By Charlotte Hillyard
How many of us mums and dads spent hours Googling images of cute, adorable little nurseries, before our little ones were due? Colour schemes, personalised accessories, the list goes on! But did you know, their sleep environment really can play a part in how well they sleep.
Let’s take it back to basics, in caveman days, we slept in dark, cool and quiet caves, away from threat of wild animals. This instinctual environmental set up, still plays a significant role in signalling sleep to our bodies, EVEN today.
Sleeping in a dark room cues the release of the sleepy hormone, melatonin. It also helps with any distractions preventing your little one going to sleep. If you do choose to use a night light to aid with night feeds, a red or warm colour is key, as this doesn’t interfere with the secretion of melatonin. ZED really is just the perfect choice, as it has 3 calming red light levels to choose from.
Ideally, the room temperature should be between 16-21c. This is not only a really important factor in helping your little one sleep well, but it is also SO important in reducing the risk of SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome), as overheating is a known risk factor.
Ensuring your little ones sleeping environment is safe, in line with the guidelines on the Lullaby trust website is paramount. The cot should be free from blankets, bumpers, loose bedding etc as this is key in preventing SIDS. For Toddlers and older children, ensuring the furniture is securely attached to the wall is really important too!
White or Pink Noise
I get asked a lot whether you should use white or pink noise and whether it helps aid better sleep, and it really does. For newborns, white noise that mimics the sounds inside the womb, really can be so comforting to them. For older babies and toddlers, it can be much more challenging to tune out the outside noises, especially if you are a toddler with a serious case of FOMO, so white noise can help there too. Ideally you want this consistent noise playing for the duration of their sleep and for the sound level to mimic that of being in the bathroom with the shower on.
The Whoosh would be an ideal white noise product of choice. This amazing, portable, sound soother has 8 sounds and 4 volume levels to choose from. It can be clipped to the pram or placed in your little ones room (out of reach), to really help promote that consistent sleeping environment. So, whether you are doing naps at home, or on the go, make sure you have your Whoosh on to help create that consistent sleep environment! After all GREAT sleep starts with a GREAT sleep environment!
Charlotte Hillyard is the founder and CEO of ‘The Gift of Sleep’ and she is passionate about helping families to improve their little ones’ sleep. Based in Essex, Charlotte helps families via her 1-2-1 support package services, Sleep Clinic sessions, and with the Mind charity on their local programme ‘Mums Matter’. Charlotte also offers ‘The Gift Of Sleep’ unique gifting boxes and vouchers, which enables you to gift a little bit of sleepy dust to a friend.
Charlotte can be contacted here:
Facebook: Charlotte Hillyard TGOS
Free Facebook Support Group: Sleepy Mummas Support Group