I wonder if shared bed is it safe for the baby? Until what age can the child sleep with the parents? Are there consequences for children who sleep with their parents? If you have these and other questions about shared beds, see this article for a complete guide on the subject.
Next I will talk about the advantages and disadvantages of sleeping with children and tell you a little about my experience with this subject. So, check out the article to the end to understand the truth about the shared bed.
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Can children sleep with their parents?
There is a huge discussion on that subject. On the one hand, experts talk about the benefits for babies of sharing a bed with their parents. On the other hand, organizations warn of the risks that this practice can offer. Therefore, it is important to make clear some considerations on this subject.
- Sleeping with the parents brings benefits to the baby and the mother: According to James McKenna, there is evidence that the shared bed helps the mother rest and contributes to the baby’s breastfeeding. The data were obtained in a study conducted by the University of Notre Dame in the United States.
- Sleeping with the parents increases the risk of sudden death: according to the Brazilian Society of Pediatrics, there is a higher incidence of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome on babies who sleep in shared beds.
- Sleeping with the parents increases the risk of suffocation: Several health agencies, studies and scientific journals warn of the risk of suffocation of babies because of sheets, pillows and other items present in the parents’ bed.
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7 myths and truths about the shared bed
- The couple’s intimate life is undermined by sleeping with their children: MYTH. Parents don’t need to have their private lives just in bed and there are times when they can enjoy their privacy.
- Sleeping with the baby makes night care easier: TRUTH. It is much easier to breastfeed, change diapers and take care of the baby while in the same bed.
- Babies get sick of sleeping with their parents: DEPEND. Every child is different, as are their parents. What determines that is the upbringing in general.
- The bonds between parents and children who sleep together are greater: MYTH. The strengthening of the emotional bond does not depend on the shared bed, but on a set of everyday actions.
- There are risks in making the shared bed: TRUTH. If not done with due care, there is a risk of sudden death, strangulation, suffocation and even the child falling out of bed.
- It is possible to make a shared bed safely: TRUTH. There are ways to make the practice safe.
- It’s hard to get the kid out of his parents’ bed after: TRUTH. Convincing the child to sleep in his own room is more difficult when there is adherence to the shared bed.
What are the advantages and disadvantages of shared beds?
Considering all that has been mentioned so far, the main advantages é:
- Possibility of caring for the baby easily at night
- Bigger rest for mommy in the first few months;
- Possibility to better watch the baby in his sleep;
- Easier breastfeeding.
Already the disadvantages are:
- Attachment, of children and parents, in some cases;
- Risks to the baby’s health if not done safely;
- Difficulty convincing the child to sleep alone in the future.
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How to make a shared bed safely?
The Brazilian Society of Pediatrics recommends that shared beds should not be made, as there are more risks than benefits for the health of babies. However, the organization recommends that babies sleep in the same room as their parents until they are 6 months old in their own crib. This way it is possible to take better care of the baby, rest and benefit from breastfeeding.
Therefore, the organization and other health institutions recommend the use of shared beds, as long as the baby is not placed directly in the parents’ bed. It is also important to avoid pillows, blankets, plush toys and other bulky things that might suffocate the baby.
Well, the shared bed around here has always existed. In fact, before I married Luiz Miguel already slept with me, it was a double bed for the two of us, after I dismantled the crib.
As soon as I got married, he had the little room set up for him, it was a period of adaptation, I would wake up at night and go to my room, and I would go back to bed with him, I would lie with him until I slept. And that way we could win that process.
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With Laura, it’s getting a lot harder, because if she’s like her mother… it’ll take time. I slept with my parents until about 12/13 years. Laura is going the same way, she sleeps, I put her in bed, every day she goes to my bed at 2am. And honestly, I don’t have to get up and go back to her bed anymore. It’s so automatic, she goes up and lies in our bed herself. She’s always slept with us, so that process is more complicated today.
I go on like this, without neuroses, because that coziness is very good. And you, you do shared bed or do you intend to? Tell us about your experience with this topic.