Stacey Solomon is never far from the media. She has brought us all on a raw journey of motherhood since welcoming her third son Rex with partner Joe Swash.
She recently posted a beautiful picture of Rex lying on her bed with the caption:
"Happy Saturday! Don't worry he obviously doesn't sleep in bed with us or with any duvets we just love playing with him in there. And this picture was too good to miss."
Despite the adorable snap people were quick to comment on the fact that Solomon felt the need to defend herself even with just the mention of co-sleeping.
One of her two million followers said- "Absolutely nothing wrong with safe co-sleeping. In fact, it's proven to reduce the risk of SID if practised correctly. All my babies slept in my bed for the first 2 years of their lives and all breastfed too. Made sleeping for all of us a lot easier."
Another said: "Shame you feel you need to explain yourself because you know some people will pick fault in everything you do... Beautiful boy".
What is co-sleeping?
Co-sleeping is simply when you sleep close enough to your baby that you can see, hear, touch or smell each other.
Bed-sharing is a form of co-sleeping. It is when a new-born and their mum sleep together in the same bed. There are pros and cons to bed-sharing and if you are co-sleeping, it is crucial it is done safely.
The main bed-sharing concern is that a baby could potentially be hurt by:
- Falling off the bed.
- Being suffocated by blankets, pillows or rolling over and being facedown.
- Having an adult roll on top of them.
Although these are valid concerns and bed-sharing or co-sleeping is not the right fit for every family, there are also a plethora of advantages:
- Parents get more sleep.
- Babies get more sleep. Because they are so close to their mum, if they stir at all their needs are quickly met and they can drift off back to sleep before they are fully awake.
- Breastfeeding through the night is easier with your baby beside you.
- Breastfeeding throughout the night helps to maintain a good milk supply.
- Studies show sleeping with your baby in your room reduces the risk of SIDS by 50%.
As mentioned, whatever way you co-sleep with your baby, safety is vital.
Here are some general safety guidelines:
- It is not recommended to bed share if you are a smoker or if you smoked during pregnancy.
- It is not recommended to bed share if you are overtired or have taken any drugs (illegal or prescription) or any substance that makes you less aware of your surroundings.
- Babies should not be swaddled while bedsharing as they may overheat which is a risk factor for SIDS.
- You should not bedshare with a premature baby.
- Long hair should be tied up so it can’t accidentally wrap around the baby's neck.
- For mums who are very deep sleepers or obese, babies should not be next to them in the same bed but beside them on a separate surface.