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MOVING A TODDLER FROM A COT TO A BED

MOVING A TODDLER FROM A COT TO A BED

You can help your child make the transition from sleeping in a cot to a bed when you and your child are ready. You will find this transition is the easiest to manage after your child is 3 years of age. However, all children are different and there may be reasons present that require this transition to occur at an earlier age.

Safety is always the most important consideration as to whether your child should make the transition. If your little one is climbing out of the cot or is too big for the cot then for safety reasons, you should move them into their bed. However, if your toddler is climbing out of their cot but you don’t feel they are ready to make the transition then a portacot is a good option to try. Generally, the sides of a portacot are more difficult to climb out of so it’s worth a try in using it as a replacement until your child is ready to make the transition.

Actually making the transition from the cot to the bed is a big event in a little child’s life. They have gone from the safety of 4 sides around them and being contained in a little space to having nothing keeping them in. In the toddler years it’s normal that they want to explore and use their imaginations. This means it can bring a whole new level of stress to parents who can’t keep their little one in their bed.

Here are some tips from experienced parents, on how to help your child with the transition from cot to bed:

  • Preparation;

    Talk to your child about the change that is soon coming. If possible, put the bed into the child’s room before making the transition so they can get used to it being there. Some parents even like to use the bed for daytime naps only for a little while to get their child used to the change before making the transition for night time too.

  • Involvement;

    Children want to be a part of everything and transitioning from cot to bed is no different. Get your little one involved in the transition process by letting them choose a new doona cover or something similar.

  • Routine;

    Having a positive bedtime routine in place is vital to making the transition a smooth one. Parents should keep the bedtime routine the same as it was to when the child was in the cot. And, keep it consistent! Children strive off routine but it needs to be the same every night.

  • Rewards;

    There’s nothing wrong with rewarding a child who does the right thing and stays in bed throughout the night. Parents can use a sticker reward chart or something similar to reward their child for when they do the right thing.

  • Sleep Training Clock;

    Toddler sleep training clocks are a great tool for teaching children when it’s time for sleep and when they are allowed to get out of bed in the morning. Children associate night time with sleep, but during periods of daylight savings it can get confusing for little ones in understanding that it’s bedtime while still light outside. The best sleep training clock on the market is the Sleepy Starz Sleep Clock. It has more features than any other clock on the market. The clock not only teaches children when it’s time for bed and when to stay in bed but it also gets them excited about going to bed and involved in the bedtime process.

For more information about the Sleepy Starz Sleep Clock head to www.sleepystarz.com/sleep-clock/

HOW THE CIRCADIAN RHYTHM WORKS

HOW THE CIRCADIAN RHYTHM WORKS

Babies sure are cute, aren’t they? Pure joy……but they do have their moments. If you’re a new mother, you’re probably already wondering how to get your baby to sleep through the night. It’s a matter of trial and error, the process of elimination and most importantly….time.

As adults, our bodies run on a 24-hour clock called circadian rhythm. Babies, on the other hand, are entirely different. Newborns have to develop their own circadian rhythm and this can take several weeks. By four to six weeks, a baby’s circadian rhythm becomes more pronounced and at six months it really starts to kick in….this is one of the reasons a lot of parents report sleeping problems at 6 months of age.

In essence it is our body’s internal system that responds to external stimuli which are things such as natural sunlight, food, exercise and social interaction. Early studies have found that if all the external stimuli are removed, your circadian rhythm runs on a 25 hour cycle. If you then return external cues such as sunlight, it automatically resets itself to run in time without 24 hour clock. So, in effect your body knows what time of the day it is. This is a real problem for shift workers because when you are ready to go to work, your circadian rhythm is telling you to go to bed and vice versa in the morning. So it’s a constant fight against your body.

In order to fully maximize your sleep, you need to time it to a very specific window within your circadian rhythm. This is basically the time in which your body decides that it is time to sleep which is in line with nighttime and darkness. If you can do this your body will be in harmony with your sleeping pattern and you will indeed find that you will have the best sleep of your life.

