Is sleep training right for your family?
Perhaps you are having some late nights, early mornings, struggling with naps or all of the above. You’re tired, your child is tired, your family is tired and it is starting to drain on everyone. So, you’ve been thinking about sleep training your little one, but you’ve run into some road blocks in your head. Maybe you’re thinking that you are selfish for wanting to get sleep too? Or maybe you’ve heard that your little one will begin not to trust you because of sleep training? Or possibly you know that your child (and maybe even you) could use a little more help, but don’t know where to begin? Either way, if you are thinking about it at all, you may have reached as far as you can in being overtired and it is time to do something.
Is Sleep Training Selfish?
I am here to tell you that the desire for you and your child to sleep better is a loving one. The gift of sleep is one of the best gifts that you can give your child. There should be no shame in wanting more sleep for the both of you and here is why sleep is so beneficial:
- Mood – for both yourself and your child, more sleep can improve our moods! We want to be happy and have a happy child, right?
- Safety – better sleep can improve hand-eye coordination and thus help to ensure their safety.
- Cognitive Ability – children can learn new things faster when they are well rested.
- Predictability – Babies and children thrive off of predictability. Without being able to tell time at a young age, they can tell the time between events. They can learn from your cues and understand what comes next, it is a version of communication for them in a great big vast world – it is a sense of comfort for them.
- Immune system – our immune system is tied to sleep, the better rested we are the better ability our body has to fighting off infections – children and adults alike!
- Parent’s Need Rest Too – being a parent is serious business, it is a job that never ends. Being able to count on daily naps and a child that sleeps through the night, gives you a break too!
Does sleep training create a lack of trust?
Well, I can tell you from a personal standpoint that both of my kids have been sleep trained, using Good Night Sleep Site’s methodology, and both still love me very much. Even better though, both really love to sleep!! Just yesterday, I was putting my younger one down for his mid-day nap, when my older one quietly pops his head into his brother’s room and waited until I put him down. He then grabs me by the hand, walks me to his room and lifts his arms for me to put him in bed for his nap. This is almost 2 years after he was sleep trained and this is a regular occurrence. They both can still count on diapers being changed, boo-boo’s being kissed and food on the table. I know without a doubt that they trust and love me, but even better they too know that their sleep is good for them.
Scientifically, there are no studies out there to prove that kids lose trust in their parents during sleep training. The week or two that you spend sleep training is a very very small window in the grand scheme of their lives, the gift of sleep that you will be giving to them will last a lifetime!
Where to begin?
First, I would recommend that your little one be at least 4 months from his or her estimated due date. Secondly, I would ensure that your child is getting the right amount of sleep that they need to through an age appropriate schedule. Lastly, I would also recommend that you choose a method that is right for your child and your family. It is important to create a plan that you are comfortable with following through on and being consistent with using.
Once you have decided to sleep train, you may have some more questions – this post about Sleep Training Questions may help you out.
If you feel that you don’t know where to start or could use some guidance throughout the sleep training process, we at Good Night Sleep Site are always here to help.
Certified Sleep Consultant
Good Night Sleep Site Florida