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It’s O.K. to Let Babies Cry It Out at Bedtime

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Mother and baby girl (2-5 months) sleeping together
GETTY IMAGES

When infants can’t sleep, it usually means Mom and Dad aren’t getting much shut-eye either. That, in turn, can double the risk of depressive symptoms in mothers, cause strife in marriages and result in costly trips to the pediatrician.

For wiped-out parents wondering whether or not to sleep-train their restless babies, a new study in Pediatrics has some good news: strategies that let babies cry it out for limited periods while teaching them to sleep on their own can help families sleep better in the short term without causing long-term psychological damage in kids or weakening the bond between babies and parents.

The study looked at two sleep-training methods known as controlled comforting and camping out, both of which let babies cry it out for short amounts of time. Controlled comforting requires the parent to respond to their child’s cries at increasingly longer intervals to try to encourage the baby to settle down on her own. In camping out, the parent sits in a chair next to the child as he learns to fall asleep; slowly, over time, parents move the chair farther and farther away, until they are out of the room and the infant falls asleep alone.

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While neither strategy is as extreme as letting babies cry all night by themselves, they have been criticized over concerns that they may cause long-term emotional or psychological harm in babies, interfere with their ability to manage stress or cripple their relationship with their parents.

The new study by Australian researchers involved 326 children who had parent-reported sleep problems at 7 months. Half of the babies were put in the sleep-training group, in which parents learned helpful bedtime routines as well as the controlled-comforting or camping-out technique (parents could choose which strategy they wanted to use), and half were put in a control group that did not use sleep-training. The researchers followed up with the participants and their parents five years later. (By the study’s end, about 30% of families had dropped out.)

By age 6, the researchers found no significant differences between the kids in either group in terms of emotional health, behavior or sleep problems. In fact, slightly more children in the control group had emotional or behavioral problems than in the sleep-trained group.

Researchers also found no differences in mothers’ levels of depression or anxiety, or in the strength of parent-child bonds between families who had used sleep-training and those who hadn’t.

Meanwhile, earlier data from the study show that sleep-training does work: babies learn to go to sleep easier at bedtime and stay asleep longer at night. Based on the findings, the authors conclude that sleep-training is safe and effective, and call for an increase in parent education about these methods as well as more training for health specialists to recommend the procedures.



Read more: http://healthland.time.com/2012/09/10/its-o-k-to-let-babies-cry-it-out-at-bedtime/#ixzz2K3FWXMsz


.....Ophelia Grace...............Mira Lorne...............Jude Bennett.........Liam Daniel Baines.


by on Feb. 5, 2013 at 1:43 PM
Replies (21-30):
mandapanda82
by on Feb. 5, 2013 at 2:26 PM
And all the moms who choose to co sleep what about SIDS?! Isn't that a cause of SIDS? But I don't feel the need to attack moms who do this! It works for them and I understand
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abra
by Abra on Feb. 5, 2013 at 2:30 PM
2 moms liked this

Your impression of what cio means is outdated. Did you even read the article? 

Quoting audreesmama:

I would never let my babies CIO. To me it's cruel and heartless. Why have kids if you're just going to ignore them?



.....Ophelia Grace...............Mira Lorne...............Jude Bennett.........Liam Daniel Baines.


audreesmama
by on Feb. 5, 2013 at 2:30 PM
2 moms liked this
The difference in ignorance and stupidity is the acceptance of information.


Quoting mandapanda82:

I will not tolerate anyone else accusing me of being heartless and cruel- and I refuse to read your reply because I know you will have a snarky response about how im "damaging" my child- so no I'm not even gonna read it



Quoting audreesmama:

Here's my reply to the person who quoted me:

"Both of my children get very good sleep. DD slept through the night (8pm-8am) at 8 months and DS sleeps 6 hours at a stretch at night, and he's 5 months old. I never did sleep training or CIO like what's mentioned. I get a good amount of sleep, and have never left my children to cry for even a short amount of time. It's possible to help teach a baby to sleep without ignoring him or her. I know it is, because I have done it with my two and all the foster babies I've had. 

Suggesting that letting your baby cry for a short amount of time is not ignoring them is ridiculous. You know they're crying, you know they want you, yet you choose to not be with them. That's ignoring them. You don't have to ignore your tiny baby to teach them to sleep. You're teaching them to give up. 

