The Top 3 Helpful Benefits of Crib Sleeping for your Baby
You’ve just brought your baby home from the hospital. The nursery is beautifully decorated and their crib is made and waiting for them. But are you hesitant to place your teeny tiny newborn in this seemingly gigantic crib? Don’t worry, you’re not alone! A lot of moms are unsure of what the proper sleeping arrangement should be for them and their new baby. For starters, there’s no right answer. Every infant has unique and individualized needs. For those first few months of life, having your baby near is important and convenient for nighttime feedings and bonding. But there comes a time when you may want to transition your little one into their very own crib. Here are the Top 3 helpful benefits of crib sleeping for your baby.
1. Teaches Them to Self-Soothe
In the early stage of infancy, your baby will look to for comfort among many other things. When your child is sleeping beside you in your bedroom, you instinctively soothe them when they cry, whimper or stir. And although this is completely natural and an important part of a baby feeling safe and developing trust, at a certain point in time your infant must also learn to self-soothe. This is achieved in a variety of ways from the use of a pacifier or thumb for sucking, playing soft music or a safely hung mobile. When your infant is in their crib, you won’t be able to immediately comfort or tend to them. Of course, you’ll still answer their cries, but the response will be slightly delayed. This helps them develop the skills they need to self-soothe and are the beginning steps of learning self-regulation.
2. Allows You Both to Get Much Needed Rest
Sleepless nights are an expected part of motherhood. From the moment you bring your little one home most new moms wake every few hours, several times a night for feedings and diaper changes. This is all a normal part of adjusting to a new life for both mom and baby. Although co-sleeping makes these nighttime feedings more convenient, it may make it more difficult for you to get the quality sleep you need. This is especially true if you are sharing a bed with your infant. Without realizing it, you are most likely on alert knowing your newborn is so close and may need your attention at any given moment. By allowing your baby to sleep in their own crib, both you and your child have the space and freedom needed to get a truly, good night’s sleep.
3. Fosters Independence and Security
It’s never too young to teach a child about feeling confident, independent, and secure. The first few months of life are when a baby develops a sense of security and safety at home. When you respond to their cries and needs,
they develop feelings of trust and security, knowing they can rely on you when needed. By placing your baby in their crib at night but still responding promptly to their cries, you are still fostering feelings of security
while also supporting your infant’s need for autonomy.
Sleeping in a crib provides them the space they need to sleep comfortably and they’ll soon develop the skills needed to sleep on their own. You are laying the foundation for more independent sleep patterns as your child grows older and develops into a mobile toddler. Children should feel confident sleeping alone in their bedrooms while also knowing that mommy and daddy are just a few rooms away. Crib sleeping helps babies feel comfortable and familiar with their own bedroom and surrounding.
It’s important to remember that every baby uniquely beautiful and different. Take a look at my post from last week on the Benefits of Co-sleeping and as well as benefits of crib sleeping before deciding which approach is best for you and your family.
I am a 32-year-old mother and wife of a police officer living in NJ.
I have my MFA in creative nonfiction and 10 years writing experience.
When I'm not writing I enjoy hot yoga, cardio kickboxing, running, and camping.
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