6 Things All First Time Parents Should Know

Things All First Time Parents Should KnowHaving your first child can be a very hectic, exciting, and confusing time for parents. While it can definitely be an overwhelming time in your life, all that matters is that you’re striving to be the best parent you can be. There are so many little bits of information that will be learned throughout the parenting process, but it also helps to do your research before the baby arrives as well. Here’s a helpful list of things all first time parents should know:

1. No Sleep

As soon as the little one arrives home from the hospital, you can pretty much kiss a good night’s sleep goodbye for a while. Your newborn will require constant attention and care, and short naps are a lot more likely than a full night of sleep.

2. Start Early

Anything that you expect your child to learn as they grow and develop, be sure to start as early as possible. Get a head start on communicating with them, potty training, basic shapes and colors, counting, and anything else you can think of to practice.

3. Crying

Expect your baby to cry. Whether your child is hungry, thirsty, tired, needs to be changed, or for absolutely no reason at all, you need to be prepared for the tantrums. At such a young age, crying is about the only way a baby can express its discomfort of something, so the crying is an inevitable result of having a kid.

4. Plenty of Care

There will be a ton of maintenance to be done with your newborn. Your baby will be hungry and need diaper changes every few hours, will need their skin cared for, have to take multiple naps, and need tending to when they throw a tantrum; and this is all just one day!

5. No Secret

One of the most important things to remember throughout your first journey with a child is that there’s no secret to perfect parenting. Reading and researching best practices for various parenting topics and issues is always a great idea, but you must ultimately make the judgment for how you will raise your child.

6. Enjoy!

Throughout all the sleepless nights and hours spent trying to soothe your child, don’t forget to enjoy the entire experience! Time flies when we’re wrapped up in our daily jobs and activities, and it seems to pass by even faster with a child. Take plenty of pictures, keep notes in the baby book, and have fun all along the way!

footed pajamas for fast diaper changesWritten by Lisa Youngelson, Owner of Zippyz

Like most new moms, Lisa had been up night after night changing her newborn son’s diaper. She was so exhausted she could barely function, let alone match up the tiny snaps on her baby’s pajamas.

Frustrated by endless mis-snapping and re-snapping, Lisa found zippered pajamas, and thought her problems had been solved. That night when she unzipped her son’s pajamas, he started to cry from the shock of cold air. Although less time consuming, Lisa hated that she had to expose her baby’s entire body with the zipper. She felt her baby’s comfort should come first and yearned for the perfect footed pajama, which was both soft and cozy for her baby and hassle-free for mommy.

One night while feeding her son she thought of “Zippyz.” Zippyz are patented footed baby pajamas for easy and fast diaper changes with 3 snaps on the chest and a zipper from foot to belly. Finally, a solution suitable for baby AND mommy! Plus Zippyz are a unique baby shower gift! Along with her best friend and business partner Erica, Lisa decided make the diaper changing world a better place for all new parents!

For more information, visit www.shopzippyz.com.

Interested in writing a guest blog for Zippyz? Send your topic idea to: media@shopzippyz.com.

All data and information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. Zippyz makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, current-ness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information, or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis.

How Moms Can Get Some Sleep

How Moms Can Get Some SleepAs a parent, we talk a lot about baby sleep. We analyze our children’s sleep schedules, judge their needs and bend over backwards to help them get the sleep they need. But what about moms?

There have definitely been some mornings for me where I laid in bed, looking up at the ceiling, wishing I could have just fifteen more minutes of sleep. I’m sure I’m not alone. Motherhood is a grueling experience for new parents. Amidst the lovey tender feelings is certainly some stress and anxiety. So how does a mom go about getting the rest she needs?

Sleep when the baby sleeps

There will always be chores to perform and errands to run, but your priorities should be your baby’s health and your own. When baby sleeps, you should sleep. Even if you aren’t particularly tired, lie down and close your eyes for a few minutes. Get the rest when you can.

Avoid excessive responsibilities

Everyone as a limit; a point of which they can do no more. Recognize yours and stop volunteering to help when you’ve come to it. For example, don’t volunteer to attend your child’s school field trip if the thought of a long day with hours on a bus makes you anxious.

After your delivery, use the hospital nursery

It’s funny that when we’re the most exhausted we’ve ever been (right after birth), we also want to interact with our little one as much as possible. Take advantage of the hospital staff and let them tend to your baby for a night or two while you recuperate. You’ll have plenty of time to bond.

Accept offers of help

When grandma wants to visit for a couple hours, say yes! Even if you don’t feel tired or stressed, let her come over and mind the baby for a bit. Rather than use the time to recover your inner calm, use it to prevent stress and exhaustion. Plus, you might have plenty of people who would enjoy the experience.

Speak up!

