January can often be a challenging month after all the excitement of Christmas but this year, even more so with all of us going back into another lockdown.

The time we’ll have at home can be an excellent opportunity to work on your little one’s sleep, especially if everything went a bit wrong over the Christmas period! It’s important that everyone in the family, including parents, get as much rest as possible, which is especially vital in difficult and stressful times such as these.

Sleep Needs

Please look at my cheat sheet here, which gives you an idea of the average sleep needs for children from newborn to age 6. This will provide you with a guide to how much sleep your child should be getting in any 24 hour period – obviously, children vary in their sleep needs, but the majority of children will fit into these patterns. Please note the hours that your child is sleeping and ensure that they are getting enough sleep for their age. If your little one becomes overtired, their body will produce cortisol, making it much more difficult for them to get to sleep and make them much more restless and easily woken from sleep. It’s often said, but sleep begets sleep, so the more you prioritise early bedtimes and good sleep habits, the more sleep your child should start getting.

For babies who are still napping, it’s crucial not to keep them up too long between naps as this can mean they will struggle to fall asleep. Instead, keep a close eye on your little one’s tired signs during the day and note these, which then gives you a guide as to how long they can then stay awake before needing to sleep again. Putting them down for sleep before these signs appear can often result in an easier and longer nap.

Routine, Routine, Routine!

Babies and young children thrive on routine so trying to get your little one on a predictable schedule, particularly sleep, can make life easier for everyone. In addition, this should help with any sleep battles that you may be experiencing with your wee one.

If you feel like you could do with some individual support to help get things back on track, please do book in for a free, no-obligation call – I would love to help!