My toddler now screams at bedtime

The following question is one of the most common questions I get from new clients and while I’m sleep coaching my clients.

My baby has been self settling himself to sleep since he was a wee baby and he has been sleeping really well. He’s now 2 years old and other than occasional travel overseas and adjusting to jet lag, there hasn’t been much change to his environment or routine. Nowadays though, he screams bloody murder when I place him in the cot. For the life of me, I can’t figure out what could be causing this sleep to get so disrupted. Is this normal for a 2 year old?

My answer: Yes, that sounds very normal for children not just for 2yo but at any age as they are continuously developing and going through a number of changes. They’re also sorting out in their brain of their new experiences.

As a sleep coach/consultant, I would investigate the root cause of why and when this started. To be honest, sometimes I can’t help my client to pinpoint...

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Coming Out Of A Rabbit Hole

I was in this state of funk the past few weeks and it affected my enthusiasm for work, for the raya holidays, and for being present with my family.

I don’t know what caused it at first but it was a deep rabbit hole that I found myself in. Have you had days like that?

Now that I’m finally coming out of it, looking back I realise that it wasn’t just a funk I was in. I feel that it was more of my soul wanting to take a pause from the hustle of work overall.

This year had been tough. There was a huge change in the school timings starting in January this year. Big sister is in Year 2 primary and it’s in the afternoon session 1-6pm. Little sister is in montessori school from 8.30am to 12.30pm.

Meaning I have one child with me at all times. This has proved lots of difficulties for me when it comes to focusing on my work.

Needless to say, all the cooking, school run, meeting clients, writing sleep plans, driving, and doing the marketing for my services came to a...

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Akyd’s Journey To Sweet Sleep

Sleep consultant?  Don’t get us wrong. We are not insomnia. I am sleep lover! Hahah. This is for our baby, Akyd.

Why we are looking for expert/consultant?

– He sleep very late up to 12-2 am.
– He only can sleep with nursing. Continue wake up for every 2 hours. Just to pacifiy him
– My wife become HUMAN PACIFIER to him.
– Since my wife become his human pacifier, my wife even could not move/change position. Can you imagine?
– My wife is expecting 3 months. If this condition/situation continue until our new baby come out, I cant imagine how tired my wife would be to accommodate both babies
– We don’t have really quality sleep every night.
– I as father/husband I really2 helpless –  don’t know how to help/support my wife and son.

During the first few months Akyd came to the world, we have attended this one workshop for early parents in Sg. Buloh and Sarah Ong, Sleep Consultant also one of the speaker during the...

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Crying-In-Arms vs Crying-It-Out

Once you have become a parent, you will know just how much sleep is affected with the arrival of a newborn. This is normal and expected as newborns are required to feed at about every 3 hours round the clock. But what happens when your baby is now a lot bigger, taking solids yet you still need to put him back to sleep only by rocking or nursing? Parents often are perplexed when their child continues to awaken at night wanting to nurse like a newborn. When this continues for many months and even years, many mothers become exhausted, frustrated and resentful.

There are two ways some mothers deal with this situation.

  1. continue to nurse baby at night
  2. night wean by using cry-it-out approach

But what are you supposed to do if you are unable to continue with endless night nursing and you don’t agree with the cry-it-out approach?

There is another third possibility called the crying-in-arms approach where you would support your child through his frustration and anxiety about changing...

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Sources of Stress For Babies That Cause Frequent Night Wakings

Babies have stress? Really?

Yes đź™‚

We often assume that babyhood is a stress-free part of life because everything is done for the caring of a baby. However, this is far from the truth. Because of their sensitivity and vulnerability, they get very easily stressed or stimulated even though we as parents try our very best to reduce stress for the baby.

Babies who had gentle birth, had early bonding established by having skin-to-skin contact, breastfed exclusively, co-sleeping, carried close to her mother in a sling often and has her needs responded to promptly, would still experience mild stress or uncomfortable feelings.

Researchers have found that cortisol level (hormone that plays a crucial role in helping the body to cope with stressful or threatening events) are high in infants at birth and during the immediate pospartum period. The amount of cortisol then gradually declines until about six months of age. This implies that infants are very stressed at birth and become...

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What Does Your Child’s Tantrums Tell You?

Yesterday, my 4 year old had a huge meltdown. She cried and cried and cried for 40 minutes. She yelled and kicked. She screamed at me, “I don’t want you near me! Go away!” and “I don’t love you Mama!!” in between her sobs. I stayed close and watched her with full of empathy and compassion. After a few minutes, I would ask if she needed a hug. She would yell, “NO! I don’t want you to touch me!” I then remained at my spot.

Then, she got up from lying down on the sofa and walked to the table where all her color pencils were kept in a big plastic container. She lifted up the plastic and poured out all the pencils over the table and floor in defiance. She wanted to get to something else to throw but I managed to stop the behavior. This further caused her cries to escalate.

She wanted to hit and kick me. I held her hands and legs and said, “No sayang, I won’t let you hit or kick me.” She cried some more.

As I watched...

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Importance of Emotional Well-being in Sleep

emotional well being Nov 05, 2020

As part of my continued certification with the International Maternity Institute as a child sleep consultant, it is now required for us professionals to include emotional wellbeing as one of the foundations of healthy sleep habits. According to the Mental Health Foundation, “the emotional wellbeing of children is just as important as their physical health.”

Those of you who have worked with me know the level of commitment that is required for your child to be on a predictable yet flexible schedule, having regular naps, proper nutrition, sleep environment that supports good sleep, how light/dark cycle controls your child’s body clock and having consistent bedtime routine. These are the basic foundations that need to be established before introducing a behavioral approach (timed checks, gradual withdrawal, pick up/put down etc) to fix the problem.

Moving forward, I will now include the emotional well-being of the child and the parent, on top of the elements of...

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