Sleeping on Tummy

Sarah - posted on 07/15/2010 ( 98 moms have responded )

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My 16 day old will not settle down on his back at all, you lay him down when hes asleep and within 5 minutes hes awake screaming, but you lay his on his stomach he loves it and will be asleep in a few minutes no fuss at all and sleeps for like 4 to 5 hours. He loves tummy time. Hes been able to lift his head since birth, he can get up on his elbows, lift his head and look around. is it a bad thing if i let him sleep on his belly?

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Jennifer - posted on 07/17/2010

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the reason they say not to have them sleep on their belly is because SIDS happens when a baby is rebreathing the carbon dioxide that they have exhaled, they become oxygen deprived and some babies' brains do not send the signal for them to turn their head. when they are on their tummy, because their face is so close to the mattress, carbon dioxide can get trapped around their face whereas when they are on their back, the flow of air around them is clear. that is also why they say a fan in the room decreases the risk of SIDS, because it keeps the air moving.

Kathryn - posted on 07/17/2010

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Just a thought... My friends baby could lift her head just fine in either direction while laying on her tummy. This is all good and fine until, like my friend did, you find the baby face down and not breathing. It's been less than a month since my friend lost her beautiful angel. I was always on the fence with this issue, but am now very sure that for me, its on their back to sleep until they can move totally on their own to where they are comfortable. I know they change the rules all the time, but for me, I just couldn't live with myself after seeing this happen so close to home.

Bridget - posted on 07/20/2010

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Read about the "Back to Sleep Campaign." Personally, I feel it is better that he cries as he becomes acclimated then if he dies from SIDS. He is only 16 days old, all babies cry, he will get used to sleeping on his back. We had to get used to it with 2 babies (twins) so I'm sure everyone out there with 1 baby can grin and bare it. There are all these people on this website giving explanations of what causes SIDS, well just so everyone is aware, no-one knows exactly what causes SIDS, there are several theories, but no conclusive evidence so just because your neighbor's son slept on his stomach and was fine doesn't mean your child would be as well especially with the underdeveloped brain stem theory. Since the Back to Sleep Campaign, SIDS deaths have drastically decreased so there is most likely something to it. Checking in on your son if he is at risk for SIDS may not help a thing. There have been several studies where parents placed apnea monitors on their children, and were alerted quickly to their children's apnea yet the babies were still unable to be resuscitated. A lot of people on here are uneducated about medicine and the science behind it. People are coming out and telling your there are proven causes of SIDS and there are not, that's why it's best to follow the advice of your Doctor when it comes to your children not a website.

Kristy - posted on 07/19/2010

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Stephanie Rutherford

That is exactly what I said!!! the cause of SIDS is unknown. But the most common factor in SIDS cases is tummy sleeping. I think that anyone who advises a mother to not follow the SIDS guidlines is giving "bad advice" and i never called anyone a bad parent. unless you are a health care professional who had a degree in chldren's health or is up to date with the lastest reccomendations i realy dont think anyone should be advising to put a child at risk!!!! This precious boy might be fine sleeping on his tummy but what if he's not? like I said my daughter didnt want to sleep on her back and yes it took a week of sleep deprevation but in the end my daughter slept right through because she learnt I was not going to give in. I'm not telling this mum to only have 5mins of sleep for ever, I'm telling her what worked for me and letting her know there are other options then just putting her son to sleep on his belly. So yes i will come on here and inform this mum how I got my child to sleep safely on her back. and yes I will ask other mother's to seriously think about what they are advising other mother's to do!

Luschka - posted on 07/20/2010

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Just by the way, in the womb the baby sleeps curled up, not stretched out - it is UNNATURAL for babies to be on their backs. They stay curled up much longer when you leave them to sleep on their tummies, and there is also an impact on the skull and the spine if babies sleep on their backs, are in prams and in car seats all the time. The way NATURE intended it didn't cause all these problems, it's man made 'solutions' that have.

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Arial - posted on 07/20/2010

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The doctor told me when I had my daughter to not lay her on her stomach to sleep because it causes SIDS and studies have shown that so i lay her on her back.

Julie - posted on 07/20/2010

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My little girl was in the NICU the first week of life - they ALWAYS had her on her tummy. When they sent her home they gave me all the "instructions" to have her on her side or back, etc. I would have listened had they not already trained her to tummy sleep! : ) She was fine and whats not to love about that little tush that sticks up in the air! : )

Julie
www.SpecialNeedsCEOMom.com

Peta - posted on 07/20/2010

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Im with all the others. As His Mum, you know best. My daughter slept on her stomach from the moment we got home from the hospital. Shes now 8 and its done her no harm.

Kate - posted on 07/20/2010

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My daughter was the same way. I've always put her to sleep on her tummy. She starts off on her belly and some time in the night she rolls over on her back and continues to sleep. I think thats the best for her and i feel thats when she gets her best rest. Good luck!

Amy - posted on 07/20/2010

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I would agree with some of the other mothers.. Back is best, but they do have the sleep mats that monitar their breathinatg and my daughter slept on that for a long time.. She loves sleeping on her tummy now.. and she is almost 18mon.

