Daylight Savings Time Child Sleep Solutions

adjust baby to daylight savingsI feel like we just set the clocks back an hour, but it’s already time to spring ahead. Many of us struggled with early wake ups and cranky babes who had trouble making it to a 6:00 pm bedtime. But, fear not! The spring time change is actually easier on parents and babies. Even though we technically lose an hour of sleep, our clocks push forward and make for an easier time change, because it’s a big deal when your baby sleeps an hour later. Here are my five tips to help your family deal with the time change.

1. Parents need to sleep, too!

It’s just as important for parents to pay attention to their sleep environment and routines.  Make sure your bedrooms are clear of clutter and are only used for sleep. Give yourself enough time to carry out your own relaxing bedtime routine each night. Turn off all screens at least an hour before bedtime so that you can allow your brain to release the hormones that naturally cause drowsiness.

2.  Stick to your schedule.

How you handle this time change depends on your family and child, but most do best by just keeping all routines and naps and bedtimes the same. Yes, your child will be getting one hour less of sleep, but this will not affect them greatly because it is temporary. As with traveling to a time zone one hour ahead, our bodies adjust within 3 days or so. If you want to prepare ahead of time, you can put your child to bed 15 minutes earlier for a few days before Sunday and then your child will be adjusted to the new times on Sunday. If you have a child that wakes early and goes to bed early, it can be tempting to start putting them to bed later in the hopes that they will wake later. You can try this, but it often does not work because light, hunger, and routines all affect our daily alertness and drowsiness, and it can be hard to change all of those considering factors to fit the new time change.

3.  Use blackout shades.

The sun will be rising earlier and setting later, which means it may be lighter in your child’s bedroom. This could make it difficult to fall asleep at night (here in Texas it can get dark as late as 9:00) when the sun is setting and encourage earlier waking in the morning.  Blackout shades are a great way to darken your child’s room (and even your own) and to help your child sleep until a more desirable wake up time. They can be expensive, so if you need some quick fixes, black trash bags and painters tape are a great alternative. You can also purchase temporary paper blackout shades from your local hardware store or attach blackout backing to your existing curtains.

4.  Earlier to bed means later to rise. 

We all remember the days when we used to sleep in before we had kids. Is your child an early riser? You might need to continue to use an earlier bedtime to keep your child from becoming overtired, which often results in waking earlier in the morning. For older children, consider using a clock to signal when it’s okay to get out of bed even if they wake early.

5.  Use white noise.

The birds may start chirping much earlier as we move into spring. A white noise machine is a great tool for blocking out environmental noises as well as other sounds in your home. White noise is non-habit forming and allows the brain to sleep deeply because the sound is constant.  Choose white noise over music because the dynamic changes in music do not allow the brain to achieve deep, restorative sleep.

Enjoy these days of “sleeping in”. If you need assistance for sleep issues that may not be fixed as we spring forward, working with a certified sleep consultant may be a solution.

certified child sleep consultantGuest blog by Lori Strong of Strong Little Sleepers

Lori is a Family Sleep Institute Certified Child Sleep Consultant and Certified Happiest Baby Educator.  She works with families all over the country to help them improve their child’s sleep.  In 2013, Lori was named Best Sleep Expert in the Austin Birth Awards.  Lori provides email, phone, and in-home consultations to her clients. She lives in Austin, Texas with her husband and two well-rested kiddos.

For more information, visit www.stronglittlesleepers.com.

Interested in writing a guest blog for Woombie? Send your topic idea to pr@woombie.com.

All data and information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. Woombie makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, current-ness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information, or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis.

Photo Credit: Hamed Saber via Compfight cc

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8 Tips to Save Money When You Have a Baby

save money when you have a babyHaving a baby is a wonderful endeavor, but there’s no doubt that it will be costly. Between baby supplies and visits to the doctor, you could be spending more than you anticipated. Hopefully you’ve estimated your costs and saved proportionately, but you’ll still want to find ways to cut down your spending during the first few years of your child’s life. Here are eight tips on saving money with a baby.

1. Say ‘no’ to hospital add-ons.

Hospital fees can vary widely. It’s important you understand what you’re being charged before agreeing to anything. Private rooms can cost thirty to one hundred dollars per day. TV access in your room may cost $10 per day. Many baby items in your room are billed to you (or your insurance) regardless if you use them. Be sure to ask what you can take from the room (like swaddling cloths, alcohol swabs, disposable nipples, etc).

2. Breastfeed.

Aside from the myriad health benefits for you and your baby, nursing will save you a lot of money. Formula can cost more than a hundred dollars each month. With consistency and good practice, your breast can provide plenty of sustenance for your baby. Even if you have to speak with a lactation consultant, it’s cheaper than long-term formula use. Your local hospital likely has free resources.

3. Think big.

When it comes to buying nonperishable products like diapers and wipes, buy as much as you can at one time to take advantage of the savings. Typically these products will cost less per unit if you buy a larger quantity.

4. Keep a baby-care bag with you.

Keep a bag of essential items with you all the time, especially in your car. Pack a few diapers, a tube of ointment, extra clothes, a travel pack of wipes, and some nonperishable food. These will serve as a backup for when you inevitably forget your diaper bag (and you will) and save you from having to purchase emergency supplies.

5. Call you pediatrician before setting an appointment.

Many experienced doctors can diagnose a condition over the phone without seeing your child. This can save you several costly co-pays, or hundreds of dollars if your lack insurance.

