Do the Holidays Mean Sleep Disasters?
Fabulous mommas believe it or not the holidays are right around the corner. You are probably thinking about dusting off the boxes that contain the Christmas decorations or what delicious 5 course meal you are going to prepare for Thanksgiving. You are maybe thinking about the family and friends that will visit to see your little one. It’s always fun to have family and friends over but when you have a cranky, overtired child on your hands you will quickly forget how fun the idea seemed at first.
Each child is unique and if you are lucky your child is flexible and sleeps through Uncle Ronny complaining about how cold it’s going to get this winter or cousin Jenna’s performance of what she thinks will win her the Voice competition. If this is not the case for your child then here are a few tips to make it through the Holidays without pulling your precious hair out.
1) If you already have a consistent sleep schedule, stick to it! It might be tempting to play around with naps or bedtime because so much needs to get done. But keep in mind some children are very sensitive to time changes. Some babies are so sensitive that if they are put to bed 5 minutes later they will put up quite a fight to fall asleep. They absolutely need to be put to bed at their accustomed sleep times. Try to plan activities or shopping trips around your child’s regular sleep times.
2) If you are visiting family and friends and that sleep environment is unfamiliar to your child, it might take a few days before your little one will start sleeping better. To help your child adjust better try these tips:
· Make the room as dark as possible for naps and bedtime. You can buy portable blackout blinds or use dark trash bags. Getting the room as dark as possible will help with the production of Melatonin, the sleep hormone that helps us fall and stay asleep.
· Take your child’s favorite cuddly toy, lovey, blanket and/or sheets with you. A familiar smell will help comfort your child so he or she can relax better in an unfamiliar place.
· If the house where you are staying is very noisy, take a white noise machine with you. This will cancel out the background noises and help your baby fall asleep much easier.
3) If you were planning on sleep training your child around this time of the year it’s best to wait until the Holidays are over before you begin. You most probably have so much going on and it is vital to be consistent when it comes to helping your child learn to fall and stay asleep independently.
Remember that even though Grandma hasn’t seen her grandson or granddaughter in a few months, your baby’s sleep is very important and the more sleep your child gets the more this will beneficially impact his or her mood and well-being.
Enjoy the Holidays!