Brittany - posted on 07/20/2010

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my son has never slept any other way enless he was on me sleeping and hes 19 months now i think he'll be fine.. besides that them sleeping on their backs can cause bald spots and the hair wont grow in as thick

Kimberly - posted on 07/20/2010

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Mine didn't want to sleep on his back, because he had reflux. Once we figured this out he slept on his back.

Robin - posted on 07/20/2010

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My son is 16 months old and has been sleeping on his belly since day 1. We talked to the dr about this and they of course say they dont recommend it however if he is sleeping good than you should just check on him. She said the angel care monitor is perfect and it probably allows you to sleep better at night. I was having the problem of checking on him all the time because I was worried he would stop breathing however he still sleeps on his belly if you put him to bed now on his back he quickly rolls over to his tummy. Hope this helps and good luck.

Jo - posted on 07/20/2010

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My boy had a really strong neck from birth, like yours. He also cried a lot when I put him on his back if he had wind. Make sure he really burps properly after each feed. My boy used to fall asleep during tummytime on the floor, so I would leave him there, but he was always in sight. I wouldn't recommend putting him on his tummy at night, even if you think he will be fine. It's just not worth the risk. You could always try sleeping him on his side? I did this with my boy, just wedged in between 2 rolled up towels. I would try every other option before letting him sleep on his tummy, because there's a good reason it's not recommended. This is just my opinion though, each to their own. Good luck :)

Sam - posted on 07/20/2010

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Um well both my two slept on their belly because it was also the only way they would sleep until a visit to the Chiropractor then they slept any way there where put down!! Just a thought

Luschka - posted on 07/20/2010

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Same as many others have said, my LO never slept on her back. She could lift her head from birth and has been on her tummy from 2 days. She's always slept in our bed so that I can hear her and she's exceptionally strong. She crawled early and at nine months is pretty much walking and I'm sure it's because she's been able to get stronger quicker.

You'll also find if he sleeps on his belly he wont have so much collic. My LO hasn't had any since 2 days because of the tummy sleeping and being worn in a sling rather than pushed in a pram.

Melissa - posted on 07/20/2010

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If he screams when he is on his back it could be because of discomfort and/or pain. A new born that arches its back or hold its head up and back will often do this because of pain and/or neural tension. How could a newborn possible have pain already? Birth (vaginally or c-section) is the very first trauma. My suggestion, take him to a Doctor of Chiropractic. They are well trained in evaluating babies, they use different techniques to adjust babies and chiropractic is proven safe and effective for many childhood issues beyond pain. You'll be amazed at the results and how more relaxed and at peace your little boy will be!

Kristiana - posted on 07/20/2010

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The current perspective is that baby should only be able to sleep on his tummy once he's able to turn over on his own to get there. If he can get there even now on his own, he's probably grown enough that SIDS is less of a worry.



That said, I know a number of people who have allowed their baby to sleep on their tummy so long as they used a baby monitor with sensor pad, like the AngelCare movement monitor. That might make you rest easier - I know it did for me.



Our girl liked swaddling a lot - at least for the first few months, and if you get something like the Kiddopotamus brand of swaddle they're really easy to get in and out of (and not too warm in the summer months). Hope something here is helpful!

Sarah - posted on 07/20/2010

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My son slept on his belly from about 1 month on. That was the only way he would sleep. I don't think it is a bad thing at all, you need to do what he wants. If he is going to sleep that way then go for it!

LaToya - posted on 07/20/2010

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My daughter learned to get out of the swaddle in 2 weeks so she was always on her belly. My mom raised the dead fussing about it but, like I said before, she had me on my belly when I was a baby and I still to this day (unless I'm pregnant) sleep on my belly. My daughter refused to sleep on her back and if I laid her on her side, she would go straight over to her belly anyway. I plan on letting my son sleep on his belly when he is born, too. I completely agree with Heidi. We are going to lose sleep either way but there is no point in the baby losing sleep, too. Monitor your baby and let them sleep in whatever position they are comfortable in. Good luck to all.

[deleted account]

I personally had both of my kids sleep on their bellies. They seem to be more comfortable but I would check on them often. For the most part, I feel that if your baby is strong enough to turn and lift his head, they should be okay sleeping on their tummy. All pediatricians will tell you not to do it though, as it increases the risk of SIDS. It's a personal decision though - do what you feel comfortable.

Heidi - posted on 07/20/2010

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My issue with my daughter was not a lack of sleep, I could care less about that, I don't sleep well anyway. My issue was listening to my daughter scream in PAIN. She would not deal with being swaddled and hasn't since she was a few days old. she will kick her way out, and if she cant she will scream and scream and scream. I do sleep with the ceiling fan on in the room she and I share and she doesn't have any issues.

