Rohm Portable White Noise Sound Machine Review

Size Matters.

The Hughes Brothers found the compact utility of this product most appealing. At just four-inches-square, the Rohm Machine packs and travels oh so easily. No small consideration given the extra, oh, stuff often involved in a trip including a child with autism.

From an overnight visit to a safari, this machine will do its job.

Rohm Portable White Noise Sound Machine Review by
Rohm Portable White Noise Sound Machine Review by

Whatever the ambient noise might be — from the wind outside an unfamiliar room to those infernal elephants trumpeting two miles down the road — this white-noise will mask the potentially troubling sound.

Sleep improves during use at night. Focus and concentration improve during the day, with the machine doing its work nearby.

Three sound options to select.

Your loved one can find just the sounds that will soothe her best. At the moment.

She’ll choose bright white noise or deep white noise, or — Mike Hughes’ favorite — the gentle ebb and flow of oceanside surf.

Rohm Portable White Noise Sound Machine Features

Multiple nice features for your money.

– Rightly priced at thirty dollars or so.

– Simple, easy-to-operate button controls: sound selection, sound volume and, of course on/off power.

– A lanyard included to make handling even better, to make hanging from bedside a snap

– Fully adjustable, powerful sound quality

-Rechargeable through a convenient USB cable, included with your purchase

– Backed by a one-year limited factory warranty

Rohm Portable White Noise Sound machine’s Specs

– Weight – 0.24 lbs
– Size – 3.5″ W x 3.75″ H x1.75″ D

Kindly stand by for more information about, more reviews of tools for creating the ideal environment of sound for your child.

The Hughes Brothers have just begun to investigate.

Autism and its effects on sleep: Part 2

The Bible, continued.

Let’s talk about levels of severity, about the behaviors you dear people might expect from one you love so much.

The DSM (described in the article just previous) has defined three distinct “levels of severity”, an indication of just how much support your loved one, diagnosed in general with ASD, might require.

Three levels apply. As here.

· Level 3: Those kiddos requiring very substantial support of all physical and emotional sorts – the sad, distant, clinical description of these Level 3 children: “severe deficits in verbal and nonverbal communication skills cause severe impairments in functioning, very limited initiation of social interactions and minimal response to social overtures from others.

· Level 2: Youngsters requiring substantial support – these glorious children with marked deficits in verbal and nonverbal social communication skills, with social impairments apparent even with supports in place, with limited initiation of social interactions and reduced or abnormal response to social overtures from others.

· Level 1: Little ones needing but some support. Of all kinds. The bible’s profile then: Without supports in place, deficits in social communication cause noticeable impairments, with difficulty in initiating social interactions. Also, demonstrates clear examples of atypical or unsuccessful responses to social overtures of others. May appear to show, to feel, decreased interest in social interactions.

There’s the clinical analysis. Here’s the Hughes Brothers’.

Nothing special to do with us. But we do wonder about the fuzzy edges. About those undiagnosed, undiagnosable blurs of behaviors where ASD slips over into something else.

And who can say, which doctor can diagnose where one human behavior ends and another begins?

Most especially when the youngster – however we shall proclaim her diagnosis – is functioning, is functioning just fine, thank you. We Hughes Brothers mean, “It’s just terminology, folks. Just terminology. Might we please focus on this little human being crying out, right here in front of us all, for some relief?”

But here we go, brothers. Down into the rabbit hole. Down, down we go.


Alright, let’s trot out some more descriptors, some more diagnoses. And we Hughes Brothers present them to you not with any hope of therapy, of happy endings for you and your little child. It seems the medical, the psychiatric community is content with definitions, with no treatment, no response to the evermore closely defined set of behaviors that constitute the problem.

Any answer, medical and counseling professionals? Any hint of an answer here?

As we say, more descriptions of your child’s behavior.

With near as the Hughes Brothers, in our ignorance, can determine, not one bit, not one hint of a cure in sight.

“Cure,” way too strong. “Amelioration,” maybe. “A minute or two of relief” possibly.

We apologize, do John Howard, James, Joel, Curtis, Dave, and good old Mike. For the moment, we’re just reporting. But stay with us. Stay with us, please. We’ll find some answers for you long-suffering families. We will.


