Sleep is a precious commodity, and life is hard without it. When parents and children have inadequate sleep, no one is achieving optimal brain/body health, and everyone gets cranky. Ericka Cooley, Certified Pediatric Sleep Coach, understands first-hand the entire scenario: a crying baby, short sleep cycles and utter exhaustion. Now she knows that life doesn’t have to be that way. Her business Cooley Sleep can help you and your loved ones get the rest you crave.
Some people hear the term sleep training and are compelled to run the other way. They imagine a baby crying for endless hours alone in a dark room. “People think that’s all it is,” said Ericka, “but that’s not true.” Her compassionate interactions with families offer another choice. After all, don’t we all want and need good quality sleep?
The journey for Ericka began when her 5-week old son was sleeping less than an hour at a time. Finding no relief in car rides, singing or other classic solutions, she hired a sleep consultant. In just a short time, her son was sleeping through the night. Of course, that contributed to Ericka getting sleep, too. It was a life changing experience for her, which has inspired her to help other families achieve the same success.
Sleep coaching can work for families whether or not the child is breast or bottle-fed. Ericka works with the parents around the clock to set the stage for activities during the day as well as the nighttime. As a child shifts to longer sleep periods, the breast milk quantities and timing make parallel adjustments. “Your body is smart enough to know what your baby needs,” remarked Ericka, who understands moms have many questions and concerns.
Strategies can also be implemented for families that are co-sleeping, either bed sharing or room-sharing. “You can start very early on to gain good sleeping habits,” added Ericka. It is important for all family members to get quality sleep and to be sure the environment is safe. Ericka can help you get decide when your children are ready to have their own sleeping space, as they may not be getting fully rested in the parents’ bed.
Cooley Sleep coaches parents of newborns, infants, and toddlers, but can also lend a hand with children up to 12-years-old. Sometimes new sleep issues arise for the older child when a new sibling arrives. Perhaps your usual bath and evening story ritual has stretched from 20 minutes to 2 hours of stalling tactics including demands for multiple stories, more sips of water and 20 kisses. “It’s pretty easy to teach sleep habits,” commented Ericka, “but parents need to be committed and consistent.” That’s why a coach is so critical and effective. It’s similar to hiring a personal trainer where you get personalized plans, accountability and someone to take your hand and help you through the process. “I want families to be well rested,” emphasizes Ericka.
Science shows that lack of sleep, even for a very short period of time, results in raised levels of the hormone cortisol. This affects levels of hunger and satiety where a person feels hungry and only a donut sounds good. Shortened sleep does not give the brain a chance to recover from the previous day. One of Ericka’s favorite aspects of her work is talking to the parents after new habits are in place and everyone is getting more sleep. The most common phrase is “I didn’t realize how much I suffered from not getting enough sleep.” The gradual degradation of sleep happens over time and being tired feels normal. The body tolerates an amazing amount of abuse, but there is a cost. When baby is not sleeping well, neither are you.
Imagine the quality of your life taking a huge shift towards restful health in two weeks. You can head to Ericka’s website to do a free assessment. This will give you more information and help you decide on a plan appropriate for your family.
“Remember you don’t have to be sleep deprived to be a mom,” adds Ericka. Call 702-622-3533.
You can also connect with Ericka for a complimentary 15-minute phone consultation for anyone wondering if a sleep consultant is right for their family. You can sign up here!