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Would a Pediatric Nurse Make a Good Sleep Consultant?

Updated: Oct 28, 2023

Because we aren’t nurses ourselves (our backgrounds are in Physical Therapy and Child Development & Family Science), we decided to bring in Jessie Martin, a pediatric critical care nurse, certified sleep consultant, and mom of four (6 and under), to share more about her life as a mom, wife, nurse, and sleep consultant. Oh, and did we mention she also homeschools her children?! She can shed a little light on what it’s like to do ALL THE THINGS, how she decided to become a certified sleep consultant, and how her background in nursing has helped her build a business that fits the lifestyle she’s yearned for - one that allows her to pour into her family and children while also helping families sleep!

We hope you enjoy the interview…

Interview with Jessie Martin, Pediatric Critical Care Nurse and Certified Sleep Consultant

As a pediatric critical care nurse, an add-on sleep consultant certification seems like a no-brainer. Can you share more about your decision to add this certification to your credentials?

“When my second baby was born I decided to try and find a nursing job I could do from home. I couldn’t find anything that seemed like a good fit for me. I have always loved baby sleep (my mom walked me through Babywise when my first was born and I’ve been obsessed with baby sleep ever since). I’m an acquaintance with a very popular sleep consultant and I knew she had a background as a nurse. It got my wheels turning and I started looking into sleep consulting certifications. I knew that my experience as a nurse would help me so much as a pediatric sleep consultant. I also suspected learning more about sleep science would help me as a nurse (and I was right!).”

Jessie mentions how helpful it was as a nurse to know about sleep science from her certification program - she’s right! When you know the foundational pieces of sleep, you can build developmentally appropriate strategies from there to help families achieve their sleep goals.

How do your skills as a nurse help you with your sleep consulting clients? Can you give a few examples?

And, vice versa, Jessie’s nursing skills have helped her to become an amazing sleep consultant:

“I think my communication skills with parents is much better because of my background as a pediatric nurse. I’m able to communicate with empathy, but I’m also able to say the things that need to be said in a kind and gracious way. Educating parents is a huge part of being a nurse. It’s also a huge part of being a sleep consultant. I think one of my strengths is being able to educate parents about their child’s sleep in a way that helps give them the confidence they need to go through with their sleep plan. The assessment skills I learned as a nurse are also very helpful as a sleep consultant. I also feel more confident working with medically fragile children, which I think is helpful because I imagine many sleep consultants might need to pass on working with a child who has a medical diagnosis.”

We love that she mentions how she feels confident working with children who may be medically fragile. Did you know that in the sleep consultant certification program from The Collective for Family Rest and Wellness, we brought in over 25 experts to teach about these topics and more?? We want our students and graduates to feel confident in helping ALL children and ALL families sleep well, even those with special needs or those who have a medical diagnosis.

In opposition, do you feel your sleep consulting certification helps you in your work as a pediatric critical care nurse?

“I haven’t worked in the hospital for a few years, but I think the additional experience of working and communicating with parents will make me a more confident nurse and an even better communicator. I can look back and see where an understanding of sleep science would have helped me immensely in the pediatric ICU and probably even more so when I worked in the emergency room. I wish more doctors and providers were up on their sleep science - I think the amount of medications prescribed would significantly be reduced if sleep was taken into consideration as part of a treatment plan. I will definitely make it a mission to work with charge nurses and educators to bring sleep science to the attention of whatever unit I go back to someday.”

We love what she says about sleep being part of a treatment plan! Talk about some great insight.

Sleep is a pillar of human health and well-being. It’s when our bodies restore themselves and recover, and we often think that many people forget that! Rest and recovery are just as important - if not more so - than nourishing our bodies. What would the world be like if more people focused on quality sleep as much as they do on diet? What would happen to the overall well-being of society if we all slept 8-10 hours at night?

How did you feel about the training from The Collective for Family Rest and Wellness to become a certified sleep consultant?

Here’s something you didn’t know…Jessie is dual-certified. This means she has two sleep certifications from two different sleep programs. Here’s what she has to say about it:

“I cannot say enough great things about this (The Collective for Family Rest and Wellness) certification. I am actually double-certified. I got my first certification through another program and it was a terrible experience. I walked away feeling so discouraged and did not have a good understanding of sleep or the methods needed to actually walk a family through a sleep plan. Because I have a terrible experience to compare it to, I can confidently say that The Collective for Family Rest and Wellness is an excellent, evidence-based certification program. They made sleep science make sense. The courses are so well organized and I felt like all of the pieces fell into place once I worked through the course.