If you’re tired, tell someone! There’s no need to carry a burden by yourself if others are willing. Talk to the people in your life, especially your spouse. Let them know that the stress is starting to accumulate and you’re worried about its effect on your health.

In fact, carrying for a child while you are sleep deprived is dangerous. You could make a terrible mistake. You aren’t a bad mom just because you need some time to yourself – you’re just human.

footed pajamas for fast diaper changesWritten by Lisa Youngelson, Owner of Zippyz

Like most new moms, Lisa had been up night after night changing her newborn son’s diaper. She was so exhausted she could barely function, let alone match up the tiny snaps on her baby’s pajamas.

Frustrated by endless mis-snapping and re-snapping, Lisa found zippered pajamas, and thought her problems had been solved. That night when she unzipped her son’s pajamas, he started to cry from the shock of cold air. Although less time consuming, Lisa hated that she had to expose her baby’s entire body with the zipper. She felt her baby’s comfort should come first and yearned for the perfect footed pajama, which was both soft and cozy for her baby and hassle-free for mommy.

One night while feeding her son she thought of “Zippyz.” Zippyz are patented footed baby pajamas for easy and fast diaper changes with 3 snaps on the chest and a zipper from foot to belly. Finally, a solution suitable for baby AND mommy! Plus Zippyz are a unique baby shower gift! Along with her best friend and business partner Erica, Lisa decided make the diaper changing world a better place for all new parents!

For more information, visit www.shopzippyz.com.

Interested in writing a guest blog for Zippyz? Send your topic idea to: media@shopzippyz.com.

All data and information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. Zippyz makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, current-ness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information, or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis.

Photo Credit: pierre duchemin via Compfight cc

19 Daylight Saving Time Sleep Tips by the Family Sleep Institute’s Top Certified Child Sleep Consultants

Daylight Saving Time sleep tipsThis year Daylight Saving Time ends on November 2nd at 2:00 am and the clocks will turn back one hour. People usually love getting that extra hour to sleep in, but many parents don’t get that luxury because their children are still used to the pre-time change schedule. However, there are tips out there for parents to prepare their children for the time change and make the transition a little bit smoother. Here are some tips by the graduates (U.S. and Canada) of our top rated child sleep consultant certification program to help you survive the Daylight Saving Time fall back.

Drifting to Dreamland – Amy Gemmiti, Easton, MA

Take steps the week before the clocks fall back to begin shifting your child’s schedules. Starting on or about October 25 and adjusting every two days, start moving your child’s schedule later by 15 minutes.

Drifting to Dreamland

Amazing Little Sleeper – Valerie Birch, Omaha, NE

Start early and write it out! Having a written plan of action can help you see where you’re going and be more accountable. Begin a week prior to daylight saving and adjust your child’s sleep schedule in fifteen-minute intervals. Writing the new nap and bedtimes down for each day leaves little room for error, making the transition even smoother.

Amazing Little Sleeper

Strong Little Sleepers – Lori Strong, Austin, TX 

If you have a child who is particularly sleep sensitive or who tends to wake early, prepare your child ahead of time by moving their schedule in 15 minute increments about 4 days before the time change occurs. Push naps, meals, bedtimes, and wake times later by 15 minutes every day. When we turn the clocks back, your child’s schedule will be at the new time. If your child is older and adjusts well, you can wait until the day of the time change and just shift everything to the new times on November 2nd. Remember that adjusting tends to take a few days to a week, so be consistent with your child’s routine and schedule during this time and try not to stress about it.

Strong Little Sleepers

Healthy Happy Sleep – Laura Swartz, Atlanta, GA

It’s important to keep your child’s current sleep health in mind in preparation for Daylight Saving Time. For example, if he’s carrying around a sleep debt, moving all sleep periods back by 15-30 minutes a week or two before the time change will help him catch up and handle the missing hour with ease. Although this sounds counter-intuitive, earlier sleep periods result in more restorative, deeper sleep and will quickly move the child into the healthy sleeper category. An already overtired child will only become more so, and the transition will take longer without taking this important step. For a well-rested child, push all sleep periods forward by 15-30 minutes 4-5 days before the time change so that he will be able to slide into the new schedule without much effort. Don’t make the mistake of going into it unprepared! Know where your child is on the “sleepy spectrum” so that the transition doesn’t make matters worse!

Healthy Happy Sleep

Babes in Sleepland – Angela Walsh, Rye, NY

Starting as early as a week before, begin changing your child’s eating and sleeping schedule by 15 minutes every other day. Then by the time you actually put your clocks back, you are ahead of the game. Your child will have already transitioned smoothly to this new time.

