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Caring for the Little Ones - Sleep Issues in Infant and Toddler Programs

by Karen Miller
July/August 2001
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Article Link: https://www.childcareexchange.com/article/caring-for-the-little-ones-sleep-issues-in-infant-and-toddler-programs/5014059/

In this nation of sleep-deprived people, sleep has become a very emotional issue. Stress, busy schedules, very limited family time, and free time all work together to erode the amount and quality of sleep people get . . . even babies!

Sleep is also a cultural issue - one of the strongest cultural issues we have. What people are used to doing in their families for generations is what feels right. Several people pointed out to me that 95% of the world's cultures have children sleep in the parents' bed, and it is only northern Europeans and Americans who feel babies should be isolated at night.

There seems to be a new culture issue emerging - that of parents having their children sleep in bed with them, even when this has not been a generational family practice in their heritage. In my own informal survey of parents who do this, several reasons emerge. Parents have told me they spend so much time away from their baby during the day that they miss them desperately and want them close at night. One family got into the habit when their newborn was very ill and the parents felt more secure having her right with them ...

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