Nicola from Ipswich

E takes more than an hour to settle at night and still wakes 2 or 3 times but only takes an ounce or so at each feed in the night. She is unable to settle herself and needs to be cuddled or stroked. We are concerned that she is becoming dummy dependent. She suffers badly from wind so we would appreciate any advice on bottle feeding techniques (she is bottle fed). But night time is the issue as my husband and I are very tired and he is away on exercise for 3 weeks in May and I am concerned about how I will manage without his support. Our overall objective is to help us set our daughter towards the goal of sleeping through and being able to settle herself.

“Mel came to us at a time when we seemed to be taking a step forward and two steps back with our 11-week-old daughter. She would only sleep on us in the day and getting her to sleep in her cot at night was a three-hour battle. Needless to say we were exhausted and my husband was due to go away with work for three weeks which left me panic stricken as to how I would cope. She came to stay at my parents house and so had a tired and emotional mother and worried grandparents to deal with as well as a ‘difficult’ baby but she fitted in wonderfully an instantly put us all at ease. My Mum and Dad loved her and were able to see an almost immediate effect on both E and on me. On the first night, Mel noted that E would wake herself up screaming when almost completely asleep which is something I had been told was common and just a sign of a baby who would rather be cuddled. Mel suggested however that it might be reflux and so we saw a Doctor who prescribed baby gaviscon and she suggested changing the formula we were using.

Almost immediately we saw an effect and although E is still not ‘perfect’ she is almost a different child and will now sleep on her own in the day and sleep far better at night settling within half an hour of a late night feed rather then taking two further hours of rocking and pacing. It also turns out that E often isn’t any worse than any other baby but she is exceptionally loud and so our sleep nanny was able to reassure me that although she sounds as though she is being tortured, that’s just her normal volume and we shouldn’t let it stress us so much as this was causing us to rush things and tense up which only served to wind E up further. In summary, Mel was fabulous and gave us a bit of a break, a lot more confidence and a far happier baby. I only wish we’d picked up the phone earlier! She has also been fantastic in helping us carry on settling E into a routine which is invaluable.

Thanks for helping us to begin to actually enjoy our baby! By SMS The night after she left. E is asleep! It took a while but she didn’t put up too much of a fight …. And no dummy! Fingers crossed for a good night. Speak soon, thanks again. Getting better and better. Day sleeps are still a bit erratic but last night she slept until 0615! She also had nearly 30oz yesterday. …We have turned a corner thanks to you. Speak soon, N x”