What are the benefits of co-sleeping with baby? Are there any? What are the risks involved? Will I hurt my baby? The answers to these and other questions are discussed below.
Feel free to leave your feedback in the comments below and let us know whether you agree or disagree.
Benefits of Co-sleeping with Baby
Mom and Baby Get More Sleep at Night
- This is the highlight of the whole discussion, and one of the biggest perks to co-sleeping with your baby.
- Because your baby is literally right beside you, the baby will feel more comfortable and safe and will likely sleep longer because of this.
- If baby sleeps longer, then mom also sleeps longer.
- It’s a win-win for both parties.
- Babies need adequate amount of sleep at night to ensure proper brain development and function. Disrupted sleep can lead to problems later in the future.
Reduced Risk of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome)
- The risk of SIDS is highest during the 1st year of life.
- Sleeping in the same room as your baby reduces this risk. Having your baby in the same bed has also been shown to reduce the risk of SIDS.
- Because you are closer to your baby, you are more likely to help your baby in the night if anything goes wrong.
Close Proximity to Baby for Night-time Feeds and Dipaer Changes
- Another great plus to co-sleeping!
- Parents always seek convenient ways to make their lives easier.
- If you are a breastfeeding mama, and you have co-slept with your baby, you will agree that the convenience of not having to get up to feed your baby is totally worth it!
- There are different breastfeeding positions, and you can try and test different orientations that work best for you and your baby.
Lying on your side while breastfeeding in bed is one of the easiest ways to feed your baby while lying down.
- If you have all your changing items right next to your bed, then you might not even have to get out of your bed to change your baby’s diaper at night. This again, saves you time and allows you to use less energy at night.
Milk Supply is Maintained
- For breastfeeding moms, nighttime feeds are made easy because you and your baby are in the same place.
- Breastfeeding throughout the night allows your breasts to constantly produce more milk which helps to maintain your milk supply for your baby.
Strong Bonds are Formed
- Babies love affection. Babies love to feel safe. Sleeping with your baby helps to build that security they need. The bonds formed between mom and baby while sleeping are undeniably strong.
- You form this incredibly intimate connection with this tiny human, that will melt your heart.
Free Cuddles All Night Long
- This one needs no explanation. As long as you don’t squeeze too tight, your baby will love your close affection 🙂
Ways to Co-sleep
Baby Sleeping in Bed on Mattress
- This is the one that’s used more often because it’s the cheaper option.
- Usually, a section of the bed is dedicated to your baby and you and/or your partner will share the rest of the bed. It is not advised to put baby in the middle if you or your partner is a “wild sleeper”.
- If your bed is up to the wall, then this can work well for a baby that’s slightly mobile, to prevent falling off the bed.
*Again, be extremely careful that your baby doesn’t get lodged in between the bed and the wall*
Using a Baby Bed
This is the safer option, but more costly.
- A baby bed is a small cot-like bed that is placed on your bed for the baby to sleep in. It is usually enclosed so your baby can’t fall out as easily.
- An affordable option is “The First Years Close And Secure Sleeper” on Amazon.
If you’re looking for another co-sleeping option, learn more about the Dockatot from Amazon in my review.
Risks of Co-sleeping with Baby
Possible Suffocation of Baby
This is the main risk associated with co-sleeping.
- Suffocation can come from blankets, pillows, or from someone rolling over on the baby.
- Ensure that the area where the baby is sleeping is free of extra blankets, comforters, pillows, sheets and loose fabric. This is a suffocation hazard for a baby, especially if they are not yet mobile, and can’t remove items from their face.
This is very important! If you or your partner sleeps wild or rolls around a lot, it is not safe for your baby to sleep with you, whether in the middle or at the end of the bed.
Don’t Sleep with Jewelry or Strings on Clothing
- This can be a choking or strangling hazard for the baby. Babies love to pull at necklaces and other jewelry, and during sleep, this can be to their detriment.
- Even earrings and other piercings can be a hazard for your baby if sleeping beside them.
Possible Future Implications
Child will Always Want To Sleep in your Bed
- This is more out of habit than anything else. If your child is used to doing something, then they will be thrown off or throw a fit if something changes in their routine.
- This doesn’t mean that your child is rude, it’s just what they have been comfortable with and where they feel safe.
- This is just something to keep in mind for the future.
Transitioning to Own Bed Might be Troublesome
- This ties into the above point. You have to keep in mind that children thrive on routine.
- Anything out of the ordinary will make for a difficult situation.
- You will have to take baby steps when trying to get your child to sleep in their own bed
- Make their room fun – and their bed even more comfortable. Maybe try a themed room to make them want to be there.
The Bottom Line
Co-sleeping is not for everyone because each parent will feel differently about the whole idea.
But if you choose to do so, and do it safely, it can be a wonderful experience for you and your baby.
I did it for a little while and enjoyed the convenience and bonding more than anything else.
Safety is the most important factor in your decision, and having a baby bed makes things a little easier.
Are you for or against co-sleeping? Why or Why not? Share your opinions in the comments below.
Thanks for reading 🙂