Looking for a Sleep Consultant? Key questions you need to ask:
Your eyes burn from sheer exhaustion as you try to keep them open into the afternoon. It’s been six months, and your baby WILL NOT sleep! You have read books, talked to your peers, and tried every bit of advice dr.google has shared with you during your 3 am internet browsing sessions. But your baby still won’t sleep.
You decide to find help from an expert, someone who knows babies and baby sleep. Someone who will help you to feel human once again.
So how do you know which sleep consultant to choose?
Here are questions to ask a potential sleep consultant before hiring them:
Are you certified?
Are you aware that anyone can read a few books and call themselves a sleep consultant? There is currently no licensing body for sleep consultants! This is in the works, but until this happens, it is very important that you do your homework.
There are a number of certifying bodies, which train and certify professionals as sleep consultants. Ask your potential sleep consultant if they are certified and who issued their certification. Some training is much more in depth than others.
Which topics were covered in your training?
Every training program for sleep consultants varies both in length and in topics covered. Some courses are completed over a weekend, while some last a few months with ongoing supervision throughout the entire certification of the consultant. Some courses include sleep basics, while some also cover infant mental health, early childhood development, attachment theory, behavioural modification techniques, postpartum depression, and medical issues affecting sleep.
The Gentle Sleep Coaching program covers all of these topics and much more.
What additional qualifications do you have outside of sleep consulting?
Find out more about what they did before becoming a Sleep Consultant or how they continue to educate themselves.
Once certified as a Gentle Sleep Coach, all coaches continue their education in the Advanced Training program, which offers continuing education from experts about various sleep, psychology, and parenting topics.
Before becoming a sleep consultant, I obtained a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Communication and Culture with a Psychology minor. My professional background has focused on mental health, social work, and children. I completed a certificate in Infant Mental Health ( in May of 2016.
What ages of babies do you work with?
If the sleep consultant you speak with mentions that they work with babies under six months of age, ask about the methods they use for younger babies. Have they been trained about the differences in working with a baby under six months vs. a baby over six months? There are vast differences between these age ranges, and the sleep consultant you choose should vary their methods depending on your child’s age. While sleep shaping can be used for young babies (newborn to 4 months), only very gentle sleep coaching methods should be used before six months of age and never before four months of age.
As a Gentle Sleep Coach, I have completed specialised training to confidently work with babies between four and six months of age in a safe, healthy, and developmentally appropriate manner. The methods I use for this age vary greatly from the methods I use for babies who are older than six months.
Do you provide ongoing support through the sleep coaching process?
Ask what is included in the sleep coaching process with each sleep consultant you consider. Are the sleep plans the same for every baby? What do they need to know from you to create a plan? Is the consultation in your home or over skype/phone? Is follow-up support available after the initial consultation?
As a Gentle Sleep Coach, I tailor your sleep plan to your baby. The parents I work with fill out a comprehensive history assessment, which gives me detailed information about their temperament, habits, and history. Because I understand that every baby is unique, I will create a plan that works for your child’s individual temperament and with your family’s goals. I offer in-home consultations (in the Calgary area) or Skype/phone sessions for those who are outside of the city. I offer 2 follow-up packages with the option to add follow-ups as needed. I want to make sure you are supported, successful, and sleeping!
Would you like to know more about exactly what I can offer you as a Gentle Sleep Coach?
Do you have any further questions about sleep coaching? I’d love to answer them!
Certified Gentle Sleep Coach