6. Make your own baby food.

There’s no special recipe to baby food. Mash well or puree some fresh, natural ingredients you find in the produce section, like sweet potatoes, zucchini, bananas, or squash. Make a large serving at a time and store it in the refrigerator. Not only is this far cheaper than buying baby food, but you don’t mess with the preservatives and sweeteners.

7. Use secondhand baby clothes.

Babies grow very quickly. They double their size in the first few months. Don’t buy new baby clothes that will just be too small soon after. It’s likely there is someone in your family with bags full of baby clothes just waiting for someone to give them to. If you have to buy clothes, buy gently used items from a secondhand store.

8. Share maternity clothes.

You will be pregnant for less than a year and you’ll only need special clothes for part of that time. Ask friends to borrow some maternity clothes or buy them second hand. There’s no need to replace your entire wardrobe for such a short time.

baby swaddleWritten by Karen Barski, BSN, RN, Mother of five, Certified Infant Care Specialist & Instructor, & Inventor of the  Woombie Baby Swaddle

Karen has been an RN for 18 years, and has worked in many different nursing roles. As a Certified Infant Care Specialist, Karen counsels thousands of families yearly on a multitude of issues relating to pregnancy and infancy. Also, as a mother of five, she has invaluable experience and tips to share.

Since 2007, Karen’s company, KB Designs, has invented a line of signature baby swaddle products that have helped parents easily transition their new babies from womb to home. There are multiple designs and sizes so that babies can enjoy the comfort and security of the Woombie up until the time they begin to roll.

Each product has been created and designed by Karen because of a need she identified in her life with her five children. With convenience, safety, and fashion in mind, KB Designs has helped over a half million babies and counting!

For more information, visit www.woombie.com.

Interested in writing a guest blog for Woombie? Send your topic idea to pr@woombie.com.

All data and information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. Woombie makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, current-ness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information, or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis.

Photo Credit: Robert Whitehead via Compfight cc

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5 Things Most Parents Don’t Know About Their Kid’s Mouth

natural oral productsIt smiles at you, it kisses you, chews and whistles, bites and whines but did you know your kids mouth is also home to the #1 most misunderstood and fastest growing cause of disease in kids? Here are a few facts that I think will help you make better choices when it comes to your kiddos mouth matters.

1. You transfer cavity causing bacteria (called streptococcus aureus) to your kids mouths by kissing and sharing food & drinks. 

Just like a cold or flu bacteria can be transferred around families, so can the bacteria that causes decay. Kids also can inherit the dental characteristics that cause tooth decay just like they inherit eye color and hair color. Moms can increase their child’s chances of better oral health by taking extra good care of their own mouths – especially in the last trimester of pregnancy.

TIP: Try to brush your teeth before you give kids their goodnight kisses or you can end up giving them a big ol’ dose of sugar bugs again right before bed.

2. Tooth decay is the #1 most common childhood disease in the USA.

It’s an epidemic affecting almost 50% of Kindergartners. It’s also highly preventable with proper brushing and limiting sugar intake. A recent analysis commissioned by the Florida Public Health Institute found the total ER charges for dental emergencies that could have been prevented exceeded $88 million. Childhood decay is leading into adult decay and life threatening infection and pain. All of which can be prevented with simple, consistent brushing of at least 2 minutes a day, 2 times a day.

Tip: Sing kids your favorite show tune while they brush or get a timer and even consider brushing your teeth with them to lead by example.

3. Your child needs to begin brushing as soon as their first tooth pops up AND have their first visit to a pediatric dentist at their first birthday. 

Most importantly, they need to see a pediatric dentist! These dentists are easy to find in most neighborhoods. They have and additional 2 years of training specifically about the psychology and happenings inside little mouths and they usually have super cool, kid friendly offices that your child will love to visit.  Most of them are all about prevention instead of treatment. They would rather invest in helping you keep a healthy mouth healthy than make money treating a broken one later. Toothriffic!

TIP: Check with the American Academy of Pediatric Dentists to find your closest pediatric dentist and visit their resources page for free Mouth Monster charts and incentives to help kids learn.

4. Fluoride is not the only option for having a healthy smile.

Many toothpastes for kids advertise fluoride as their magic ingredient. It has been the most common additive in toothpaste for fifty years. Many parents don’t know there is actually another ingredient becoming widely available to reduce tooth decay called xylitol.  It’s an FDA approved, all natural ingredient that can reduce cavity causing bacteria by as much as 72% when its formulated correctly! It’s safe for kids of all ages to swallow which is one less things for parents to worry about. The American Dental Association recommends that kids under the age of 6 years should NOT swallow toothpaste containing Fluoride (it can cause brown or white spots on the forming permanent teeth.) That’s kinda tough when your teaching a toddler to brush so xylitol is a great alternative.

TIP: Look for a  xylitol toothpaste or toothgel (for babies & toddlers) formulated with 30% or more xylitol.  Older kids and adults can also chew xylitol gum to help keep mouths bacteria free all day long.

5. It’s not just candy that causes cavities! 

Things like milk and juice and even crackers have a lot of sugar in them (natural sugars.) It is never a good idea to put your child to bed with milk or a sippy cup of either of these. The natural sugars will sit on their teeth and/or gums overnight and feast away. Just like if you leave a used paintbrush in paint thinner, the sugar breaks down and dissolves the teeth enamel and cavities start to form. Also, the frequency you expose your kids to sugar is much more important than the amount of sugar.

TIP: If you are going to treat your kids with sugar, it’s better to give them one handful of candy a day than a whole bunch of little bits throughout.

