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Taking The Stress Out Of Traveling With A Baby

Going away can be really stressful, especially where it involves taking a little one!

It's important to try to focus more on the present and manage the things we can control about sleep; like the environment, tools we use to settle, daytime activities and connection with little ones.

I know it can feel nearly impossible to release worries about sleep going to pot but you have the tools and resources to manage things. Lets explore them here!

First, let's look at some positives

It can be good for you to reflect on some positive factors before you travel can help to alleviate a level of stress.

  1. Family support to help share the load and support you in ways you feel would be beneficial (feel free to communicate with them ways that will be helpful to support you. Families want to help!) You might be able to tag team it more with a partner whilst away.

  2. Quality time and even more love for you and your babies!

  3. Opportunities for you to rest a little with more around to entertain your tot. 

  4. Being with family whilst away may be a chance for you and your partner to spend a little bit of time alone. Perhaps you could go for a coffee or some food for a little while to give you two the opportunity to connect.

"Babies are extremely adaptable to changes; when aboard. I recommend you maintain similar habits and practices and keep reading their cues. Trust yourself; you are really attuned to them and very good at managing and responding to their needs."

Crossing the globe: 

When travelling West to East, bedtime may just be a little later, and it's okay to stick to this normal routine; daylight and starting your day at the same time will eventually shift this!

When Traveling East to West, one option is to incorporate an additional short nap for your baby, helping them adjust to the new time zone and achieve a regular bedtime. If that proves challenging, consider gradually pushing bedtime later by keeping your baby awake for a slightly extended period (10-30 minutes).

My tips for managing sleep adjustments: 

  • Get exposure to lots of natural light as this will help you adjust to the timing.

  • Wake up between 6 to 8 am local time to get into the new timezone.

  • If you are using a routine try to shift sleep times by 5-15 minutes to align with the new zone, if not follow those cues and use the morning wake to stimulate the body clock.

  • Cap naps at 2 hours. Cap each individual nap at 2 hours. This will help save that long sleep for bedtime. Longer naps can delay the adjustment.

  • Try to have around 2 hours of awake time before bed. 

  • Feel free to add in some cat naps to catch up on sleep

  • Maintain your wind-down routine before naps and bedtime, try sleeping with a blanket or sheets before you go so your scent is near them during sleep which can be soothing.

  • Night wakes are normal during changes in routine; don't worry too much about this.

  • Keep light to a minimum and use your soothing techniques to support them. If they seem really awake after 20-30 minutes of trying, you might like to try getting up for 40 minutes or so and treating that like a nap and putting them back down again for bed after a short time awake.

  • Let go of perfection: sleep may well be a little wonky, but that's okay. Give yourselves some grace to adjust. 

  • Coming home: sleep may take a little adjusting, similar to when you headed out, but remember you can find my guides to help manage sleep challenges.

Most importantly, enjoy your trip and make the most of this special time as a family!

Sleep well

Imogen X The Little Sleep Company


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