Babes in Sleepland

Dream Little One – Danielle Rowe, San Jose, CA

BE PATIENT!!  Whether you decide to ease your child into the time change (adjusting bedtime later by 15 minutes every couple of days) or make the abrupt change on November 2nd, you need to have patience with your child. They might be getting up a little too early for your liking (blackout shades can help) or be a bit cranky due to some missed sleep. Just remember that any change in routine can take a week or 2 for your child to adjust. In the mean time, get outside and enjoy the daylight (it can be a great distraction as well as help set their sleep rhythms). This is the toughest time change but it only means that the fun Fall and Winter Festivities are near.Be patient and enjoy!

Dream Little One

Baby Sleep Right – Luanna Bruneau, Halifax, Nova Scotia

Here are tips to help your child adjust to DST a few days in advance:

Date Delay All Meals and Sleep Times by:

  • Thursday, 30 October 2014 15 min
  • Friday, 31 October 2014 30 min
  • Saturday, 1 November 2014 45 min
  • Sunday, 2 November Start according to your normal schedule

Baby Sleep Right

Fairy Sleep Mother – Christina Lattoz, Martinsville, NJ

To adjust your child’s sleep routine for Daylight Saving Time, it is important to start the transition a week in advance. Start by moving daily routines fifteen minutes ahead every two days. For example, if snack time is normally at 10am, serve your little one a snack at 10:15. If bath time starts at 6:30, move it ahead to 6:45. Keep adjusting the schedule until you reach your child’s new bedtime once Daylight Saving begins. It is also best to make sure you are well rested the week before this big time adjustment so it’s a smoother transition on the body.

Fair Sleep Mother

Children’s Therapy Services Sleep Support Program – Liberty Mahon, Cheshire, CT 

In order help your little one to adjust to DLS, I recommend sticking to your usual schedule. You will be adjusting everything in your daily life, including your schedule for work, meals and play, to the new time- your child’s sleep schedule is no different. If naptime was at 9am before DLS then it will be 9am after DLS. During this time, make an extra effort to keep a regular schedule. Cues within your daily routines will help your child know what to expect. If your child always take a bath, read stories then goes to bed, his body will unwind in response to the particular activities leading to bedtime. He should go to bed easily regardless of the time. Just as it may take you a few days to adjust to the new times, you can expect that it will take a few days for your child’s sleep to regulate as his internal clock resets.  A consistent and patient approach is your key to success.

Children's Therapy Services Sleep Support Program

SleepyHead Solutions – Renee Wasserman, St. Louis, MO

For the less sensitive child:

Go with the flow. Come Sunday, adjust the entire day to the new time including naps, bedtime, and meals.

For those who have difficulty with sleep transitions:

Start the transition several days before the end of DST by shifting the day (naps, bedtime, and meals) later by 15 minutes.  Each day, shift an additional 15 minutes.

SleepyHead Solutions

Well Rested Baby – Amy Lage, Beverly Farms, MA

The “fall back” component of DST may be 2 days after Halloween, but don’t let it leave you and your kids feeling like zombies.  Why is this time change scary for some parents?  Because children who were previously waking at 6:30am will now be waking at 5:30am post time change if left to their own devices.  Fear not: with simple prep work, your family can adjust with ease.  Start several days ahead of the change by keeping lights dim or off for an extra 30-60 minutes in the morning, using only the natural light coming in your windows.  In the afternoon expose your child to as much sunlight as possible and in the evening keep the lights on and bright all the way till bedtime.  As our internal clocks are set by cues from light and dark, this simple “light therapy” will help to give our clocks a jump-start.

Well Rested Baby

Achieve With Carolina – Carolina Romanyuk, Brooklyn, NY

Since we will be pushing mealtime and bedtimes 15 minutes later every 3 days, our kiddies will be tired. To help them adjust easier to this time, fresh air and sunlight is a huge plus because the light resets our internal sleepy clock.

If it’s too chilly outside, you may use your indoor lighting to your advantage and turn on the lights in your home where the child is during their waking hour for this transition. Our bodies sleep system (circadian rhythm) works off light and dark. When our environment is lit up, it keeps us awake. When it’s dim or dark, we get relaxed and ready for sleeping.

Achieve with Carolina

Off to Dreamland – Sasha Carr, PhD, New Canaan, CT 

Do the DST change at your house all at once a day early on Saturday morning!

If making a gradual change isn’t an option or just seems like too much trouble, try changing the clocks at home before you go to bed on Friday night, and use the new time on the clock as you go about your day on Saturday. This will give everyone in your family an extra day to adjust before Monday comes around.  Just remember that sports practice, birthday parties, and other Saturday plans outside of the house will still be on “outside” time!

Off to Dreamland

Meet you in Dreamland – Kerrin Edmonds, Atascadero, CA

Three days before the time change shift your child’s nap and bedtime back by 20 minutes. Then by the time Sunday comes around, it won’t be a huge change.

If your child wakes early that Sunday morning, try and keep them in dim lighting for the first hour after they wake, to help their body clock reset.

