According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), all babies should be following the ABCs when it comes to sleeping. They state that babies should be sleeping alone, on their backs, and in the crib. They further recommend that your child be sleeping in the same room as you, but not on the same bed. How to break Co-Sleeping.
There are some manufactured devices that are bassinets that you can push right up to the bed, so there are lots of ways to have your baby very near you. Every parent or caregiver should prioritize safety when the baby is sleeping.
What is Co-Sleeping with Baby?
The term co-sleeping refers to sleeping nearby your baby, often in the same bed, and sometimes in the same room, but not always.
It is a common misconception that co-sleeping is nothing more than bed-sharing, but co-sleeping actually encompasses so many more options for you and your child.
For a long time, co-sleeping and bed-sharing have been contentious terms in the United States. There is much talk about co-sleeping and parents who co-sleep hide the fact they do so to avoid negative comments.
The 4 Types of Co-Sleeping;
1. Bed sharing
This is when you have your baby with you in the bed physically, sharing the same bed.
2. Bed Extension
something that attaches to the side of your bed so basically your infant isn’t in the bed with you physically but it is somehow attached to your bed so that it just extends it a little bit
3. Room Sharing
This is when you have either a portable crib or a full-size regular crib in your room, close to your bed or across the room
4. Situational Co-Sleeping
In situational co-sleeping, the baby sleeps in a crib in a separate room or in a nursery and if he cries or has trouble sleeping, the parents might bring the baby into their room and have a bed extender or even bed share.
Safe Sleeping Measures for Baby Recommended by AAP:
2. On their back
3. In their Crib
Dangers of Co-Sleeping (Bed Sharing)
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) advises against bed-sharing, which increases an infant’s risk for sudden infant death syndrome. In the opinion of the American Academy of Pediatrics, bed-sharing increases the risk of SIDS.
- Baby suffocation hazards include bedding, pillows, and adult bed mattresses that are soft or loose. Additionally, an infant can get trapped or wedged between a mattress and a headboard or wall.
- For exhausted parents who sleep deep, suffocation is a real danger, as are the chances of rolling over onto their baby (which may lead to suffocation).
- Smoking and drinking alcohol raises the risk of SIDS.
Benefits of Co-Sleeping
- One of the biggest advantages is that SIDS can be reduced by 50%
- Having your baby sleep next to you in her own room will allow you to detect any breathing difficulties she might have during the night.
- Baby sleeping in your room will make nighttime feedings and wakings easier
- Parents can check on their babies more often and sleep better, so they are more rested
How to Break Co-Sleeping
Ultimately, deciding when to stop sharing a room comes down to what feels right to your family. Some parents argue that their sleep, as well as the infant’s sleep, got worse as the baby grew older, while others contend that room-sharing did not worsen their sleep even as their babies grew older.
The following tips may help break co-sleeping
- Make sure both parents are on board with the plans for late-night awakenings. Support each other when the baby awakens in the middle of the night. It’s important to keep in mind that this is only one step in encouraging your baby’s independence and self-reliance.
- Decide what approach to take. Several approaches can work based on the temperament of your baby and your family’s preferences. Parental reassurance can help some babies sleep better in the crib.
- Share your plans with your baby. Tell them about babies who sleep through the night.
- Stress how daytime is for fun and play, while nighttime is for sleep and rest. Give them praise for every accomplishment.
- Provide your baby with a safe place to sleep without blankets, bumpers, or stuffed animals, and the room should be dark.
- Use a noise machine to help the baby sleep soundly.
- It’s important to be consistent. You and your family should choose an approach that feels comfortable to you. According to Dr. Wittenberg it can take up to 3 weeks for your baby to transition from a family bed to a crib.
- Your baby will likely protest at first; this is completely normal, so remain calm and reassuring.
- Always consult with your pediatrician if you are unsure of what approach to take.
1. You’re Going to Spoil Your Baby
The idea that one can spoil a child is false since a baby can never be spoiled. Your baby needs all the love and affection you can give, as well as your time and energy. The more of that you can give, the better!
2. Co-Sleeping Creates Dependency
There is no truth to this, children who co-sleep with their parents beyond infancy and those who bedshare tend to transition to sleeping independently with no problem of being overly dependent on their parents. The transition should be done slowly, but your child will get to a point where they are able to sleep independently by themselves.
3. Co-Sleeping Means no Sex in a Marriage
This will need your creativity; you can have sex in another room while the baby is sleeping or you can have sex during the day when baby is taking a nap. You will have to bring out your creativity.
4. The Whole family has the same bedtime
When your baby is a newborn, it is normal for you to go to bed at the same time as them. As the child grows, you can put them to bed earlier, but you do not necessarily need to go to bed at the same time.
5. Your child will sleep with you forever
As with everything else, you can train your baby to sleep on its own. Your baby can be introduced to sleeping on their own gradually. You should introduce the concept of sleeping on their own slowly until they become comfortable with it. Your baby does not have to sleep in your bed forever.
Co-Sleeping Done Safely
1. Get a bassinet that you can attach to the bed or the one that you can have in the bed with you, this will allow you to have the baby very close by while still maintaining that safety for the baby.
2. If you have to have the baby in the bed with you, make sure everyone in the bed has a separate blanket and that there are no pillows next to the baby.
3. If you are sleeping with your spouse in the bed and your child in the middle, make sure you each have your own blanket so that it doesn’t go across the child.
Products for Safe Co-Sleeping
- Nina Sena mini
- 4Moms Breeze
- Ergobaby swaddled
- Oilo sleep sack
It’s perfectly fine to keep sharing rooms as long as everyone is happy. In contrast, if you need a bit more privacy or feel your cutie will sleep better in her own room, then you need to get her one.
There has been confusion and even controversy surrounding co-sleeping, but the most important thing to remember is that room-sharing during infancy is safe and recommended in order to reduce the risk of SIDS, whereas bed-sharing is dangerous and increases the risk of SIDS. I hope you find the information and tips on how to break co-sleeping useful.