Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Sleeping solutions are never easy

I had no idea what I was getting into when I wrote about Ryan getting stuck under the bumper pad. I wrote about my concerns before I really did any research. I have since done some, but not really enough to consider myself an expert by any means. But the most interesting article I read was an About.com article and I think it's convinced me that Ryan doesn't really need the bumper pads.

The article says that according to one study, it's impossible for an infant to hit his head hard enough while sleeping to cause any injury or bruising and that injury is unlikely if a child gets an arm or a leg through the bars of the crib.

Now I just have to get over the fact that they are so cute. I kept Sophia's on her bed until she was at least 18 months and even then, my husband and I had a long discussion about it first. When I talked to him about taking Ryan's bumper pads off, he was really hesitant so we kept them on. Ryan was fine last night, but I'm getting much closer to taking them off after my research. Maybe tonight will be the night.

This whole bumper pad discussion stems from a picture I posted of Ryan sleeping on his tummy. Since then, I've gotten some comments from parents who have struggled with whether or not and when they should put their baby on their belly. I think there are a lot of parents out there who are ashamed or embarrassed to admit they let their babies sleep on their belly. I was one of them, I'll admit it, but after talking to the pediatrician at Ryan's last appointment, I am way more confident. Plus, Ryan is an older and mobile infant, so I think there is less stigma for me.

I believe there is a real risk of SIDS, but at almost 7 months old, I think my son is pretty safe, and with his new found mobility there is little I can do about his sleeping position aside from sitting at his bedside and control his every movement throughout the night. Since I'd like to maintain some amount of sanity in my life, I'll skip the bedside watching.

I think it's a personal decision every parent must make on their own. I am not going to change your mind or try to convince you to think the way I think. It would be a waste of time. Being a parent means you will be forced to make hard decisions about your children for the rest of your life. Sometimes they are scary and sometimes they aren't, but I don't think they ever get easy.