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Teaching Infants to Sleep Does No Harm

A new study suggests that sleep training methods for infants, such as the “cry it out” method, do no harm to the child, the parent, or the child parent relationship as the child grows.

Many parents look down on the “cry it out” method in particular because they believe it is cruel to the infant. They believe that it will give the infant the impression that their parents will not be there to help them.

A new study followed a group of infants who reported at 7 months to have trouble sleeping. It followed them until the age of 6, finding no negative differences between the participants who employed the “cry it out” method and the control group.

While some parents hold the infants all night, and some left them cry until they cry themselves to sleep, there are a number of different methods in between as well.  Some parents try a time staggering the approach, and some try methods that involve being near the infant, but not touching.

An infant with poor sleep quality is not only missing out on valuable sleep itself, but it disrupts the quality of the parents sleep as well.  Finding what works right for you may take time, but this study should give some relief – if they believe in crying.

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