“There is an abundance of free information and resources available online, and I have friends and family with their own children who are happy to give me tips and advice … so why would I invite a stranger into our lives to tell us what’s best for our child?”
It may not always be phrased this way, but I’m aware that this is a very common and real question that parents have sitting at the back (or the forefront!) of their minds when they begin to consider the idea of seeking professional advice around their child’s sleep.
Hey, it’s a valid question! Your mother managed to get you sleeping independently. Your sister is managing with her kids just find. Your colleague never had to co-sleep with any of her three bubs and they all sleep fine now … so surely at least ONE of them has some tips and tricks that will help you, right?
Maybe they will…
Maybe they won’t.
Look, let me be the first to say that if you have somebody in your life that is able to give you the advice and support you need to get your little one sleeping better, then I wouldn’t be surprised – nor offended! – if you decided to look to them for help instead of a professional Sleep Consultant. Why spend money where it’s not needed? It’s a no brainer.
The thing is, most of the families that come to me have already exhausted all of their personal support avenues – and without any luck. There could be a number of reasons as to why the tips and tricks didn’t work for them when it worked for their friends, but the most common reason is pretty simple: they’re not dealing with the same child.
Just as you or I can be similar in so many ways and different in others at the same time – so can kids! Some children rely heavily on sleep props while others are sensitive to temperature changes. One may not be getting enough nap hours in while the other may be too overtired to settle well in the first place. Sometimes it’s not lack of sleep at all that’s the problem … but the need to drop a daytime nap!
Then, of course, we have the dreaded combination of ‘all of the above’.
Adding to this challenge is the fact that most strategies are not an overnight fix, and so parents may be abandoning a solid approach before they’ve even given it good chance to have an impact – often because there has been some element of protest from their child.
Basically, sleep is actually quite a complicated element of our daily lives to understand and there is very rarely one go to solution that can fix any one sleep difficulty.
HOWEVER! A professional Sleep Consultant has the appropriate training (yes, there is a reason we’re labelled as ‘certified’ or ‘professional!’) and experience to be able to identify they underlying cause of your child’s sleep difficulties, and therefore recommend the appropriate changes. Aside from this, we’re able to offer some pretty essential support and encouragement in the times where it’s needed most (read: after your baby cried for 45 minutes straight last night when you refused to offer the bottle again). We are there to assure you that the challenges you’re meeting are normal, you’re on the right track, and if you persist you will reap the rewards soon enough.
Think about the benefit of having a personal trainer. Sure, you could purchase your own equipment and follow a fitness routine you’ve seen online … but will you commit 100%? Will you know what changes to make to the program to suit your specific body type and personal lifestyle? Maybe not.
So, when it comes to get your little one’s sleep on track I really do wish everyone the best of success on their own. However if that doesn’t work out for you the way you had planned, a professional Sleep Consultant could turn your life around.