· Asperger syndrome: once thought of as the mildest of onsets of ASD. Fine. Kids and their elders with Asperger do not pick up on social cues. They are oh so sensitive to sensory stimuli of every sort – a distant cough, a squirrel there no there running in the treetops, a faint suggestion of coffee brewing. The Aspergers among us focus on a point of interest – calligraphy, stamp-collecting, marksmanship, kayaks – and they function so, so highly and completely in their knowledge of, their interest in, their overweening impulse to discuss calligraphy or stamp-collecting or target shooting or riding down those Class IV rapids in a boat of the child’s own devising.

· Here’s a brand new one, childhood disintegrative disorder, once thought of as the rarest and most savage from of autism. (Before the revision of DSM-5 – See the Hughes Brother’s immediately previous piece.) Suffice it to say that, now these blessed kids with CDD will most certainly manifest seizure disorders. Cold comfort, the Brothers worry, with your beautiful little Junior sitting there in his chair, minding his own business. His limited social, speech, and cognitive abilities.

· And hey, if that sweetheart eating Cheerios in her highchair hasn’t manifested any of the above untoward behaviors . . . well, let’s just call her an unfortunate suffering from pervasive development disorder, not otherwise specified.

The Hughes Brothers stand with the families somehow involved with all of the above. And, as with one voice, we ask.

Give me strength. Lord, give me strength.

Autism and its effects on sleep

Eighty percent of all young people with ASD have difficulty falling and staying asleep.

The Hughes Brothers do not know at first hand of the hurt, the heartache, the stupid worry, the numbed-up exhaustion of persuading, night after night, a beloved little one to . . . please, please, please . . . try to get some sleep. Our brother Mike Hughes knows more than the rest of us combined, and he knows because of his daughters, young women with hearts the size of Kansas who work with families confronting the hourly challenges, the minute-to-minute demands of loving and living with children with autism spectrum disorder.

Mike Hughes, through his knowing daughters, guides our research. He informs our collective opinion.

The rest of the brothers offer you our hearts and our minds and our most sincere, if incomplete, understanding of the difficulties your family must confront as a result of loving a little child with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).

Thank you for your time and your trust. We promise you all the support we can muster. Thank you. Thank you.

Lack of sleep compounds the ASD problem. And so it goes.

A tired little guy to begin with, now even more worn out here at five in the morning . . .

Talk about vicious.

This cycle.

This roundabout whirligig of one trouble after another. No sleep leads to more hyperactivity. Bad sleep means even more inability to concentrate. An endless night of thrashing about, of sleeping at best in fits and starts – it means a morning of aggression, flat-out bad temper from your child, your sibling.

Meanwhile, you’re tired too. Bone tired.

And the loving doesn’t come easy. These chilly mornings before the furnace kicks in, but your child has once again for mighty damn certain started kicking. And kicking. And screaming. And hurting all over the house.

Autism and its effects on sleep: Let’s agree on some medical understanding.

Once more, we Hughes Brothers in no way hold ourselves out among you as medical authorities of any stripe. Nothing could be further from the truth. We’re Kansas guys who have come round to research about autism – more specifically research about products that might help families dealing with ASD – because of some nieces who stole our hearts clean away a long time ago.

So here we go.

We’re reading the bible, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, in its current edition also known as DSM-5.

Hard going. Really hard going.

But we’re certain of this much:

here come the diagnostic criteria for ASD, group one.

1. Persistent deficits in communication skills, obvious problems in appropriate social interaction in multiple settings – school, for sure, and birthday parties and funerals and airplane flights – who can say when a disruption might occur?

2. An inability to converse, irregular eye movements, nervous tics, a total lack of facial expression, and on. And on.

3. So much difficulty in developing and then maintaining, much less understanding different types of human social relationships.

Group two. Again and again and again.

You know. Oh my Lord, you know. These patterns – these tiresome and oh, so painfully predictable patterns – of behavior. God bless you, and let’s discuss.

1. Muscular movements, bizarre placements of the limbs.

2. Miming. Oh dear, just spot-on repetitions of the speech of her sisters, his teachers, the mailman. It happens, and it’s called echolalia, the clinical term for what you hear day to day.

