Co-sleeping – when a parent and child sleep within a “sensory” distance of each other. This means that each can tell that the other is nearby, whether by touch, sight, or even smell. Now, choosing whether or not to co-sleep involves many factors to consider. How often you would co-sleep, how secure you feel in the safety of it, and whether or not it will suit you and your family’s lifestyle. Many different families involve many different sleeping situations, so deciding if a specific variety works for you is completely up to you and your partner.
There are different types of co-sleeping with your little one that you can try – the point is to find the style that works with your family. Let’s take a look at each variety…
The parents sleep in the same bed as the child.
This is when there is a crib securely attached to one side of the parent’s bed with three sides of the crib left intact (while the one next to the bed is lowered or removed).
Simply having a crib or bassinet in the room near the parents’ bed.
Along with these different types of co-sleeping, there are also advantages associated with them. These include…
- Parents often get more sleep
- Babies often get more sleep
- Helps babies fall asleep more easily
- Having the baby close by makes breastfeeding during the night easier
- Which helps maintain your milk supply
- Helps reduce the risk of SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome.
Now that we’ve covered the advantages, it’s time to make sure you are co-sleeping as safely as possible, this means…
- Place your baby on their back to sleep
- Have a firm sleep surface
- Use bedding that is tight fitting to the mattress
- Make sure there are no loose pillows, stuffed animals, or soft blankets near your baby’s face
- Make sure there is no space between the bed and an adjoining wall where your baby could roll and become trapped
- When bed-sharing, do not swaddle your baby
- If your baby is under four months of age, it is a better idea to choose a sidecar arrangement or room-sharing rather than bed-sharing.
- Don’t place your baby to sleep alone in an adult bed
- Do not bed-share if you are under the influence of alcohol or any medication that makes you drowsy
As it was mentioned before, there is no guaranteed method that will work for your family. So, it is up to you to consider each and every possible option in order to choose the type that fits your lifestyle best. With a bit of trial and error, you will eventually find a method that suits your family.