Is Co-Sleeping a No-No?
By: Pinky McKay On:24 September 2021
ABOUT 80 percentof Australian parents of babies under six months will take their babies into their bed and share sleep.
This may be a conscious choice to have a family bed, it may be an early morning snuggle to get some extra zzzs or it could be a matter of survival - taking an unsettled baby into bed to get sleep for everyone!
We can’t simply say ‘sleeping with your baby is unsafe’ because the reality is that it happens - and for most of the world’s population, it’s a reality that wouldn’t be questioned. In some countries such as Japan where co-sleeping is common place, deaths from sleep accidents are rare. I know many parents who have or are sleeping snuggled next to their babies, perfectly safely. My own five babies slept with us until they eventually they outgrew the need to ‘wander in’.
The thing is though, when parents sleep with babies on sofas, if they are smokers, on medications or drugs, including alcohol that impair their awareness of their baby it isn’t safe to sleep with your baby. So, please, discuss with your partner whether you can both accept responsibility for sharing a bed with your baby and please take care to create a safe sleep space wherever you plan to put your baby to sleep.
Pinky is a best-selling author and sought-after public speaker. She also regularly appears on major network TV stations.