Sleep schools in demand as expectant mums book in their unborn babies

Mums-to-be frightened by stories of sleepless nights and unsettled newborns are booking their babies in at sleep school before they are even born .

The rush to book a place before baby arrives has already seen a waiting list blow out at sleep schools in Melbourne of up to four months, the Herald Sun reports. And midwives expect the pressure on sleep school places to get worse if maternity hospitals keep on pushing women out the door so soon after birth.

“Pregnant women are buying a cot, a bassinet, a car seat, a pram, a breast pump — and booking in for sleep school,” author, midwife and maternal and child health nurse Cath Curtin tells the Herald Sun.

“Mothers are so fixated about the birth … and then they go home and it’s like ‘Now what do I do?’.

“My concern is that we have lost touch in teaching parents how to parent. It starts in hospital, where mums only stay for four days which is not long enough to be really taught what to do.”

mum and baby sleeping

Ms Curtin says new mums need to be taught the basics, such as the main reason babies don’t settle is usually because they are hungry.

“You can’t overfeed babies, because Mother Nature is too sensible,” she says.

“But there has to be a balance between food intake and energy expended, to help the baby sleep.”

Sleep education is offered at a variety of public and private early parenting centres.

Masada Private Hospital’s mother-baby unit manager Patsy Thean tells the Herald Sun she only has an eight-week waiting list as she discourages women from booking in before the birth.

“Not every baby will have a problem, so you have to wait for a couple of months first,” she says.

“It’s quite distressing if a new parent doesn’t know it’s normal for a baby to cry a total of three hours in a 24-hour time period. There are a lot of education classes out there for parents to prepare for the birth, but not much talk about what to do when the baby comes.”

Sometimes there is no escaping the exhaustion and you just have to embrace it just as Wendy Wisner did with this post inspiring other mums to share their sleep deprivation stories.

At Babyology we get it, sleep is a valuable, though somewhat scarce, resource so to help add a little calm to the sleep routine we compiled a list of bedtime songs to that won’t drive parents mental. Make sure to browse our other sleep related resources.

(via Herald Sun)

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