The ongoing support has made a huge difference for me as well. One thing that can be really tough as a new consultant is knowing which methods or strategies to use with what ages, and the Collective does an excellent job of equipping their consultants to know what to do for different scenarios and situations.” Here’s a little more information about that ongoing support she mentions:

  • All students and graduates are added to our online Facebook community where we chat all things sleep and help each other navigate through different client situations

  • Students and graduates have lifetime access to their courses so they can come back for a refresh anytime they need to

  • We provide quarterly continuing education for all students and graduates to make sure everyone is staying up to date with what’s currently going on in the sleep world and industry

  • The Sleep Consultant Academy course to become a certified sleep consultant is updated frequently as more research about sleep and pediatric sleep is studied and published

What would you tell other nurses who are considering adding this certification to their repertoire?

“I think it’s been a wonderful certification to add to my nursing experience and would recommend it to any fellow nurses. It’s a great alternative to working 12-hour shifts, or it can be something you do on the side as supplemental work. The knowledge you’ll gain will help you at the bedside and as a member of a medical team (I can almost guarantee you’ll be the expert in sleep on your unit and maybe in your entire practice or hospital, etc.).”

Depending on where you work, you can use your knowledge to educate families about sleep, and potentially extend an offer to work together as one of your sleep clients if they need it.

Tell us more about your business and the packages you are able to offer with your background and education. Where can people find you and connect with you?

We highly recommend, at the very least, following Jessie on her Instagram accounts (details below). You can see how she runs her business, lives her life, and raises her babies!

“My business is The Goodnight House Pediatric Sleep Consulting. I work part-time and am able to fit sleep consulting into my busy life as a homeschooling mama of four (6 and under). Right now I offer an online newborn sleep class, a 3-4 month sleep guide, and a 1:1 personalized sleep plan package. The package that I offer specifically focuses on using a holistic approach, which has definitely been influenced by my work as a nurse. We look at every area of their child’s life (their days, nights, personality, family dynamics, etc.) and I create a plan that fits their needs. You can find me over on Instagram at @thegoodnighthouse or my personal account @hellojessiemartin.”

5 Reasons a Pediatric Nurse Would Make a Good Sleep Consultant

If we’ve still got your attention after reading our interview with Jessie, keep reading!

A pediatric nurse would make an amazing sleep consultant, just like Jessie! Here are a few reasons why:

  • In-depth understanding of child development: Pediatric nurses spend countless hours studying and working with children of all ages. They know how a child's sleep patterns evolve as they grow, and can tailor their advice to suit a child's specific developmental needs. Plus, they've seen it all - from the toddler who tries to negotiate their way out of bedtime to the baby who just won't let go of the pacifier. Their experience means they can provide guidance that's both tailored and practical.

  • Expertise in health and wellness: A pediatric nurse is well-versed in the importance of good sleep for a child's overall health and well-being. They understand the impact that insufficient sleep can have on a child's physical and cognitive development, and can offer evidence-based strategies to promote healthy sleep habits. Whether it's addressing sleep disruptions caused by allergies or establishing a solid bedtime routine, a pediatric nurse can provide the guidance needed to optimize a child’s sleep.

  • Compassionate and caring approach: Pediatric nurses are professionals who have dedicated their careers to helping children and their families. They understand the frustrations and challenges that come with sleep issues, and approach their work with empathy and understanding. They can provide reassurance during those tough moments, helping parents feel supported and confident in their journey towards better sleep.

  • Excellent communication skills: Pediatric nurses are masters at effective communication, which is a crucial aspect of sleep consulting. They can explain complex sleep concepts in simple terms, ensuring that parents understand the reasons behind their recommendations. Plus, they're great listeners too! They'll take the time to understand unique family dynamics and tailor their guidance to fit a family’s specific needs and goals.

  • Potential for a rewarding career change: If you're a pediatric nurse considering a career change, becoming a certified sleep consultant could be a natural and fulfilling transition. By combining your medical knowledge with a passion for helping families transform their sleep habits, you can make a positive impact on countless lives. Imagine the satisfaction of seeing the smiles on parents' faces when their little ones finally sleep through the night!

How to Become a Sleep Consultant

To become a certified sleep consultant with The Collective for Family Rest and Wellness, you would need to complete our sleep consultant certification course. This course is designed to provide a solid foundation of baby sleep science and equip individuals with the knowledge and skills necessary to support families. Interested in learning why this program may be the best for you?? Read more here.

The course consists of six educational units that can be studied at one's own pace. Upon successful completion of the course, participants receive a certification badge that can be displayed on their website and social media platforms.

We hope to see you in our private student and graduate Facebook group soon! Have questions about our program or want to chat with the founders? Set up a time to chat here.


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