3. A preoccupation with the most rigid sorts of order, lining up – bless her heart – potato chips in a military straightness.

4. A heartfelt, often vocal adherence to patterns, to the repeated comfort of expectable events hour after hour.

5. Fixation on a somewhere object – a stuffed animal, a television program, an imaginary friend.

6. Super, super sensitivity to some environmental presence: the smell of tacos for supper, a song on the stereo, that cardinal flitting about the birdfeeder in the backyard.

Forgive us. We’re learning as we go.

More to come tomorrow, as the Hughes Brothers think along with you, about how in the world are we going to help this beautiful, this blessed child.

Stay strong and read more Autism support articles here.

Autism Product Review: The Sleep Sheep

Rhymed and soothing sleep on the way.

Stuffed animals remain the paradigm of sleep aids. Heck, the paradigm of aid in being a kid.

Little Sleep Sheep here, she arrives with more than the paradigm’s share of potential helps.

Mostly, she sounds off.

The Sleep Sheep features four sounds that even the crusty old Hughes Brothers found soothing. Well-chosen these sounds, all natural, Heaven’s own lullabies.

Autism Product Review: Sleep Sheep Review by
Autism Product Review: Sleep Sheep Review by

Your little one will relax to warm and oh so gently thumping heartbeats. To waves rolling across eternal beaches just beside the bed there. To raindrops falling on the womb itself, relaxing the random plop of drops from a sympathetic sky. And whale songs. Whale songs, for good sleep’s sake, those patterned regular, babily predictable clicks, whistles, and pulsed calls. How very wonderful: a giant humpback lulls the smallest of children off to peaceful, easy sleep.

Autism Product: The Sheep Sleep features

· A user-friendly push-button sound selector

· Volume control

· Automatic stop that shuts Sleep Sheep to sleep herself, a stop after either 23 or 45 minutes (The Hughes Brothers are far from hep to the magical qualities of 23 . . . not 20, not 25 . . . minutes to songs’ end. So be it, 23 it is.)

· A Velcro strap for easy attachment of good old Sleep Sheep to a bedpost, a comforting rail next to a toddler’s tiny silent ear

· Removable sound box includes – thank you, Sleep Sheep people, thank you – two AA batteries

· A storybook

· And yes, an adoption certificate

Softness upon softness, tactile and lovable.

Beyond cute, cuddly in the way a month-old puppy is cuddly, Sleep Sheep plays white noise. But the Hughes Brothers simply cannot agree with the manufacturer’s description here. Our observations of grand-nephews responding to the Sleep Sheep tell us that “white noise” does not begin to describe the coos and the comfort coming from this foot=high bundle of love. Mary’s little lamb here will go with your child throughout her day, will be the last touch, the last lilt of his day.

A mother’s heartbeat at the touch of a button.

Infants find nothing so reassuring as the regular beat of the womb, the omnipresent now of a mother’s love feeding her baby with every quiet little, soft little thump of her heart. Sleep Sheep mimes perfectly, replicating into those tender moments before sleep arrives.

And sound levels are dialed way down. Attuned. Just right for the sensitivities of these babies, these toddlers, even these aging children we call parents.

A warning in this regard!
Do not leave infant unattended with product. This product is not intended for use in a crib.

Autism Product: The Sheep Sleep Specs

Plus an award or two.


Item Weight: 1.5 pounds

Product Dimensions: 7.1 x 9.8 x 6.7 inches

Item model number: 7303-Z8

Batteries: 2 AA batteries required. (included)

Target gender: Unisex

Material Type: Latex Free, Phthalate Free, BPA Free, Lead Free

Number of items: 1

Style: Cloud B

Power source type: Battery

Dishwasher safe:No

Plus. Plus, plus, Sleep Sheep has won several industry awards, including the National Parenting Council’s Seal of Approval and the iParenting Media Award. Way to go, SS.

Autism Product: The Sheep Sleep Rating

The only quibbles we’ve encountered.