But as soon as the time change has occurred, no more adjustment time. Switch cold turkey! This also goes for those of us who don’t get around to readjusting our children’s schedule. It might take a few days but they will adjust

If you have a toddler, a tot clock can be very helpful in letting them know when it is okay to get up for the day.

Meet You in Dreamland

Good Night Sleep Site – Alanna McGinn, Burlington, Ontario

Parents Need Tips Too – It’s important to understand that these time changes don’t only affect our children. It can also be a tough adjustment for us parents. Where we go wrong in the Fall is that we use the “extra hour” as an excuse to stay up later and sleep in more in the morning. The best route to take is to stick to your same routine. To help adjust your own body clock go to bed at the same time each night (even though it will be darker earlier) and wake up at the same time in the morning. It shouldn’t take longer than a week for you to adapt.

Good Night Sleep Site

Lullaby Sleep Solutions – Kristen Grippe, Erie, PA

Please DO NOT skip or shorten your child’s afternoon nap in hopes she will get tired earlier than normal for bedtime.  If you start about 1 week ahead and gradually move the bedtime and naptime back in 15-minute increments for a few days at a time, then your little one will be right on schedule and you can enjoy that 1-hour of extra sleep when the clocks actually change!  Be sure to use black out shades in windows to keep the bedroom dark in the morning.  If your little one wakes an hour earlier than the clock says they should, keep your normal daily schedule with usual nap times and bedtime.

Lullaby Sleep Solutions

BabyZzz – Jenn Kelner, Toronto, Ontario

1. Plan a few days ahead – Prepare a few days in advance by moving your child’s daytime schedule later in 15 minute increments.

2. Block the morning light – Ensure your child’s bedroom is really dark and use some room darkening curtains to block the new early morning light.

3. Avoid rushing in – If your child does wake earlier than normal, leave them to amuse themselves until the normal wake up time to give their internal clocks a chance to reset.

4. Expose them to plenty of daylight – Expose your child to plenty of light on Sunday, especially in the morning, to help their internal clock adjust to the new time.

5. Earlier bedtime to catch up – If your child has lost some sleep due to the time change, plan for an earlier bedtime to catch up.

Baby Zzz

Baby Sleep 101 – Joleen Dilk Salyn, Winnipeg, Manitoba

It’s important to recognize that a child will wake up extra early (before 5:30am) if they’re overtired. With the time change coming, this early waking can be magnified and wreak havoc on a child’s routine. In order to minimize extra-early risings during the first few weeks of the time change, make sure that your child is well-rested *before* the clocks move back. This means restorative naps every day and an age appropriate bedtime between 6-7:30pm for children under 4, for at least two weeks before Daylight Saving Time ends.

Baby Sleep 101

Mountain Dreams Family Sleep Consultants – Julie Miller, Squamish, Vancouver, Whistler, Pemberton

1. Start early: It is best to be prepared and start adjusting a week out.  Consider shifting your child’s entire schedule 10 minutes later each day for a week.

2. Follow a routine: Children cannot read a clock so your routine is how they know what time it is. Follow your complete daily routine on the new adjusted schedule.

3. Adjust sleep times earlier: You will need to adjust to an earlier bedtime gradually.  You may find your child’s usual 6:30am wake up is now 5:30am on the morning after the time change and for a few days following. You will want to compensate with an earlier nap and bedtime schedule and continue to stick to your consistent routine until your kid’s internal clock adjusts.

4. All children are unique: Remember that every child is different and they will adjust differently to changes in their sleep schedule.

5. Also keep in mind that the start and end of daylight saving time are good reminders to get caught up on safety measures around the house, such as changing the batteries in your smoke detectors and cleaning out your medicine cabinets.

Mountain Dreams Family Sleep Consultant

child sleep consultantsWritten by Family Sleep Institute Certified Child Sleep Consultants

The Family Sleep Institute is the very first comprehensive yet affordable child sleep consultant certification program based on 15 years of experience by the leading Child Sleep Expert, Deborah Pedrick. The Family Sleep Institute lives up to its name as it is truly a “family” to all graduates who go through the program. FSI instructs, mentors and certifies Child Sleep Consultants around the world.

Interested in writing a guest blog for Zippyz? Send your topic idea to: media@shopzippyz.com.

All data and information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. Zippyz makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, current-ness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information, or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis.

SIDS Prevention and Safe Swaddling

SIDS prevention and safe swaddling

October is SIDS Awareness Month and parents are encouraged to learn more about the risk factors involved in SIDS and what steps they can take to prevent it. SIDS is defined as the death of an infant, less than 1 year of age that occurs suddenly and unexpectedly and cannot be explained after a thorough investigation is conducted. Scientists have learned a great deal about SIDS over the last years and SIDS cases have decreased drastically, but there are still over 4,000 kids that die unexpectedly each year with no known cause.

