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Sleep by Alexandra's A to Zzz of sleep success

Updated: Apr 21, 2023

Here's my A to Z of helpful sleep tips……Enjoy!!

A is for Allergy - A milk allergy is when baby’s immune system reacts to proteins in cows milk. Milk allergies can cause sleep disruption so be sure to check with your GP if you have any concerns.

B is for Bedtime - It can be very important to establish a good bedtime routine early on. It really does help encourage good sleep habits.

C is for Circadian Sleep Rhythm - Babies are nocturnal so it’s helpful to correct babies body clock rhythm early on. However rhythms do start to develop naturally at 6 weeks old.

D is for Dream feed - They involve feeding your baby whilst they are asleep, the theory being that by doing so, your baby will have a longer stretch of sleep. Only consider dream feeds for under 9 months old.

E is for Exercise - 1 hour of moderate exercise daily, broken down into 15 minute sessions can help encourage a young child's sleep.

F is for Fed Is Best - Whether you are breast or formula feeding, fed is best. A lot of mums struggle with breast feeding and then feel guilty about using formula, please don’t. Your baby is happy no matter how they are fed.

G is for Growth Spurts - It is handy to know roughly when babies go through certain growth spurts as during this time they will probably need extra milk and may wake more in the night. However growth spurts do not last long.

H is for Healthy - It’s good to have a healthy relationship with sleep, know what works for you. Does having small naps in the day help when having broken sleep at night or do you feel better if you go to bed when baby does? Figure out what works best for you and remember this period of sleep deprivation will eventually pass.

I is for Illness - Any sort of illness such as colds or viral infections will most likely disrupt sleep. It is not recommended to work on your little ones sleep during this time. Just give your baby the love and comfort they need, then start again when they are well enough.

J is for Junk Food - Junk food may be filling, however your child will not be getting all the nutrients they need from junk food so try to give them a well balanced diet, as a bad diet can affect sleep.

K is for Key - My key sleep principles are consistency, confidence and calm. It is so important to use all three to be successful when sleep training.

L is for Lactose Intolerance - This is when your baby has difficulty digesting the lactose, or the sugar found in cows milk. This is much rarer than a milk allergy so be sure to get the correct diagnosis from your GP.

M is for Melatonin - This hormone is made by the pineal gland, a small gland in the brain and it helps control sleep and wake cycles. Light affects how much melatonin the body produces so we encourage a less bright environment before bed.

N is for Night Terrors - Night terrors mainly affect younger children, more often in boys, and there is often a family history. Check out my blog for more information on how to deal with night terrors.

O is for Obstacles - You will have many obstacles along your’s and your baby’s sleep journey, however its important to remain consistent and calm.

P is for Physical Development - Certain developmental milestones can shift and change sleep patterns in babies. Simple things like rolling over, sitting and standing up can be the cause of a disturbed sleep.

Q is for Quiet Time - It is very important to have quiet time before bedtime. It is recommended to have at least 1 hour of no screen time before bed. They can still play, however encourage a calm activity like doing a puzzle or reading.

R is for Reflux - It is very common for a baby to have reflux so if you have any concerns regarding your baby’s reflux or if you aren’t sure if it even is reflux, go see your GP as it can really disrupt sleep.

S is for Sleep Cues - Try to recognise your child's own key sleep cues. Typically signs like rubs eyes, pulls ears and yawns are indications that your baby is tired. Signs like fusses, whines and is very irritable are indications that your baby is overtired.

T is for Teething - Unfortunately there are no sleep solutions for teething, just some good teething gels and a lot of love can help until it passes. Teething typically starts around 6 months of age, but can be quite individual and so can affect much older babies.

U is for Uninterrupted - Uninterrupted sleep may seem a life time away, however this phase will pass and until then, I have lots ways that I can help you. Whether it be through my free resources or on a personal 1 to 1 basis.

V is for Very Common - Sleep problems are very common. 40% of children at some stage will have a sleep problem considered as significant by their parents.

W is for White Noise - White noise machines can be a life saver. Although they don’t sound nice to us, they remind babies of being in the womb. 80% of infants that listen to white noise fall asleep within 5 minutes.

X is for Xxx - Sometimes a kiss and a cuddle is all your baby needs to help them go back to sleep.

Y is for You Time - Being a parent can be really hard sometimes, so remember to take time out for you.

Z is for Zzz - Hopefully when taking all of these tips into consideration, you will be able to get plenty more Zzz’s.

Find out more about Sleep by Alexandra

Sleep by Alexandra helps your family sleep better so you can enjoy more time together. Alexandra Collingbourne is a sleep consultant specialising in safe, holistic methods of getting your baby, toddler or young child to sleep in a way that empowers parents to live better, happier and with more energy. Specialist postnatal depression & anxiety support is also available for those who need it.

● View baby and toddler sleep services from Sleep by Alexandra here

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