· A complaint or two about the fit of the sound box into the plush – but bear in mind, the box is not designed for full enclosure. The control buttons and the power wheel will operate outside SS, with the Velcro strap to hold it tight. Remember too, the box does not function as an inevitable ingredient of the sheep’s lovability: with the sound machine removed, your child can cuddle away with her new, now quiet friend.

· Some concerns about keeping the Sheepster clean. The Hughes Brothers do not recommend submersion, but then we so seldom do. Spot cleaning should maintain healthfulness for all concerned.

· And finally, a few comments regretting that the SS does not send out its soothes all night long. Knowing that three-quarters of an hour in, the animal will go dark, but be consoled in the fact that the slightest bit of audibility from your baby will immediately restart the timer.

Forty bucks might seem a bit pricey.

It’s not.

Ask any family now enjoying the happy, happy consequences of just the right sounds at just the right time of evening.

Rest easy with Sleep Sheep, say the Hughes Brothers.

Autistic Children’s Privacy Pop Bed Tent Review

A tent for gosh sakes: the first comfort a kid ever made for herself.

The Hughes Brothers have been brought to a dead stop by the stark simplicity of it all. A tent.

A tent.

But of course. Of course. That first, overpowering and unremembered pulling of a soft blanket over a little one’s head. The joy and protection of it all. The womb back again, with the quiet all of a loving mother’s heart.

From just a bit of overhead covering.

If your child must deal with the challenges of autism at bedtime, take that kiddo camping.

Autistic Children's Privacy Pop Bed Tent Review by
Autistic Children’s Privacy Pop Bed Tent Review by

Camping right smack dab there in the easy familiarity of the child’s bedroom, among all the routine that you’ve built around these critical minutes just before sleep.

And now.

Now. A place of that child’s own. Surrounding. Enveloping. Reassuring. All his.

More Privacy Pop Bed Tent Info

The Privacy Pop Bed Tent costs about $130. The best, guaranteed, the best money you ever spent on your little one.

The Hughes Brothers are not at all sure how the Metropolitan Museum of Art became enamored of the Privacy Pop Bed Tent, but in MOMA’s own words, this specific shelter represents both “an ingenious insomnia solution” and, no fooling, “a private oasis.”

Autistic Children’s Privacy Pop Bed Tent Features & Specs

Enough abstractions. Time for the tent’s features.

· Composed of water-resistant polyester

· Propped by metal poles

· Structurally similar to a traditional tent, but intended for snugness

· Adaptable to toddler, twin, twin XL, full, queen, or even king mattresses

· Easy installation

· With mess windows and doors

· Double-sided zippers

· Easy in, easy out – just the ideal amount of shelter from the day, and the night

Your other children, in fact you might very well want a Pop Bed Tent.

The Hughes Brothers are thinking almost exclusively about potential benefits for children with autism, about how this straightforward, straightahead obvious little deal might ease the late-evening hyper-sensitivity of these sweet special children. But.

But, but. This tent will serve, serve well anyone suffering from nighttime anxiety. It will soothe toddlers who scoff, loudly, at naps. It will welcome big old guys such as we Hughes Brothers, who grew up building, moving into, and loving like boyhood itself the tent-like forts that, we knew in our hearts, would not would not ever go away.

Then as now, autistic or otherwise, we all want just some meaningful solitude, some safe and faraway, long-gone seclusion.

The Bed Tent comes across as snugness its own warm and welcoming self. The windows and doors can be adjusted, zipped closed or perhaps part-way to control the entrance of outside light. Your child can make the Bed Tent just as dark, just as private, just as encompassing as the minute might warrant. Adjustable, responsive to immediate demands for privacy, even as the mesh windows deliver but only the desired airflow, not one whiff more or less than might comfort the little sleeper inside.

Suppose that kiddo wants a drive-in movie? Not a problem.

The Hughes Brothers picked up this particular tip from a neighbor’s son, a Marine just returned from Afghanistan. And while we’re quite certain that the young lance corporal was not sleeping in quite the tent we’re applauding here, we do know that he rigged an enclosure over his bed there in the Kabul barracks to give himself some privacy among the dormitory-wide presence of a hundred or so of his buddies from the Corps.

Here’s what he did: he hung a white curtain at the far end of his bed tent. And watched there movies and more with the HD projector he bought for his smart-phone.

