You finally got your baby's sleep figured out and have a bit of predictability with your little ones 3 naps but then suddenly everything changes. Naps start getting shorter, your little one starts to fight falling asleep and in general sleep just becomes a struggle. What happened?! You my friend, might have a baby that's ready to drop a nap!
Now before you go making any rash moves, make sure that your baby actually needs to drop the third nap. Going from three naps to two naps is a big change because they're not only dropping a third nap they're also dropping that extra wake window!
Keeping that in mind, if it's just been a day or two, there might be something else bugging your little one like teething pain or they might be getting sick. It's also important to keep in mind that if they've been learning something new, this can temporary affect sleep as well. Check out my blog on sleep progressions to assess if that's a factor.
One of the scariest things about becoming a mom of two was figuring out how I was going to juggle a newborn and a toddler when it came to nap time. When my oldest was a newborn, naps were so difficult that I literally had to have family come over during their lunch breaks so I could take a shower or get ready for the day because Lily wouldn’t nap on her own for more than 5-10 minutes without level-5 screaming. It was exhausting and heartbreaking!
Fast forward a year and a half, I was in a much better position; confident in sleep and my abilities as a mom. This was partly thanks to it being my second child and partly due to the fact that I became a certified sleep consultant but still, those fears of an overtired and cranky baby still lingered under the surface. I was so anxious about naptime but as I continued on, nap after nap, putting my knowledge into practice, things got easier.
If you’re feeling anxious about sleep when you have...
When a family comes to me with their sleep issues, I ALWAYS start by asking this question “How dark is their sleep space?”. This is because the sleep environment and how dark it is plays a huge role in our body’s ability to fall asleep and stay asleep.
So why exactly does this matter? After 3-4 months, our bodies start consistently producing the hormone melatonin, the “sleepy hormone” that helps to regulate our circadian rhythms or our “body clock”. This helps us feel like it’s time to sleep at nighttime and time to be awake during the daytime. Little ones are so sensitive to light that even a tiny bit can make a big impact!
I started out thinking that I could get away with my kid’s rooms just being dark, that it was good enough but learned very quickly that PITCH black is ideal. I mean, can’t-see-your-hand-in-front-of-your-face type dark! I then moved on to all of the hacks, the tinfoil (way too loud), garbage bags (looks...