So, be smart about your kisses, get your kids to a pediatric dentist at their first Birthday, limit sugar frequency and look for oral care products with the properly formulated xylitol.  A few small changes today will save you lots of money down the road and keep your kids smile healthy and bright for as long as they want to use it!

all natural, xylitol productsGuest blog by Dr. Steve Branam of Branam Healthy Smiles for Life

In his 35 years in practice as one of the country’s leading pediatric dentists, Dr. Steve Branam has seen the effects – and the causes – of early childhood tooth decay firsthand.

The accumulated knowledge and experience gained in Dr. Branam’s practice and his passion for prevention was the driving force behind the creation of the Branam range of all natural, xylitol products, and a company dedicated to providing parents with trusted resources to combat tooth decay.

For more information, visit www.branamsmile.com.

Interested in writing a guest blog for Woombie? Send your topic idea to pr@woombie.com.

All data and information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. Woombie makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, current-ness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information, or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis.

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Spring Baby Shower Gifts Invented By Moms

You’ll have to think outside the box if you want to come up with a unique baby shower gift that will really impress the mom-to-be. Products invented by moms always make the best gifts, because no one knows what a mom needs better than an actual mom! All these products are created by real moms who have real experience. They just want to make life a bit easier! As a mother of five, I understand what moms really need. If you’re going to give a gift, it might as well be useful. Check out my favorites.

1. Woombie Air Baby Swaddle

The Woombie Air is the safest and most effective baby swaddle that requires no wrapping. It’s the first breathable baby swaddle that regulates baby’s body temperature by allowing excess heat to escape. All you do is put baby in and zip up; the unique peanut-shaped swaddle gently cocoons baby and the 4-way stretch bebeflex(TM) fabric enables baby to move naturally which helps protect against hip dysplasia. Baby’s arms are not pinned to the side; prevents overheating; and no worries of dangerous, lose blankets unraveling and covering baby’s face. The Mom/Nurse invented Woombie Air re-creates the security and comfort baby felt in the womb and promotes longer periods of sleep from birth to 6 months (or when baby begins to roll).

best baby shower gift

$26.00

www.woombie.com

2. The Diaper Clutch

The Diaper Clutch is a stylish and convenient way to carry your diapers and wipes! The Diaper Clutch is the very first to feature the easy access window to the wipes…making diaper changing that much easier. The inner pocket has enough room to fit 2-4 diapers…depending on size. Grab it and go for that quick outing or toss it in your diaper bag. Designed around the Huggies Disposable wipes refill pack, the diaper clutch is also compatible with most disposable soft pack wipes with hard top cover. The Diaper Clutch comes in many different stylish prints for both boys and girls.

best baby shower gift

$24.00

www.thediaperclutch.com

3. San Diego Bebe Eco-Nursing Pillow

The mom invented and multiple-award winning San Diego Bebe(R) Eco-Nursing Pillow offers support, comfort, and discretion for mom and baby. For those times when mothers have no other option but to breastfeed in public, the San Diego Bebe(R) allows for modesty with its built-in Privacy Cover(TM) providing complete discretion while nursing. The cover’s lightweight mesh construction allows continuous airflow, keeping mom and baby comfortable. San Diego Bebe(R)’s signature Comfort Bolster(TM) wraps around the outside of the pillow for added security. San Diego Bebe(R) has an angled top surface and detachable back pillow for optimal support and comfort. It is available in a variety of chic colors and plush fabrics. Option for one baby or for twins to feed two babies simultaneously!

 

best baby shower gift

$59.99 – $79.99

www.doubleblessings.com

4. Nizo Wear Nursing Bras

Nizo Wear healing nursing bras feature a unique patented pocket in the pull down flap that can hold a warm or cool pack. The pocket acts as a thin barrier between wearer’s skin and the heating or cooling pack, which increases comfort and safety. The Nizo Wear design has removable molded pads held securely in place in the pocket, for added lining when you want it (to hide nipples, breast pads, light leaks), and the ability to take it out when you don’t. In addition to the innovative functionality, Nizo Wear is made from amazingly soft fabrics, pretty prints, and shapely lines to help moms feel stylish and good again.

Nizo Wear nursing bras currently come in three feminine styles: the Serenity Nursing Bra, Solace Nursing Bra, and the Allure Nursing Bra.

best baby shower gift

$19.99 – $29.99

www.nizowear.com

5. Baby Elephant Ears

Baby Elephant Ears is a multi-use headrest providing spinal/neck alignment and comfort for babies — and they’re designed to look like adorable elephant ears! Baby Elephant Ears go wherever baby goes — stroller, swing, carseat, changing table, etc. The headrests are fully washable and require no attachments, straps or special skills and they’re offered in diverse prints and organics. The superior design and durability of these headrests make them the perfect gift for parents!

best baby shower gift

$21.95

www.babyelephantears.com

6. Baby J Padded Play Mat

This padded play mat for babies and toddlers is perfect for use at mommy and me classes or for lying down in the park. The play mat was designed for the germ conscious mom who always wants a clean area for her little one. The play mat is crafted with vibrant and colorful, 100% cotton, designer fabric and super plush minky. It’s comfy and cozy for any new baby, and great for tummy time. It measures 29″x35″ and features a Velcro closure that ensures one side stays clean and sanitary, and always stays compact and folded up in your diaper bag.

best baby shower gift

$55.00

www.babyj.com

7. PullyPalz

PullyPalz are the first ever baby toys that actually help babies retrieve their own pacifiers! They’re interactive and entertaining to keep baby distracted and helpful for parents who no longer have to play the “pacifier game.” The innovative and developmentally beneficial toy keeps pacifiers in view and in reach to keep them clean. PullyPalz hold most pacifiers and attach to baby carriers, bouncers and more.