Just a thought.

Autistic Children’s Privacy Pop Bed Tent Review

Our thinking: make of this so basic, so potentially life-changing covering exactly what your child needs.

We admit. The Hughes Brothers are taken with the existential simplicity of this, this childhood staple. But please, shove aside our nostalgic exuberance, and explore for yourself and for your family the potential joys of nothing more than a bit of soothing cloth between a troubled child and the music of the spheres.

And to all, a good, good night.

Book Review: Healing without Hurting

Healing without Hurting: Treating ADHD, Apraxia and Autism Spectrum Disorders Naturally and Effectively without Harmful Medications

By all the Hughes Brothers can determine, here’s THE book to read for parents and friends of children with autism.

The complex, quite wonderful title/name LPC Kozek stands front and center of this basic literature about the complexities of autism spectrum disorders. Ms. Kozek answers also to the name of Jennifer. She’s a therapist practicing in Connecticut and, more to the point, the mother of a son with autism, little Evan.

Mom found a way.

Jennifer began to treat her son “bio-medically.” And the results lay beyond profound. Life-changing they became. Her little guy no longer screaming, feral in his grunts and screamed hurts. No more hitting other children. No toys, no food thrown. No more massive swings of mood capable of affecting an entire family, a classroom, a friend’s sixth birthday party. Gone now the rage. New and so, so welcome Evan’s willingness to listen to teachers, his entirely appropriate responses in social situations of every sort.

Good gosh, Mom says Evan will now look you in the eye and speak to you of major, all-boyish things.

Published in 2014, the book still describes, still testifies to the goodness that now attends a happy young man ten years on an earth he has just begun to recognize. And love.

Mom Jennifer’s book describes in rich, useful, usable detail the full and complete menu of natural treatment options for children such as Evan, the usual clinical, all the medical approaches tried and found, at best, but partially helpful.

Drawing on her own overwhelming experience, Ms. Kozek has written a book which will take other parents on a beautifully detailed accounting of her own, of Evan’s success story.

Autistic wisdom, parceled out for all to read. And to heed.

While the back story is engaging and, in places, quite beautiful, the authoress at no time loses sight of the good she has set out to do.

Accordingly, you may expect highlighted, unmistakable tips – typographically, illustratively managed in such a way that you will see. And you will remember.

The Hughes Brothers, drawing on our own early educational backgrounds, will tell you that a nun might not have done a better job of emphasizing key points, of delivering a sound and succinct outline of all that is to be taken from each chapter.

Much about this splendid read identifies so much that otherwise would not be so obvious.

Jennifer Kozek’s book would be worthwhile and then some, had she stopped with the classification of terms identifying common behaviors associated with autism. She delivers in all appropriate detail the signs, the earliest signs, that an autoimmune disorder might be brewing.

She synopsizes a pharmacological dictionary of terms related to medications, their likely benefits, their unavoidable side-effects.

She catalogs food sensitivities, the merciless outside attacks on a child’s autoimmune system. She shows worried parents how to test for nutritional deficiencies. She warns about the causes of malabsorption of much-needed food values.

Ms. Kozek explores with rightful rigor the gut-brain connection that obtains with so many children with autism. And she spends precious pages discussing the varied supplements that might play a role in supporting your child’s physical health. At the same time, she alerts parents to the food additives to, at all costs, be avoided. She identifies damaging toxins in the environment. She recommends vitamins.

She will help you find the right doctor, the supporting clinical practitioners best able to help your child.

The woman just will not stop.

Most specific to our purposes here, this book will help you with the sleep problems accompanying autism.

Her analysis of sleep problems is quick, cogent, and responsive. Her suggestions for treatment of bedtime difficulties are entirely in keeping with the overall thrust of the book: that is, practical in the extreme, straightforward, and completely self-controlled.

The Hughes Brothers have more to say about Healing without Hurting.

Stand by, please.

Melatonin’s benefits to sound sleep for children with autism confirmed

Good News!

The Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry says so.

A study published by the JAACAP in October, 2017 has confirmed that children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) with refractory (stubbornly resistant) insomnia will benefit directly from prolonged release melatonin (PEDPRM).

