Nobody Puts Baby in the Corner, but Don’t be Afraid to Put Them in the Crib

For most parents, bedtime is a joyful occasion. Knowing their children are safely and peacefully snuggled in bed, it’s the time that parents can figuratively “clock-out” and take some time to unwind. When a young baby is in the picture, it is often a different story. Babies are notorious for waging anti-sleep campaigns while parents helplessly try and sooth them despite their own extreme exhaustion. For parents who feel guilty letting baby cry, a new research study suggests that it may be time to give that method a try. Your text to link…
The study published in the journal Pediatrics focused on 43 infants described by their parents as having sleep problems but being otherwise healthy. The parents were told to try two different methods that involved allowing the child to cry for short periods of time called graduated extinction and bedtime fading. Researchers found that both of the sleep techniques decreased the time it took children to fall asleep and graduated extinction even helped to reduce night wakings. The researchers did not find any negative emotional impact.
The first author on the study Wendy Middlemiss, an associate professor of educational psychology at the University of North, cautioned parents that “you have to be responsive. You can’t let them cry for long periods of time”.
The researchers agree that while the sleep training techniques used may not be for everyone, this study will help alleviate guilt for exhausted parents who may decide to give them a try.