The greatest threat to your child’s sleep and the archenemy of sleep training is overtiredness!!!

Just as we have a natural rhythm with sleep, so do children. Our bodies are amazing machines that have hormones to make sure we’re performing during the day and then hormones that kick in to ensure we rest at night. All these need various things to function correctly, but the most important is timing.

So now the question comes in, what happens when your child is awake past the time when all these natural signs of tiredness have come and gone? Simple, the body then assumes that the reason why they are not asleep is because they need to be awake, so the “daytime” hormones kick back in!

And this is the part that any parent dreads!

And once these awake signals are activated, shutting them down is near impossible! This then starts an endless cycles of hormones going crazy.

The best way to ensure your child does not start on this rollercoaster is to ensure that they are asleep before they pass this window. Newborns, unlike older children, are a bit of a mystery when it comes to showing readiness of wanting to sleep, unless of course you know what you need to look for. Knowing what to look for in a newborn will help you get your little one down to sleep just when you need to and prevent a little meltdown.

Some of the most obvious signs signaling tiredness include pulling the ears, rubbing their eyes, rubbing nose, back being arched and turning their face toward your chest.

Although these are the most obvious signs of being sleepy, they are often mistaken for signs of hunger. To ensure this does not happen, the best advice is to look at the signals as well as the time.

For newborns, they can usually only handle one-hour periods of awake time, so be sure to take note of when they wake up and try to get them ready for sleep or a nap around 60 minute later.

As your baby grows, so too will their ability to stay awake longer. But remember, that often toddlers still need a good amount of sleep!

Speaking of toddlers, they seem to have their own strange habits when they’re overtired. The sudden surge of “daytime” hormones can often make them seem super happy and full of energy for a while – in other words they would look like anything other than a child who is in need of sleep. This however does not last long, and their moods will shift into moodiness and by then you will have a battle on your hands.

If you’re new to all of this, this may seem too much. After all, how could you possibly get everything done in an hour, right? You’d barely get the diaper changed, baby fed and some quality time before baby needs to go to sleep again! But let me put your mind to rest, not one of my past or current clients have come to me and complained that their child was getting too much sleep!

For now, my advice is that you try this out for a few weeks and see whether it’s working or not. I can almost guarantee that you will see your child become a happier one.

If after a few weeks, you’re still not seeing much of a change and you have ruled out any sort of illness, then it might be time for us to have a quick chat! You can click on the button below and schedule a complimentary sleep evaluation call to discuss your child’s sleep.