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Understanding Sleep


Attachment Parenting International - excellent resources on infant sleep safety, co-sleeping, nighttime parenting and more. A leaflet is available to share with friends and relatives explaining the research, safety guidelines and benefits.


AskDrSears - personal and professional insight into when and how to co-sleep written by respected American paediatrician and father of eight, Dr Sears. The site has a wealth of other very helpful sleep-related articles including helpful evidence-based explanations for infant and child sleep behaviour.


Infant Sleep Information Source - ISIS is a collaboration between Durham University Parent-Infant Sleep Lab, La Leche League, NCT, and UNICEF UK Baby Friendly Initiative, funded by a grant from the ESRC (Economic and Social Research Council). This easy to navigate site is for parents and health professionals interested in evidence-based research on normal infant sleep.


The Natural Child Project - a list of many excellent articles relating to bedsharing, co-sleeping around the world, SID, sleeping locations, self-soothing and much more.


Durham University Parent-Infant Sleep Lab - a fantastic resource from the research lab within the Department of Anthropology investigating infant and child sleep and parenting behaviour. Information available includes completed projects, publications and talks by the research team.


Parent-Baby Research Overview - an American University site under the guidelance of Prof. McKenna who is recognised as a leading authority on mother-child co-sleeping. Excellent safety guidelines with illustrations, a look at bedsharing controversy, videos, articles and FAQ.


Dr Jay Gordon - an interesting article by another US paediatrician with an AP approach who makes useful suggestions for achieving sleep patterns that meet the needs of the whole family.


Prof. James McKenna - a respected article by the sleep expert, entitled Co-sleeping & Biological Imperitives: Why Human Babies Do Not and Should Not Sleep Alone.


Bedtime Protest Evolutionary Mismatch - excellent article on why children protest at bedtime in the context of our evolutionary survival instinct.


Self-soothing - compelling blog post from Canadian Parenting Columnist about why the concept of self-soothing is a made-up research term supported by no clear evidence-based data.


Sleeping Through the Night - a highly readable academic essay by anthropologist Kathy Dettwyler on human design and adaptability in relation to night time sleep and breastfeeding.



Excessive Crying


AskDrSears Excessive Crying - well researched article on the physiological changes in children left to cry alone and unattended.


Cry It Out Article - an excellently referenced article addressing the potential dangers of leaving your baby to cry that looks at the theory of attachment including the physical effects of crying on babies within the context of modern society.


Why Crying Hurts - insightful article from the Dunstan baby language website about the realities of sleep deprivation and the lack of evidence for the saftey of sleep training.


Crying-it-out 'harms babies brains' - a BBC report quoting Dr Penelope Leach on scientific tests looking at sleep training and the effects on pediatric neurobiology.

Many people come across attachment parenting while researching sleep! There is an increasing amount of research supporting bedsharing and co-sleeping as safe when practiced within the specified safety guidelines. These resources seek to provide science-based articles and help establish why controversy over bedsharing exists within our culture. These links also offer parents information to understand how sleep happens for their children and suggest strategies that parents can use to set realistic expectations and facilitate healthy sleeping patterns for everyone. Attachment Parenting UK does not condone cry it out or other similar sleep training and there are links to articles explaining our position.

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