Parent feedback

Rosie & Jack

I contacted Mel when Jack was just over a year old. He experienced health issues from a newborn – reflux and Cow’s Milk Protein Intolerance – which badly affected his sleep. This was diagnosed by another sleep expert when he was 5 months old.  However, as Jack got older the sleep issues remained (and the sleep advice stopped being productive). We saw another sleep expert just before his 1st Birthday who said that his sleep problems were medical, but the paediatrician started telling me that it was now behavioural.

But none of the sleep advice we had been given by either sleep expert was working (along with any standard technique we read in any book). We had further diagnostic tests done to eliminate any medical problems and contacted 3 more sleep experts when he was 1 year old – 2 told me that they didn’t think they were able to give any more advice than we’d already been given. His sleep patterns didn’t seem to fit any ‘normal’ sleep problems, likely due to his previous medical history.

A previous “sleep expert” from another organisation had spoken to me so nastily that she made me cry (not difficult when I was as sleep deprived and desperate for help as I was!) and had told us to punish him for crying by taking away his comfort blanket – we tried it purely out of desperation, despite knowing it was wrong, and unsurprisingly it didn’t work – he ended up hysterical for hours and hours, several nights in a row.

I was in a very bad place when I spoke to Mel. A year of getting 2-3 hours sleep a night was starting to take its toll on all my close relationships (ironically I had developed insomnia myself so was getting even less sleep than Jack!). I wasn’t able to go back to work and could barely function to keep a household functioning.

However, Mel said that she would try to help – she was very honest and said she couldn’t make any promises due to the complexity of his issues but she wanted to give it a go! Her methods were kind and did not involve him crying or screaming. It was tailored specifically for Jack and the issues he was presenting, rather than a standard sleep programme that I had been given before and that you can read about in books. Mel said that normally problems can be resolved in 2-3 weeks but that we should expect to notice a difference in 5-6 weeks (if at all) because of Jack’s problems.

We started the sleep support plan that Mel suggested that night, and saw an INSTANT result. Previously, it was taking us 1-2 hours to get him back to sleep even when we held him. Mel’s technique took 1 hour on the first night and thereafter 15-20 minutes.

I cannot thank Mel enough. She was extremely kind and friendly and just talking to her gave me instant relief.

I think I join my husband in saying that if we experience any future blips we will be contacting Mel straight away! Even when he’s 18 and we are experiencing quite different sleep problems!!” Mel says “Most just address the actual sleep pattern. While this can be effective for many babies, I try to take a more holistic approach where possible.

Mel says “It is important to look at the whole child and all the aspects of his day and night, then link these together to help achieve a good nights sleep for both parents and child. If a baby has had health issues from a very young age it’s not surprising his Mum and Dad would want to help him settle to sleep by holding him and rocking. This can become a habit for baby, who then finds it very hard to self settle after the health issue has passed.”

