1 hr 7 min

Ep. 62: What do we really know about Crying It Out‪?‬ Evolutionary Parenting Podcast

    • Kids & Family

As we know, sleep is one of the most talked-about topics for new parents. None of them are getting enough, and everyone is worried about it. In Western cultures, parents are often made to feel that the only way to get sleep is to leave their baby to cry to learn to sleep alone, something called 'crying it out'. This can be modified slightly where parents leave their child for intervals of time, often called 'controlled crying' or 'controlled comforting'. Importantly, the age at which we recommend this to families has gotten younger and younger over the years, and even who we recommend it to has changed. Whereas it was once recommended for families with severe problems, it's now recommended as a preemptive move parents should take to avoid problems. But what does the research say about these changes? Do they support the use of this type of sleep training? Joining me to discuss this is Macall Gordon, a researcher specializing in infant mental health who has reviewed the research in depth and is here to share these findings. Whether you're surprised or not, the findings are ones that should be more widely discussed for they have major implications for all families.

Thank you so much for listening, that's it for this week. I hope if you're one of those families who has felt pressure to sleep train but it isn't for you or you don't even feel there's a problem, you can feel better about saying no. And if you are struggling, I would add that there are other methods you can use that do not require you to leave your baby to cry and I would strongly recommend starting there, especially as we discussed here - often there are underlying issues that should be examined. Until next time, stay safe and happy parenting.

Macall Gordon, M.A.: https://www.antioch.edu/faculty/macall-gordon/
Relevant papers to the discussion:
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S2352721822000778
https://connect.springerpub.com/content/sgrcl/13/2/65.abstract

If you are struggling with your child's sleep and want to find out if something may be underlying the problem, you can try the Brief Infant and Toddler Sleep Screen, something I devised to help families determine what - if anything - is affecting their child's sleep: https://evolutionaryparenting.com/test/bitss/

As we know, sleep is one of the most talked-about topics for new parents. None of them are getting enough, and everyone is worried about it. In Western cultures, parents are often made to feel that the only way to get sleep is to leave their baby to cry to learn to sleep alone, something called 'crying it out'. This can be modified slightly where parents leave their child for intervals of time, often called 'controlled crying' or 'controlled comforting'. Importantly, the age at which we recommend this to families has gotten younger and younger over the years, and even who we recommend it to has changed. Whereas it was once recommended for families with severe problems, it's now recommended as a preemptive move parents should take to avoid problems. But what does the research say about these changes? Do they support the use of this type of sleep training? Joining me to discuss this is Macall Gordon, a researcher specializing in infant mental health who has reviewed the research in depth and is here to share these findings. Whether you're surprised or not, the findings are ones that should be more widely discussed for they have major implications for all families.

Thank you so much for listening, that's it for this week. I hope if you're one of those families who has felt pressure to sleep train but it isn't for you or you don't even feel there's a problem, you can feel better about saying no. And if you are struggling, I would add that there are other methods you can use that do not require you to leave your baby to cry and I would strongly recommend starting there, especially as we discussed here - often there are underlying issues that should be examined. Until next time, stay safe and happy parenting.

Macall Gordon, M.A.: https://www.antioch.edu/faculty/macall-gordon/
Relevant papers to the discussion:
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S2352721822000778
https://connect.springerpub.com/content/sgrcl/13/2/65.abstract

If you are struggling with your child's sleep and want to find out if something may be underlying the problem, you can try the Brief Infant and Toddler Sleep Screen, something I devised to help families determine what - if anything - is affecting their child's sleep: https://evolutionaryparenting.com/test/bitss/

1 hr 7 min

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