If you try to do this it is really important to establish a consistent sleep routine. This involves going to bed at the same time every night and getting up at the same time ever morning. If you sleep in on weekends your internal clock is always playing catch up. Napping for adults or napping too late in the day for little ones can wreak havoc on our circadian rhythms.

The body’s circadian rhythm is the control system that regulates when babies get hungry, digest your food, produce urine and bowel movements and regulate blood pressure and body temperature. With so many critical bodily functions so closely intertwined to these rhythms you can begin to see why any disruption could create health issues. The crossing of multiple time zones when traveling creates a new environment that your body will be forced to synchronize all of these behaviors and functions to.

With so many factors working against a healthy, stable, well regulated body cycle we should all do everything we can to hedge against these known external influences. Better preparing for trips or following best practices when sick can help alleviate additional symptoms that could be prevented.

For help in getting your little one to sleep through the night go to www.sleepystarz.com/sleep-consulting/ to see Sleepy Starz’ affordable sleep consultation packages.

Getting Rid of the Dummy

Getting Rid of the Dummy

Ask any mum and you’ll find out how difficult it can be to wean your children from their beloved dummy. Every child who uses a dummy loves their dummy…..-it’s been a source of comfort and security in them. So naturally, most parents have found it to be a struggle when the time has come to toss the dummy.

Here are a few tips to help make the transition easier for you and your little one easier:

  • Look for signs that weaning that your child might be ready. Signs might come in the form of less use, throwing their dummy out of their cot, falling asleep on occasion without the dummy. If you can get the timing right, the transition will be easier.  
  • Find another source of comfort for the child.
  • Prepare your child for it. Talk to them about the dummies going away because they are such a big boy/girl now. Some people like to do it a Christmas time so Santa can take them in return for a present.
  • Decide whether you are going to go cold-turkey and get rid of all dummies all at once or make it a more gradual process.

Cold Turkey

  • If you have decided with the cold turkey approach, make sure you stay strong. Once all dummies have been taken away, ensure that you don’t give in and give one back just to stop the crying.
  • Make sure that you have talked to your child about taking away their dummies instead of doing it without them being prepared.
  • Be prepared for a few days/nights with some extra crying and need for extra comfort. Going cold-turkey can be hard but with some extra cuddles and comfort, most children will be fine after only a few days.

Gradual Method

  • Talking to your child and preparing them is just as important as the cold turkey method.
  • Start by taking away a couple of dummies and limiting access to them. Gradually increase the number of dummies taken away until there is just one left and then none.
  • Limit use of the dummy during the day. Your little one will slowly start getting used to the limited use.
  • Start by taking the dummy away at day time sleeps and use it only for night time sleeps.

Getting rid of the dummy can be a stressful time for both the parent and the child. Offering extra cuddles and attention can be really helpful but consistency and persistence are the most important thing. Any big changes take time so having a realistic expectation that it might take a few days or even a week or so is crucial.

If you find that your little one’s sleep is still being affected after a couple of weeks then it’s worth getting help. Sleep Consulting by Sleepy Starz offers a range of affordable sleep consultation package. To view the packages go to www.sleepystarz.com/sleep-consulting/

What Does the Sleepy Starz Sleep Clock Do?

What Does the Sleepy Starz Sleep Clock Do?

The Sleepy Starz Sleep Clock is a revolutionary toddler sleep training clock recommended for children aged 2 years plus. The clock teaches children the concept of time and when it’s sleep time through child friendly images in which the child can relate to. It has more features than any other sleep clock on the market worldwide and was granted an Australian patent in 2016. The Sleepy Starz Sleep Clock currently has a worldwide patent pending.

Toddlers do not have the ability to read the time. Therefore, the Sleepy Starz Sleep Clock inventors and co-founders of Sleepy Starz Pty Ltd came up with the idea to teach children the time for sleep through images. This is especially helpful at the beginning of daylight savings and the end of daylight savings when the light outside changes making it confusing for children.