best baby shower gift

$24.99

www.pullypalz.com

9. Wubbanub Pacifier

Soft and cuddly, it’s unique style allows pacifier to remain close and will easily position to baby. The pacifier is made of medical grade silicone and BPA free. The soft plush portion provides comfort to the touch and makes it so much easier for the baby’s little hands to grasp and manipulate the pacifier them self. Which means fewer bouncing, rolling and lost pacifiers and less rooting around in the stroller or bag to find the pacifier.

best baby shower gift

$12.99

www.wubbanub.com

8. Bobee Diaper and Wipe Dispenser

A wall-mounted diaper & wipe caddy, Bobee allows for one-handed access so you can keep one hand safely on your baby. The diaper caddy comes white and is customizable with included colorful decals to decorate and match your nursery room decor. Changing table space is freed up for other important baby items, and the diapers and wipes are up and out of the way from curious little hands. The dispenser fits high quantities in all sizes and brands of disposable diapers. Pre-package wet wipes fit neatly below.

best baby shower gift

$42.00

www.bobeeinc.com

baby swaddleWritten by Karen Barski, BSN, RN, Mother of five, Certified Infant Care Specialist & Instructor, & Inventor of the  Woombie Baby Swaddle

Karen has been an RN for 18 years, and has worked in many different nursing roles. As a Certified Infant Care Specialist, Karen counsels thousands of families yearly on a multitude of issues relating to pregnancy and infancy. Also, as a mother of five, she has invaluable experience and tips to share.

Since 2007, Karen’s company, KB Designs, has invented a line of signature baby swaddle products that have helped parents easily transition their new babies from womb to home. There are multiple designs and sizes so that babies can enjoy the comfort and security of the Woombie up until the time they begin to roll.

Each product has been created and designed by Karen because of a need she identified in her life with her five children. With convenience, safety, and fashion in mind, KB Designs has helped over a half million babies and counting!

For more information, visit www.woombie.com.

Interested in writing a guest blog for Woombie? Send your topic idea to pr@woombie.com.

All data and information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. Woombie makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, current-ness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information, or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis.

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5 Toddler Sleep Problems With Easy Solutions

baby sleep solutionsAs a Child Sleep Consultant certified by the Family Sleep Institute, I’ve helped tired families with infants, babies, and toddlers become well rested families through customized sleep solutions and support. There are many common sleep habits that toddlers can develop; habits that are not so ideal for healthy sleep. Here are five toddler sleep habits with easy solutions

1. Refuses to nap but still needs a nap

A nap may be missed due to illness, travel or change in routine. As the child gets more overtired, it becomes more difficult to nap. This will have a cumulative effect which may cause the child to refuse to nap altogether.

Solution: Earlier bedtime to help make up that sleep deficit and make it easier to nap, get the child outdoors in the morning for fresh air and exercise, very soothing routine before naptime, and leave the child for 60 minutes to give them the opportunity to fall asleep without stimulation. Once the nap has been re-established, bedtime can be moved a little later.

2. Night waking

Waking during the night is normal, but it becomes a problem when the child cannot return to sleep unassisted. They will call out for mom and dad, disrupting everyone’s consolidated sleep.

Solution: Have a consistent soothing routine in place to get the child nice and drowsy. Ensure the child is getting enough sleep, as overtiredness leads to frequent night waking. Make sure the child is able to self-soothe, and implement some sleep training/coaching if necessary. Remove all reinforcement (negative or positive) when the child wakes as this is an incentive for the child to wake up fully and call for the parents.

3. Afraid of the dark

Fears in children are common, and it can easily prevent a child from falling asleep.

Solution: Make sure the child has lovey or comfort item like a teddy bear to help them feel protected. Give the child a very soothing routine before bed to get them nice and relaxed. Give them some extra attention at bedtime, and reassure them that you are nearby. Provide the child with a very low watt nightlight.

4. Getting out of bed or “jack-in-the-box syndrome”

Younger toddlers may be climbing out their cribs, which can be very dangerous. Older children may be repeatedly getting out of their beds, which is tiresome to the parents.

Solution: For children who are still in a crib, turn the crib around so that the higher side of the crib is facing out (if possible). Use a sleep sack to prevent the child from climbing over the side. Use a video monitor, and as soon as the child lifts a leg to climb over, enter the room and give a stern “no!” This is usually enough to prevent the child from trying it again. For children who are in a toddler bed, implement some sleep rules and install a baby gate at the child’s door and call it his “big boy castle gate” or her “princess castle gate” to keep the child in the room but with the door open. If the child gets out of bed, silently return them to bed. This needs to be done consistently and without any interaction (positive or negative) so that the child is not getting any reinforcement for getting out of bed.

5. Nightmares or night terrors

Children may experience nightmares or night terrors, which may appear similar but are actually quite different.  Nightmares are frightening dreams, whereas night terrors occur when the child is between sleep stages and is almost trapped between being awake and being asleep. The child may appear awake because they are screaming or thrashing around, but they are actually asleep and will not be aware of your presence. Once the episode is over, they will often go right back to sleep and have no memory of the event.

