Sleep Problems

About sleep problems

A lack of a sleep causes difficulties not only for the child who is not sleeping but for the entire family. A lack of sleep causes difficulties in concentration, lowered coping skills, and increased stress, just to name a few of the consequences. Establishing a proper sleeping routine and getting a sounds night’s sleep is beneficial for everyone in the child’s environment. Research shows that good sleeping routines increases appropriate wake-time behaviour, increases communication skills and also increases skill acquisition (the learning of new skills).

Sleep problems can affect children from babyhood right through into their teens and symptoms include:

  • constant waking up during the night 
  • nightmares and night terrors
  • sleepwalking
  • bed-wetting
  • refusal to go to bed 

Children with sleep issues invariably suffer with exhaustion and, if untreated, can result in additional problems such as anger and aggression and challenging behaviour.

What causes sleep problems?

Sometimes a sleep disorder is caused by another underlying problem such as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, anxiety, Oppositional Defiance Disorder or even a neurological condition.

In many cases however it is simply a behavioural problem. Sleep is a behaviour – and the good news is that behaviour can be changed.
It is important to determine, even if your child is affected by an additional disorder, how much of this disorder ‘causes’ the sleep problems and how much can be resolved. We have found a solution for every child and family that comes to us with a sleep problem.

Helping your child with sleep issues

NETwork Interventions specialises in Applied Behaviour Analysis – a highly effective and scientifically proven approach to helping children with sleep issues and many other disorders.

Our starting point is to determine the root cause of the poor sleep patterns and to track exactly what is going on. This involves taking a look at your current sleep routine and determining changes that can be made to ensure a proper night’s sleep. Consistency is key in establishing an effective sleep routine and ensuring you have support is essential.

Most families are under the illusion that if they remove a nap time during the day that night time sleep will be better – this is often not the case. In most cases, sleep = more sleep! We will determine the amount of sleep your child needs and help you to schedule your routine accordingly.

You as parents

Your role as parents is crucial for the success of the programme. Your determination to implement our recommendations on a daily basis will significantly impact how successful the programme is. It will be more than worth the investment of time, effort and money - and, as many families tell us, the positive impact this will have on your child and your family will make it all worthwhile. When you start a sleeping programme, NETwork Interventions will work with you to ensure you have the support you need to make it work. This could mean ensuring a partner or friend is available to take over if you are having a difficult time or a consultant that you can call in the middle of the night if you are not sure what to do or feel you are not able to implement successfully. A highly trained member of the NETwork team will work hard to ensure the steps taken are achievable and with your consistent implementation, we should see changes quickly. We are even available to put the sleep routines and recommendations into place with you, in your home, at night if this is required. Click here for case stories from families we have worked with.

Did you know?

The average time it takes for a sleep intervention to work is just 3 days. If the sleep problem has persisted over a long period of time, an intervention of up to 3 weeks may be needed to solve the sleep problems.

The next steps...

Contact us today to find out how NETwork is helping families and schools like yours.  For more information and resources please get in touch with us.

"Our son was diagnosed with Asperger’s aged 7; NETwork Interventions spent a day observing him at school and at home and quickly identified the skills he was lacking – skill deficits that we - and others working with our son - had not picked up on. NETwork Interventions trained us to help our son learn those missing skills. The results have been remarkable – he no longer cries about going to school, his concentration and behaviour are much better and he is far less likely to alienate others by the things he says. Thank you."
Parent in Surrey

"It is always a pleasure talking to Lu and Shelley - we think they are superstars!"
C & C, Ottawa

"We started an informal intervention for our 18 month old last week, Zack. Lu came for an observation around a month ago. This was followed by Shelley spending two days with our family last week. Our 18 month old had three signs and plenty of motivation and social intent, but no requests for items or people. He had a few unintelligible requests for activities and just sounds or unintelligible words for when he labels things. We have done our research. As professionals in the field of child development and with ASD and ADHD in our extended family, we know that it is better to act earlier rather than later. We didn’t want a heavy or burdensome programme for reasons of time, of finance and also of emotion. Admitting there may be a problem is actually very difficult. Last week was extremely draining emotionally in this capacity. We know that prevention is necessary as there is no firm cure and we can’t take the risk of not intervening and waiting another six months as our GP and Paediatrician told us. Shelley came to the farm with us, came swimming with us, to the park and to granny and grandpa’s home with us. She did day to day life with us such as bath time and bed time. The first day Shelley watched what life was like for me, balancing home, children, marriage and work. Life is hectic. The second day we swapped roles and she put recommendations in acting as I would and then supported me to implement it. She is coming back on Thursday to see how we are getting on and she is returning with a new schedule for me after going away to analyse it these last few days. We are absolutely thrilled with Zack’s progress already. His Gymboree teachers commented on his language ‘explosion’. His aunty, who does not know that we are running this intervention, commented on how much Zack is talking this week. I am confident that within a few months, Zack will not have a spiky developmental profile and it looks as though he will have even more skills than his peers at this rate. This is fun and I am so grateful to Shelley, Lu and Ruth who, together, have created the ‘perfect programme’ for us."
Luke, Louise, Lyndsay and Zack, Surrey, England

"This week I have been feeling very defeated with my son changing campuses at school. At the end of my call with Shelley I was filled with hope again. That is why I love our calls. Not simply because of the work with my son, but because Shelley always helps me to see a way forward. "
Gem, Brisbane

"I have had previous counselling for over two years but left because of no progress. I am finding the experience with Liz different in a very positive way. After just four sessions I am seeing great progress."
M, London

"The observation and assessment period that NETwork complete at the beginning is difficult to understand at the outset, but it turns out that it is an intricate process that [does] indeed find the issues to work on and subsequently address and resolve."
Mum, Quebec

"Dillan had significant behavioural issues and received a very late diagnosis of NVLD when he was 9 years old. This diagnosis did little to help our family. Louise quickly and efficiently set up a programme for our teenage son which rapidly identified his strengths and weaknesses. Shelley taught us and his teachers how to best address these, including language deficits which had previously remained unrecognised, Louise’s team worked within our budget, working hours and extensive travel commitments, working closely with school and our local authority to ensure everybody was on board and funding accessed. At times it felt as though Louise was coordinating a small army. Additional support of parent-counselling through Louise’s team proved invaluable, even though we were originally a little sceptical. It most likely made the difference between success and failure in our ability as parents to sustain a positive family unit whilst implementing the programme. We worked with NETwork Interventions for just under one year."
Dr Edwards, North London

"We would like to say a massive thank you for your hard work during the 2 day assessment. We are so grateful and highly impressed with your level of knowledge, confidence, professionalism as well as the kindness and respect shown to our family. Now, we really believe there is light at the end of the tunnel."
Monica, UK

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