Forgive all the initials. Beneath them lies some genuine hope for families now bedraggled and sometimes grumpy.

The Hughes Brothers will refrain from any commentary hereafter, reporting in its own language the methods and the results of the study.

A rigorous study suggests melatonin’s benefits are real.

The scientists behind this study could not have crossed more t’s, dotted more i’s. Random, placebo-controlled, and double-blind, the trial involved 125 particpants between the ages of 2 and 17.5 (not 18!). Each of these patients suffered insomnia even after behavior intervention had failed to produce results.

Each child was administered 2 mg of PEDPR once daily. The dosage was increased then to 5 mg or the placebo for the last thirteen weeks of the study. These participants included children diagnosed by physicians of ASD; no attention was paid to whether or not these children also may have had attention deficit and hyperactive disorder (ADHD) or other neurogenetic disorders. The one big, the overwhelming, common factor among all the kids: sleep issues, relentless all-night-long sleep issues.

The means of sleep measurement.

Be assured the measurements and their gathering withstood the strongest scientific protocols. These measures called for both the Sleep and Nap Diary (SND) data validated by the caregiver, and the Composite Sleep Disturbance Index (CSDI). These measurements led to totals of sleep times after thirteen weeks of taking the higher dosage of either melatonin or the placebo.

The baseline sleep time – the time measured as both the test and the control groups took the 2 mg of melatonin — was 457.2 minutes for those in the PEDPRM group and 459.9 minutes for those in the placebo group. At the end of the thirteen-week trial, it was observed that the PEDPRM-treated children slept an average of 57.5 minutes longer than those in the placebo group who slept only 9.14 minutes longer.

More good news.

Sleep latency, or sleep onset latency (SOL), the amount of time it takes to fall asleep, was observed to have decreased by 39.6 minutes on average for those with the PEDPRM treatment, while it was only 12.5 minutes for those under the placebo treatment. Sleep latency was not linked to any earlier wake-up time. It was evident that the rate attaining a more beneficial response towards sleep latency was higher among those under the PEDPRM group than the placebo group. Sleep disturbance was also observed to have declined among the PEDPRM group members.

Based on previous studies conducted on the effects of supplemental melatonin, it has a favorable profile as regards to side effects and its low cost. The majority of parents who have children with ASD find melatonin a beneficial alternative to FDA-approved medications.

Sleep problems among children with ASD

Many children – for all sorts of childly reasons – experience difficulty falling asleep and staying asleep, but such problems are more prevalent among young people diagnosed with ASD and Asperger’s syndrome. Children with ASD, as their families well know, often wake up way, way too early.

Children with ASD do not sleep well for any of way, way too many reasons. These children respond with maximized sensitivity to stimuli of every sort, sensitivity which can so easily interfere with falling asleep easily, with sleeping without disruption throughout the night. These youngsters require routine. They demand controlled conditions. They struggle with any changes in their environment.

Take heart, parents and siblings.

If you’re not already using melatonin as part of your child’s bedtime regimen, this recent study suggests you might want to give this amazing hormone – a happy product of the brain’s pineal gland – an overnight try.

The Hughes Brothers do so hope and pray it might work for you and your family.

SnugBug – An Autism Weighted Blanket Alternative

Heavy on the alternative.

The SnugBug’s originator insists at every turn that her product is not, not, not a weighted blanket. Rather, you have right here a bed wrap delivering pressure rather than weight. The SnugBug promises to address the sleep-related disturbances that your child suffers because of autism – also restless leg syndrome, insomnia, ADD/ADHD, and anxieties of every nasty sort.

Here’s how SnugBug works, we think.

The Hughes Brothers admit, up front here, that our beloved nieces have worked with only one family using the SnugBug, and so we promise to moderate our promised effects.

It seems a stretchable spandex material delivers the deep pressure usually associated with weighted blankets. Wrapped tightly around the bed, the SnugBug calms with an increased endorphin and serotonin production.

We admit that we’re relying here on the manufacturer’s own wayward input, all in first-person, a point of view which has its advantages, we assume.

So we started reading about other users’ reactions to the Bug.