See below for more parent studies & feedback

I contacted Mel when I was at my lowest ebb with my 5 month old son who had been waking every 30 mins throughout the night for months on end. I was exhausted and frustrated as I’d researched so many things but nothing worked and I was overwhelmed with contradictory information online or from others. I honestly can’t thank Mel enough. Her knowledgeable, kind, understanding and non-judgmental approach had me at ease instantly. Mel will work with each family differently (I have an older daughter too so what we did ...
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I cannot recommend Mel more highly. We got in touch with her because our 4 month old son was not napping longer than 30mins during the day and was waking every 2 hours overnight. After one phone call Mel quickly identified a strategy for us and after 4 weeks of implementing our lives completely changed. Our son is now putting himself to sleep independently and his daytime naps are the perfect length for his age. He's also now only waking up once in the night. Our family can hardly believe ...
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Josie - Surrey Hi Mel, We've had two good nights so far, with E... settling in 40-50minutes when first put to bed. The first night she woke a few times but twice she settled in five minutes which is unheard of! Last night she stirred in the early hours but put herself to sleep without us at all, amazing. And I've had to wake her at 7am today. Fingers crossed we weather the next storm (as in under no illusion it will remain so great) but many thanks for helping ...
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Our baby is nearly 4 months old and still not sleeping through the night. He has his last feed at 10pm and then wakes at 2am and every hour after that until 5am, each time he wakes he cannot settle himself back to sleep unless lifted out of bed and cuddled, or if we use a dummy. We would like him to be able to sleep through the night (he no longer feeds after 10pm) or at least be able to settle himself back to sleep each time he wakes ...
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Dear Melissa, Eli was one on Saturday - he is a good sleeper and that's all thanks to your help and advice at 12 weeks - even through periods of teething, illness, development we know that we can get him back on track. I will always be grateful for your calm and helpful voice in a period of utter chaos! I have recommended you to a couple of friends who had babies around the same time as us but are struggling with some sleep issues. Hopefully they'll be in touch ...
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I need to know how to stop my daughter from breastfeeding through the night & co-sleeping as well as being able to encourage a better eating practice throughout the day. "This time last week my 21 month old daughter E was still greedily breastfeeding at all hours of the day and night and sleeping tucked up beside me in our bed. Consequently I had not had a full night's sleep for almost two years and my health was really suffering to the point where the doctor said I seriously must ...
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We have exclusively breastfed our baby since birth and she is now one week away from being 6 months old. She has always fallen asleep at the end of a feed and we never really questioned this. We have now realised that she cannot actually fall asleep without being on the breast and that she uses me as a comforter to get her to sleep. Now that her appetite is increasing as she is ready for weaning, she doesn't always fall asleep at the end of a feed and so ...
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Our son has never been easy to settle to sleep, so when he was tiny we rocked, fed, walked, bounced etc etc, but mostly fed to sleep. He would always sleep well once asleep though, until 4 months, when teeth and sleep regression started. At this point he was waking more often, and would be almost impossible to settle back into his cot in the night, so we started co-sleeping from 5am then 4am, then 3, then from his first wake up! This was fine, but he would wake 2hrly ...
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My five month old baby has had trouble napping during the day and has often woken up cranky, clearly needing more sleep. After spending hours reading baby books, surfing the net and taking professional advice, I decided to try controlled crying. This left my baby distressed and me completely stressed out. I was at my wits end, desperately wanting to do what was right for my baby but totally confused by all the conflicting advice. So I contacted Mel at Sleep Nannies! Mel was a breath of fresh air. She ...
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Within the last 2 weeks, our son has started to wake up every 45 mins or so from 1am onwards during the night and has been unable to resettle. We have had to get up and reinsert his dummy. As a result, we went dummy cold turkey three days ago and it has been a disaster. He is unable to self settle and we now find ourselves rocking/ jigging him to sleep. He wakes up again at 11 and we dream feed him, he goes straight back to sleep. But ...
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G is 10 & half months old and has never slept through the night. As a newborn he was very resistant of night time sleeps, we reacted by rocking, driving, cuddling, feeding him to sleep. At night, at worst he wakes 3 times and I usually breastfeed him back to sleep or fall asleep in our bed then put him back in his cot. We've used several methods to try to get him to sleep longer (pick up/put down, crying it out, totally ignoring him) but nothing has worked and ...
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Our daughter goes to bed at 7pm and will generally sleep well until about 10.45pm when we give her, her last feed of the day. The problems start after that. She used to sleep until about 4am, and on rare occasions would sleep through until 6am. But recently she's started waking at all hours of the night and we're experiencing great difficulty in getting her back to sleep for any length of time. My fear is that we're starting to create bad sleep habits. She already uses a dummy, and ...
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He wakes to feed around every 2 hours at night. Generally he needs to be asleep to go back down during the night. He can now settle himself at the beginning of the night and can be put down awake-this works when he's not ill most of the time. He is allowed to babble and cry a little on this first settle but when he gets upset we go to him and pick him up to comfort him. Sometimes he will then go down again awake but others he needs ...
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We need help getting our 4 1/2 month old baby girl to sleep through the night. Around 2 months she got to the stage where she was waking only once in the night and having a small feed then back off to sleep until 7am. One night this changed and since then she wakes every night between 3 & 6 times a night. I am absolutely exhausted and i feel that she is not as happy as she should be. She has a dummy and it seems that when she ...
