Pediatric Sleep Consultant- mother of three

by Joanna von Yurt
(Santa Barbara, California)

Benefits of the Slumber Sleeper for Special Needs Children

Some sleep experts estimate that up to thirty percent of all children struggle with sleep in one way or another. In the special needs community, that number is significantly higher – as much as eighty percent.

Sleep is an essential component of one’s development, so it’s extremely important that special needs kids get their rest. Here are a few reasons we think our Slumber Sleeper is also helpful to the special needs community.

Sleep Disruption

Some children with special needs (especially any child that falls on the autism spectrum) tend to have sensitive nervous systems. Slight changes in their environments can easily disturb them, even the absence of sensation. The Slumber Sleeper provides a feeling of gentle security and light pressure all night long, which helps override sudden sensations.

Similarly, caregivers are encouraged to create sleep spaces that encourage sleep by limiting sensation: darkening shades, white noise machines, comfortable temperature, etc.

In fact, autism specialists sometimes recommend parents tuck either side of their blankets beneath their mattresses so they feel tightly tucked in, which is, in essence, a similar feeling that the Slumber Sleeper provides.


Caregivers for special needs children often try to build consistent routines. Change can be unsettling and cause anxiety (for all children, but special needs kids more so).

By using the Slumber Sleeper, you’re creating a consistent environment night after night. It’s comforting, soothing, and most importantly: reliable. Your child knows what to expect when it’s time to go to bed and doesn’t fight you about it. Further, if you are having to travel with your child by bringing the Slumber Sleeper along you will continue that consistency for your child even while away from home.

Back Positioning

Sleeping on one’s back is the most recommended position. It’s regarded as the best sleep position for anyone of any

age. It allows the mattress to support the spine and doesn’t force our backs into any contortions.

For children whose disabilities affect their bones, ligaments, joints, or muscles, the Slumber Sleeper keeps them in the healthiest sleep position all night long.

Circadian Rhythm

Since the brain regulates our sleep-wake cycles, autistic children often have trouble going to sleep and waking up at appropriate times. They wake up sooner than they should, fight bedtimes, and wake up more often during the night.

The only solution is to make the bedroom environment as conducive to sleep as possible. The Slumber Sleeper helps remind them that it’s sleep time and their brains respond accordingly.

safe sleep solutionWritten by Joanna von Yurt, Co-Founder and CEO of Swanling Innovations Inc.

Joanna von Yurt is the mother of three intelligent, sensitive, and compassionate girls (who all want to be mommies when they grow up). She is first AND foremost a mom! Professionally, however, she is an accountant, controller and serial entrepreneur.

Joanna has a degree in Psychology from Harvard University with an emphasis in child psychology. She worked as an infant caregiver for 12 years and interned as a Child Life Specialist, family/social therapist, and assisted in clinical studies involving children’s personality and social psychology.

Joanna has a lifelong passion for childcare and child safety. She enjoys sharing her experiences with other parents about sleep routines, attachment parenting, safe sleep guidelines, and children’s natural sleep patterns. Her company, Swanling Innovations, is committed to producing modern, safe and innovative products that meet the expectations of discerning parents. The Slumber Sleeper™ is a 4-in 1 safe sleep solution (mattress protector, flat sheet, fitted sheet and sleep sack all in one) designed to help keep your baby safe, warm and centered.

Joanna always says that a well-rested child and well-rested parents add up to a happy family!

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