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Hello sickness my old friend...

Updated: May 11, 2023

I, like many, am thrilled to be back to seeing our favorite people and have been really enjoying the fun, crowds and community. What have I been less pumped about? The germs. I have NOT missed having sick kids. The colder weather has arrived in Alberta, and in turn so has the sharing of all those nasty bugs amongst the kids. So how do we get through illness and preserve the great sleep habits we have worked so hard to establish with our kids? Let me tell you.

If your kids have a fever or a stomach bug or whatever and you need to be close by keeping an eye on them, I strongly recommend you moving in with them instead of moving them in with you. Here’s why:

- If your kids are used to sleeping in their own beds independently that is how they are going to sleep best so let them stay in their own beds. Sickness already disrupts sleep but letting them stay in their bed will keep some consistency.

- You moving in, whether that is a makeshift bed on the floor or into a recliner in their room, allows them to sleep independently while you can get to them in a hurry or monitor what’s going on without completely switching up the bedtime routine your little one is used to.

Extra wakeups are coming, it’s likely inevitable so make peace with it and remind yourself that this is not forever. If they need a little extra love, comfort or a snuggle during the night that’s ok. Try to resist the urge to go back to nighttime feeds if that’s not part of your normal night regime and they are getting enough during the day. Plan to offer fluids and give medication as needed overnight. Exception: if your Dr or Medical Professional recommends feeds in the night then absolutely do it, what they say goes!

Routine, routine, routine. If at all doable, stick to your bedtime routine as much as possible. Changing everything up can be stressful for our little ones. Kids love predictability and that doesn’t go away just because they are sick.

Trust your gut. Do you need to throw it all out the window and let that kiddo of yours sleep on your lap with a bottle in their mouth? Giver. You are their person, you know what they need and it’s up to you to give it to them, not up to me to tell you not to! I would never want you to resist the need to go to your baby when they are sick (or ever) because I recommend sticking to your routine. Sleep training can be paused for sleep kids, we can get back to it eventually.

Get back on track. With my kids I can always tell they are on the mend when their energy levels climb again. They may have lingering symptoms but when that spark shows back up again, I know it’s time to get back to business. Time to move those extra snuggles back to waking hours and get back to sleeping independently for all of us. Hallelujah! Kids with great sleep habits can quickly get back their norm, it’s our job as their caregivers to remind them of what they are capable of. And if you need some sleep solutions to get that baby sleep back on track, reach out.

Happy sleeping,

Your Sleep Coach, Corie

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