Most pediatricians warn against it. Most moms do it, at least occasionally. 

What is it?

Cosleeping, parents and infants sleeping in the same bed.

I recall those busy nights. Up every few hours to feed the baby. Sleep deprivation is a way of life. Right now my son and my daughter-in-love are living the infant, night feeding, little sleep experience.

Many new parents struggle with having their newborn in his or her own room. So here are some things to consider regarding where and how your little one sleeps.

  1. Be aware of the  things you can do to prevent SIDs: place your baby on his back, use a firm mattress (no pillow, waterbed,  sheepskin, or  bean bag mattresses) don’t cover the baby’s head with a blanket, don’t smoke, and if you are able breastfeed.
  2. Be aware of possibility of the baby falling off a surface or getting lodged into a crevice if he is not in a crib, play-yard, or bassinet– even if he isn’t rolling over yet. (My little grand, Matty, at only a couple days old whips his right arm so that his body flings from his back to his side. You just never know what these wee ones are capable of so err on the side of caution.) Avoid putting the baby on a couch or sofa, the  crib or bassinet mattress should fit snugly into the frame. Adult beds are not designed with infants or young children in mind. 
  3.  If you and your spouse decide to have your baby sleep in the same room as you ( thinking you may get more sleep and the baby will be safer) the best solution is to keep a bassinet in the room next to your bed.  This way the baby will sleep alongside you but in his own spot. It has been documented that parents and babies wake up more often during the night while cosleeping.
  4. If you are a smoker, take sedatives, consume alcohol, are obese, or have long hair (long hair may strangle the baby) do not have your baby in bed with you.

Suffocation and strangulation are the real risks of cosleeping. If you still choose to use this method it is important you know the potential risks prior to making that choice.

Ultimately the decision of whether or not to cosleep is up to the parents. Get all the facts and speak with your doctor to help you decide what is best for you and your baby.

Safety first. Sleep….well.. second.

  In peace I will lie down and sleep,
for you alone, Lord,
make me dwell in safety.
Psalm 4:8
      

 

© LoriWildenberg. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Lori Wildenberg is a licensed parent and family educator, parent coach, and co-founder of 1Corinthians13Parenting.com. She has written 5 books including Messy Journey: How Grace and Truth Offer the Prodigal a Way Home. and her most recent book Messy Parenting: Powerful and Practical Ways to Strengthen Family ConnectionsContact Lori for your next event or for parent consulting or parent training courses. Lori can also be found mentoring over at the MOMS Together Group on Facebook.