Solution: If it is a nightmare, reassure your child that the dream was not real and help them understand reality vs. fantasy. Comfort the child with your voice and your presence. If the child is having night terror, do not interfere as this may prolong the episode but rather sit back and watch and make sure they are safe. Avoid talking about the incident the next day, as this can be confusing for the child. Night terrors often occur because of a change in routine or overtiredness, so ensure the child has a consistent routine and put them to bed a little earlier. Night terrors are very common in children and will usually disappear by adolescence. Rest assured that night terrors are worse for the parents watching than for the child experiencing the event.

certified child sleep consultantGuest blog by Jenn Kelner from BabyZzz

Jenn Kelner is a Family Sleep Institute Certified Child Sleep Consultant and owner of BabyZzz. She helps tired families with infants, babies and toddlers become well rested families through customized sleep solutions and support. She offers various services including home, phone/Skype and email consultations.

For more information visit www.babyzzz.ca or email jenn@baby-zzz.com.

Interested in writing a guest blog for Woombie? Send your topic idea to pr@woombie.com.

All data and information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. Woombie makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, current-ness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information, or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis.

Photo Credit: Hamed Saber via Compfight cc

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How to Tell If Your Little One Is Ready To Transition to a Bed

transition from crib to bedAt a certain age, toddlers begin to escape their crib. At this point, safety should be your number one priority. It should be a goal of yours to make your child’s sleep environment as safe as possible. If your child is managing to climb out of the crib, a change is necessary. Your second priority should be to ensure you and your child get the sleep you both need. As a child sleep expert, I’m here to offer some tips on getting your child ready to transition from the crib to a bed.

First, make sure your child is 100% ready for the transition. The change will affect your child emotionally, mentally, and physically. I advise parents to keep their child in the crib as long as they can (up to three years old). So before you take the leap to a big kid bed, you want to make sure that your child is really ready for this transition. If they are not quite there yet, you want to see if you can safely modify their sleep environment to keep them in their crib until they are ready.”

How do you know if your child is ready?

1) They understand boundaries and can follow directions.

2) They have been consistently climbing out of their crib (and the modifications listed below did not remedy the situation).

3) They actually ask for a big kid bed.

4) They are 3 years old!

If your child is not quite ready — check out these changes to see if you can delay the move:

The Sleep Sack – Put your child to sleep with a sleep sack over their PJ’s! This is such an easy modification, yet it is so effective. Most kids cannot climb out of their crib while wearing a sleep sack because it does not allow them to lift up their little legs. You can make it seem like a fun and exciting change to your toddler. Take them shopping and allow them to pick out the color or print themselves. You may need to modify your child’s pajamas to a lighter weight or lower the temperature slightly so they do not become hot in their sleep sack, but these changes are well worth it if the sack safely keeps them in their crib.

Remove The Bumper – If your child’s crib has a bumper in place, remove the bumper. If your little monkey is making his great escape by hoisting himself up with the help of his bumper, this usually solves the problem. Without the added height of pushing off the bumper it will be much harder to climb out.

Catch Him in the Act – If he is only climbing out at bedtime or at naptime and you own a video monitor, this tactic is extremely effective. Position yourself near your child’s bedroom door video monitor in hand. The very second he starts to attempt to climb out, you quickly open his door and firmly say “NO.” Without further conversation (you don’t want to give him any added attention as that will just make him want to do it again), you lay him down and leave the room. For most kids, they are so shocked that they got caught that it just takes this reprimand one time to work. However, you will want to watch for a few days and repeat as necessary. If you are 100% consistent with your reaction, the climbing will cease to occur ever again.

If your child cannot stay in their crib safely or you feel that they are ready for the big move, here’s what you do: 

Do Some Prep Work: Get your child involved so they feel in control of the situation and also excited about the new change. If your child is going to stay in their crib converted into a big kid bed, allow them to pick out some new sheets or a new big kid blanket. If they are going to go into a completely new bed, allow your child to be part of picking out the new bed. Pick up a book or two about the transition to help them understand what will happen and to ease any fears. Talk about the transition with them and explain that bedtime will remain the same, they will just be sleeping in new big kid bed.

Implement a set of sleep rules for the new bed: Before you make the switch make sure your child understands that they are expected to stay in their bed until the next morning. Expect your child to wander out of their bed the first few nights. Make sure you have a plan in place to deal with this a head of time.

Keep your current routine in place: By this time you should have a solid bedtime routine in place. Children count on consistency as it makes them feel safe and helps them to understand what to expect. Keep your pre-bedtime routine as consistent as possible as this will just help things go more smoothly.

Make sure their new found freedom doesn’t spiral out of control: With all of this excitement, your child will likely try to get out of their bed during the night at some point in the first few days. When this happens, you need to deal with it quickly and consistently. Every time your child gets out of the bed you will immediately take them by the hand and walk them back to the bed. During this time, you will not acknowledge them by talking or making eye contact. You need to remain completely silent. If you talk to them you are reinforcing the reason why they are getting out of bed in the first place — attention. If there is no communication, the novelty wears off pretty quickly. Our children are quick learners.

Be Firm & Consistent: While it is easy to cave at 3am and allow your little one to crawl into bed with you, be consistent and stick to your plan. With just a few days of absolute consistency your child will understand the rules and stay in their bed.

Here are some additional tips:

1) Purchase a sleep clock; this is helpful for your child to understand when it is ok to get out of bed in the morning.

2) Make sure your child is not over-tired by allowing for an earlier bedtime if necessary especially during the first few days when falling asleep may take longer than usual. If they become overtired during this transition, it will make it harder for them to adjust.

3) If possible, try to make the transition while your child is in a well-rested state.