The SnugBug operates like a pillowcase, fitted over the child’s mattress. No tucking needed. The product fits toddler, twin, full, and queen-sized mattresses.

For children with dermatological issues, the SnugBug has proven itself breathable in the extreme. Some users, happy with the immediate effects on an autistic child, have considered purchasing a Bug for themselves or a loved one.

Our favorite reviewer described her son “on a spectrum with a trampoline.” The kid moves about, we understand. She recommended the product for “anyone with sensory processing disorders,” adding that her little guy sought out his bed for comfort throughout the day, bringing his stuffed animals along.

Back to the basics. The SnugBug Specs

· Solid pattern only

· In colors of white, black, blue, and pink purple

· Totally handmade to customer’s specifications, using nylon

We think you should consider the SnugBug, by all means, if other sleep aids have failed.

By no means do we think SnugBug is a last resort. Far from it. Our nieces gave us sufficient detail of the family now using it, detail sufficient to our recommendation for these extreme situations, these poor little folks with so much to confront, many of their troubles occasioned in the womb, the mother’s overwrought drug and alcohol abuse in those critical months.

The Hughes nieces’ experience then.

This innocent, adopted child suffered from a whole alphabet of disorders. He was Oppositional and Defiant. He suffered from Bipolar Disorder and Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder – all the result of prenatal exposure to drugs, postnatal neglect. Especially manic at bedtime, he strew chaos throughout the house, robbing his parents and siblings of any pretense of going to sleep. Of course, his earnest parents had enrolled him in therapy. The docs did their part. Mom and Dad remained supportive and consistently good parents. But not one attempt at normalcy in the late evening hours came close to soothing the poor child.

Until Snugbug.

As with so many children dealing with autism, new or increased medication can often only complicate the sleep cycle.

Good news: within a week of using the SnugBug, our nieces visited a family living like a happy television sitcom family. Yes, this beloved child still careens about the house but, come eight o’clock, he seeks out his bed, goes happily to sleep, only to awake nine hours later rested and, for him, content and settled.

The price is right. Give the SnugBug a chance.

Once more, the Hughes Brothers cop to limited experience with this alternative with the rhyming compound-noun name. But at sixty bucks max, the Snug Bug merits a try. If perchance your autistic child finds no solace there, you the sleepy parent just might.

Worth a shot, in our opinion.

Autistic Calming Covers

A medium-weighted blanket for everyone.

At six pounds, this comfort blanket works well from kindergartners to their grandparents. A workable, marvelously constructed therapeutic blanket, designed and sewn for all best results in adults and children confronting sensory, anxiety, autism, and sleep issues of every sort.

Right up front, know this: gift wrapping available from the good people at The Swanky Stitchery.

Colors and patterns matter with Calming Covers

Here they are in all their cartoonish glory.

But first a note about that wondrous term “minky.” Minky is a sensuous sort of beyond- plush fabric. A full 100% polyester. Think of fleece– but softer and thicker and warmer and more consoling and lasting in its affection for you and yours.) .

Purple butterflies
Blue turtles minky
Brown dinosaurs — brown!
Hearts, red of course
Nautical anchors mink
Panda minky
Pink mermaids minky, as indeed all mermaids should be pink, pink and perfect
Woodland minky
Yellow flowers

Not one thing bland or usual in these blankets. Not one.

The Swanky Stitchery begins with designer fabrics, high-end stuff made for this very specific, this very soothing purpose. Maybe you have some experience with weighted blankets as a means of helping your child sleep sooner, sleep better, sleep longer.

Maybe that experience didn’t accumulate to all that you’d hoped for.

Swanky Stitchery will change your mind now. Right now.

Good sleep can stand some style. Sure it can.

Calming Covers begin with couture designers such as Michael Miller or, say, Riley Blake.

Calming Covers. Size and use matter too. Sure they do.

Pick blankets sized from small to extra-large. Pick your fabric: plush mink, soft flannel, good old cotton, King Cotton, good and true to this day, to this purpose.

These purposes, rather: the ideal sleep blanket for your child with autism, but also a lap cover or, outdoors, multi-used off toward a beach or picnic blanket for all ages.

