LETTER: The value of sleep

I AM writing in response to your article published on your web site; Top Tips For Baby And Mum’s Best Night Sleep.

On the whole I felt it was a good article, although I do have one difference in opinion on one of the points that was made too simplistic.

Point 4: Find a room arrangement which suits you, declares that “it is safest to have baby in her own bed than in yours, particularly if you are sharing the bed with other adults or children”.

I would like to see what supporting evidence there is for that claim, particularly as in the same paragraph, the SIDS word is used. I realise that it is written not in direct correlation with that topic, but I feel that it is implied by combining the two in the same paragraph.

I would argue that the baby’s sleep is best when you feel comfortable with your choice for sleeping arrangements. My wife and 15-month-old son have always slept on a firm queen mattress on the floor by themselves, with no chance of the covers heading over my son’s head; with myself sleeping on a second mattress beside on the floor. 

It has not been a result of disrupted sleep’s last-ditch effort to try and get the baby to sleep; it has been an educated, calculated, and planned sleeping arrangement. I feel from personal experience from stories from other parents we have talked to, that the majority of people that try co-sleeping use it as a last-ditch attempt to try and get some shut-eye. 

Often this can lead to unsafe sleeping arrangements, ie: both parents are tired at the time, bed is soft, covers too high, mattress off the floor, etc.

This has proven a god-send as a sleeping arrangement, as my wife doesn’t have to wake fully to start night feeds, and has led to many easy nights.

I do believe in making life as easy as possible for couples turning into families for the first time; and I would like to see an article being a discussion about options, rather than a simplistic one liner that could rob parents of what has been in our case a wonderful experience.

We know people who co-sleep, and others that don’t; and I do not feel like this article attempted to help people make this choice.

Scott Wilson,  Port Macquarie

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