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Our 20 months old and is still waking through between 1 and 3 times a night. I have tried leaving him to cry but he made himself so distressed after 40 minutes I gave in... When J wakes, the only way to get him back to sleep is to take him out of his cot and usually feed him. He eats well in the day so am sure this is just a habit rather than need. I have tried watering his milk down gradually but get to a certain level ...
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As a family of two children, aged 5 and aged 3 it was somewhat of a surprise to learn that we were going to be expecting twins into our family. Having had two children already we felt we had the knowledge to deal with two new arrivals but the sleepless nights were going to be a problem! Friends of ours who also had twins, had also used Mel to help them through the early days and on their advice, we also decided to enlist the help of Our sleep nanny ...
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It's with pleasure that I give some feedback with regards to my telephone consultations with Sleep Nannies. I was unsure how successful the telephone would be because I was unsure if I would be able to convey my situation and our individual needs to someone over the phone. Also I was nervous about telling a stranger (professional) that I was struggling with helping my daughter to settle herself to sleep. I was afraid that I would feel criticised and I was already feeling an inadequate mother! However, within minutes of ...
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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 ...
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Our daughter E has difficulty settling herself to sleep and is becoming increasingly dummy dependent. She ends up sleeping with mum for second half of night. We would also like assistance getting her to take more food in the day. "Admittedly I was a little nervous of having a stranger come into my house but it was the best thing I could have done. Before the sleep nannies visit I was sleeping in E's bedroom and for the second half of the night I had E in the bed with ...
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Until 8 months old T was a near perfect sleeper. going to sleep on his own - sleeping 11-12 hours a night from 16 wks and rarely waking. when he did wake he would be easily settled back. Since august he has been prone to night wakings - 1 to 4 times a night. Sometimes he can be easily settled back to sleep but more recently he will not. In fact he had taken to crying hysterically screaming, standing up at the cot and shaking the bars. He resisted going ...
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A is, generally, a very happy baby. She has been in a routine (Gina Ford) from about 8 weeks and she seems to enjoy it. She rarely cries during the day, she feeds well and puts on approximately 7oz a week (she is partially breast fed and partially formula fed). Our issue is bed time. We have a bed time routine, including a bath, dim lights, soft music and a breast feed. But when we put her in her cot at 6.45/7pm she does not want to sleep. We have ...
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Our ultimate objective is to get N to sleep through the night in his own cot. Currently he goes to sleep in his cot at about 6.30pm with me sitting beside him (tried "controlled" crying, but he screams for over an hour, like his foot has been cut off!) He then wakes at about 11pm and I feed him then and put him back in the cot. At about 12 he will wake again and from that point on just will not settle. He can't be hungry but is not ...
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My 11 month old daughter has always slept quite well from an early age. She has always happily gone to bed at 7pm and maybe woken once in the night for her dummy. She would always wake at 7am. I am now having lots of problems. She is not settling at 7pm anymore. Wakes up screaming in her cot about 3 times a night. She is also waking at 5am and wont settle back to sleep. I understand this is due to separation anxiety as I have gone back to ...
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Our little boy, W, is coming up to 11 months old. We did have him going to bed between 7-8pm and sleeping through some nights. But recently it has fallen apart and W is standing up in his cot wailing for up to 2 hours this past week. He has been teething and has some hay fever. However, we have probably been too soft with timings, cuddles and letting him into our bed because we're tired... "We just want to say a big, big thank you to our sleep nanny ...
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After 15 weeks of being first-time parents - my husband and I decided we needed some help in getting our baby daughter's life (and ours) into more of a routine. D had mostly been fed on demand, carried in a sling and rocked or fed to sleep. While this felt right while she was a newborn, it was apparent that as the weeks went by and with no set routine or nap times, she always seemed grumpy and unsettled and had no idea how to get herself off to sleep ...
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I can honestly say that the phone call with Mel from Sleep Nannies was like having a very heavy load lifted off my shoulders. Her words that 'you are not the only parents out there with this problem' may sound like common sense, but when you're suffering from nightly torture it is actually very comforting to know that you're not the only person going through it! In addition, she had very useful advice on both diet and, more particularly in our case, about getting a bit tougher with our lovely ...
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Our baby wakes around 4am every morning and won't settle back to sleep. "I was very happy with the telephone service I received from you and impressed with the very quick response. I found Mel easy to talk to and I felt confident that the advice she was offering would work for me. She was also happy to listen to my point of view too rather than giving me a standard solution to my problems. I particularly appreciated the fact that I was able to have a couple of follow ...
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D has had colic, which has subsided, but a stomach virus and a bad cold followed and so she is not sleeping during the night. She is waking up to 5 times a night and taking a long time to settle. Her milk intake is unpredictable and she has just started taking a little baby rice, which we suspect has also thrown her. Hi there. Result! She slept through till 6.10am She woke at 5 to have a poo!. Chatted and then went back to sleep. I stayed silent and ...
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Our 11 month old son has never slept through the night - overcoming this would be our ideal goal. Currently he not only awakes on multiple occasions but can be awake for up to 2 hours during the night. His current routine is, Bed at 7pm normally with no fuss. He will sleep without stirring until between 10.30-11.30pm when he will awake, at this point we normally feed him (has been breast fed but for the last 2 weeks we have been giving formula where he has taken anything from ...
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