We talk about co-sleeping when children sleep with their parents in the same bed. There are groups and associations that defend or attack this practice.
In this way we can see that, the defenders of this practice say that it helps the development of the bond of the little ones with their parents; on the other hand, his detractors say that there are cases in which he can pose a risk to the baby on a physical and emotional level.
In many cultures, such as the Japanese, co-sleeping is a common and natural practice, while our culture still considers it “inappropriate”. In any case, when you decide to sleep with the baby, after The question arises as to whether co-sleeping with older children is correct.
The ideal way to stop co-sleeping is for the child to be prepared, therefore there is no specific age in which the children should start sleeping alone and put aside the practice of co-sleeping.
Sleep is a process in which various physiological and psychological factors are involved. Thus, the evolution of each child in terms of sleep is different, since the personal characteristics of the child influence the way they sleep. For this reason, the pace and needs of each child must be respected.
Even so, and without forgetting that each family has its own rhythms, many experts recommend practicing co-sleeping until the child reaches 5 years of age. When they sleep alone, parents should accompany them until they fall asleep. Generally, it will be around 7 or 8 years when children tend to be more autonomous in terms of sleep and can do without the company of their parents to sleep.
There are studies that show the benefits of this practice:
- Sleeping in the same bed reinforces the affective bond between the parents and the child, being the shared dream something that facilitates family interaction. Therefore, the longer it is practiced, the better it will be for the little one.
- Some studies show that co-sleeping shows that children have more self-esteem, self-control, self-confidence, stress tolerance and higher degree of happiness. However, there are psychiatrists who say that co-sleeping leads children to be poorly autonomous, manipulative and with socialization problems.
- To be really beneficial it must practice in a natural and consensual way by parents. Although there are also studies that emphasize the disadvantages of co-sleeping.
- Sleeping with parents has been found to lead to various sleep problems for the child, they would sleep less time, they would take longer to fall asleep and also they would wake up more times during the night.
We can only come to the conclusion that parents should not go by extremes. The best will be get carried away by instinct. Choose to pay attention to what the experts say or not, but with the certainty that what in the end they decide is the parents and not get carried away by pressure.
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