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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
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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 (41-50):
mandapanda82
by on Feb. 5, 2013 at 2:46 PM
Well I did find some articles that say co sleepinh is a cause.. I don't know how reliable the source is

http://life.familyeducation.com/SIDS/Co-sleeping/64358.html


Quoting mandapanda82:

Thanks! That makes more sense



Quoting abra:

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


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cabrandy03
by Brandy on Feb. 5, 2013 at 2:47 PM
1 mom liked this

If the proper precautions are taken bedsharring is actually linked to lower SIDS rates then babies who sleep alone.  It's called cradle death for a reason.

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



jjchick75
by Bronze Member on Feb. 5, 2013 at 2:47 PM

Well okay let me rephrase in most cases it's not ruled SIDS if the infant dies in the parents bed. 

http://www.askdrsears.com/news/latest-news/dr-sears-addresses-recent-co-sleeping-concerns


Quoting mandapanda82:

http://life.familyeducation.com/SIDS/Co-sleeping/64358.html

Quoting jjchick75:

No. SIDS means you don't know what caused the baby die, if they died in an adult bed there is a reason for the death, therefore it's not SIDS. It can be dangerous if not done properly but there are many other countries where co-sleeping is the norm and their infant death rate from SIDS and other deaths during sleep are very low. Baby was never meant to be put in a bed alone and left. They were always supposed to be tucked in near their mommy. 

Personally I would never use CIO. I don't think that teaches anything and they wear themselves out. I babysat at night for a baby boy fromt the time he was 6 months-12 months and she made me let him cry and he would cry for 2 hours every night for the entire 6 months. There is just no way I could do that with my own child. I couldn't do it with him and cried with him. We set up bedtime routines from birth and co-sleep. That is what works for us. There is no article that could convince me it's fine to let a baby cry.  To each their own. 



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






abra
by Abra on Feb. 5, 2013 at 2:48 PM
1 mom liked this

A hearty AMEN! 

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 on Feb. 5, 2013 at 2:48 PM
Sorry, I posted before I read the clarification.

Quoting mandapanda82:

Suffocation I meant



Quoting themissheather:

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
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abra
by Abra on Feb. 5, 2013 at 2:49 PM

Ahahaha! 

Quoting mandapanda82:

They're just jealous cuz were getting sleep! Lol

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.


aimesnyc
by on Feb. 5, 2013 at 2:50 PM
1 mom liked this

Awesome.  I'm glad that your children sleep well and your method worked for your children.

However, I am sad that you completely disregard other people's feelings and neglect to put yourself in another person's shoes.  I'm sure that you would not enjoy it if someone attacked your parenting style, especially if you feel like you are doing the right thing. 

Other than the three nights that my son sleep trained, I tend to my son's cries.  That is, unless I am busy.  If I am busy at a hot stove or going to the bathroom and he wants me to hold him, he has to learn that there are simply moments where I cannot rush to him.  There is nothing wrong with crying - in fact it's pretty healthy physically and mentally.  I grew up thinking that it was not ok to cry - that it was a sign of weakness.  I do not want my son to feel that way.  So yes, I let him cry from time to time.  And guess what - he still knows that I will be there for him when he truly needs me.  He still seeks me out when he has a need to be met, and to me that is my indicator that he knows that even though my husband and I let him cry in small increments for three nights in a row when he was 6 months old, we are still there for him when he needs us.  What we do during sleep training is so far from true emotional abuse and neglect, which some children in the world unfortunately experience.  Compared to what truly abused and neglected children experience, again, your blanket statement of sleep training being cruel and heartless is just incorrect. 

Quoting audreesmama:

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 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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cabrandy03
by Brandy on Feb. 5, 2013 at 2:51 PM
1 mom liked this

I don't care which method of CIO we're talking about, I think it's cruel and isn't something I feel comfortable doing with my kids.

jellybeanjean
by Bronze Member on Feb. 5, 2013 at 2:52 PM
Tempting but cio was just too hard for me to deal with. Broke my heart!
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amy31308
by on Feb. 5, 2013 at 2:52 PM
I agree with the age part. I did cio but not until my son was 9 months old and my daughter. .. I don't remember but she was older as well. I couldn't fathom doing that to a baby younger than 6 months. All it took was 3 nights of about 10 min of crying and they went right to sleep and learned to comfort their self during the night rather than me have to get up 5 times just to put a pacifier back in their mouth.

I'd do it again as well.



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.
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