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Thread: Mitcham sleep school, Melbourne

  1. #1

    Default Mitcham sleep school, Melbourne

    I'm investigating Mitcham Private Sleep School as DD won't settle easily during the day

    Has anyone been there and experienced their methods? What were your thoughts?

    TIA.

  2. #2

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    I've called around to a sleep schools in times of desperation but so far have not gone any further than speaking to them on the phone. Mitcham was not one of them though. What have you found out so far? What is the waiting list like and their costs?

  3. #3

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    Not sure on cost, but would be covered by private health insurance. Waiting list is 2-3 weeks and they apparently use the comforted crying approach but will modify if you are unhappy with what they are doing.

    We need to sort out day sleeps, feeding to sleep and cat naps.

    What have you found out about he others?

  4. #4

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    There is a private service that comes to your home, costly and not covered by private health but it does sound really convenient. There is one in particular that also use comforted crying apparoach and i can't seemed to find the name of them. If i look back on a thread i started late last year i'll be able to tell you. Just got one more little one up at the moment so i'll do it asap.

    You sound similar to us also, but our nights are pretty average also, cat naps during the day, we were feeding to sleep which i have since worked on and get an average of 4-5 hours during the night.

    Talk soon

  5. #5

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    I went there with DS2 in November 2010. The child is the patient and you pay a boarding fee. So if you have PHI bubs is covered & then you pay the out of pocket boarding fee. It's for 5 days, if you are really struggling they will extend it for 1 or 2 nights. I really liked the approach they had. My DS2 was around the clock boob feeder wouldn't settle night or day in his bassinet or cot. Would only sleep on the breast and I was beside myself by the time he turned 4 months. Not sure how old your bub is but under 12 weeks they stay in the room with you. Over 12 months they have a small room to themselves. when I was there they could only take 4 babies over 12 months & one under 12 months.

    They help you establish a routine basically. They go through on arrival everything that has been happening, what you want to get out of the stay and how you want to approach it. On the first night if you want to the doctor will prescribe two sleeping tablets so you can get a good nights sleep. This all depends on feeding etc. If you don't express or baby won't take a bottle then they will have to wake you. Tablets only last in your system a few hours. As your stay goes on they will go through different methods of settling. First you will go in put bubba down come out saying whatever you would normally say and give them a chance to settle on their own, if they don't settle you go in and try 1 or 2 methods wait till they are calm and not crying and then come out again all the time you are stood outside so you don't have to leave them. They also have an infra red camera so that you can watch them to see what they are doing. There is a lady that comes in and offers massages once or twice a week for $60. I made a good friend out of my stay there. We still speak. Some of the nurses I gelled with others I didn't but thats just life. They like them to sleep for at least 90mins. So if bubs wakes at the 40min mark then they will help you too resettle. If bub is having none of it & it's a day sleep then you or they may suggest going for a walk to the park thats round the corner or down to the shops. By the time we left DS was no longer feeding to sleep & sleeping in his cot for 90 min sleeps

    We worked out that DS2 still had an arm that he couldn't control so we had to wrap him in a one arm angel wrap. That he liked to sleep with his teddy (square piece of fleece with bunny head in the middle) on his face. He literally pick it up from the side & dump it on his face. Thank goodness for infra red camera I was worried but they said that if he could breathe through it he was fine. He hates to be held or touched when sleeping. We have our up's and downs he still isn't the best sleeper but I now know what he likes. Day sleeps are normally easy. Night sleeps not so, he went off kilter in Nov last year as he got his bottom molars and only in the last 2 days have we had wins. Especially tonight but I think thats because DH is out & he doesn't think he's missing anything lol DH helps DS2 sleep of a night while I take care of DS1. Also he's a tummy sleeper which I think may have been part of the problem as DS1 who goes to sleep in one position & wakes up in it slept well as a baby.

    Let me know if you need any more info or specific information. If you are really not coping keep ringing them asking how far down the list you are & you may get bumped up.
    Last edited by Hansie; February 3rd, 2012 at 07:32 PM. Reason: Can't spell!!!

  6. #6

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    Thanks for info. The main thing i'd like to know is what sort of methods they use. DD and I went through controlled comforting on weds and we both hated it (she vomited but they kept going. I should have walked out). They seemed responsive on phone when I described my experiences and indicated they would modify if I didn't like things.
    The info really helps. DH and I will give it more thought over the weekend. Thank you!

  7. #7

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    Night Nannies is the one i was told about that follow the No Cry Sleep Solution philosophies. I was seriously going through my head ways to afford it, for the convenience (i have 2 others and it's so hard to organise being away) and for the promptness. When i enquired they were willing to come out within a few days.

    How old is your daughter? My DD is 14 months old so we have some pretty ground in ways that i need to try to manipulate. If you want to have a read of the thread i started early Jan it's here http://www.bellybelly.com.au/forums/...enough-175516/ Around this time i started trying to change things myself and had a chat on the phone to a couple of nurses from Tweedle and QEC. Trying some tips from them we were making some progress but then then went on holiday for two weeks and as expected pretty much need to start all over again.

