Sunday, March 13, 2011

Back to Sleep?

A number of years ago the "powers that be" told every new mom that we needed to lay our babies down to sleep on their backs--- AND ON THEIR BACKS ONLY---otherwise the chance of losing our little ones to SIDS was greatly increased. All three of my previous children slept exactly that way as infants--- on their backs, which brings me to my current problem..... Warren is a tummy sleeper!

Every night, I lay this boy down to sleep on his back, or even on his side, and he will sleep at the most 3 hours- but usually only about an hour and a half at a time. But, during the day when I lay him on his tummy to nap on the couch and get his "tummy time" (another must-do proclaimed by the powers that be in order to fix the whole flat-head and weak-neck issues brought about by the "back-to-sleep" campaign) he sleeps dreamlessly for hours on end! Just look at how peaceful he is!
So what is a mom to do? I know that if I put him down on his tummy at night I could go back to actually sleeping and then possibly join the living some time soon. ( Instead of my current state of wandering around in my unbuttoned pajamas all day staring off into space in a foggy stupor.) But, I won't/can't do it! The pediatric profession has made me too paranoid! I could never live with myself if my baby became a statistic because I wanted to sleep at night. Thus he only gets his precious tummy sleep when it's day time and I am awake to check on the rise and fall of his back every few minutes or so.

Stanton is convinced that the whole "Back to Sleep" program is based on bad science- or some study done in rural Australia with suffocating sheep skins or something... but even if that were true... there is still that little OCD voice in my head saying, "But what if they're right?" "What if there is only a .00001% chance that they are right?--- Do you want to take the risk?"

It's so frustrating to live inside my brain!!

So.....we continue on. We DON'T sleep all night-- on our backs, and we sleep A LOT during the day-- on our tummies.

Oh sweet delicious sleep!

7 comments:

Bethany said...

5 out of 6 of mine slept on their stomachs from the very beginning (like as soon as we're home from the hospital). The 6th one (who was actually our 1st) slept in her carseat. I leave the hospital early just so I can put them on their stomachs and sleep myself. I had one doctor tell me that if the baby doesn't sleep than the mom doesn't sleep and the mom needs to sleep. The same doctor told me that the difference they found in that study was miniscule. He also told me that there are a lot of SIDS factors (smoking, fluffy bedding, low birth weight baby, etc., etc.) that are far more important than back vs. stomach, and if that was the only one going against me that my baby was going to be fine.

Anyway, do what you feel you need to do (obviously), but we all survived on our stomachs.

Good luck -- and get some sleep!

Danika said...

I know what you mean! I remember the first time my mother-in-law came to visit when Brandon (our oldest) was a baby. She put him down on the couch to nap while we played a game right next to him. I was HORRIFIED...but then realized it was the first time he had slept longer than 30 minutes without being held! She tried to convince me to always let him sleep on his tummy, but I just couldn't do it - it wasn't worth the risk. So we endured many months of horrible sleep for my peace of mind.
But after experiencing my friend lose her baby to SIDS this January (not sure whether her baby was sleeping on his back or tummy) and watching her grieve it is definitely not worth the risk. I could never live with the guilt if my baby passed away because I wanted more sleep or peace.

ZAC said...

Amanda, Warren is BEAUTIFUL! He is seriously perfect. Congratulations to you, Stanton and your family. About sleeping children on their stomachs: When I had Noelle(#3), I bumped into a friend who claimed that babies sleep better on their tummies. So I determined to give it a shot. I tested the theory during naps everyday and when I felt confident that she would not have any problems through the night, I let her sleep through the night that way too. I did the same thing with #4 and they're both great! And not too long ago, someone told me that when babies sleep on their tummies, the brain develops faster. Something you might want to research. Just my two bits! Good luck!

Anne said...

it's all about instinct. sounds like you are handling it perfect.

holly said...

oh my...he is such a cutie!! I wish I could just pick him up and kiss those sweet cheeks. I'm so happy for you guys! I hope that you get some sleep soon . :)

Kristy said...

a study by Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine showed that SIDS drops by 72% if you put a fan in the room with baby. they think it's the reinhalation of carbon dioxide that causes SIDS. hope that calms some fears and congratulations, he's adorable!

Jenni said...

I believe that those "powers that be" are the makers of those helmets for babies with flat heads. I think it is one of the biggest scams going... "Let's get together and tell all the parents that it is best for babies to sleep on their backs, we'll provide all of this medical research, statistics etc. and scare them to death...the babies will get flat heads and not sleep a wink, the parents will be so sleep deprived and desperate, that they will pay LOADS of money to buy our head-unflattening-helmets!" And laugh all the way to the bank! I had a doctor tell me once that babies feel like they are falling when they sleep on their backs, so they don't sleep well, it's unnatural. It's a tricky situation...darn those powers that be! He is so sweet looking. Congrats!

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