An introduction to side-sleeping

When it comes to sleeping methods with your new-born, there is a lot of information available about the different methods that parents can choose from. Whilst the NHS recommends that the safest place for a baby to sleep is in the parent’s bedroom for at least the first six months, there is a lot of debate about the safest way to do so, from having a Moses basket in the room to co sleeping or side sleeping.

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What is side sleeping?

Side sleeping is a way of sleeping with your little one next to you during the night, but still keeping them in their own crib. A side sleeping crib attaches to the parents bed and allows very close proximity between parent and baby without having to share a bed or bed covers. A side-sleeping crib such as the Chicco Next2Me is designed with a side panel that can be lowered, allowing parents to reach their little one during the night for night feeds and comforting.

 

What are the benefits of side sleeping?

Side sleeping has many benefits for both baby and parents but without any of the potential dangers associated with sharing the same bed as your new born. The benefits of side sleeping include helping new-borns adjust to sleeping patterns, making night-time feeding easier and encouraging baby-parent bonding.

 

Putting your baby to sleep in their own separate bedside cot also enables you to follow two simple safety rules for new born – the ‘Feet to Foot’ rule and the ‘ABC’ method. The ‘Feet to Foot’ safety rule for new-borns is the idea that your baby’s feet should be close to or touching the foot of the cot or crib with the covers safely arranged so that your baby cannot shuffle below the covers, whilst the ‘ABC’ method refers to putting your baby to sleep alone on their back in a cot or crib.

 

Is side-sleeping safe?

When it comes to sleeping with a baby, a side-sleeping crib is one of the safer methods that parents can opt for. Not only does it reduce the risk of little one overheating from the heat produced by a duvet and body heat, but it also reduces the risk of accidental suffocation or that baby might roll or fall out of the bed.  Research across Europe also found that the risk of sudden infant death (SIDs) was significantly lower when babies were left to sleep in the same room, but not in the same bed as the parents.

 

Ultimately whether you put your baby to sleep in the same bed as you or separately comes down to personal choice, but it is also really important to understand the potential dangers involved in sharing the same bed as your new-born before making that decision.

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