4) Avoid making the switch when there are others changes going on in your toddler’s life — a new baby, potty training, a move etc.

baby sleep consultantGuest blog written by Amy Lage of Well Rested Baby

Amy Lage is a Family Sleep Institute certified Child Sleep Consultant. She is co-owner of Well Rested Baby. She offers a host of services including in person, phone, email and Skype/FaceTime consultations that can be tailored to meet any family’s needs and schedule. Amy is thrilled to be able to share her knowledge with other parents and hopefully transform their lives by helping them get a good night sleep!

Amy, her husband Jeff, their 2 and a half year old Stella, their 3 month old Harley, and their two dogs Jackson and Cody live in Beverly Farms, Massachusetts.

Please email her at amy@wellrestedbaby.com with any questions.

Visit www.wellrestedbaby.com for more information.

Interested in writing a guest blog for Woombie? Send your topic idea to pr@woombie.com.

All data and information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. Woombie makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, current-ness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information, or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis.

Photo Credit: JWJUSAF via Compfight cc

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6 Best Products for New Moms

New moms are always amazed with the number of products they need for their new addition. Even after you’ve purchased clothes, diapers, and furniture, you’ll find reasons to buy more items as you go along. Check out my picks for the six best products for new moms.

1. Woombie Air ($26)

The Woombie Air is a perfect baby swaddle for all seasons. A vented front offers improved air flow, making it safer than over-wrapping with a blanket, which can lead to overheating. It’s easy to use and you can dress and undress baby underneath as needed. The Air softly confines, but leaves room for baby to move his or her limbs, just like a womb.

best products for new moms

3. Sony BabyCall Monitor ($70)

This baby monitor has a battery life longer than most others – 28 hours! It has a handy feature that weeds out background noise so all you hear is your baby. It’s receiver is water resistant, which makes it perfect to carry with you in the kitchen or bathroom, and indicators let you know when you it’s out of range.

best products for new moms

3. San Diego Bebe Eco Nursing Pillow ($59.99)

This nursing pillow is designed for comfort and discretion for both mother and baby. The Comfort Bolster provides support and security while the Privacy Cover lets mom nurse anywhere. It comes with an adjustable strap and pillow for moms’ back. Most importantly, it’s made of safe products for eco-minded mothers.

best products for new moms

4. Baby Elephant Ears ($21.95 to $29.95)

Infants have very little control over their head and neck. This multi-use headrest provides neck/spinal alignment and comfort. It gives your baby plenty of support and encourages healthy posture development. It’s made to go wherever you bring your baby: the changing table, the car, swing, or stroller.

best products for new moms

5. Combi Coccoro ($200)

This car seat is light weight and compact, designed to fit in smaller vehicles. It’s so streamlined that you can fit three of them across the backseat of most cars. The five-point harness system (with four harness heights so it grows with baby) can be adjusted with a single pull. Deep side walls, energy-absorbing foam, and rear-face tethering keep your baby safe in the event of a crash.

best products for new moms

6. Baby J Padded Play Mat ($55.00)

This play mat was designed for the mom who always wants a clean spot for their little one. It’s great to take with you wherever you go or leave in the nursery. It’s a perfect surface when you need to change a diaper away from your changing table and for when your child starts spending time on his or her tummy.

best products for new moms

baby swaddleWritten by Karen Barski, BSN, RN, Mother of five, Certified Infant Care Specialist & Instructor, & Inventor of the  Woombie Baby Swaddle

Karen has been an RN for 18 years, and has worked in many different nursing roles. As a Certified Infant Care Specialist, Karen counsels thousands of families yearly on a multitude of issues relating to pregnancy and infancy. Also, as a mother of five, she has invaluable experience and tips to share.

Since 2007, Karen’s company, KB Designs, has invented a line of signature baby swaddle products that have helped parents easily transition their new babies from womb to home. There are multiple designs and sizes so that babies can enjoy the comfort and security of the Woombie up until the time they begin to roll.

Each product has been created and designed by Karen because of a need she identified in her life with her five children. With convenience, safety, and fashion in mind, KB Designs has helped over a half million babies and counting!

For more information, visit www.woombie.com.

Interested in writing a guest blog for Woombie? Send your topic idea to pr@woombie.com.

All data and information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. Woombie makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, current-ness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information, or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis.

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5 Tips for Moms Who Breast Pump at Work

breastmilk pumping tipsMany women think that breastfeeding ends once they return to work, but this isn’t the case. Pumping is a great way to keep your milk supply flowing by expressing milk during the day, and it ensures that your baby always has a bottle of mommy’s best. Your child will get all the proper nutrients and health benefits, even when you can’t be there.

I returned to work just three months after the birth of my son, but I was fortunate to only work part-time. It was a challenge breastfeeding one day and pumping the next, but I was able to adjust. Here are my five tips for moms about breast pumping and returning to work.

1. Invest in a good pump

According to Liz Pevytoe RN, IBCLC, a cheap pump can cause injury, low supply, and mastitis from lack of emptying so invest in a good pump.

My pump was a manual express by Medela. Since I was just part-time I felt like it was ok, but it would have been quicker and nicer with an electric one. I would definitely suggest an electric pump for full-timers.

Whatever pump you choose, make sure you are using the correct size flanges and if you are unsure then you should ask a lactation consultant for help.

2. Get into a pumping routine.

Pevytoe recommends starting and ending your workday empty (before you clock in and after you clock out, pump). Either way you choose to do it is fine, but the most important thing to remember is to stay on a schedule! Make sure you do not try to skip a pumping session as it could be detrimental to your supply or health.

I used to pump on my two 15 minute breaks (one morning, one afternoon) and at my lunch break. Every time I tried to skip a pumping I got a plugged duct and let me tell you that was not fun! I learned quickly the importance of a regular schedule!

