You have probably noticed that everyone has an opinion when it comes to parenting, haven’t you? This is justified though, particularly for those who are parents themselves.
However, what about the more controversial topics? Are there things that one should or shouldn’t do? Is there a good or bad way to raise your kids? Is there a right or wrong way in doing so? Needless to say, some things are more important compared to others, and thus seek more attention. One of them is the most recent piece of advice given by a pediatrician, suggesting that children should sleep with their mothers until age three.
According to a recent article in Daily Mail, Dr. Nils Bergman, of the University of Cape Town, South Africa, “Their hearts were also under more stress… Sleeping alone makes it harder for mother and child to bond – and damages the development of the brain, leading to bad behaviour as the child grows up…”
Although there have been various studies suggesting that co-sleeping results in more infant deaths, mounting evidence shows that there are other factors in these sudden deaths and that babies shouldn’t sleep alone.
According to Dr. James McKenna Ph.D of the Mother-Baby Behavioral Sleep Laboratory at University of Notre Dame, and author of Sleeping with Your Baby: A Parent’s Guide to Co-sleeping, countries with the highest number of moms sleeping with their children is associated with lowest infant mortality rates. Therefore, it is extremely important to recognize the other factors when advising the public when it comes to co-sleeping in the same bed with your child, sleeping with them in separate beds but in the same room, or have them sleep in separate room.
Dr. Berman supports this concern in an article in The Independent, detailing ls some of those factors: “When babies are smothered and suffer cot deaths, it is not because their mother is present. It is because of other things: toxic fumes, cigarettes, alcohol, big pillows and dangerous toys.”
He also emphasizes that,“Animal studies have linked the combination of stress and lack of sleep to behavioural problems in teenage years… and changes to the brain brought on by stress hormones may make it more difficult to form relationships later on, leading to problems such as promiscuity.”
Regardless of your decision on this topic, meaning whether you co-sleep with your infant or not, it is recommended to read Dr. McKenna’s article referenced here, because it gives a clear explanation of the controversy surrounding co-sleeping. It will help you make the right decision, depending on your lifestyle, housing and financial situation.
Note: Check out the articles outlined in the section below for further and more detailed information regarding co-sleeping.