Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
Disclaimer: The Parliamentary Library does not warrant the accuracy of closed captions. These are derived automatically from the broadcaster's signal.
Sleeping with baby -

View in ParlViewView other Segments

(generated from captions) Just get her up, play with her in about 20 minutes. and then maybe try again You just read a few books, talk to some people all that information together. and then you just mosh who has a different opinion You'd always get a different nurse and how you should be doing it. on what the baby should be doing us and that fixes it every time. Last resort, he jumps into bed with (Babies gurgle, women chat) about parenting the little ones. There are so many mixed messages about babies and sleep? But what do we really know We've created, ideologically, expectations and beliefs a set of totally unrealistic about how babies sleep. that babies should be better off It really emerged out of ideology from their parents, sleeping separate and autonomously competent and individualists because we want to make them as soon in life as is possible. and independent should be co-sleeping. Dr McKenna says babies and mothers in which a mother and baby It refers to any situation of one another, are within sensory range and respond to the sensory cues such that each can detect and signals of the other. sleeping in the bed with the parents, This means the baby can either be or simply within arm's reach. are better off in the long-term. Research shows that these babies that are able to be alone, Children that are more independent, those children are the ones of affirmation and contact that have had the most amount when they were young. and co-sleeping at risk of SIDS However, a baby can be who is smoking or is sedated. if it shares the bed with a parent that responsible co-sleeping Dr McKenna quotes studies which show reduces the risk of SIDS. supervision of the adult, Babies sleeping outside the in a crib, in a room by itself, the chance of dying has two to three times from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. but it's thought that co-sleeping It's unclear why, puts the baby in a protected state. We see oxygenation levels, as being greater. which we've measured in a lab, We see breathing more stable. clinically normal for the baby We see thermo-regulation more when that mother is present. and things like that You hear a lot about SIDS made me feel safe. and just having him right there I knew he was alive. (Laughs) breathing and everything's good. I could have a little look and he's But other parents choose as soon as possible. to put their babies in another room So noisy, so it's easier to put them in their own room. you're getting some sleep. At least that way is getting up for work, My husband also get him up if I could. so I kind of not want to really once he was put in his own room. He was much better getting up to her Didn't want her to feel me or something like that. if she just made a little murmur she was in her own space, So I just made sure and, yeah, more independent. some modern-day parenting methods. Professor McKenna is critical of dad have a very different situation It's clear that the mother and the or paeleolithic ancestors. than our paeleocine ancestors It might be tempting to say, to learn to fit in.' 'Well, these babies have got you can make. Well, that's a decision in fact, will fit in. But don't expect that the babies, But Dr Harriet Hiscock says significantly in the last 30 years. demands on parents have changed who very clearly from the onset say, There's some families 'We are gonna fit around our baby.' carry the babies a lot more, And they tend to often feed them a lot more regularly with the baby. and even share a sleeping space this just really is not possible For other families where they've got to go to work in this modern day and age for other children. or they've got to care important time for co-sleeping Professor McKenna believes the most is while the baby is breastfeeding. the medical organisations, We know that most of American Academy of Paediatrics, including the for the first year of life. recommends that babies breastfeed for babies to be relatively close So it wouldn't be unusual at all in the same room with the parents. as much after those six months, The babies won't be feeding quite and maybe mothers will at that point or seven or eight months sleeping separately in another room. feel that their babies can handle are programmed to cry The reality is that newborns and wake up for regular feeding. the size of their brain They're going to double to triple and guess how that happens? in the first year of life and breastfeeding and sleeping. They do it by breastfeeding

culturally or write a memo saying, We can't just nullify that these babies out of the bed.' 'Hmm, you know, we've gotta get Why? Who said? Where's the evidence? That's not even a scientific truth. That is not a medical truth. and a construction. That's a cultural choice ought to know the difference. Parents at the very least just won't stop crying? But what do you do if your baby This is such a controversial issue. Do you soothe them until they stop? Or do you just let them cry it out? I just let her cry it out really distressed and she needs me, but if she does start to sound and walk straight back out. I'll go in and give her a dummy I don't pick her up or anything. to pick her up every time she cries. She needs to learn I'm not going screaming and it just feels awful Sometimes they cry and they're I won't be able to do this for long. and I can't... yeah. I'll be going in there in a minute, is called controlled crying. What these mothers are talking about I think that controlled crying is an unfortunate and unnecessary social invention - very, very recent. There are no people on the planet that actually, other than western industrialised folks, that actually even know what that is. They're not trying to be selfish. They're really communicating their love and affection and their needs for you. It's a pretty pure emotion. It's something somewhat to be celebrated, despite the fact that it can be hard. The definition of controlled crying is often understood as leaving a baby to cry until it's exhausted. It's something Dr Hiscock doesn't advocate and that's why she prefers the definition 'controlled comforting.' Controlled comforting refers to settling your baby in their cot or bassinette briefly and then leaving the baby for increasing time intervals where they may be grizzling or they may be crying to let the baby have a chance to put themselves back to sleep. Recent studies by Dr Hiscock show that controlled comforting has no adverse impact on a child's behavioural development. In fact, she says there were some benefits. Controlled comforting works in about 70 to 80% of the babies to improve their sleep. and that, in turn, is associated with a reduction in postnatal depression symptoms. Interestingly, 45% of Aussie mothers develop postnatal depression if their baby has a sleep problem. The baby waking up overnight we know from our work, is associated with a doubling to tripling of the risk of postnatal depression. A mum who's depressed finds it very hard to function, she can't enjoy her baby, and that has long-term impacts on the baby's social and emotional development, as well as on their language development. We don't to produce very unhappy and disappointed and exhausted parents - this is a given. At the same time, the baby's emotions, the baby's physiologies are not going to be subject to cultural nullification. Having a newborn can be stressful, and in the end, sleep time for mum and baby is likely to be a compromise. Ahead on Catalyst, sleeping off the pain. The ultimate relief. Young or old, most of us complain about not getting enough sleep, and here to discuss this with me is sleep expert Professor Drew Dawson. Welcome, Drew. Hi, Maryanne. Did you get enough sleep last night?