The leading theory is that SIDS affects babies with an undetected condition (such as a respiratory or heart vulnerability) combined with an environmental stressor (such as an obstructed airway). Babies born prematurely, have a young mother (under 20 years old), or experience a life-threatening event early in life are at a higher risk for SIDS. There’s no way to prevent SIDS entirely, but you can work to make your baby’s chances of avoiding the syndrome as low as possible.

When parents better understand the risks involved with SIDS, this can help to reduce future infant deaths.  Here are five tips on how to help reduce the risk of SIDS along with how to make sure you are swaddling baby correctly and safely.

1. Always place baby on his back to sleep.

Many studies have found that there is a higher incidence of SIDS among babies who are placed to sleep on their stomachs. It is thought that sleeping on the stomach narrows the baby’s airway and causes difficulty breathing. There is also a possibility that an infant sleeping on his stomach is “rebreathing” his own exhaled carbon dioxide. Baby must be put to sleep on his back throughout the first year of life. Swaddling helps baby sleep on their backs and helps prevent sleep-deprived parents from placing baby on their stomach to sleep.

2. Keep baby’s crib clear of blankets and toys.

You never want to put blankets, comforters, bumpers, stuffed toys or pillows anywhere near the baby while he is sleeping. Baby’s head and face must remain free of any blankets or coverings. If using a blanket, make sure it gets tucked around the mattress but a tight fitted sheet is best. By keeping the crib clear it can prevent rebreathing and suffocation. Bumper pads should also be avoided as they can be a potential risk of suffocation or strangulation.

3. Practice safe swaddling.

Pediatrics study suggests that babies who are swaddled experience a more restful sleep than unswaddled babies and can awaken more easily in response to noise, potentially decreasing the risk of SIDS.

For safe swaddling parents should always:

  • Use a swaddle where baby can have good hip range of motion; swaddling too tightly can cause hip dysplasia.
  • The preferred sleeping position for babies is the “hands over heart” position; use a swaddle that does not pin baby’s arms to the side. Babies (and especially babies with colic) can self-sooth and settle by using their hands and fingers in the natural “hands to heart” position just like babies do in the womb.
  • Use a swaddle that will not unravel- this prevents blankets from becoming lose and covering baby’s face. There are swaddles that do not even require wrapping!
  • Don’t over-swaddle baby or double swaddle- overheating baby is linked to SIDS. The new Woombie Air is the first breathable swaddle that regulates baby’s body temperature by allowing excess heat to escape. (Another tip, use a fan in baby’s room to maintain airflow. Plus, the white noise sound the fan creates will help baby sleep!)
  • When baby begins to roll, it’s no longer safe to swaddle. To transition baby to arms-free sleep, take one arm out of the swaddle at nap time and then when baby is used to it, try it at night time.  Take out the other arm and remove the swaddle completely gradually.

4. Keep baby at a comfortable temperature.

You don’t want baby to get too warm while sleeping so it’s best to keep them somewhere that’s room-temperature and don’t excessively clothe them. It has been suggested that babies who get too warm go into a deeper sleep making it more difficult for them to awaken. KidsHealth.org suggests keep the room at a temperature that feels comfortable for an adult in a short-sleeve shirt.

First Candle, a national nonprofit health organization uniting parents, caregivers and researchers nationwide with government, business and community service groups to advance infant health and survival, says, “When a healthy baby becomes overheated their brain recognizes the problem and attempts to correct it. When a baby predisposed to SIDS overheats, nothing happens to correct the situation.”

5. Place baby on a firm sleep surface.

According to the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, SIDS is sometimes called “crib death” and while cribs themselves don’t cause SIDS, the baby’s sleep environment can influence sleep-related causes of deaths. It’s important to use a safety-approved, firm mattress covered with a fitted sheet and avoid placing baby on a pillow, waterbed, couch, chair or other soft surface. This can help prevent smothering or suffocation. You can check the safety of your baby’s mattress or crib by contacting the Consumer Product Safety Commission at www.cpsc.gov.

While the exact cause of SIDS remains a mystery, we’re closing in on a solution. The number of SIDS deaths has declined by 50% since 1990, but more work is needed. You can help by donating to the American SIDS Institute and helping us share these tips.

baby swaddleGuest Blog by Karen Barski, BSN, RN, Mother of five, Certified Infant Care Specialist & Instructor, & Inventor of the  Woombie Baby Swaddle

Karen has been an RN for 18 years, and has worked in many different nursing roles. As a Certified Infant Care Specialist, Karen counsels thousands of families yearly on a multitude of issues relating to pregnancy and infancy. Also, as a mother of five, she has invaluable experience and tips to share.

