Once the days of erratic, unpredictable newborn sleep start to fade, most babies begin to form at least a loose schedule to their sleep. Rather than cat napping on and off around the clock, sleep begins to order itself; first you start to see one longer stretch at night between 6-8 weeks and then a more regular morning nap time around l 12 weeks, and finally several weeks later the afternoon nap. .
The problem is by the time this starts to happen around 6-8 weeks,parents are so sleep deprived themselves, they often do not recognize these emerging patterns. I encourage parents to keep their a sleep log, as it is often easier to see patterns and changes if families track their sleep.
Many families are eager to begin sleep coaching, but often they don’t take into account that their infant may not be ready. Remember, sleep develops slowly over the early months of life as your baby acclimates to the world.
Start Sleep Coaching When Your Baby is Ready
Prior to beginning sleep coaching, I recommend every parent track their child’s sleep habits for a while to truly gauge how much sleep the child is getting, how long they are able to stay asleep, how many times they wake during the night, and to understand when their wake and bed times are.
This information is vital to recognizing patterns and understanding what changes are needed so you can build them into your sleep coaching plan. It can also help you track how much and how often your baby is eating so you can review this with you doctor prior to starting sleep coaching.
In my coaching practice, I always ask parents to keep a sleep and feeding log so that I can assess and point out inconsistencies and patterns. Regardless of your child’s age or whether you are starting sleep coaching or not, it’s important to know their sleep and wake patterns, as well as their eating schedule.
If you’re not home, asking your sitter or nanny to keep a feeding and sleep log will make it easier for you when you come home or pick them up at the end of the day.
Catching Up With Technology
In the past records or logs were kept with pen and paper, which works, but isn’t always easy to see patterns as they emerge. That’s why I’m so excited to be partnering with Evoz.
With the newest Evoz baby monitor, this sleep information is created for you based on the collected crying and room data.
Plus, you can add supplemental data from feedings, diaper changes, and milestones as well.
As parents, viewing this data in graphical format can help you easily see patterns as they emerge.
This data can be exported to help your child’s doctor or to one of our sleep coaches, providing a full picture of your child’s current sleep situation and allowing you both the ability to see improvements quickly and easily.
Using The Data
You may notice that when you are able to get your little one to bed before 8:00 pm, he tends to sleep a longer stretch and has less night wakings. Or perhaps you realize that when you’re able to get him to sleep until 7:00 am, his naps throughout the day are longer and more structured rather than broken catnaps you noticed on days he wakes at 5am.
You may even discover that you’ve created a feed to sleep association that’s causing your little one to fuss for a bottle many more times than necessary at night because that’s the only way he knows how to fall asleep.
There’s no need to get down on yourself if you discover that you may have supported some bad habits in your little one. The great thing about having the information from the data is that you can easily recognize the problem and work on a solution from there.
Even better than just having this data at your fingertips, Evoz and I have teamed up to use this data to provide you with information to help your child get better sleep. Based on your child’s age and the collected sleep data, we can recommend articles and videos accessible from the app to help you understand the stage your child is in and move towards improving sleep for your little one – and yourself too!
If you have a younger child (or a few that share a room), you can also utilize the video monitor to help keep track of sleep or lack thereof.