”, but do try to avoid doing anything that you don’t want to do long-term. One night of co-sleeping for comfort won’t hurt, but if you do it every night for two weeks, then you’ve most likely just created a brand-new expectation for your little one.

      Here’s a look at how Nicole handled teething and sleep with her boys:

      “My plan with my first son was that if he was extra fussy during the day, I’d give him Motrin (and Orajel which is now a no-no) at bedtime. If he had any night wakings 6+ hours (give or take 1 hour) after the medication, I’d tend to him with another dose and then stay with him for 30 minutes until it kicked in and then put him back down. It was usually only about 2-4 days of super fussy times that he needed extra soothing until the tooth popped through. Other times, I’d have to be more stringent on my nighttime visits, because of the problems it would create.”

    Baby Teething and Sleep Training

    So, what should you do if your child suddenly starts teething during sleep training? We recommend that you keep on sleep training. Now, this is a general recommendation – there are times when teething discomfort may be so intense that you have to just suspend your efforts for a night or two. But in general, we recommend that you don’t stop sleep training due to teething. There will ALWAYS be “issues” that crop up, which will impact your baby’s sleep, and if you were to stop for all of them, you may never get around to teaching your baby better sleep habits! While you might need to moderate your sleep training efforts a bit, and will definitely need to adjust your expectations during teething, it’s usually best to stick with sleep coaching.

    We’d also recommend that you don’t make teething an exclude for putting off sleep training, or for suffering through interrupted sleep. Remember, your child will teethe for a solid 2-3 years – so if you wait until teething is over to start working on sleep, you’ll be waiting forever!! You will no doubt always be able to find a reason to avoid or delay sleep coaching, but if your little one’s sleep is truly problematic, then it’s usually best to just start sleep training, and deal with any speed bumps like teething as they crop up. We know that when it comes to sleep training, the first step is usually the hardest to take – but once you take it, you’ll be well on your way to better sleep!

    Baby Teething Doesn’t Have To Ruin Sleep: Let Us Help!

    Teething can be a tough thing to handle when you’re also trying to sleep train – that’s why many parents choose to sleep train with the help of The Baby Sleep Site®/s team of expert sleep consultants! When you purchase a sleep consultation package with us, you get access to your own consultant, as well as your very own Personalized Sleep Plan™, created just for you! What’s more, your consultant will walk you through each step of implementing your plan and will be available to answer your follow-up questions.

    Browse our list of consultation package options here.

    Once you make your choice and purchase, you will immediately receive an e-mail with your Helpdesk login information. You’ll be able to login and start your Family Sleep History form right away – it’s that simple!

    Want more information about how personalized help works? Check out our FAQ page here, and get answers. You can also take a tour of the Helpdesk.

    Have swaddling questions or tips? Leave them below – we love hearing from you!

     
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