3. Store your breast milk.

You can keep your milk in a cooler with ice packs so that you do not forget your expressed breast milk at work!

4. Make sure your bra fits properly!

This is critical because if not, you can get plugged ducts. A great fitting bra shouldn’t dig, pull, poke or otherwise cause discomfort. If it does, it’s not the right size (or bra) for you. Make sure it feels comfortable when you are moving around. There shouldn’t be any breast tissue spillage at the top, side or bottom of the cups. If there is, your cup size is too small. Try sizing up for a better fit. Your bra should feel comfortable and supportive. You shouldn’t have to settle for a so-so fit. Sometimes you will have to go up a cup size or two. Don’t let it concern you — sizes do vary among brands. Finding the perfect bra takes time and patience, but the way you will look (and feel) once you have found it will be worth all of your effort.

5. If you find you need to increase your milk supply, talk to a lactation consultant or your doctor for advice.

A galactogogue is a milk stimulating herb that can work well to increase your supply. Typically only works if you are frequently expressing breast milk. Also, it can make you sick if you tend to skip out on pumping sessions/emptying.

I have found Motherlove’s products to work wonderfully and recommend these.

  • Nature’s Way Fenugreek Seed
  • More Milk Special Blend by Motherlove
  • Nature’s Way Blessed Thistle
  • Organic Mother’s Milk Tea 16 Bags

 

nursing brasGuest blog by Nicole Zoellner from NizoWear.com 

Nizo Wear is the first nursing bra to have a unique, patented pocket in the pull-down flap that can hold a heating or cooling pack helping bring moms relief and healing faster while being extremely comfortable and super chic.

Nizo Wear nursing bras were inspired by the real-life experience of the company’s founder, Nicole Zoellner. When Nicole became pregnant with her son, she eagerly read all the materials her doctor had given her about the benefits of breastfeeding. She happily anticipated the feelings of serenity and bonding that nursing promises mother and infant.

So, Nicole set out to do for other nursing moms what no-one had been able to do for her: provide a practical, comfortable way to get relief from the soreness breastfeeding mothers often experience. Her design was patented, and Nizo Wear was born.

Visit www.nizowear.com for more information.

Interested in writing a guest blog for Woombie? Send your topic idea to pr@woombie.com.

All data and information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. Woombie makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, current-ness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information, or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis.

Photo Credit: Stinging Eyes via Compfight cc

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6 Tips to Handle Your Baby’s Separation Anxiety

handle separation anxietyIn the first couple years of your child’s life, you and she will spend a lot of time together. You’ll do everything from chores to play. You’ll be her entire world, but eventually she’ll have to learn that you can’t be in the room all the time.

Babies can become extremely sensitive to their moms leaving. They’ll start wailing as soon as mom has been out of the room for a few moments. Separation anxiety is the likely culprit. This is a common point in a child’s development, but the emotional ride can be tough for both mom and baby to endure. You can help manage the struggle of separation anxiety by following these seven tips.

1. It’s alright to comfort your child.

Some parents will insist that the proper course is to let your child scream until she gets over it. However, she’s learning that she’s an independent person from you and that can be frightening. She needs you to cuddle and reassure her that you’re still around. The more secure she feels, the more comfortable she’ll be when you aren’t around, and the easier she’ll transition into her independence.

2. Encourage her to play independently.

It’s great that you want to give your child as much of your attention as you can, but it’s also good to encourage independence. Initially you can try averting your attention for a few moment every time you play with your child. Then, gradually move yourself away, and eventually leave the room for a minute at a time. Your child will become used to you coming and going and learn to play by herself.

Helpful tip: The popular game Peek-a-boo isn’t just for fun. It actually helps teach children “object permanence,” which is the understanding that objects (and people) don’t disappear when out of their site.

3. Introduce caretakers gradually.

Leaving your child with a babysitter or daycare can be heartbreaking the first couple times. Not only are you absent, but your child is in a brand new environment without any familiarity. If you can manage, arrange to spend some time with your child and his caretakers so your she becomes accustomed to the situation. If a babysitter is coming to your house, don’t leave immediately. Allow your child some time with the sitter so she can process the new person and your absence separately.

4. Say goodbye.

You might be tempted to leave out the back door once it seems like your child is interacting with the caretaker, but this is unhealthy in the long run. Experts advise that your child will be even more upset when she learns that her mother has unexpectedly vanished. Some Mommy & Me classes will practice “going away,” where moms say goodbye, leave the room for a moment, and return shortly.

5. Keep things familiar.

If you have to go away for a while, try to keep everything else the same. Have your child stay home with someone she knows like her grandparents or a friend who visits often. Keep siblings together and bring her favorite toys. Also, stick to whatever routine she’s comfortable with. If she takes her nap with some light music playing, keep to her schedule so she doesn’t feel out of place.

6. Build anticipation for when you’re gone.

You can help your child forget about your absence by hyping whatever will be happening while you’re gone. Tell her how much fun she’s going to have with whoever will be watching her. You can say something like, “I know you’re going to have so much fun at Grandma’s house.”

baby swaddleWritten by Karen Barski, BSN, RN, Mother of five, Certified Infant Care Specialist & Instructor, & Inventor of the  Woombie Baby Swaddle

Karen has been an RN for 18 years, and has worked in many different nursing roles. As a Certified Infant Care Specialist, Karen counsels thousands of families yearly on a multitude of issues relating to pregnancy and infancy. Also, as a mother of five, she has invaluable experience and tips to share.