    I'm desperate from changes and still am undecided if i can do this on my own or if we need outside help. It's so hard knowing how you and your little one will respond to these techniques and the last thing we want is a traumatic expereince.

    A little off track i know to the original post i know but i'm just trying to offer help any way i know how.

    Good luck and heres to a better nights sleep for all of us

  8. #8

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    I guess it comes down to what you are comfortable with. I was worried to the point of being sick would they make me do things that I didn't agree, would I feel I wasn't in control, but at the same time new something had to change, for me, for my husband, for DS1 & for us as a family. If you feel that you need the help give it ago if it's not for you don't stay. You will work out pretty quickly when you get there if it's not for you. Usually they ask you to come in before lunch.
    Techniques they use (these are based on the ones I was taught that worked for me there maybe more) are watch for sleep cues so once bub looks tired you wrap or place them in the cot (no sleeping bags as the rooms are kept around 20 degrees) & leave them to try & settle. All the time listening to whether they are just protesting or actually emotionally crying. It took me a while to pick these. If DS didn't settle I would go back in & pat the mattress near his head until he was calm. Then leave again. If he still cried I'd go back switch on the music they have in each room & maybe pat again (this worked really well for DS) or rock the cot. They have the big ones on wheels. DS would generally go with music & patting.
    These days if he's refusing to sleep mainly at night we do the camp out style where we go in give him his water, give him a cuddle put him back in his cot tell him it's night time & lay on the floor next to him so we are there to soothe him & be in the room but he settles himself. We have done this for probably the last 6 months (from being 12 months) as he cottons on very quickly to different methods. This method is on the raising children website under sleep. DS now knows what is happening and throws all his soft toys out at us aiming for our heads giggles as he gets a bullseye then lays down goes off to sleep.

    I have had to change my parenting style with DS2 if I was asked if I would have thought I would have done this kind of sleep routine I would have said never. I felt so guilty like I was abandoning him by putting him in his cot awake. The first time I stood outside & cried, but that was something from my childhood I was a terrible sleeper I was left to go to sleep on the sofa because I would wait for my mum to go to sleep & then walk round & go and sit with my Dad. As a baby it was first in best dressed as who would sleep in Mum & Dad's bed with me. Usually my Dad slept in my bedroom. DS1 was held to sleep, transferred and slept the whole night from being 6 weeks in his cot. We also co-slept as he's a very cuddly child likes to be close even now he sneaks in on the odd occasion at 4, but DS2 hated being held to sleep, would not co-sleep. I used to think if only you would co-sleep we would be fine I could get some sleep you could get some sleep.

    Sorry a bit of topic but I thought maybe some background about how I felt may help too. It's the hardest thing in the world sleep dep & I don't wish it on anyone. You need to do what will work for your family. There was lady there at the same time with a 9 month old who got up in the wee hours for 3 hours or so. He did that on the second night of being there & they let him be just watched what he did so that they following day they could get a plan together to try & get him through that wakeful patch.

    I hope you find the technique that works for you. I remember it being a huge shock when I realised I had to teach DS1 to sleep. I hope my rambling helps in some way.

  9. #9

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    My DD is only 3 months old, but I'd like to prevent our bad habits from becoming ingrained. She really only feeds to sleep, doesn't sleep well (at all!) during day unless she's fed to sleep and on me and doesn't sleeping in her cot during the day. Nights are pretty good generally with two feeds b/n 8/8.30-7ish. I'd like to be able to get her to sleep without being so reliant on me so that DH can have a role. If she doesn't sleep during day and has multiple wake-up the day just stretches for me and an over-tired baby.

    People keep saying do what works you. But this approach isn't feasible in the long term, particularly as she'll be in care when I'm back at work.

    I know that whatever method we try will be emotional for me but the ultimate goal will benefit DD. she can sleep anywhere from a bowling alley to a restaurant and the house, but only does it by being fed to sleep and not in her cot during the day.

    I know the issue might be a control one on my part (teacher) and yes, it came as a shock to me that I had to teach DD how to go to sleep. But it breaks my heart when I see my overtired DD crying out for a feed because that is the only way she knows how to go to sleep.

    Thank you for all the info. It'll help make the decision more informed on our part. Can you remember how much the boarding fees were? And how easy was it to implement the new routine when you were home without the support of the staff?

  10. #10

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    The boarding fee was $220 when I stayed just checked my statement for back then Implementing the routine at home had it's ups and downs. My DH was excellent very on board to help in anyway. He started doing the night time taking him down to bed so that once he had his feed then he didn't smell my milk. He would also get up for the first couple of weeks if DS was having multiple wakes so that he would again not smell my milk & go back to sleep fairly easy. I still fed him once or twice depending. Before you leave they will go through support networks & if DH can come in and visit to see what you are doing then this also helps them understand what is happening etc. It is not a quick fix as the change, develop, get teeth etc you will have set backs and have to implement the soothing techniques. Sometimes you also take the easy way for a short while until you can't handle it & then you get back on board. Sometimes it gets off track for a while we've been off for 3 months as he got molars but now when the sleeping bag comes out he has a laugh & giggle puts his arms out & goes to sleep. This will only last a short while and then more teeth, immunisations, sickness will come along & we'll do it all again. They just give you the tools to help you through those moments & every person that comes in to contact with DD who looks after her will need to be on the same page. Although babies do adapt to different styles ie how you help them to sleep, how their grandparents do it, how day-care does it.

