Mamamia has recently launched a new Podcast series called “Year One” which is all about how to help you as a new parent, survive and enjoy, the first year of your child’s life. The Podcast series gives you practical, expert advice from an in house “dream team” of baby experts and I was delighted to be invited to join this team. It’s also a relatable, often hilarious journey of real life stories from the hosts, Holly and Christie, who are mums and share four children under seven between them.
I recorded two episodes and the first is titled “Getting Sleep Sorted”.
Let’s face it, it doesn’t really matter how many baby “how to” books you devoured or how often you researched Dr Google, the first year of your child’s life is still a very steep learning curve for any new parent. And the subject of sleep seems to be the hottest topic.
Prior to having a baby you may never have understood this obsession with sleep. Now you do. The nearest good coffee hub takes on an almost religious significance.
There will be days when you think you’re losing it. Sleep deprivation, an unsettled baby, well meant but unwanted advice, and often minimal trusted support. The hardest job of all is parenting and lots of your friends just won’t get that.
My first bit of advice based on 20 years experience as a Mothercraft Nurse is don’t be afraid to put your hand up if you’re not coping and you need professional support. No one can do a new job without help, any job. You haven’t failed and it shows real courage to ask for help.
The topics and advice we cover in this episode “Getting Sleep Sorted” include;
- The first 6 – 8 weeks and helping you understand what’s normal sleep patterns and what’s not.
- The 24/7 intense new role for mum, how often should baby be feeding, unsettled periods and how to cope.
- How to establish healthy sleeping patterns after 6-8 weeks
- Do parents sabotage their baby’s sleep, common mistakes.
- When and how to start a day/night time routine.
- Where should baby sleep? Safe sleeping guidelines, first with parents and when does baby graduate to their own room? Do baby monitors help?
- How to avoid/assist “flat head”.
- Should you use sleep aids like white noise, dummy?
- Settling techniques and coping strategies for those tricky times like “witching hour”.
- Baby starts to roll, what then? Transitioning from swaddle to sleeping bag.
- What does “sleeping through the night” actually mean and when does it happen, if ever?