A Little Shut-Eye
Finding an infant sleep expert in Los Angeles
Most new parents agree that sleep deprivation sucks. Really, really sucks. We’ve rounded up the most trusted sleep experts in the city, for those weeks when all manner of swaddling, shushing, swinging, and scheduling seems to fail.
The Cradle Company
Background: Founder Brandi Jordan, MSW, has a BA in child development and a Master of Social Work degree from USC. She has worked with hundreds of newborns and multiples since 1998.
Philosophy: Jordan urges clients to do whatever works for their family—whether that be CIO, co-sleeping, or something in between. She works with families to determine the tools needed to improve their sleep problems in a developmentally appropriate way.
Services: Jordan provides overnight sleep consultations as well as consults via phone, Skype, her office, or your home. All services include ongoing phone support as you work on implementing your comprehensive sleep plan.
Background: Seedlings Group comprises a team of experts with doctorates in child development and developmental psychology. They are also parents of small children themselves, resulting in a comprehensive understanding of what you’re going through.
Philosophy: Seedlings Group offers an empathetic approach based on age-appropriate strategies; they realize that no one approach works for every family or child, and are willing to develop no-cry solutions. They consider factors such as behavior and emotional development when analyzing sleep issues, and will tailor their guidance for babies who sleep independently as well as for babies who co-sleep.
Services: Sleep consult sessions are available via phone, Skype, or home visits.
Background: Sleepy Planet co-founders Jennifer Waldburger, LCSW, and Jill Spivack, LCSW, draw from more than 15 years’ experience as child and family therapists. They are the co-creators of The Sleepeasy Solution.
Philosophy: Waldburger and Spivack think the emotional side of sleep learning is a big stumbling block for parents: parents know their children need to sleep, but don’t want them to cry. The Sleepy Planet founders believe it is absolutely possible to help children learn how to sleep in only a few nights, and in a very loving way; their “least cry” approach is designed to minimize tears as much as possible, and help kids learn quickly.
Services: Full two-hour consults, or mini-consults for parents who have read their book or DVD. Consults are offered in person, by phone or by Skype. They also offer three-hour “Sleep School” sessions at The Pump Station; $175/person or $225 per couple.
Background: Heather Turgeon is a psychotherapist who specializes in working with couples and new parents. She also authors the column The Science of Kids for Babble.com.
Philosophy: Turgeon works with families to create custom sleep plans that are consistent and structured, yet comforting and reassuring.
Services: Sleep consultations focused on night wakings, difficulty falling asleep, resisting bedtime, nightmares, irregular naps, and more.
Julie Wright, MFT
Background: Julie Wright, MFT, is a licensed psychotherapist with an extensive background in infant mental health and early child development. She trained at Cedars Sinai Early Childhood Center and cofounded a program for parents and babies from 0-3 at LA Child Guidance Clinic. She also works in private practice with infants, children, parents and adults and has real-life experience as a mom.
Philosophy: Wright specializes in attachment theory and mindful parenting. She always starts with the parents’ goals, and thinks it is key for parents to learn how to nurture a child’s innate capacity to self-soothe without “over-helping” and getting in the child’s way.
Services: Consults via phone or Skype, as well as 90-minute in-home sessions with follow-up.