Since 2007, Karen’s company, KB Designs, has invented a line of signature baby swaddle products that have helped parents easily transition their new babies from womb to home. There are multiple designs and sizes so that babies can enjoy the comfort and security of the Woombie up until the time they begin to roll.

Each product has been created and designed by Karen because of a need she identified in her life with her five children. With convenience, safety, and fashion in mind, KB Designs has helped over a half million babies and counting!

For more information, visit www.woombie.com.

Interested in writing a guest blog for Zippyz? Send your topic idea to: media@shopzippyz.com.

All data and information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. Zippyz makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, current-ness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information, or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis.

6 Baby Sleep Myths Busted

baby sleep mythsWhile new parents often find themselves deprived of sleep, they should do everything they can to make sure their new children aren’t.  It’s important for parents to understand healthy child sleep habits.  Many common beliefs you’ll hear as you investigate baby sleep are actually myths worth busting. Here are some of the common misconceptions about baby sleep.

1. Myth: Adding cereal to baby’s bottle will help him stay asleep.

This is an odd misconception that as a certified child sleep consultant I hear only once in a while. Putting baby cereal in your baby’s bottle won’t help him sleep through the night. In fact, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends you never put anything in a bottle other than formula or breast milk.

2. Myth: Put your baby on a sleep schedule right away.

Babies aren’t born with a natural sleep rhythm like you and I. A newborn is going to have an erratic schedule and it’s far easier if we learn to adapt to it, rather than trying to force the infant. For the first few weeks (even the first couple months), your baby is going to sleep whenever he wants. Once he begins to sleep for longer stretches is it worth the trouble to influence his schedule.

3. Myth: Good sleepers sleep through the night.

Babies follow the same REM sleep pattern as we do, but the cycle is only about sixty minutes (to our ninety). They rise into light sleep and awake occasionally like anyone else. The difference is that the best sleepers have learned how to calm themselves and fall back asleep (this is called self-soothing).

4. Myth: A baby making noise at night needs mom right away.

Listen closely to the noises your baby makes at night before you rush into the room. They’re usually the same gurgles and spurts he makes during the day. If you leave your baby alone after waking, he’ll learn to put himself back to sleep. Learn to distinguish between the normal sounds and the “Help!” sounds. If your baby is clean, dry, and recently fed, it’s safe to leave him in the crib.

5. Myth: Snoring is cute and harmless.

While fifteen to twenty-five percent of all babies snore, it could be the sign of a serious medical condition. There’s a small possibility snoring can signal sleep apnea or another breathing obstruction. Disrupted sleep (and the loss of it) could lead to developmental problems. If the snoring is frequent, consult your doctor.

6. Myth: A baby should be sleeping through the night after three months.

All children are different, so it’s important not to impose rigid expectations on your child. If your child isn’t sleeping through the night by three months, nothing is wrong. Many babies only sleep five to six hours at a time at this age. They will eventually adjust to a proper adult-like schedule.

certified child sleep consultant

Guest Blog by Lori Strong, Certified Sleep Consultant and Owner of Strong Little Sleepers

Lori is a Certified Child Sleep Consultant through and Certified Happiest Baby Educator. She is the founder and owner of Strong Little Sleepers, which was started on the idea that all families need and deserve to get a good night’s sleep. Lori was the first certified child sleep consultant in Austin, Texas and was honored as Best Sleep Expert in the 2013 Austin Birth Awards. She is also a member of the International Association of Child Sleep Consultants. Lori combines her experience as an educator and a parent to offer customized sleep plans and support to families with children ages 0-6 across the country.

For more information, please visit www.stronglittlesleepers.com.

Interested in writing a guest blog for Zippyz? Send your topic idea to: media@shopzippyz.com.

All data and information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. Zippyz makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, current-ness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information, or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis.

5 Ways to Tell That Baby is Teething

baby teethingNo children are the same. All babies experience teething in different ways. Teething symptoms can range in variety and intensity; some last for a few days and never both your child, while others can last for months as whole groups of teeth come through. The symptoms can appear as much as a couple months before you ever see a tooth. Here are the signs that baby is teething.

1. Poor sleep pattern.

Often the gum pain is present, but distractions are enough to keep your baby’s mind off of it. When it’s time to go to sleep, however, there’s nothing to do but think about the pain, so your baby will struggle falling asleep. You’ll find yourself crib-side more often as you soothe him to sleep.

2. Gnawing on toys, you, and everything!

Pressure on the affected area is the quickest way for your baby to gain relief. When he presses on the part that hurts, his brain is overloading with pressure signals and can’t process the original pain. You’ll notice him gnawing at his toys, crib, and even your fingers. Offer a teething toy or a cold washrag for him to chew on.

3. Lots of drool!

You will notice your baby’s clothes are suddenly damp all the time. This is because his mouth is creating a build-up of saliva to lubricate the gums. To avoid chapped skin, you will want to gently wipe your baby’s face throughout the day. If it’s becoming a problem, attach a bib. Pooled saliva may cause a slight wet cough.

