Last week one of my favourite shops, Tickle Tots, posted a blog post about ‘Getting through the Night Shift.’ At the end of the article, they asked if people had any tips to add. We’ve recently been using their Tickle Tots 2 nappy at night time so I thought I would pen a response.
Thomas slept through the night when he was about two and half months. The problem is – it only happened once. I kept a positive outlook and get repeating ‘he can do it, it will happen.’ Except it didn’t.
The months went by and October came round again. It had been a full calendar year since I had experienced an actual night’s sleep. Needless to say – I was pretty tired.
We tried various forms of sleep training but were really bad at actually being in a routine. It was just easier to feed him every time he woke. It felt like the quickest thing to do and ensured he didn’t wake anyone else. The problem being – there was no end in sight.
Finally, about a month ago we decided to just bite the bullet and try something different. We had a cunning plan to instigate a new routine that did not involve feeding to sleep:
Step One: Create new shared bedroom
Up until this point Thomas’ cot had been in our room. He is too young to move out of his cot, but we wanted to be able to sleep in with him if necessary. To this end, we built a set of bunkbeds for their room. This ensured that Katie was majorly excited about sharing a room but we also had somewhere we could sneak into if necessary.
Step Two: Get a decent night time nappy
I’m a member of a popular advice group on Facebook in which you can pretty much ask anything. A common problem people seem to have is disposable nappies not lasting the night. Lots of people advise just putting on two nappies – but I’ve found it simpler to just use a decent cloth nappy.
When Thomas was much younger we used a two part nappy that was very bulky. It had extra ‘boosters’ but he felt very damp by morning. It seems contrary but actually we’ve had a much better time with slimmer nappies like the Tickle Tots 2.
The Tickle Tots 2 comes with two bamboo boosters that popper into the outer wrap so that they stay in place. This seems to absorb really well with both layers can last a long time. Although it has a stay dry layer, we use a Little Lambs fleece liner as well to ensure that he feels dry all night. Obviously on the theory that this will help him stay asleep!
It’s also important that Thomas is comfortable. The Tickle Tots 2 fits really nicely round his legs and doesn’t leave any nasty cuff marks. The nappies have a ‘double layer leg gusset’ which basically just means the elastic ensures a good fit round the thighs and guards against leaks! The waterproof outer is also breathable and I’ve found that this helps to keep everything cool – so his skin isn’t all clammy in the morning.
Step Three: Be strict with timing
Strict routine is not our strong point but we have started to give Thomas a bath every night (he’s always grubby) at the same time. He has a play in the bath for around 20 minutes before getting into his PJs. We’ve been using a new bubble bath that seems to agree with his skin a lot more – and smells amazing.
On this theme, we additionally started using a lavender baby pillow spray. I have NO idea if this actually makes a difference or not but I daren’t stop…
I’m not sure if it’s the new location, an improved nappy, or use of different products but in the last three weeks, he’s slept through every single night but two.
He’s waking up very early each morning (about 6am) but as Mike is an early bird – this is actually manageable. I know many of my friends will want to give me a firm slap… but I’m actually getting some sleep!
I am literally touching a wooden desk whilst writing this. I’m petrified that some horrible regression will occur and I’ll have another year of sleeping in two hours cycles. But for now I’m taking it.
I’m praising the sleep gods above. Building a shrine for my Tickle Tots 2 nappies. And of course, spraying that pillow spray with abundance. Keep your fingers crossed!