There are 7 different loveable scenes in which the parent and/or child can choose from as well as 3 different sleep settings. The team at Sleepy Starz understand that every child is different and every child is going to learn in different manners. This is what makes the clock so remarkable…..it can be customized to suit the nature of the child and the way they learn.

The parent can set the wake up time in which they are happy for their child to get out of bed in the morning. The clock also includes a lock feature, so little fingers cannot change any of the settings pre-set in the clock. The 15 minute countdown timer within the clock is a fantastic feature used to help prepare children for sleep time. 15 minutes before the parent wants their child to go to sleep is when to set the 15 minute countdown timer in place so bedtime does not come as a shock. During these 15 minutes is a great time to read the 7 page picture story book featured within the clock about Sleep Tight Ted (the free teddy bear included in every clock purchase). The brightness controller is perfect for controlling the light/dark of the screen and can be set to whatever sort of light works best for the child in their room.

Mid 2017, the Sleepy Starz Sleep Clock was featured on Channel 7’s Today Tonight. Further, feedback from customers across Australia has been phenomenal. Parents are reporting that their children are sleeping through the night in as little as 2-3 nights.

To purchase your Sleepy Starz Sleep Clock head to www.sleepystarz.com/sleep-clock/

Sleepy Starz Sleep Clock

Sleepy Starz Sleep Clock

The Sleepy Starz Sleep Clock is the revolutionary innovation of Nat and Emily Duffell, the co-founders of Sleepy Starz Pty Ltd. The clock teaches children the concept of time through images in which they can associate with and teaches long lasting sleep habits. It has a granted patent within Australia (2015101639) and a USA patent pending.

With more features than any other sleep training clock on the market the aim of the Sleepy Starz Sleep Clock is to teach children when to go to sleep, when to stay in bed and when they are allowed to get out of bed in the morning. Most young children are unable to tell the time so the Sleepy Starz Sleep Clock teaches them the correct time to stay in bed through a series of enjoyable and calming images which are relatable to the child.  The parent can set the time in which they want their child to get up.

There are 7 scenes in which the parent/child can choose from as well as 3 different sleep settings allowing the parent to choose which suits their child’s personality best. The inventors of the understand that each child is different and there is no one correct way of teaching children the correct sleep principles.

The simple sleep setting has one image in which is displayed on the screen throughout the night. At the wake up time chosen by the parent, the ‘day’ image of the chosen scene will appear on the screen which tells the child they are allowed to get up.

The moon crossover setting has a series of night images in which a moon slowly crosses over the sky. The child will see that it’s close to morning time when the position of the moon is on the far right hand side of the screen. The ‘day’ image of the chosen scene will be displayed on the screen at the wake up time chosen by the parent.

The star countdown setting has a series of night images where stars slowly fade from the screen throughout the night. The day image of the chosen scene will appear on the screen at the wake up time.

The Sleep Clock has several other features including:

  • A brightness controller which allows the Sleep Clock to be used as a night light;
  • A 15 minute countdown feature where the day image of the chosen scene appears on the screen for 15 minutes before fading away to the night-time images. This allows parents to prepare children for bed;
  • An optional lock feature so the clock settings cannot be changed by the child;
  • A picture story book.

Included in the Sleep Clock packaging is your child’s very own teddy bear called Sleep Tight Ted. Sleep Tight Ted is a hero when it comes to helping children sleep. He is even featured within the Sleep Clock and will become a favourite of your child’s at bedtime.

You can purchase your Sleepy Starz Sleep Clock at www.sleepystarz.com/sleep-clock/

Sleep Deprivation and the Link to Health Issues

Sleep Deprivation and the Link to Health Issues

Emily and Nat founded Sleepy Starz Pty Ltd to provide sleep solutions, products and information to help young children, and their parents, achieve a better night’s sleep. They became first time parents to their baby girl Amber in 2009 and Amber refused to sleep through the night. Emily and Nat dealt with this all through Amber’s baby and toddler years to the point where Emily developed post natal depression. As things started to improve, they realised there had to be a better sleep solution and more specifically, a better toddler sleep-training clock.   As a result, Emily and Nat developed and manufactured a revolutionary sleep clock to teach young children how to sleep and develop good long lasting sleep patterns.  