Since 2007, Karen’s company, KB Designs, has invented a line of signature baby swaddle products that have helped parents easily transition their new babies from womb to home. There are multiple designs and sizes so that babies can enjoy the comfort and security of the Woombie up until the time they begin to roll.

Each product has been created and designed by Karen because of a need she identified in her life with her five children. With convenience, safety, and fashion in mind, KB Designs has helped over a half million babies and counting!

For more information, visit www.woombie.com.

Interested in writing a guest blog for Woombie? Send your topic idea to pr@woombie.com.

All data and information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. Woombie makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, current-ness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information, or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis.

Photo Credit: Upsilon Andromedae via Compfight cc

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How to Deal With Crying While Sleep Training Your Baby

sleep training your baby

Over the years, I have examined several of the common sleep training methods that are used for babies and toddlers. It’s important to choose a method that you feel comfortable with and can see yourself maintaining, not only at 7:00pm, but at 11pm, 2am, 4am, etc., for several weeks.

Cry Me A River

So this is the big issue that makes sleep training so hard for all of us. Everyone wants to know: How much will my child cry?

If you’re wondering why we’re not saying “if your child will cry,” it’s because, in the vast majority of cases, a child cries at some point during sleep training. Of course, there are some children who don’t cry at all, or only fuss, but they are in the minority. It would be great if we could promise you no tears in every situation, but that’s just not realistic. Saying that there is a sure fire ‘no-cry’ sleep training method is misleading – you are changing the way they have fallen asleep for months or years. In general your child isn’t going to be happy about it, especially when they’re tired. However, if your family is so exhausted that you can’t even function, then it may be time to put your fear aside.

Many times parents come to sleep consultants at the end of their rope. They are beyond tired, frustrated, constantly arguing with their spouse and impatient with their children. They know that their lack of sleep isn’t letting them be the best parent they could be, but they have put off any sleep training because they are worried their child will cry. Sometimes this can translate in a parent’s mind that their child will feel abandoned or scared. But crying doesn’t necessarily mean lonely or fear, it can also mean they are angry and exhausted. It’s important to have the appropriate response to each circumstance.

Crying When Tired

Let’s think about the crying a child does during sleep training from another perspective.

Let’s say you are in a foreign country and everyone speaks a different language. You have no idea what they’re saying, but you do know that they’re saying something. Would you just assume the worst and fear they are plotting your demise?

Hopefully not!

You would probably use the context of the situation, their facial expressions, body language, your location, and other factors to make a reasonable judgment call in regards to what they’re trying to communicate to you.

The goes for your child when he or she is crying. You need to use the context of the situation and make the appropriate call as to what they’re saying. If they have a sleep debt from being massively overtired, and you are no longer rocking/holding/bouncing/feeding to sleep/replacing the soother a million times a night/driving all over town and trying to avoid red lights (think the movie Speed), then it’s reasonable to assume that they are crying because they’re frustrated.

Sleep Training Does Not Equal Bad Parenting

You are not a bad parent for deciding it’s time to help your child learn healthy sleep strategies. Every family is different and whether you want to start before any bad habit emerge or your ‘tools’ of bouncing/rocking/soother, etc., have stopped working, when you feel it’s time to change the situation, do it with confidence in your child and yourself.

You are not making your child cry, you are allowing them to learn a new skill that will help them be healthiest that they can be. You are being empathetic and understanding that they are frustrated, tired and just want to sleep, while giving them time and opportunity to practice these new skills. You trust and believe in your child that they can learn new habits.

Sleep is one of the fundamental building blocks of human health. Not being well-rested is unhealthy for both your child and yourself. Crying does not lead to health issues, but sleep deprivation does.

When you remove the sleep props or sleep associations that your child relied on to fall asleep, they will understandably be upset. But by setting up a great sleep routine, making sure your child is napping well, and keeping bedtime early, you will help to miminze the amout of frustration crying that your child does. 

But of course, everyone worries. I understand because I too was also concerned. Fear can stop us in our tracks before we can even take a step forward. Our brains go into overdrive and imagine worse-case scenarios. But it’s important to not deny your child quality sleep and therefore optimal health, because of what may happen. Often, parents’ worries far exceeds the reality and a child doesn’t cry for as long or as hard as they thought. And remember, you will minimize the amount of crying by following a great sleep routine before sleep training.

So back to the main question-how long will the crying last? We’ve heard it before, but it needs to be said again: every child is different. There are many factors that influence how long a method starts to work such as:

  • age
  • method
  • personality
  • consistency of parent implementation
  • quality of day routine
  • sleep debt amount
  • how many attempts at sleep training were previously tried

These factors will all influence how long they sleep training will take, which makes it difficult to provide exact answers on the time a child takes to learn new sleep habits.

Changing sleep habits is hard work, especially in the beginning, but when it’s time for you to make that change, know that your child is very capable of learning how to sleep more solidly on their own.

Image courtesy of Danilo Rizzuti / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

baby sleep consultantGuest Blog by Joleen Dilk Salyn of Baby Sleep 101

Joleen is an independent certified Baby and Child Sleep Consultant, and founder of Baby Sleep 101. She received her extensive training from the Family Sleep Institute. She is also a member of the International Association of Child Sleep Consultants. Joleen is a mother of two wonderful children; ages 2 yrs and 9 months.

Visit www.babysleep101.com for more information.

Interested in writing a guest blog for Woombie? Send your topic idea to pr@woombie.com.

All data and information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. Woombie makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, current-ness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information, or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis.

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