Sleep classes in Sheffield teach Freddy to nod off

Three year-old Freddy Taylor, of Greystones, who had trouble sleeping until he attended a sleep workshop at Sheffield Children's Hospital, with mum Kathryn Taylor.
Three year-old Freddy Taylor, of Greystones, who had trouble sleeping until he attended a sleep workshop at Sheffield Children's Hospital, with mum Kathryn Taylor.
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It’s time for bed, Fred! A Sheffield toddler who had never had a whole night’s sleep is now getting much more shut-eye after visiting a sleep workshop.

Freddy Taylor, aged three, from Greystones, drove his mum Kathryn and dad Ryan to distraction by waking up in the early hours and loudly talking, singing and playing games.

Three year-old Freddy Taylor, of Greystones, who had trouble sleeping until he attended a sleep workshop at Sheffield Children's Hospital.

Three year-old Freddy Taylor, of Greystones, who had trouble sleeping until he attended a sleep workshop at Sheffield Children's Hospital.

Kathryn – who called her son’s outbursts his ‘night parties’ – said she was in a state of ‘sheer desperation’ before taking Freddy along to a sleep workshop at Sheffield Children’s Hospital.

“I felt that every route we went down, we were hitting a brick wall,” said the 33-year-old mum-of-two.

“Freddy has a very vivid imagination. He can be incredibly loud, so much so that I actually went round next door to apologise when our new neighbours moved in.”

Freddy’s raucous episodes saw him wake between 2am and 3am with a burst of energy, leaving him restless and hyperactive.

When a GP referral and sleep study drew a blank, Freddy’s mum signed up for the workshop run by sleep practitioner Vicki Dawson.

The sleep workshops are run by The Children’s Sleep Charity and funded by Sheffield Children’s Hospital Charity.

Kathryn was advised to create a calm environment in Freddy’s bedroom to improve his sleep pattern and to keep a strict evening and morning routine.

She also gives her son an extra evening meal of foods such as bananas, peanut butter and oats, which help release the brain’s sleep-inducing chemical melatonin.

Vicki, founder of the sleep charity, said: “Freddy’s was the first instance I’ve seen of this unusual behaviour but, because Kathryn has come forward, other parents suffering from similar issues have too.”

Freddy now sleeps straight through 70 per cent of nights.

“He’s not fully cured but I no longer feel like I’ve lost hope,” said Kathryn, who hopes to become a sleep practitioner herself.

Visit The Childrens Sleep Charity or The Childrens Hospital Charity for more details.