“Parents of young children that don’t sleep, suffer from tiredness, health issues, depression, anxiety and all sorts of issues,” Ms Duffell said today.

“We were first time parents and as with many, we were thrown in the deep end. Our Amber was a terrible sleeper and would only sleep for two hours at a time. 

“Statistics show that parents can have a six-month sleep deficit in the first 24 months of a baby’s life. This really takes its toll.

“I actually developed post natal depression as a result. Lack of sleep affects every part of your life and your experience of being a parent. I even sought help, but nothing seemed to work.”

“I realised that there just had to be a better option out there because it was torturous. We tried a few different sleep training clocks but they didn’t really achieve much,” Mr Duffell continued.

“So with all of our experience in dealing with sleep deprivation, trialing different things and experimenting with some of the sleep clocks on the market, which didn’t work, we decided to create our own sleep clock that did work.  

“We knew other parents were desperate for a solution.  We spoke to other parents and realised there were many others going through exactly the same things as we did, with many only managing to get two-and-a-half hours of continuous sleep each night.

“We found a good designer and manufacturer and started work.

“The sleep clock we have developed is home grown and tested, and as Amber grew older we continued to research so we could help others with the ideal sleep-training clock.

“The Sleepy Starz Sleep Clock features a 15 minute countdown timer, to prepare your child for bed 15 minutes before you actually need them to sleep and it even features a nightlight function.

“We are just proud to offer a companion for all parents out there because we know from experience how tough it can be, mentally and physically.”

The Sleep Starz Sleepy Clock is now available online via the Sleepy Starz website and will be available through stockists later in the year. The RRP price is $129.95 but for a limited time the clock is discounted to $99.95.

www.sleepystarz.com.au

Sleep Tips

Sleep Tips

As a sleep consultant, one of the questions I get asked most is “When will my baby start sleeping through the night?” The fact is most newborns will not sleep through the night and it’s completely normal for them to wake needing a feed, extra comfort or help getting back to sleep.

With this being said, there are things that parents can implement from a young age to set their baby up for good sleeping habits. ‘Clean sleeping’ is really important and can be implemented from day 1. Clean sleeping is about setting your baby’s body up to have a really great sleep and includes the 3 ‘E’s’ which are environment, eating and emotions.

Environment

Environment is about ensuring things like the room temperature is correct for the baby to sleep- not too hot and not too cold. Light is another important factor and a baby’s room should be dark to help produce melatonin (the sleepy hormone). Noise is also important and an affect a baby’s sleep. If you have a baby who is easily disturbed, white noise can be a good option to muff out external noises.

Eating

Most young babies have a diet consisting of breast milk or formula. However, what the mother eats is absorbed into a breast feeding baby’s bloodstream and can affect sleep. There are certain foods that can help increase the sleep inducing hormone, melatonin and include turkey, nuts and dairy. When your baby is on solids, remember these Melatonin producing foods!

Emotions

A baby’s emotional cry should never be ignored. Whilst crying is normal, it is also your baby’s way of communicating to you that there is a problem and that they need you. If your baby is crying an emotional cry, attend to them straight away and give them what they need which could be a feed, change of nappy or just a cuddle.

Around 70%-80% of babies will sleep through the night by 9 months of age if you set up the correct sleeping habits from a young age. If your baby is one that isn’t sleeping through night by this age, it doesn’t mean that you have done something wrong, some baby’s are just fussier sleepers and it takes them longer to learn this skill.

Another thing we can do to set our babies and toddlers up for a good sleep is by having in place a consistent and positive bedtime routine. Young children strive off routine and consistency is the key. A good bedtime routine should start 20-30 minutes before bed and can include things like a feed, bath, bedtime story or a song and saying “goodnight” with a cuddle before leaving the room (if not co-sleeping). If possible, let your child fall asleep independently. For young babies, this isn’t always easy, but putting a baby to bed drowsy but awake is a great way to set them up for good sleeping habits later on.

