Sam has put together her ultimate guide to summer sleep for your little ones.
Sam has worked with 1000’s families all over the world as a Gentle Parenting & Baby Coach, helping with all aspects of parenting.
With each season comes challenges with sleep for little ones, from keeping them warm and snug in the winter to cool and comfortable in the summer months.
The Baby Guru’s Top Tips:
Blackout blinds: With lighter evenings and mornings, a blackout blind is a must to help little ones get the optimum amount of sleep. The Gro Company stick-on blackout blinds are great for when at home, for staying away at family or friends or when on holiday.
UV Pram Shade: If your baby normally sleeps in their cot at home and their room is dim or dark, creating a similar environment in their buggy or pram can help with naps on the go. The SnoozeShade with universal fitting means it will fit all types of buggies, giving them a dark and UV safe environment to sleep in. The Snooze Shade is breathable and will not trap heat like a towel or thicker covering.
White Noise: There is nothing worse than walking for ages and for your little one to eventually drop off to sleep, only to have a siren, dog barking or noisy environment to wake them. Having some white noise tucked in with them will help drown out all those unwanted sounds likely to wake them, so aiding peaceful sleep. Making sure the white noise is at a safe sound level, and if using your phone on flight mode, so avoiding both RF waves and notifications waking them.
Light-tog Sleeping Bag: Keeping them cool enough on balmy summer nights can also be a challenge. Think of their sleeping bag like a duvet, the lower the tog rating the cooler the cover. Sleeping bags are available in a tog rating as low as 0.5 but a standard 1.5 rated bag with adjusted layers for room temperature is great. If it’s super warm then just a nappy may be enough with a short-sleeved vest if the room temperature drops in the early hours.
Room Fan: If using a fan in the bedroom, ensure that the cool air flow is not directly facing your baby but rather facing a wall and bouncing back.
Shutters: Keeping shutters, blinds or curtains closed in the bedroom during the day, with safe level windows open, helps keep out the warm sunlight, keeping the room cooler.
Sleep while on holiday
When staying away from home, expect bedtimes to be a little unsettled and often little ones need extra reassurance when settling.
Here are Sam’s Top Tips:
Extended Playtime and Bedtime Routine: Having some extended playtime and a longer bedtime routine may help them feel more familiar with their new sleep environment.
White Noise: They may already be sleeping in their own room at home but needing to share with you or siblings while away, so using some white noise may help avoid waking them when you go to bed or noises from other siblings.
Relax the Rules: If you do end up having to rock, feed or co-sleep while away so that everyone gets their sleep, do not worry. It’s important that you all enjoy your holiday and once back at home, you can get them settled and get back into their normal routine. Yes you may have a few objections and difficulty settling but they will soon pick up their routine again.
Fresh Air: I truly believe that being outside, getting lots of fresh air, maybe by the sea, with more opportunities to be running around helps with a good night’s sleep for all. Often babies and children sleep soundly and for longer when on holidays!
Rest Days: I’m often asked “do I need to stick to my current routine during the holidays or days out?” In short the answer is no, but babies and children do respond well to a routine, even if the timings are out of the norm. Having naps on the go, meals out and late bedtimes are all part of holidays but watch for their tired cues. In older children being overtired is usually reflected in their behaviour. On some busier days it’s not possible to stick to routine but try and have some quieter, rest days for everyone's sake!
Extra and Late Naps: Another question I’m asked a lot… “is going out in the evening with babies and toddlers okay, when they are normally tucked up in bed at 6.30-7pm?” Yes of course. My top tip to help them would be to let them have a late nap in the buggy or car. Then when you get back from being out, have a quick bath time routine before a late feed if needed and down to sleep. Don’t always expect a later wake up though, sadly this is not always the case. Making sure they catch up during nap times the following day can help prevent over tiredness.
Hope you have found these tips helpful!
If you would like some 1-2-1 help with your little one’s sleep, routine, feeding or weaning Sam is always happy to help.