There are many misconceptions about holistic health AND about sleep.
What it really comes down to is approach. For me, an attachment and holistic approach involves treating the whole person – or family! It is individualized, relationship centered and also evidence-based (which is science talk for approaches that are supported by research).
The purpose of a holistic approach is to look past the symptom(s), to find and correct the root cause of the problem. While, the attachment lens helps to prioritize your child’s developmental needs for safety and security – all while improving your overall health and wellness.
There are no quick fixes or band-aid solutions here!
The process involves an in depth assessment, sleep diaries, education and collaborative discussion.
When working with me, the goal may be to improve sleep, but after we spend some time working together and discovering the root cause of your challenges, you might just find that the solution will benefit you and your families in other ways as well.
A better sleep really does bring brighter days!
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Sleep Is hard…Parenting while sleep deprived, is MUCH harder!
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A Holistic Sleep Coach is someone who has completed training in a number of areas pertaining to sleep, health & wellness.
This includes training in child development, parenting, attachment, breastfeeding, nutrition, allergy, mental health, biology, temperament, sensory, as well as social and cultural factors…and more!
A Holistic Sleep Coach takes a comprehensive, multi-factorial approach to identify the underlying root cause (and in most cases causes) of your or your child’s sleep problem(s).
Its not about a quick fix, its about finding a lasting solution.
Parenting has evolved a lot over the years, and so has parenting support! With so much information available online, through social media, books, and well-meaning family members or friends, it is hard to know what advice to take.
When you work with me you gain so much more than just sleep support. You will gain evidence-based knowledge, so you can make informed decisions around sleep and development. You will gain confidence in your parenting abilities, so that you can troubleshoot future problems independently and with ease.
Any sleep plan that fails to factor in all of the unique parts that make your child who they are, within the context of you as a parent, and the rest of the family…will likely fall short.
I will help you find the right path for you!
I am much more than a sleep consultant. I am a proud mom of twin boys! My background is in Psychology and Psychiatric Nursing, having spent many years training and working directly with families through their sleep, stress, behaviour, mental health and parenting challenges.
Additionally, I hold specialized training as a Certified Infant Sleep Educator, and as an Accredited Holistic Sleep Coach. I am also working towards being certified in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Insomnia
My educational and employment background are important given there are no regulatory or government bodies within the field of sleep. Whether it be sleep consulting, sleep training, coaching or education.. most of the training programs only consist of a few weeks of training, and have no educational prerequisites.
What this means is that pretty much anyone can call themselves a sleep expert – with little to no training, experience, or understanding of the importance of things like attachment.
Given how significantly sleep impacts our health, I strongly urge you to research your options!
As a Sleep Educator, I help individuals and families to better understand normal sleep behaviour – everything from sleep patterns, and daily sleep requirements, to frequency of night-time awakenings.
We can’t truly correct sleep challenges until we understand what is normal. Sleep Education basics include learning how to read your child’s behavioural cues, and the importance of attending to your baby/child responsively.
The goal is to help you to develop tools and strategies so you can build on your parenting to sleep skills, all while helping to ensure a strong attachment and optimal brain development.
Often this involves incorporating a number of lifestyle changes to help the whole family get more zzz’s. But don’t worry…I’ll walk you though it!
Sleep training and sleep coaching/education share the common goal for families to feel more rested, but they differ significantly in how they arrive at their goal.
Sleep training is quick and very intense…and unfortunately the results tend to be short lived requiring repeat sessions. The whole process involves a lot of crying that most parents (and babies/children) find traumatic!
While sleep training was once considered best practice, research is now suggesting that it might be harmful. We now know that babies who are sleep trained are not actually sleeping through the night (because its developmentally impossible to do so). They have just been trained to stop signaling (i.e. crying) for their parents when they need something. In effect, they learn that there is no point in crying as their needs will be ignored.
When it comes to babies and young children, we know that intensive periods of crying and neglect can have lasting implications for brain health, development, and attachment.
This is why I take a gentle, holistic and attachment-focused approach to sleep. My goal is to find you solutions to get more sleep without sleep training and without compromising normal healthy development, and with minimal to no crying.
The short answer to this that they might, at least a little we-bit. No one can predict how a child will respond in a new situation. So anyone who tells you that they can promise you no tears is likely wrong! Babies do not like change, they do not understand it, and so naturally find it distressing. They are hardwired to cry in new or strange situations!
What I really want to stress here is the difference between traditional sleep training (also known as cry-it-out), and gentle, responsive and respectful sleep support. Because the difference is a BIG one. (You can read more in the section about “How is This Different Than Sleep Training”)
Crying that is attended to in a supportive and responsive way, not only feels more natural to parents, it is also healthier, and promotes a secure attachment.
To be clear here… My goal is always to prevent crying at all costs. If tears happen it can be a sign that we are moving too fast for your child, and that we need to slow down, and revisit our plan. My approach is TRULY gentle and attachment focused. I do not promote or use any form of cry-it-out or timed checks. I will never ask you to leave the room, or avoid picking up, touching or otherwise comforting your baby/child – especially if they are distressed!
You can be responsive to your child’s needs and still make positive steps towards a more restful sleep!
My goal is always to help your child to get more sleep AND help YOU to feel well rested.
However, some babies, and children have unique needs, and/or strong temperaments that make lengthening (also known as consolidating) sleep difficult.
It is also important to factor in normal sleep behaviour. Most new parents do not realize that it is developmentally normal (and healthy!) for a baby (or even a toddler) to wake up multiple times during the night. Night waking is actually very important for brain development during those early months!
Absolutely! I have spent the better part of my career specializing in working with people who have disabilities.
Everyone deserves a better sleep! Getting there can sometimes take a bit longer, but the reward is worth the effort.
Research shows that sleep plays a key role in the reduction of many mental health challenges – like ADHD, irritability, and aggression – that children and adults with a disability can face on a daily basis.
Not a problem! While I am physically located in the small town of Port Alberni, on Vancouver Island in Beautiful British Columbia. I have clients from all over the place!
The wonders of modern technology allow me to provide electronic support to anyone (via phone, email, and video-chat (i.e. Zoom or Facetime or equivalent).
I recognize that private individualized support may be a luxury to many. But, I strive to help as many people as I can! For this reason, I have many free and lower cost options available.
My group packages are one great option. Simply bring along your mommy friends to be eligible for group rates!
I also have some online courses for if you prefer a more DIY approach. Check out my Courses page
If you are looking for some truly free support, then I recommend signing up for my mailing list to receive free parenting to sleep tips!
There is also my FREE Facebook Group! I run free sleep clinics here once a month! Join Here!
Plus – there’s gift cards! Better sleep is pretty much the perfect gift.
Extended health plans vary so much. It really depends on where you live, and your coverage details.
Many plans will reimburse Registered Nursing services. One important factor to consider is that my nursing registration is limited to the province of British Columbia, Canada.
I recommend contacting your service provider to be sure. I am also happy to submit a preauthorization request on your behalf. Then we will know for sure!