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Gentle Sleep Support and Services

Gentle Sleep Coaching and Support for infants and children (0-6 years old), including young clients with special needs, trauma, attachment and loss issues.

Gentle Sleep Certified

Family First Play Therapy Centre is now very excited to now offer a sleep support program.  Lorie Walton, M.Ed, RP,  became certified as a Gentle Sleep Coach in March 2019.  Her reasons for taking on this next stage of learning was to help the many families and children who attend Family First get a better nights sleep.  Children who have experienced trauma, loss, attachment, emotional regulation and developmental issues often also struggle with sleep issues.  Pairing Lorie’s expertise as an ECE and Developmental Psychology major (BA, B.Ed, M.Ed), Child Play Therapist Supervisor, Registered Psychotherapist, and Theraplay Therapist Trainer/Supervisor with the in sync philosophy of the steps of the Sleep Lady Shuffle® just made great sense.

The Gentle Sleep Coaching® method provides gentle proven solutions to help your child sleep well and wake up happy.  The Sleep Lady® Shuffle helps parents learn to use proven step-by-step changes in bedtime, nap time and middle of the night routines that haven’t been working for them thus far.  It offers a gentle alternative rather then letting their child ‘cry-it-out’.  Our aim is to help your infant or child, (children who have special needs are also welcome to this support program) develop sleep independence and teach them age appropriate and soothing self-regulation skills so that they can establish healthy and lifelong sleep habits.

This program is used around the world successfully and is based on the belief that each family and child are unique where values, lifestyle and child rearing philosophies are respected in order to ensure parents are as comfortable and in agreement with the step by step support.  This service is not an ‘overnight cure’ but rather a building of new skills which supports change to last long term.

This service is designed to be financially affordable and offers a variety of support packages for individuals as well as families.

Lorie and her Sleep Coaching team invite you to call for your infant’s or child’s sleep challenges and to discuss the sleep support packages which best suit your needs.

Fees for Individual Sleep Coaching without Psychotherapy Services Support

Individual consultation connections are as follows:

  • Intake/history meeting = $150 / hour
  • Written program + ½ hour explanation of program = $150
  • 4 – 15 minute follow-up phone calls/ skype / zoom sessions = $150
  • 6 – emails = $150
  • In home 1 hour visit (30 kms or less from Family First office) = $150

Or if you prefer a full package of support the following are available:

Package One: $425 includes Intake/history meeting, written program + ½ hour follow-up explanation of program, 4 – 15 minute follow-up phone calls/skype/zoom.

Package Two: $500 includes Intake/history meeting, written program + ½ hour follow-up explanation of program, 4 – 15 minute follow-up phone calls/skype/zoom, 4 emails

6 months to school age

The Gentle Sleep Coach Program is the first and most extensive professional sleep coach training and certification program available. The program involves over 80 hours of training with a faculty panel that includes 2 medical doctors, a psychologist, an attorney, lactation counselor, postpartum doulas and a family therapist. Each coach must pass an exam and participate in case supervision with Kim West, LCSW-C (a.k.a. “the Sleep Lady”) who has been helping tired parents for over 20 years. Clinical supervision and ongoing advanced training are required to maintain certification as a Gentle Sleep Coach. Some of my training topics included:

  • Basic counseling and child development
  • Sleep science and behavioral modification techniques to help parents of children age 0 to 6 years old.
  • Secure attachment theory
  • Support for the breastfeeding mother

The training also consisted of lectures from top specialists, including:

  • Postpartum Depression from Dr. Shoshana Bennett, author and leading specialist on Postpartum Depression
  • Medical Conditions and Sleep Apnea in Children led by Dr. Lewis Kass, Director of Children’s Sleep Center
  • GERD and Sleep led by Dr. Anthony Loizides, pediatric gastroenterologist
  •  4-5 Month Old Training Summary

The GSC Program also includes an exclusive advanced training series specifically focused on how to gently work with babies 4 and 5 months of age. This program, which I have also completed, consists of over 40 hours of instruction and mentorship.
Some of the curriculum training topics include:

  • In-depth knowledge of the delicate nature of infants under 6 months of age and how to consider all elements of their well-being.
  • Current evidence-based guidelines and instruction on how to evaluate the 4-6-month-old child and family and determine if the child is ready for sleep coaching.
  • Gentle sleep solutions and strategies that are effective and developmentally appropriate for the younger baby.
  • This specialty training is designed to give coaches the knowledge, education and all the tools and resources they need to successfully work with families of babies 4-6 months of age in a safe, healthy and developmentally appropriate manner.

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