Team SnoozeShade are huge advocates of sleep on the go, and as we descend into autumn we feel its more important than ever to spread the word to new parents across the land. The SnoozeShade was invented so that mums and dads could take charge, stay social, and keep naps on track too. Here's a quick guide to napping on the go, and why you need to make it part of your life today.
Naps are so important
Babies and young children need more sleep than the rest of us, and much of this sleep is achieved during the daytime. From around the age of six months (or sooner for some babies) a routine is established whereby you kind of know more or less when your baby is going to need a sleep. At this point you can plan your days accordingly. It's also at this point that babies become more aware of their surroundings and of stimulation in the room where they're sleeping, so many babies take their daytime naps in a crib in the nursery to avoid being woken.
Naps are important because that's when the young brain is developing and little bodies are rejuvenating. Ask any parent who's child has missed a nap and they will tell you that the daytime sleep is essential for so much more too. Naps give babies and children a chance to recharge ready for more adventures, and studies have also found that sleep helps to improve memory, gross motor skills and concentration levels too.
And let's not forget that, naps are a chance for parents to relax and unwind too- so keeping them on track is essential! No matter how much you love being with your baby, every parent needs a break now and then- even if it's just thirty minutes, or the chance to nip to the loo without someone crying... we all need naps in one way or another! Think of them a little like time out- a brief breather before the next round of parental duties begins.
When naps interfere with life, and vice versa
As already mentioned, by around the age of six months your baby will be more aware of things going on around him, and this can disturb sleep. If this is the case, it's a good idea to put baby to sleep in
his own room, away from distractions and safe from things that could wake him. And then you are stuck. No more mid afternoon coffee and cake meet ups with friends. Having to wake baby to go out on the school run. Cancelling plans to go out, or have friends round. You life revolves around nap time, and how much you can do either side of your baby's sleep.
Napping on the go
Napping on the go, simply put, is all about helping baby to achieve daytime sleep without
cancelling life. It doesn't mean your baby misses out on daytime sleep, and it doesn't mean that baby never needs to sleep at home during the day either. Like anything, a balance is good and if you know your baby sleeps better in a bed then obviously you'll want to make sure you're at home for most of the naps. But there will always be times where you want or need to be out and about at nap time, so napping on the go means that you don't need to make a choice between whether baby sleeps or you get your errands done.
Napping on the go means allowing baby to sleep while you're out- in the car, pram, stroller or otherwise.
Tips for napping on the go
If you're wondering how baby will ever be able to sleep out of the house and away from the nice peaceful nursery then perhaps these tips will help:
- At home, don't go to great lengths to keep daytime noise to a minimum. Babies are able to sleep through a fair amount of noise, but if you regularly tiptoe around at nap time they will come to expect silence for all of their daytime sleep. This makes napping on the go difficult.
- Give your baby lots of opportunities to sleep in the pram or stroller away from the house so that the idea of sleeping while you do what you need to do is not met with protests.
- Use a SnoozeShade to create a darkened, cosy nook for sleeps. This is why we invented it after all! The SnoozeShade is made from breathable fabrics that eliminate sunlight (and protect from wind and cold weather in winter too) so that you can create an ideal sleeping environment away from the home.
- If baby is able to sleep quite well in the daylight but is easily distracted, again- use a SnoozeShade! The warm coccon of the shade blocks out visual stimulus, allowing baby to switch off completely and enjoy sleep of a good quality.
- Try to aim for at least some of your naps to be out of the house each week, so that when it comes to needing to be out of the house, it isn't likely to be an issue.
Napping on the go can be a saviour for some parents. Sometimes being tied to the house can make for a pretty isolating experience, and yet if baby doesn't sleep well during the day then there's a chance night time sleep won't be much good either. Some parents lead active outdoor lives that they want to share with baby. Some parents may suffer from low moods or depression that can be treated effectively by being out of the house, meeting people and exercising in the fresh air. Whatever the reason, being out of the house is sometimes necessary, and if baby can come along and sleep while you do it then why not?
What are your top tips for napping on the go?