    There is no right & wrong answer we all have our limitations. We are all great parents we do what works for us & our family at the time. I used to say to myself "this too shall pass" as it is a short amount of time & logically I new it, but it no way felt like that it felt endless. I also felt I failed this was my second child I SHOULD know what I am doing how to do this etc but they have their own personalities as well.

    Take care look after yourself as well.

  11. #11

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    Ladies isn't it even just that tiny bit comforting to know others are going through similar things, even at those wee hours of the morning.

    Hansie i too thought i should be so much more in control of DS2's sleeping habits as i'd been there before but it didn't end up that way.

    With DS1 i had all the time in the world and he was such a good little sleeper once i knew what it was i had to do for him. Like you say MM you do have to teach them their sleeping habits in some way.

    With DS2 i did have a day stay at a sleep school and with their help was able to go home and gradually implement things and get to where i wanted us to be.

    But where i am now is a huge internal battle for me. DD being #3 has had to settle into a pretty noisey household, a busy one that is in and out of the car daily and somehow find some kind of sleep and feed routine in amoungst all of that. She was a silent reflux bub so the beginning was a shock to us (never expereinced that before) and hell for our poor little girl. So pretty much everything was a challenge. I believe as a result (and maybe some of it is just DD's way) her sleep patterns are pretty messed up. I knew what i had to try and do and could do it when time allowed but it was so hard to be consistant. I just kept thinking everything would fall into place over time. But i got to 12 months and i'd had enough, everything wasn't just falling into place and i had a baby that could not get to sleep without me. I too was feeding to sleep and as frequent as ever 2-3 hours at 10 months old. DD loves her dad but would have nothing to do with him at sleep time, only i could settle her. I had to make some big changes to feel like i was doing the right thing for me and my DD. I was no where near happy with her quality and lenght of sleep.

    So with a bit of my story there i would say MM you are on the right track in many ways. For you, for your DD, for preparing to go back to work and for hopefully enabling some of the load to be shared a bit more with your DH. It's just finding how and when is the right time for you.

    On the Queen Elizabeth Centre website there are a few videos with settling techniques. They are in 3 stages, young, infant and toddler. It may or may not be of any help to you with the ideas in mind on how you want to approach this but you may get a couple of tips from them. The other thing i ended up doing was purchasing the book the No Cry Sleep Solution by Elizabeht Pantley, there are lots of good tips in there on various things you can come across looking after little ones and i used a few of them to move away from our feeding to sleep routine.

    I think it's possible that Hansie also mentioned it but with DS1 when his day sleeps only started being 40 min long the moment he woke i would be ready to put him in the pram and walk him back to sleep so as i was more satisfied with the amount of sleep he was getting. Eventually his day sleeps became much better. I also did a lot of being there for the transition between sleep cycles and patting him back to sleep. It's time consuming and as i said i could do it with him but with others in the house it's just not possible. Looking back again i remember that i did become run by my DS's clock, my days were planned around him being in his bed when he needed to be, especially in the establishing stages.

    Also similarly to Hansie my boys had blankies that they loved (and still do). DD sadly has not taken to one though. All three were offered a dummy but never took to them at all.

    Good luck with whatever you choose to do. It's tough and no changes happen over night, whatever you choose to do will take time, you'll need consistancy from you and your DH but none of it needs to be traumatic in any way. Lots of hugs and kisses to get where you want to be is a must

    If you have any more questions i'm here if you need me

  12. #12

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    Well, we're off to Mitcham on Fri for their residential program. Hopefully we see some progress!

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    Best of luck, let us know how you go

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    Glad you posted I have been thinking of you the last few days. Good Luck, will be thinking of you. I hope you find the support you need, you come out with a bag of tricks that help DD settle & you feeling rested & more in control.

    PS you might like to take your pillow we girls didn't think they were very comfortable & asked our lovely DH's to bring in our pillows

  15. #15

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    Munchkins mum, I know you're already booked in to Mitcham but for anyone else, I've just been to Northpark private hospital where they have a mother baby unit residential program. The nurses were brilliant there and didn't do anything you weren't comfortable with. It also depends on the baby's age what sort of settling techniques they use. Goodluck! Sleep school is a godsend,

  16. #16

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    Just an update from my experiences at Mitcham. They are great!

    We no longer feed to sleep. DD is feeding every 4 hrs rather than every 1-2. She is self-settling, with varying degrees of success for 3 naps a day and self-settles after every feed overnight.*

    The nurses there are fantastic. They look at how the babies sleep, try different things, wraps, music etc. All things can be readily duplicated at home.*

    Yes, there is some grizzling, sometimes crying (minimal) but all wirked within your comfort zone. *If anyone is considering sleep school, consider Mitcham Private.*

  17. #17

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    So happy to hear you guys have had some success. Enjoy your little one

  18. #18

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    That is fantastic Munchkin's Mum, I am so pleased it worked for you also. You sound so much happier.


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