To crib or not to crib? This is the question many parents find themselves contemplating as they're planning for the arrival of their little one. With a fair amount of options for babies to sleep in these days (think bassinets and co-sleepers) it's easy to forget that the OG of nighttime hangouts for babies is the crib. In recent years, the crib has been somewhat shunned; being seen as an isolating place for bambinos to snooze. But that may just be some unnecessary bad press. How does crib sleeping affect your kid later in life? The results are highly positive.
Having a crib of one's own to rest in gets the good social skills rolling. Babies start learning soon after they pop out of your belly, and setting them up for some solid life lessons can start in the crib. Even if you choose to keep your baby's crib in your room (instead of setting it up in a nursery), your little one can start to develop the ability to self-soothe during sleep times. As pediatrician Dr. William Sears wrote in an article for Parenting magazine, once your baby is between six to nine months old, they are able to begin learning self-soothing skills.
With a little nudge from you, your baby can learn how to manage falling asleep on her own as well as going back to sleep after spontaneously waking in the night. According to Baby Center, establishing a bedtime routine, being consistent, and giving you child the time and space to comfort herself, teaches your baby how to self-soothe. And it turns out this ability really gives kids an advantage down the road.
When it comes to the importance of being able to self-soothe, Dr. Vicki Panaccione, founder of the Better Parenting Institute and a child-clinical psychologist told Pregnancy and Baby that it, "is the total foundation to develop frustration tolerance, effective coping strategies, self-confidence and independence." This one tool can help your baby succeed in many areas of life.
Although co-sleeping and other bedtime options for baby has some benefits, the advantages of crib sleeping ripple out for years. To set your child up for a strong sense of managing their feelings and coping with difficulties, try putting them to sleep in a crib. It may be just the start they need to an emotionally healthy life.