I don't really care how you feel about my opinion or that it is rude, because it won't change my view of parents who do CIO. To me, CIO and sleep training are a bit rude. You're bringing a child into this world, who had no choice in the matter, then you're going to ignore them until they cry themselves to sleep out of fear, desperation and panic because you don't want your sleep pattern disrupted. That's rude. To me, that's cruel and heartless. You may feel differently, and you are entitled to your opinion, as am I. "



Quoting mandapanda82:

Exactly- we want then to get a good night sleep- so that makes us cruel?! They're gonna have to learn eventually! I cannot believe these moms say we don't care for our babies! I'd never say that about a moms love for her lo no matter what the parenting style is





Quoting aimesnyc:

A majority of parents that do some sort of CIO are by no means "cruel or heartless."  In fact, we love our babies very much and want them to be able to get a good night's sleep, which is actually very healthy (http://children.webmd.com/features/good-sound-sleep-for-children).  We also would like to get the amount of sleep necessary to be happy and healthy parents.  We do not "ignore" our children.  Do you think it's easy to let them cry for a short amount of time and not rush in?  However, we know that the end result (should the sleep training be effective for our child, because we also recognize that all children are different and it may just not work for our child) will only help our child.  My sister sleep trained my niece and attempted to do so for my nephew.  My niece did great with it, and it did not work for my nephew.  She did not force it, but instead lived with the fact that he had sleep issues until they resolved on their own.  My niece, as well as my own son that was sleep-trained, is a very bright and happy child. 

To make a blanket statement about those who choose to sleep train their children is, to me, a bit rude.  There are things that other parents do to their children that I do not agree with, but I would never hint toward another parent being cruel or heartless.  That is, unless there are obvious signs of abusive behavior. 




Quoting audreesmama:

I would never let my babies CIO. To me it's cruel and heartless. Why have kids if you're just going to ignore them?











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abra
by Abra on Feb. 5, 2013 at 2:32 PM

You are referring to ferber method of cio, not the modern technique used for this study. Did you even read the article? 

Quoting pinkiebabii:

I'll believe the studies that actually tested babies stress level while crying it out over this one where they went back five years later and mom said oh he is fine and that was the end of that.

It is very selfish to let your baby CIO. It isn't even reccomended before 6 months and there are awful mothers who do this to there little babies who need comfort and love.

I agree with the fact that CIO works but that is because you teach your child you (general) are an unreliable mother who doesn't care enough about them to pick them up when they need you so they stop asking for you.



.....Ophelia Grace...............Mira Lorne...............Jude Bennett.........Liam Daniel Baines.


abra
by Abra on Feb. 5, 2013 at 2:32 PM

The risk of cosleeping is suffocation, not SIDS. 

Quoting mandapanda82:

And all the moms who choose to co sleep what about SIDS?! Isn't that a cause of SIDS? But I don't feel the need to attack moms who do this! It works for them and I understand



.....Ophelia Grace...............Mira Lorne...............Jude Bennett.........Liam Daniel Baines.


audreesmama
by on Feb. 5, 2013 at 2:32 PM
Yes, I did. My impression is not outdated, it just differs from what is outlined here. Regardless, I have never and will never let my children cry for me and ignore them. If they need or want me, it's my job to be there.


Quoting abra:

Your impression of what cio means is outdated. Did you even read the article? 

Quoting audreesmama:

I would never let my babies CIO. To me it's cruel and heartless. Why have kids if you're just going to ignore them?



Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
LilyFlair
by on Feb. 5, 2013 at 2:34 PM
2 moms liked this


Quoting mandapanda82:

And all the moms who choose to co sleep what about SIDS?! Isn't that a cause of SIDS? But I don't feel the need to attack moms who do this! It works for them and I understand

Im in a birth month group and a woman posted about her her close friend suffocating her baby to death while co sleeping. Co sleeping can be dangerous and can kill. every year ppl kill their babies doing it thats why they cover the risks in the hospital before you leave with baby. But ppl still do it and defend it till the cows come home, no one can tell them other wise. But heaven for bid another mom CIO they are all over her! CIO isnt good under a certain age, i do think theres a fine line in trying to get your baby to learn to self sooth by letting them cry in their crib for a few min and just letting them there for awhile. It can be abuse when NOT done right. co sleeping can be deadly. they both have pros and cons and are PERSONAL choices we make as mothers. We have no right to flame or belittle other mothers for the choices they make for their children. It's ok to disagree but I think we all need to remember theres a differance between having an opinion and being a B*tch.


also I dont think co sleeping CAUSES sids.

abra
by Abra on Feb. 5, 2013 at 2:35 PM

How difficult it is to change habits later depends on the childs personality. It could be easy, like it was for lele, or it could take 3 years, like it did for one of my babies. Each parent has to pick and choose which method works best for them. There is no one right answer for every situation because we are not identical family units. We each have unique dynamics that make it impossible to say one way is best for everyone. 

