The debate regarding whether parents should or should not co-sleep with their babies has gone on for years. Some say that it has many psychological benefits for kids as well as parents while there are others who would point out various dangers and risks associated with it. Where your child is “supposed to” sleep is a common discussion. Each type of baby sleeping arrangement has several advantages and disadvantages.
Advantages Associated with Co-Sleeping
Some advantages of co-sleeping with your kids are listed below:
- A child, especially a toddler may feel warm and secure beside his mother.
- Infants receive relatively more nourishment and are provided with constant breast feeding by mothers during nights which is facilitated by co-sleeping.
- A parent is more aware of a child’s condition when he/she sleeps beside him/her. It is beneficial because in case of severe health conditions or crisis, he/she may be able to respond immediately.
- According to research, in most cases where parents leave their children to sleep alone in cribs are left unalarmed and hence are unable to properly take care of them. A sudden medical emergency could not be overruled in such cases.
- Co-sleeping is a favorite practice for many families because some parents as well as children sleep better when they are in the same room.
- In some cases, where children sleep in separate room from their parents, the risk of child being left unattended after falling down from bed is pretty high. In such cases, co-sleeping seems to be far more beneficial.
Disadvantages Associated with Co-Sleeping
While there are many advantages of co-sleeping with your children, there are some disadvantages associated with this scenario as well. Some of these disadvantages are listed below:
- There’s a risk of your child feeling suffocated or even getting strangulated during the night if there’s no space between you and your baby. Parents who practice co-sleeping should be alarmed by this fact.
- According to research, co-sleeping has been known to develop an unhealthy childhood dependency which is definitely not a good thing for a child.
- There are some cases when mothers have known to complain about unable to properly sleep beside their children as constant or sudden movement of the baby may cause them to weak up.
- If any of the parents is suffering from any infectious health condition, then co-sleeping must be avoided because it may turn out to be dangerous for the child.
- Similar to the above mentioned point, if parents are under heavy medication, drugs or under any sort of therapy, then co-sleeping should be avoided.
- It’s difficult for parents to make their child sleep independently in his/her own bedroom once he/she gets used to the habit of co-sleeping.
- Sleeping in the same bed may pose severe health hazards for the child if any of the parent or both parents are into smoking or drinking.
Tips for Parents Who Prefer Co-Sleeping with Their Kids
Following are some tips that will help:
- Replace your duvet with blankets and sheets
- Make sure that your baby does not slips through the gap between the mattress and the headboard by having those closely fitted.
- Make sure that the bed is close to the wall or use a bed guard so that your baby does not roll out of the bed.
- It’s not safe to sleep with your baby if you are overtired.
- Try to get your child to sleep in a cot at first. In this way, your child will be less likely to depend on you being there to get to sleep.
Tips for Parents Whose Baby Sleeps in a Separate Room
Following tips will help:
- Establish a routine that works well with your child’s own biological clock and let him/her learn the difference between day and night.
- Choose a separate, safe, and quiet sleep environment for your baby that offers a comforting atmosphere without any distractions.
- Follow a pre-sleep, nightly routine such as feeding, some quiet time spent together, or a warm bath before bed time.
- Teach your baby to fall asleep on his/her own with minimal distress and without being bounced, rocked, or nursed to sleep.
- Get a good video baby monitor so that you can monitor your baby without visiting his/her room at night and potentially disturbing his/her sleep.
In conclusion, the decision to whether or not you should co-sleep with your child is ultimately yours to make. In any case, you can’t deny the advantages a video baby monitor has to offer.