I'm not a fan of letting babies cry it out. I've always responded to my kids' cries in the night and never did any increments of timed crying when putting them to bed. But if sleep training has worked for you, I don't think you are an evil dragon breathing fire into babies faces in the night. Let's just sort of agree to disagree. I'm still going to tell you about this new study though. It may come as a bit of a jolt to CIO parents, but the latest study is saying that whether or not a kid sleeps through the night is a genetic thing. Which makes any kind of training seem torturous.
Sleep training debunked by latest study saying sleeping through the night is a genetic thing. Babies are predispositioned to either be good sleepers allowing mommy and daddy plenty of zzzs or they are born to make you into a zombie.
Jacques Montplaisir, MD, PhD, of Sacré-Coeur Hospital in Montreal, studied 995 sets of twins (405 identical) 6 months of age to 2 years old and discovered that genes played the biggest role in getting kids to sleep. Genetics was shown to affect 47 percent of kids who were 6 months old sleeping through the night; 58 percent at 30 months, and 54 percent at 2 years. Researchers also reminded that sleeping through the night is in fact a myth -- even the best sleepers woke up three times on average in the night. They just were able to stay calm and carry on with sleep.
I have twins. My son is the most amazing sleeper in the world -- he loves his naps and happily goes to bed at night and sings himself to sleep sometimes. My daughter is the very reason many people try crying it out. She's the complete opposite of my son and they were raised the exact same way. I'm shaking my fist at whatever genes she inherited and my son did not. We can't change genetics. Forcing sleep training seems cruel based on these findings.
This study also revealed that environmental factors influence on how long or well kids napped. Shalini Paruthi, MD, a pediatric sleep specialist at Saint Louis University in St. Louis, said: "You really want to make sure your environment is as good as it can be," she told MedPage Today, which might include "keeping a dark and quiet room for them to sleep in and making sure they have their own sleep space so they're not bumping into a sibling on the mattress or on the bed."
Sleep, sweet sleep. We never get enough of it. It makes us a bit loopy when we are deprived. We just have to keep our eyes on the future and look forward to the time when our kids are teenagers and sleeping until noon. By then we'll have a much larger set of issues to deal with making this seem small in comparison.
What do you think of these findings? Do you sleep train your kids?
Image via © iStock.com/Jason Lugo