4. Fussiness and crying.

While some babies experience teething easily, others can suffer pain. You may find that your baby is crying more often and more easily than before. Things that would frustrate him but not bring him to tears are suddenly too much for him. If the pain seems unbearable, speak with your doctor about what kind (if any) pain relief you can offer.

5. Refusal to eat.

The sucking motion can worsen the pain your baby is experiencing. To avoid the pain, he may refuse to eat, or eat/nurse briefly before turning away. Keep offering the food. Usually this problem doesn’t persist and your baby will eat. If he has refused to eat for two full days, speak with your doctor.

A simple teething toy (ideally one made of silicone) is usually enough to give your baby some relief. Some can even be stored in the fridge and utilize the numbing properties of cold.

pacifier holderGuest Blog by Julie Tabor Thompson, Founder & President of Bounce Innovations, Inventor of PullyPalz

As a mother of two, Julie found she was continuously retrieving dropped pacifiers, because even though they spit them out, they still want them immediately! She called it “the pacifier game,” and, at times, it was difficult to play. One day, she thought, ‘I wish somebody would invent a …’ A what? What could make it so babies can keep up with their pacifiers? Clips help parents keep up with pacifiers, but they don’t help the baby. Babies don’t understand when it’s behind their shoulder or around their side. As they say, out of sight, out of mind. She started by making the first prototype in her kitchen (which included melting molding plastic, an instruction manual for her sewing machine, and YouTube videos). Several designs later, the PullyPalz were born… The first ever pacifier toy that – with the help of baby’s interaction – keeps pacis coming back!

Her goal is to offer unique products that make life and parenthood just a little easier, and ultimately more enjoyable. Compatible products (teethers and toys) will be coming to market soon. Julie also offers product development and consultation services for other aspiring entrepreneurs.

For more information, visit www.pullypalz.com.

Interested in writing a guest blog for Zippyz? Send your topic idea to: media@shopzippyz.com.

All data and information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. Zippyz makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, current-ness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information, or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis.

Tips for Dealing with a Colicky Baby

dealing with colicWhen you have done everything in your power and your baby just won’t stop crying, you might be dealing with a case of colic. We don’t know exactly what causes colic, but most people believe it happens when excess gas is trapped in your baby’s stomach or intestines. Your baby’s body isn’t mature or strong enough to maneuver the gas out, so he remains uncomfortable. 1 in 5 babies experience colic. They cry, tense up, their bellies distend, and they may even turn a light shade of purpose. Thankfully, it doesn’t last forever, but here are some tips to sooth colic.

1. Offer a Pacifier. For some babies, the sucking motion is enough to manipulate the digestive tract. Also, the sucking motion is soothing to babies which might take his mind off the discomfort.

2. Warm Water Bottle. Fill an everyday plastic bottle with warm water. Gently roll it over your baby’s belly. The warmth and pressure can be soothing.

3. Tighten the Swaddle. Colic symptoms can often be relieve by pressure to the midsection. When you swaddle your baby for the night, enclose him more tightly than you normally do.

4. Switch Formula Brands. If you are using formula, experiment with different brands. You want to find one that doesn’t give your baby so much gas. He might be sensitive or have an allergy to an ingredient in the mix. Better yet, breastfeed.

5. If You Are Breastfeeding, Change Your Diet. If you’re nursing, the baby eats what you eat. Something in your diet may be causing him to have gas. Children are commonly allergic or sensitive to wheat, shellfish, soy, nuts, eggs, or have issues with broccoli, cauliflower, and the like. Try eliminating some of these.

6. Leg Lifts. Lay your baby on his back and put a little bit of pressure on his tummy. Extend his legs upward toward his chest so he looks like a frog. Vary one at a time or both together to help roll the gas out.

7. Sit Ups. Put your little one on your lap and support her head. Hold her legs still and gently guide her down, and then up, bending at the waist, as you would do a sit-up. This motion and easy pressure helps move the gas along and out.

8. Warm Bath & Massage. A relaxing bath and gentle abdominal massage can be calming for a baby any time, but especially when they have colic. Take advantage.

9. Chamomile Tea. Chamomile is well known for its soothing and sedation properties in adults and babies. If your baby’s colic is keeping him awake, look into using it to help him sleep.

pacifier holderGuest blog by Julie Tabor Thompson, Founder & President of Bounce Innovations, Inventor of PullyPalz

As a mother of two, Julie found she was continuously retrieving dropped pacifiers, because even though they spit them out, they still want them immediately! She called it “the pacifier game,” and, at times, it was difficult to play. One day, she thought, ‘I wish somebody would invent a …’ A what? What could make it so babies can keep up with their pacifiers? Clips help parents keep up with pacifiers, but they don’t help the baby. Babies don’t understand when it’s behind their shoulder or around their side. As they say, out of sight, out of mind. She started by making the first prototype in her kitchen (which included melting molding plastic, an instruction manual for her sewing machine, and YouTube videos). Several designs later, the PullyPalz were born… The first ever pacifier toy that – with the help of baby’s interaction – keeps pacis coming back!