Quoting SewingMamaLele:

It's actually not.  I've done it twice already and have two really good independent sleepers with very little fuss.   I think if you push when the child isn't ready it would be hard... but it's just all about knowing your child.  

Quoting AleaKat:

I toss and turn too much in my sleep. I'd be too paranoid baby would get squished or something and then when the time comes to break them of that habit it's hell.

Quoting SewingMamaLele:

Which is exactly why we co-sleep.   Baby isn't ignored, we all get to sleep.   Win-win-win.

Quoting AleaKat:

Same here. If I'm up all night tending to crying baby ill be an even worse mother when I'm falling on my face from exhaustion.



Quoting expectantmom81:

We did CIO with both joys and would do it again :-)





.....Ophelia Grace...............Mira Lorne...............Jude Bennett.........Liam Daniel Baines.


abra
by Abra on Feb. 5, 2013 at 2:38 PM
1 mom liked this

If that is true, scientists must be the most stupid of all of us because they prove and accept information for a living! Thankfully, if I had to choose between being ignorant or being rude, I would rather be ignorant. Thankfully, we dont have to choose and can be both kind and well educated. You might want to look into both. :-) 

Quoting audreesmama:

The difference in ignorance and stupidity is the acceptance of information.


Quoting mandapanda82:

I will not tolerate anyone else accusing me of being heartless and cruel- and I refuse to read your reply because I know you will have a snarky response about how im "damaging" my child- so no I'm not even gonna read it



Quoting audreesmama:

Here's my reply to the person who quoted me:

"Both of my children get very good sleep. DD slept through the night (8pm-8am) at 8 months and DS sleeps 6 hours at a stretch at night, and he's 5 months old. I never did sleep training or CIO like what's mentioned. I get a good amount of sleep, and have never left my children to cry for even a short amount of time. It's possible to help teach a baby to sleep without ignoring him or her. I know it is, because I have done it with my two and all the foster babies I've had. 

Suggesting that letting your baby cry for a short amount of time is not ignoring them is ridiculous. You know they're crying, you know they want you, yet you choose to not be with them. That's ignoring them. You don't have to ignore your tiny baby to teach them to sleep. You're teaching them to give up. 

I don't really care how you feel about my opinion or that it is rude, because it won't change my view of parents who do CIO. To me, CIO and sleep training are a bit rude. You're bringing a child into this world, who had no choice in the matter, then you're going to ignore them until they cry themselves to sleep out of fear, desperation and panic because you don't want your sleep pattern disrupted. That's rude. To me, that's cruel and heartless. You may feel differently, and you are entitled to your opinion, as am I. "



Quoting mandapanda82:

Exactly- we want then to get a good night sleep- so that makes us cruel?! They're gonna have to learn eventually! I cannot believe these moms say we don't care for our babies! I'd never say that about a moms love for her lo no matter what the parenting style is





Quoting aimesnyc:

A majority of parents that do some sort of CIO are by no means "cruel or heartless."  In fact, we love our babies very much and want them to be able to get a good night's sleep, which is actually very healthy (http://children.webmd.com/features/good-sound-sleep-for-children).  We also would like to get the amount of sleep necessary to be happy and healthy parents.  We do not "ignore" our children.  Do you think it's easy to let them cry for a short amount of time and not rush in?  However, we know that the end result (should the sleep training be effective for our child, because we also recognize that all children are different and it may just not work for our child) will only help our child.  My sister sleep trained my niece and attempted to do so for my nephew.  My niece did great with it, and it did not work for my nephew.  She did not force it, but instead lived with the fact that he had sleep issues until they resolved on their own.  My niece, as well as my own son that was sleep-trained, is a very bright and happy child. 

To make a blanket statement about those who choose to sleep train their children is, to me, a bit rude.  There are things that other parents do to their children that I do not agree with, but I would never hint toward another parent being cruel or heartless.  That is, unless there are obvious signs of abusive behavior. 




Quoting audreesmama:

I would never let my babies CIO. To me it's cruel and heartless. Why have kids if you're just going to ignore them?













.....Ophelia Grace...............Mira Lorne...............Jude Bennett.........Liam Daniel Baines.


themissheather
by Bronze Member on Feb. 5, 2013 at 2:39 PM
No cosleeping had been shown to lower the incidence of SIDS.

Quoting mandapanda82:

And all the moms who choose to co sleep what about SIDS?! Isn't that a cause of SIDS? But I don't feel the need to attack moms who do this! It works for them and I understand
Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
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