I'm Worried About My Child
A lack of a sleep causes difficulties not only for the child who is not sleeping but for the entire family. A lack of sleep causes difficulties in concentration, lowered coping skills, and increased stress, just to name a few of the consequences. Establishing a proper sleeping routine and getting a sounds night’s sleep is beneficial for everyone in the child’s environment. Research shows that good sleeping routines increases appropriate wake-time behaviour, increases communication skills and also increases skill acquisition (the learning of new skills).
Sleep problems can affect children from babyhood right through into their teens and symptoms include:
constant waking up during the night
nightmares and night terrors
refusal to go to bed
In many cases however it is simply a behavioural problem. Sleep is a behaviour – and the good news is that behaviour can be changed. It is important to determine, even if your child is affected by an additional disorder, how much of this disorder ‘causes’ the sleep problems and how much can be resolved. We have found a solution for every child and family that comes to us with a sleep problem.
Our partners at NETwork Interventions specialise in Applied Behaviour Analysis – a highly effective and scientifically proven approach to helping children with sleep issues and many other disorders. Our starting point is to determine the root cause of the poor sleep patterns and to track exactly what is going on. This involves taking a look at your current sleep routine and determining changes that can be made to ensure a proper night’s sleep. Consistency is key in establishing an effective sleep routine and ensuring you have support is essential.
Most families are under the illusion that if they remove a nap time during the day that night time sleep will be better – this is often not the case. In most cases, sleep = more sleep! We will determine the amount of sleep your child needs and help you to schedule your routine accordingly.
Your role as parents is crucial for the success of the programme. Your determination to implement our recommendations on a daily basis will significantly impact how successful the programme is. It will be more than worth the investment of time, effort and money - and, as many families tell us, the positive impact this will have on your child and your family will make it all worthwhile. When you start a sleeping programme, NETwork Interventions will work with you to ensure you have the support you need to make it work. This could mean ensuring a partner or friend is available to take over if you are having a difficult time or a consultant that you can call in the middle of the night if you are not sure what to do or feel you are not able to implement successfully. A highly trained member of the NETwork team will work hard to ensure the steps taken are achievable and with your consistent implementation, we should see changes quickly. We are even available to put the sleep routines and recommendations into place with you, in your home, at night if this is required.
The average time it takes for a sleep intervention to work is just 3 days. If the sleep problem has persisted over a long period of time, an intervention of up to 3 weeks may be needed to solve the sleep problems.