Her goal is to offer unique products that make life and parenthood just a little easier, and ultimately more enjoyable. Compatible products (teethers and toys) will be coming to market soon. Julie also offers product development and consultation services for other aspiring entrepreneurs.

For more information, visit www.pullypalz.com.

Interested in writing a guest blog for Zippyz? Send your topic idea to: media@shopzippyz.com.

All data and information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. Zippyz makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, current-ness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information, or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis.

Photo Credit: kennymatic via Compfight cc

6 Ways to Get Your Baby to be a Rock Star Sleeper

make baby a great sleeperTo us, sleeping is pretty easy. We lie down, turn off the lights, close our eyes, and fall asleep pretty quick. Our bodies and brains have been trained over years to fall asleep to those conditions. Babies, however, lack our experience. They don’t struggle to sleep well out of spite; they’re just bad at it. In fact, there’s an entire industry of professionals devoted to teaching children how to sleep.

During the first few months, your baby’s need to eat is more important, so he/she will not be able to sleep for long stretches of time. By five months, however, your child should be able to sleep for four or five hours at a time. Use these tips to make your child a great sleeper.

1. Create a soothing routine.

Just like grown-ups, babies sleep the best when their bodies are on a consistent schedule. By establishing a night-time bedtime routine that you follow every day, your little one will be conditioned to fall asleep. He/she will fall asleep easier, sleep longer, and cry out less often during the night.

You can establish a routine by only playing quiet games or activities as it nears bedtime. Give a warm bath, a gentle massage, and keep the lights dim. Try to keep all the bedroom conditions consistent so your baby isn’t afraid when he/she wakes up in the middle of the night.

2. Learn the tired signals.

Every baby is different, so your cues may vary, but after some time you should be able to determine when your child is getting sleepy. Don’t wait until he/she is over tired, fussy, and cranky. The goal is to put your child down before he/she is actually asleep so self-soothing and falling asleep alone is learned quickly. You don’t want to end up being your child’s security object.

3. Swaddle your baby.

The startle reflex is a basic survival skill that babies are born with. It makes them jerk spontaneously. This reflex can easily wake them up. You can provide security by swaddling them in a muslin sheet or shawl. For best results, use a specially made baby swaddle that zips up so your little one can’t wiggle free.

4. Set the room temperature just right.

The optimal temperature for sleeping baby is between 65 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit. This is usually a little cooler than most people keep their homes. If you can’t adjust the thermostat in the baby’s room, leave the window slightly ajar. Be sure to position your crib away from the window.

5. Consult a sleep consultant.

When you want to do something right, it is always best to consult an expert. Sleep consultants train to help moms and dads put their child on a sleep schedule that works for the family. They know all the tricks and best practices to make sure your baby gets the best rest possible.

6. Create some white noise.

In the womb, your baby was exposed to sounds constantly.  Between the sounds of the outside world and the sounds inside a mother’s body, it’s actually quite loud in there. This means your child learned how to sleep amidst all types of noise, so when you lay them in a silent room, they become uncomfortable. You can pick up a white noise machine to create the right ambiance or use a simple house fan.

footed pajamas for fast diaper changesWritten by Lisa Youngelson, Owner of Zippyz

Like most new moms, Lisa had been up night after night changing her newborn son’s diaper. She was so exhausted she could barely function, let alone match up the tiny snaps on her baby’s pajamas.

Frustrated by endless mis-snapping and re-snapping, Lisa found zippered pajamas, and thought her problems had been solved. That night when she unzipped her son’s pajamas, he started to cry from the shock of cold air. Although less time consuming, Lisa hated that she had to expose her baby’s entire body with the zipper. She felt her baby’s comfort should come first and yearned for the perfect footed pajama, which was both soft and cozy for her baby and hassle-free for mommy.

One night while feeding her son she thought of “Zippyz.” Zippyz are a patented footed pajama for easy and fast diaper changes with 3 snaps on the chest and a zipper from foot to belly. Finally, a solution suitable for baby AND mommy! Along with her best friend and business partner Erica, Lisa decided make the diaper changing world a better place for all new parents!

For more information, visit www.shopzippyz.com.

Interested in writing a guest blog for Zippyz? Send your topic idea to: media@shopzippyz.com.

All data and information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. Zippyz makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, current-ness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information, or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis.

Photo Credit: Jan de Graaf via Compfight cc