Get your baby to sleep through without controlled crying: An interview with the Twilight Nanny
Johanne Ryder is an independent Sleep Consultant / Night Nanny and childcare specialist, based in Fareham (Hampshire). She is a mother of two small children with 22 years experience in child care and sleep consultancy. Jo launched her Twilight Nanny service in 2010 and has since helped countless families with their night routines!
We first met Jo when she came to help with our youngest’s lack of sleep. She is wonderfully warm and caring, and really knows her stuff when it comes to baby’s sleep patterns! Her methods are reassuring and tailored to each individual child. We caught up with Jo to have a chat about her Twilight Nanny services in Hampshire:
Hi Jo, thank you for taking time out of your busy day to have a chat with us. Firstly, we wanted to say thank you for helping Noah with his sleep… or lack of! What first made you realise you could offer this great service to sleep-deprived parents and children?
Thank you I'm so pleased that my support was able to help you. After having my second child I was running a busy 105 place day nursery, and as any parent I wanted to try and have a good work / family life balance. I came across an exclusive Night Nanny agency, and after a long meeting with the owner I registered to be a Night Nanny, and soon after completing my Sleep Support training I then took on my very first sleep support family, I loved this aspect of my work and the support I could offer. Soon after is when I started my own business Twilight Nanny offering advice , reassurance and support to sleep deprived families as well as supporting families as a Night Nanny with their Newborns in private homes.
What age do you offer your sleep consultancy from and do find there is a “best age” to start?
I offer New Parent Consultations for families that are expecting a pending arrival as well as supporting when they are just a few weeks old , we discuss bonding, routines, feeding, settling techniques, reassurance and anything else they wish to go over in preparation for the new arrival. It's never too soon to offer positive, reassuring and comforting sleep associations for your baby and often many families that have my support early on benefit later too. It is never advisable to expect a baby that is under 6 months old and not fully weaned onto three means a day to go all night without a feed, but I can still support and help families to teach their little ones to know how to settle to sleep and so therefore then only wake when genuinely hungry rather than because they don't know now to sleep !
I offer support from pregnancy though to 3/4 years of age, it tends to be more about when the family needs the help.
How many families have you helped since becoming the “Twilight Nanny"?
Gosh It must be getting to the late hundreds at least, country and worldwide. Over 22 years in childcare and supporting many families, I wouldn't like to put an exact number on it!
Tell us more about the remote support package you offer:
This follows from a sleep support consultation - DAILY REMOTE SUPPORT this is when you put your plan into place with my daily email / phone and text support. I see you through the recommended 5 nights, we gradually make the changes depending on your baby and how they respond to the techniques we agree on day by day.
You run a twilight Nanny Baby/Child Sleep workshop with Julie Whitehead at the You And Your Baby hub in Eastney for small groups or 1-2-1 sessions. Can you tell us more about this and what is included?
THE SLEEP CLINIC AT THE YOU AND YOUR BABY HUB. Suitable for babies & toddlers.
Together we will talk about your babies sleep, routines, settling techniques, sleep associations and comfort. There will be one to one time to talk about individual families where I will recommend techniques and give support to help. All will receive a personal support pack. This is £45 per person including tea and biscuits....Minimum 3/4 in a group Maximum of 6/7.
One to one Sleep support and New Parent Consultations. What happens in a meeting? Theses are suitable for New Mummies and families with little ones up to 3/4 years old.
I like to allocate up to 2 hours if possible, I come to your home if within 1 hour of PO16 or we can Facetime / Skype, we discuss in detail what happens over 24/48 hour routine (if you have one!) We talk thorough /feeding /activities /environment /day napping / meal times if weaned or weaning / Diet / bedtime routines / what happens at night / your responses and how you settle your baby. For New Mummy consultations I advise and support in all areas you may wish to discuss.
From this we make a personal family plan to help support you and your baby. NO CC or CIO only reassurance and comfort. I teach you what to look out for and how to help your little ones feel safe and secure in there beds with you comforting them.
Which is the most common "sleep problem" you come up against when meeting new families?
The most common struggles that families can experience at one time or another around sleep is where there baby or babies are unable to settle to sleep without Mummy of Daddy helping them do it, so therefore needing more and more help in the night and often this spirals into less sleep for babies and parents. A good point to keep in mind is that if a baby can go to bed from awake knowing where they are then they are more likely to sleep better and be able to go through sleep cycles without additional help:
This is a good way to describe a baby when they go to bed already asleep, often they will wake within 40mims to an hour screaming... Why? Because the last thing they remember is being in mummy or daddy's arms and suddenly they wake wondering where they are and where you have gone!
As well as offering sleep consultancy, you are also a night nanny! What does this service generally involve?
My Night Nanny support involves working in private homes at night, usually between 9pm-7am. I offer the same support as in my New Parent Consultations but also hands on support with night feeding, changing baby, routines and settling techniques. This helps many parents get the rest they need at night as well as the support in becoming a new parent or a new parent for the second or third time too.
Are there common myths when it comes to a baby’s sleep patterns?
Often a babies sleep is a reflection of many factors, this can be linked to different sleep associations and also different sets of circumstances that lead to sleep patterns and issues. For example; reflux, illness, colic etc etc it's important for all parents to realise that often sleep issues that can occur are out of our control, we all do our best and that's all you can do ...
Is there anything else you’d like to add?
I'd like to add that Twilight Nanny works at supporting families and babies with no CC or CIO methods, only reassurance and comfort. Thank you so much for the opportunity to answer your questions it's been fantastic chatting with you.