Free advice for weary parents

Families around Australia can get their dreams answered as part of a global Facebook forum to mark Baby Sleep Day.

From 10am (Adelaide time) on Thursday 1 March, Flinders University child sleep psychologist Professor Michael Gradisar – and from 12 noon (Melbourne time) Dr Harriet Hiscock from the Royal Children’s Hospital – will kickstart the international Pediatric Sleep Council Facebook Q&A session, focusing on any questions about typical sleep development or sleep problems for children aged 0 to 3 years old.

Paediatric and childhood sleep experts from the UK, Israel, Italy, US and Brazil will join throughout the day.

The real-time forum will take any questions – from bedtime routines for babies to advice on sleeping with music and background noise.

“Little ones sometimes like to have some sort of distracting sound or music on while they fall asleep. Know, though, that this can become a habit,” Professor Gradisar says.

Professor Gradisar, director of the Child and Adolescent Sleep Clinic at Flinders in Adelaide, has specialised in the treatment of pediatric sleep problems since 2006.  He has researched controlled crying and bedtime fading.

Last year the sleep experts ansdwered more than 300 questions from families around the world, led by questions about night wakings (27%), sleep training (21%), naps (17%) and bedtime issues (13%). More than 70,000 people have visited the website for further information.

Baby Sleep Day is marked on 1 March ahead of National Sleep Awareness Week and World Sleep Day on 16 March.

Go to the US Pediatric Sleep Council’s Facebook page or visit their website for more information including videos with paediatric sleep experts, tips, research and tools to help children and their families get the sleep they need.

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