For toddlers and older children, there are more options available in terms of other products that can be used. Sleep training clocks are a great way to teach your child when it’s time for bed and when they can get out of bed in the morning. The sleep clock which I recommend is the Sleepy Starz Sleep Clock which can be easily integrated into your child’s bedtime routine. The Sleepy Starz Sleep Clock uses child friendly and calming images to teach your child the concept of time and when they should be asleep. It features a picture story book which is an important aspect to any toddler’s bedtime routine. It also features a 15 minute countdown timer so you can prepare your toddler for sleep time.

There are lots of sleep training methods that can be used for babies over the age of 6 months and these range from crying it out (something I don’t personally recommend) to controlled crying to the ‘camping out’ method. The type of sleep training method to use comes down to the child and to the family. What works for one family might not work for the next. The most important thing is to do what you feel comfortable with and that doesn’t create too much stress for yourself or the baby. A baby will read and respond to your stress levels and this can affect their sleep. And, always remember that consistency and persistency are key. Anything new you try is going to take time.

Children and sleeping is tricky and sleep deprivation is a hard thing to deal with and you need to also take care of yourself to be the best you can be for your little one.

Sleep Consulting by Sleepy Starz offers affordable sleep consulting packages. All sleep consultations are conducted by a certified professional in a supportive and non judgmental manner. Head to www.sleepystarz.com/sleep-consulting/ to view the packages available.

SLEEP STRATEGIES

SLEEP STRATEGIES

Entering parenthood for the first time is a sweet but challenging experience. Among many disadvantages and discomforts of new parenthood, the most talked about and difficult to be dealt with are problems related with sleep. ‘Teaching’ a baby to sleep at the correct times takes time and patience from the parents. A baby’s circadian rhythm (AKA body clock) is not developed when they are first born so they cannot differentiate between night and day. Newborns sleep, wake and feed around the clock in the first few weeks of life and this makes it a challenging time for parents.

Strategies to help maximize one’s opportunities to sleep include:

1) Ensue that the child gets enough sleep at regular intervals to avoid overtiredness.

2) Try to learn what your baby’s cry means. This takes time but differentiating between a hungry cry, a wet nappy cry and just a grizzle that doesn’t need immediate attention can be very helpful.

4) Teach the child to soothe themselves back to sleep on their own when they wake up in the middle of the night. This does not mean leaving your child to cry an ‘emotional cry’ without comfort. But, what it can mean is leaving your child if they are just grizzling or teaching them to find their comforter on their own.

5) Over the counter and prescription medications should not be used to help your child sleep unless prescribed by a trust worthy pediatrician. Instead, parents can ensure that their child is receiving a healthy and balanced diet, that they are getting exercise and exposure to natural light and generally using the environment to promote sleep naturally. 

6) Ensure there is a positive bedtime routine in place. A bedtime routine should start approximately 30 minutes before you want your little one to sleep and can include things like a bath, breast or bottle, massage, book, song etc. Work out what works best for your child and keep the routine consistent every night.

As a sleep consultant I always remind parents that their little ones are only babies for a short period. As much as possible I encourage parents to enjoy their time with their newborns but to also ensure they look after themselves. The health and wellbeing of the parent is just as important as that of the child. However, the term “it’s just a phase” is not helpful and not something I believe. If a child is having issues with their sleep it’s important to seek help to fix the issues sooner rather than later. Sleep Consulting by Sleepy Starz offers affordable sleep consultation packages to help with these very issues. Go to www.sleepystarz.com/sleep-consulting/ for more information.

Bedtime Battles: No More – A ‘Must Read’ for Sleep Deprived Parents

Bedtime Battles: No More – A Must Read for Sleep Deprived Parents

Co-founder of Sleepy Starz Pty Ltd, inventor of the Sleepy Starz Sleep Clock, Certified Sleep Consultant and author Emily Duffell knows everything there is to know about getting your fussy baby or toddler to sleep. This means not only falling asleep on their own but also sleeping throughout the night.

