How comforters provide reassurance for little ones
I spoke to certified sleep expert Charlotte from Saving Sleep about the benefits of your little one having a comforter for added reassurance.
Who doesn’t like a cuddle in bed! I often get asked what my essential sleep items are for my children and it’s without a doubt their comforters /blankie/teddy. It is the first thing I pack when we go on holiday and the first thing I give them when it’s sleep time. If I forget these, I can kiss goodbye to a smooth bedtime and full night’s sleep.
My children love a cuddle in bed. Since they were 6 months old, I have given them a comforter at sleep time as I am a strong believer of positive sleep associations. They provide them with so much comfort, security and reassurance at bedtime as well as signal it’s time for sleep.
Not only do they help my children settle when going to bed, but they also play a key role during the night. When babies come into light sleep during the night and temporarily wake, a comforter, blankie or teddy are amazing tools to help them resettle without the need for mum or dad to get involved.
As we all know, our little ones go through so many phases and transitions as well as new experiences across the first years of life. At around 9-12 months and 2 years they can suffer from separation anxiety. But other big events in their life such as the birth of a new sibling or the start of nursery or child minder can produce quite the wobble. This is when having a transportable familiar comforter can be especially helpful for extra cuddles and reassurance during these unsettling times.
Here are a few ideas to help introduce a comforter to your baby.
1) Start by putting the comforter between you and your baby during feeding. Let your baby hold it while feeding, as they will be relaxed and cuddled up to you.
2) Keep the comforter down your breastfeeding bra or top for a few hours or overnight, to get your scent onto it.
3) Offer the comforter at every sleep occasion either at home in the cot or out and about in the pram (only do this when they are over 6 months, as guidelines for night-time sleeping are for a totally clear cot)
4) It's a good idea to have more than one of your baby's favourite comforter, for when one is in the wash or to keep at Granny's house.
I particularly love the Etta Loves comforters as not only are they a lovely size for little hands to hold, but they're so so soft. The sensory stimulation is an excellent way to keep your baby calm, but if you're using them at bedtime make sure their room is dark enough so that your baby can focus on sleep, not the mesmerising patterns!
Thank you Charlotte. Charlotte is a wonderful human that I used to work with during my career in Advertising and you can find out more about her work at www.savingsleep.co.uk - she really is brilliant!