All told, a blanket for the ages.

A lost thought, the weight in these weighted blankets.

So, so many weighted blankets depend on glass beads or sand for their heft and comfort. Not so with products from The Swanky Stitchery. These blankets arrive full of food-grade — food-grade! — plastic pellets. You know, the pellets used to make milk containers or, same deal, baby bottles. As such, expect no leaks. Do not worry about toxins of any sort, perfectly safe these blankets for infants, toddlers, and pets. Machine washable, of course.

A guarantee your child can sleep soundly upon.

Swanky Stitchery’s business is bound up with the particular needs of their little adopted daughter Ella. You may nod off so very easily knowing that these weighted blankets will come to you with a guarantee of your total, your complete and happy satisfaction: a thirty-day money back deal plus one year free replacement.

Wrap your child in swank.

And rest easy.

Sleep and children with autism, a primer.

Sleep disturbances affect at least half of all children with autism. Parents and siblings of sleep-deprived autistic children can recite horror stories of familial fatigue, stress, and anxiety surrounding their attempts to bring some sense of normalcy to bedtime. The potential reasons are varied and difficult to pinpoint, the reasons why falling asleep and staying asleep is so very difficult in kids with autism.

Some potential causes of sleep problems with autism.

Some potential villains in sleep deprivation among the pediatric population.

Malfunctions in the body’s biological clock, often referred to as the circadian rhythm Problems with production of and metabolism of the melatonin, the hormone involved in control of the sleep-wake cycle Side effects of medication Over-stimulation at bedtime Medical disorders, a whole big bunch of them, ranging from anxiety and restless-leg syndrome to epilepsy and stomach problems

Autistic children have difficulties with breathing

Breathing as much as any other cause, we learn.

Researchers have known for several years that children with autism suffer in untoward numbers from apnea, that formidable opponent to good sleep found so often in older adults, men in particular. So the incidence of apnea in autistic children came as something of a surprise.

With apnea, breathing stops for seconds at a time, over and over again throughout the night. Each stoppage triggers an unconscious micro-arousal as the poor child briefly gasps awake. These breathing disruptions can result from a physical blockage of the upper airway by soft tissues, such as the tonsils and adenoids, or from some blip in the brain.

The good news here: surgical removal of the tonsils and/or adenoids can lead to immediate, dramatic improvements in the sleep cycle.

REM and children with autism.

Even after the research involving apnea have come new findings, very interesting new findings that suggest children with autism may have far less rapid-eye movement (REM) sleep. This reduction in REM sleep raises concerns about these children’s cognitive function during the day. Memory and learning depend, in significant part, on appropriate amounts of REM sleep. The dreams which occur most often during REM have much to say about the child’s emotional well-being, and any deprivation thereto will necessarily bring along any number of adverse daytime effects.
Autism and the inability to fall asleep, continued.

All the potential problems which trouble all children seem to exaggerate themselves, to accelerate the ill effects in young people confronting autism. Simple anxiety, for instance — worries about school or about friends — can amplify themselves in the waking nightmares of autistic kids. Any sort of neurobiological dysfunction can wreak bedtime havoc as well.

Polysomnography, a perfect starting place.

A laboratory procedure called polysomnography is the current preferred method of analyzing sleep in all its slumbering complexity. The technique records electrical symbols in the brain throughout the night, watching and listening as the child cycles through the different phases of sleep from evening’s beginning to morning’s end. Polysomnography detects any abnormalities in the architecture of sleep, the expected patterns of slumber throughout the night.

Please look for polysomnography in your home.

Few, if any, children with autism would be able to tolerate the regimen of this procedure, were it to be conducted in a sleep laboratory. Too many wires. To many unfamiliar people. In a strange environment. Too many tactile incomings. Too much sensory input all around.

A desensitization period, a timeframe ranging from a week to perhaps as long as two months, might be necessary before your child will become comfortable with the testing process.

Once more, the Hughes Brothers offer you heartfelt, deeply personal

Mike Hughes’ daughters, favorite nieces all around, work daily with children with autism. And we look forward to helping them, and you, find the sleep aids that will bring soonest, best rest to your entire household.

Thank you for your confidence in our work.