After experiencing sleep deprivation which in turn, led to post natal depression Emily knew all she wanted to do was help other parents and ensure they wouldn’t have to go through what she went through.

A few years ago, and whilst inventing the Sleepy Starz Sleep Training Clock, Emily put her natural writing abilities to paper and wrote and published the book Bedtime Battles: No More – How to Get Your Child to Sleep Throughout the Night in 10 Simple Steps which is available in both hardback and kindle format in the Amazon stores online.

The blurb of the book reads:

Mother of two Emily Duffell brings you ’Bedtime Battles: No More!’ A guide to getting your child to sleep throughout the night. Her highly acclaimed new book is packed full of simple, practical and easy to follow techniques for the treatment of sleeping problems in children.

If your child’s bedtime is a constant source of conflict or you endure nightly wakings or broken sleep then this is the ultimate handbook. ’Bedtime Battles: No More!’ provides expert advice and a stress free approach for sleep deprived parents.

Emily understands first-hand the difficulties associated with toddlers and sleep, as well as the impact this can have on a parent. Read how Emily transformed her children’s night-time performance and why she is fast becoming a leading expert in children’s sleep issues.

Learn Emily’s simple steps to success to ensure a healthy, happy, sleeping child today.

Since writing the book and releasing the revolutionary Sleepy Starz Sleep Clock, Emily has launched a sleep consulting service in her bid to help babies, toddlers and families achieve better sleep. 

For more information about Bedtime Battles: No More, Sleep Consulting by Sleepy Starz and the array of sleep solutions offered by Sleepy Starz, go to www.sleepystarz.com

SCREEN TIME AND THE EFFECTS ON SLEEP IN CHILDREN

SCREEN TIME AND THE EFFECTS ON SLEEP IN CHILDREN

It’s a real known fact that children these days are consumed by the television, video games and mobile device use. It seems that children in this day and age are spending less and less time outdoors in the sunshine and fresh air and more time indoors engaged with something on a screen. Houses are being built with smaller backyards to allow for more indoor space and parents don’t seem to be encouraging their children to be outside.

In 2014 the Nature Conservancy (www.nature.org) conducted a global survey on how much time children spend outside as well as parent’s views on the importance of children being in the outdoors. The survey results revealed that the amount of time spent outside depended on the age of the child. Pre-schoolers spend an average of 12 hours per week outside but this number decreased as the child got older and by the time the child was a teen, the number of hours was down to 6 per week only.

The same survey also revealed that parents want their children to be outside more, but there are things like homework and technology that are keeping them indoors longer.

Market research conducted by Childwise in 2015 (www.childwise.org.au) suggests that children in this day and age are having more than 6 hours of screen time each and every day compared to 3 hours per day in 1995. When you think about it, it’s quite a significant difference.

There are a lot of things that affect sleep for babies, toddlers and children and these include both the time spent outdoors in the fresh air as well as screen time. Children nowadays appear to have easy access to a computer, a laptop, a phone or free use of the television. Whilst, it’s important for children to understand how to use technology, it’s just as important that parents don’t forget the importance of the other things in life.

It’s been proven that screen time before bed can in fact affect not only the onset of sleep but also the quality of sleep. With more television being watched than ever, it’s no surprise that toddlers and young children are being exposed to things that they are just too young for. In the toddler and pre-school years the imaginations of children reach a high and viewing inappropriate things on the screen can heavily impact upon their sleep. 

With everything in life, it’s all about a healthy balance. Whilst this is easier said than done, it does need to be made a priority. For toddlers and young children, the Sleepy Starz Sleep Clock is a fantastic aid to help little sleepers and is also a great alternative to screen time before bed. It is a customisable sleep training clock with a high quality touch screen which engages the child at bedtime. With more features than any other sleep training product on the market, the Sleepy Starz Sleep Clock is a must-have. Head to www.sleepystarz.com/sleep-clock/ for more information.

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