catnapping and poor night sleep

CASE STUDY: unsettled all day, catnapping, poor night sleep

Elsie's sleep story...

Elsie was, in general, a very unsettled baby! She would sleep in the sunlit lounge during the day but usually only for 10-30 minutes at time. The only way her mum Nicci could get her to sleep at night was to put her in a hammock at night, and bounce her back to sleep every 2-3 hours. Some nights it took over an hour to settle Elsie back to sleep!

During the day, Nicci was putting Elsie in her bassinet after an hour of awake time, which everyone kept telling her was right for a newborn baby. However, Elsie would always end up upset and needed to be actively settled to sleep. Most of the time, Nicci would need to rock or bounce her to sleep, which was starting to get very exhausting!

And to make things even more challenging, Elsie was a snack feeder too. Feeding had always been difficult for them but Nicci had no idea if this was 'normal' for a newborn or not. She had also noticed that Elsie seemed very unhappy during her awake periods. She almost seemed to be in pain, which made Nicci wonder whether she had colic or something similar.

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Nicci got in touch with Little Ones when Elsie was just 5 weeks old. After reading through our Newborn Sleep Program, she could see straight away that Elsie wasn't having enough awake time for her age. This meant that she was undertired - which Nicci didn't even know could be an issue!

We recommended that Nicci start working on stretching out Elsie's awake times, so that she would be tired enough to settle easily and nap for longer. We also recommended she try and put Elsie in a dark room for her naps, because the dark is very soothing for babies and helps the release of melatonin in their body.

After a couple of days of hitting the right awake times, Nicci was amazed to be able to settle Elsie in her bassinet for 80% of sleeps with absolutely no troubles at all!

Unfortunately, Elsie's feeding really wasn't improving. In fact, her feeding difficulties had become even more obvious now. Nicci was doing her absolute best to follow the Program, however, it just didn't seem to be working for her little girl.

Although there had been some improvements to Elsie's settling and nap lengths, we suspected something else was causing her unsettled behaviour. We recommended that Nicci seek professional advice around the feeding issues they were having and lo and behold, it was was discovered that Elsie had a bad lip and tongue tie. These ties were released a week later, which resulted in a much happier and far more settled baby!

Following our Program helped Nicci to identify and resolve the underlying cause of Elsie's poor feeding and sleep. Once these issues were resolved, Elsie went on to successfully move from bassinet to cot, lose the dummy at 12 weeks old, and fly through the four month sleep regression without a glitch!

Nicci has since told us that a few of her friends have commented on how much more confident and happy she has been in the last 2 months:

I often tell people that 'Little Ones' saved my life, cheesy, but we all know what weeks of sleep deprivation can do!

If you suspect something is not quite right with your little one's feeding or sleep, the Sleep Programs in our Little Ones App will help you get to the bottom of what's going on. You can also reach out to our team of expert sleep consultants at any time for more personalised advice and support.

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