The Case Against Ferber Sleep Training

I think we have been truly blessed with a little girl who sleeps really well. We count our blessing every day for such a content, healthy, happy little girl. 

I know friends and family that have little ones that have medical reasons for not sleeping well or that have never sleept through the night. I know that this causes many issues, like stress and postpartum depression, all the sleep deprivation leads to pure exhaustion and therefore parents become desperate and will try anything to get their child to sleep or sleep through the night. 

The truth is we as adults don’t sleep through the night and wake many times but are able to fall asleep again. We wake for water, to use the loo, a loud sound, too hot, too cold you get the idea. So why do we expect a baby to sleep through? 

I used my own method to teach our  daughter to fall asleep on her own. I used to hold her or rock her to sleep when she was a newborn. I read that falling asleep is something you can teach them to do from 6 months onwards. Sleeping through is also something they do themselves when they are mentally able to do so. So I used to rock her until she was drowsy and then put her down in her cot and pat her bum for a few minutes and then sit in the rocking chair in her room until she fell asleep. So she could see me and knew I was with her and eventually she would fall asleep on her own. If she fussed or moaned I would give it a minute or two and then pick her up if my attempts to calm and reassure her by telling her shhh… it’s sleepy time my love and start again if she didn’t settle by picking her up calming her down rocking tillshe was calm then stop rocking and put her back down in her cot. Sometimes she was hungry and would go down after nursing or giving her a bottle now that she is older and no longer breastfed. I never let her get worked up or cry for longer than a couple minutes because I know it would only take longer for her to fall asleep because the cortisol hormone increases in her system, making it harder to fall asleep. As well as all the other health issues mentioned in the article.  

She is generally pretty good at falling asleep on her own and sleeping through the night which she did on her own but there days that she won’t fall asleep on her own, except in my arms against my chest. In my opinion she is just a baby and only once too and obviously just needs comfort from me as she may not be feeling well, going through a mental leap, which I have mentioned in a previous post. The Wonder Weeks 

There could be medical reasons why a baby doesn’t sleep through which I will post an article I read. 

I don’t believe in the Ferber method because of all the negative information I have read about this method of sleep training. I just do not have the heart to hear my child cry like that. Cortisol levels rise in a babies body, their heart rates increase, oxygen levels decrease, their only way of communicating with us and trusting we will be there for them is lost by the cry it out method, when they are left to cry for long periods of time. This makes it harder to fall asleep or settle them as well. 

I know every one is different and has different reasons for using sleep training. But this article just goes to show how it does effect a child’s mental & physical health in the moment and later on in life. 

This quote from the article just sums it up for me  “Ferber now says in interviews that he regrets some of the advice he’s given. He’s been quoted as saying that he feels badly that child health professionals are encouraging parents to leave very young babies to cry, and that it’s ok to co-sleep.”

Harvard Researchers who examined emotional learning, infant brain function and cultural differences claim that babies who are left to cry themselves to sleep suffer long-lasting damage to their nervous systems. The researchers claim that this makes these children more susceptible in later life to anxiety disorders, including panic attacks. 

 I’ll let you decide for yourself. 

The Case Against Ferber Sleep Training