Reflux sleep problems
Jennifer a freelance editor and Michael a fire fighter live with their 9 month old son Tyler in Pennsylvania USA. Tyler was diagnosed with colic and acid reflux had not slept well from birth.
From his first night, our son, Tyler, wasn’t a good sleeper. For the first few months, Tyler slept less than any baby we had ever heard of–about 4 to 8 hours in any 24-hour period. Also he cried for hours each day, especially between 7 and 11 at night. At 2 months, Tyler’s paediatrician diagnosed him with colic. At three months, he diagnosed Tyler with acid reflux and put him on ranitidine. Tyler’s sleep improved for a few weeks.
Often he would have one 4-hour period of sleep a night. But when Tyler was 5 months old, his sleep steadily worsened. He would fall asleep only by nursing, rocking, or walking, and he would sleep for only an hour at a time, waking up to 11 times a night! Often during one of the awakenings in the middle of the night, he would stay up for 1 to 2 1/2 hours.
At 7 months old, Tyler still woke at least every 2 hours, 4 to 6 times a night. Sometimes he was up for hours in the middle of the night. He took three 30 or 45 minute naps a day and woke crying every time.
At 8 months, Tyler’s doctor advised letting him cry it out – something we just didn’t want to do!
By this time, we were completely depleted and exhausted from so many months of poor sleep. It was taking its toll on our relationships with each other, and other people. In an Internet search, we came across Millpond Children Sleep Clinic.
Several times over Tyler’s first 9 months, we had wished that someone could help us. As the Millpond sleep consultants are all medical professionals they sounded exactly what we were looking for.We emailed them Tyler’s story, asked a few questions, and were delighted by their answers:
- Can they work long distance–absolutely.
- Who pays for the phone call–they do.
- Have they helped other families like ours–yes, thousands of them.
We decided to give it a shot!
We vowed to follow the advice of our sleep consultant, to the letter. If she said to sing the national anthem while standing on our heads next to Tyler’s crib, that’s what we would do.
We filled out a sleep questionnaire and kept a sleep diary for one week and emailed them to our sleep consultant.
Then we talked with her by phone for an hour. She asked some more questions and answered all of ours and then she gave us her sleep program.
We were very surprised and happy. The program addressed Tyler’s feeds, food, sleeping and naps, and it also revamped our entire schedule. As Mandy is a health visitor she could give us specific advice about nap times, nap routines, bedtime, bedtime routines, and more.
The first thing we were to do was move Tyler’s last feed to before his bath, so he would be more comfortable when we put him in his cot.
We were then to give him a short relaxing bath, and after this go straight into his dimly lit bedroom to settle him to sleep. Mandy outlined the gentle steps of the gradual retreat plan for us to follow to slowly teach him how to go to sleep happily in his cot. We were to implement these at bedtime and in the night when he woke.
Within just a few nights, Tyler was falling asleep on his own, without even a peep, in less than 5 minutes! And he began sleeping from 8 pm to 5 am–9 hours straight. Even more surprisingly, Tyler began eating and nursing better as well. His mood improved dramatically. So did ours.
A few weeks later, Tyler sleeps every night 9 to 10 hours.
Just the other day for the first time in his life, he laid his head down on the floor in the living room, wanting to take a nap. Last night, as we were finishing up his bedtime routine, he crawled over to his cot, pulled himself to stand, and gestured that he wanted to go to sleep! It feels like a miracle.
See what families say about us
This training day has been very positively received by all members of the health visiting team. Staff feel better equipped to assess and provide advice on interventions that are evidence based to support parents. I strongly recommend that all clinical staff attend this extremely valuable training.”Carol Adams, Clinical Educator Health Visiting. Lewisham NHS Trust
Within my role as Infant Feeding Specialist – we have a large volume of mothers worried that their child is not sleeping, often equated to feeding concerns – this workshop has provided me with more in-depth strategies to support families with sleep issues. Lots of interesting research to follow-up and incorporate into my practice.”D Wilson, Infant Feeding Specialist
The HSE National Programme ‘Nurture’ engaged Millpond to deliver an extensive number of sleep workshop to registered public health nurses in the Republic of Ireland during 2018/19. Millpond provided an excellent professional service. They were open and willing to engagement and adaptation of the UK sleep programme to local needs. Feedback from the workshop participants was excellent. The Millpond trainers were flexible in developing the programme timetable and workshops were delivered over a wide geographical area in a timely and efficient manner.Virginia Pye, National Lead for Public Health Nursing, HSE
The landscape around children’s sleep is increasingly expansive and changing. Millpond’s up-to-date training meets the need to adapt to growing trends in child sleep challengers. Fully comprehensive and nurturing in their approach; encompassing all essential holistic and trending aspects in fully supporting a child’s emotional wellbeing to maximising a child’s sleep potential.Rozanne Hay, UK Representative & Director of Continuing Education for the International Association of Child Sleep Consultants
I think this on-line course was presented very well, to a high standard.S Jelley, Community Nursery Nurse, Ceredigion
I have my Diploma in Children’s Service’s and have worked with wee ones (aged between 12weeks and 3 years) for 15 years, as a Nanny and within centers. Honestly, I think the course was brilliant. I loved it being online; it allowed for a ‘hands-up’ system which I think saves time and the content was so relevant, so much better than expected!Jane, Nanny, London
“An excellent training course with informed and sector-leading practitioners who have a wealth of knowledge and relevant experience.”A Williams, Early Years Pathfinder Staff Development & Training Officer, Flintshire
Really great to leave with a sense of a Tool Kit to support the children and families I work with.”T Harold- School Health Nurse and Community Practice Teacher
“Fantastic training very informative and interesting…really gained a lot of new information and strategies to help families in the future.”M Cartwright, B5 Child Health Nurse
I attended the workshop you did at Oakleigh special school. I wanted to say it was wonderful. I learned lots of new things and was impressed by your extensive knowledge about sleep, especially that it was backed up by research. Thank you.”T Nicholls
“As part of Mothercare’s community programme, Mandy hosted two 2 sleep workshops for parents. Parents were tremendously keen to attend and to get the best advice about good sleep practices for both babies and young children. Mandy’s sessions met the parent’s needs, resulting in parents feeling more confident and empowered afterwards.Mothercare's Parenting Consultant, Liz Day
I have no hesitation in recommending Mandy to host a workshop on children’s sleep whether to parents or professionals.
It’s thought provoking, interesting and contains good practical advice that works, so making sleep times easier and less stressful for both the child and the parent.”
I worked for 15 years making science and medical documentaries for BBC television. In 2011 I created my own digital company; Essential Parent (EP) to support new parents.Diana Hill, Essential Parent
EP works with the NHS, maternity hospitals, children’s centers and local authorities around the UK.
We chose Mandy Gurney as our sleep expert from many other possible candidates, since she was the only one who combined enormous authority, experience and knowledge, along with common sense and warmth. It’s a very rare combination of qualities and one which has served our parents, midwives and health visitors really well.
We’re enormously proud to be working with her – and we know just how lucky we are!”
Need sleep? …call us today direct on: 020 8444 0040