Co sleeping is defended by many parents who indicate the benefits of sleeping with their babies and indicate that it is the most natural was practiced over the centuries in many communities. On the contrary, there are those who only see negative effects on co sleeping with the baby and prefer to have their babies sleep in the cribs. Between the two extremes, there are a multitude of options such as the rather extended co sleeping of the occasional or the co sleeping that avoids the co sleeping during the first months of the baby’s life. Let’s what the scientific evidence and experts say about it.
Scientifically, it is difficult to pinpoint the suitability or not of co sleeping with the baby. However, the Associations of Pediatrics does not recommend the practice of co sleeping, at least during the first year of life, as it would have been related to the Syndrome Sudden Infant Death (SIDS) which is defined as the death of a child that is unexpected by history and in which no cause is shown.
This fact, supporting Associations of Pediatrics would be relevant during the first months of the baby, but not after, when the risk of sudden death disappears. For the first months, these associations recommend cohabitation, the baby may sleep in a co sleeper near to the parents’ bed, which would allow the advantages and breastfeeding on demand and immediate assistance to the baby but would avoid the risks of associated with sleep in the same bed with the baby. However, for anyone who decides to co sleep with the baby, there are certain guidelines that make a safer practice of co sleeping.
- The mattress has to be firm and wide enough for the two or three of them and you should avoid soft mattresses, water mattresses or bedding with the baby on a sofa.
- The quilt, blanket or duvet should not be too heavy.
- The baby is on his/her back.
- Parents do not smoke, or at least never do it in the room, or drink alcohol, or take any sedatives, or have significant obesity.
Opting for co sleeping is a personal choice of each family and will depend on many factors and in which nobody should interfere. However, you can make co sleeping safer with a co sleeper instead of having the baby lying on the bed and you can find out more about co sleepers here.