Emily - posted on 07/20/2010

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Here is an article from the SIDS.org website that I think you should read that deals with this same question. I had the same issue with my son, but I was persistent to always place him on his back. Yes, we did lose some sleep in the beginning, but lost sleep was a much better option than the increased possibility of death which according to the link is up to 12.9 times greater with tummy sleeping. What worked for us were the good swaddling blankets, a pacifier, and the Baby Einstein Sea Dreams Lullaby Soother which plays music for about 30 minutes gently getting quieter and quieter. Air circulation is important as well, so our son has always slept with the ceiling fan on low. He took his daytime naps in his swing. You may look into baby hammocks which keep the baby on his back and it seems to cuddle the baby as well as if he was being held, which should provide a comforting and safe feeling.
http://www.sids.org/nfeaturedques.htm

Maricarmen - posted on 07/20/2010

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I don't think it's bad as long as you check on him during the night my 3 month old baby girl has been sleeping on her belly since she was born

Erin - posted on 07/20/2010

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My son's been the same way since he came home from the hospital. I could never get him to sleep on his back. Ever since he was old enough to flip himself over, he sleeps on his tummy. I think as long as there's nothing blocking his face, I think he will be fine. I've mentioned it to doctors and they usually haven't had a problem with it. You should definitely ask them about it though to be on the safe side.

Destiny - posted on 07/20/2010

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both of my kids have been the same way, people dont like it but my son is 3 1/2 and did great with and my daughter is 10 months old and she never had a problem with sleeping on her tummy. You just have to what you think is best for your baby and dont worry about others!

Maria - posted on 07/20/2010

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My sons been sleeping on his stomach since he was 8 weeks old. hes older now, so he sleeps however he wants, but just like evryone else says check on him as much as u can. all will be well =)

Melissa - posted on 07/20/2010

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My little man was...and still is...the same way! For our own peace of mind we would check on him a lot and he was always fine. Keep anything that he could choke on or suffocate out of the way. Honestly, I think that just like us, babies know what's most comfortable and if that's what's comfortable for your baby, that is what is best for him!

Kavitha - posted on 07/20/2010

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Hi sarah, I had t same prob wit my son. Tried everything but he wouldn't sleep on his back. He would just lay awake for hours together. Once on his tummy he would doze off n a couple of mins. He s almost 4 and a half now, and still s comfortable, sleeping on his tummy. Other than that no prob. So don't worry.If the baby's crib s not t same room as u, make sure to check him on a regular basis.It doesn't hurt to be careful. My best wishes to u and ur baby

Jennifer - posted on 07/19/2010

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my boii has slept on his tummy since day 1 i didnt lyk it at 1st n every 1 was tellin me it wasnt good but when i would put him down he would roll straight on to his tummy!

Kami - posted on 07/19/2010

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my daughter is 2mths and she has been sleepin on her tummy since she was 3wks old. Her father and I realized after 3wks of the both of us gettin only 5hrs of sleep in one night that she was a tummy sleeper. Her doctor told me not to put her on her tummy till she could roll over on her own but my theory is our parents put us on our tummies why can't we put our children on theirs. Some babies are just more comfy on their tummies. If he's sleepin that way then you have nothin to worry bout

Chloe - posted on 07/19/2010

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My son has slept on his belly since he was about 2 weeks old, He is now 8 months.. Plus my partner and myself are all belly sleepers as well.. We were all put on our belly's as babies and are fine.. My partner actually questioned a doctor at the hospital about doing so and we were told, if that is what he like and settles him then do it.. Each child is different and the SIDS guidelines are a general guideline.

Holland - posted on 07/19/2010

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my daughter always slept on her belly too. You can't always go by what the "experts" say,they change every few years. Go by what your baby does well with. If you ar comfortable with him that way and he sleeps go for it, otherwise you two will be a cranky pair. Just keep an eye on him to make sure he's okay.

LaToya - posted on 07/19/2010

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A lot of people say it causes SIDS but my daughter is still here. She's 14 months old and has been sleeping on her belly since she was 10 days when we figured out that she sleeps better on her belly and my mother had my on my belly from the day I was born. If you feel comfortable putting him on his belly, then do it, especially if it helps him get more sleep. Just don't put any stuffed animals or pillows or anything like that that could possibly suffocate him and he will be fine.

Tina - posted on 07/19/2010

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No my son did the same thing! As long as you feel safe doing it go ahead!! My mom was the first to have him sleep on tummy overnight, so from then on I let him... it was either that or sleep in reclining rocking chair for next couple months with him lol.

Jameeka - posted on 07/19/2010

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I don't think so. When my son was first born, he would turn over onto his side on his own. In my personal opinion, babies are smarter than people give them credit for. When my son wanted to move his head, while he was sleep, he would lift his head up and turn it. I mean, you're still gonna keep an eye on him while he's sleep, so it's really a judgment call.

Sarah - posted on 07/19/2010

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My daughter was the same and when she slept on her tummy she always slept better. I asked my doctor about it and his reply was that he couldn't tell me to do it but that I had survived it as a baby. it was the unofficial okay I needed to feel better about doing it. she still sleeps that way most nights and she is 3.

Amanda - posted on 07/19/2010

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I let my son sleep on his tummy when he was younger if he really wouldn't sleep on his belly. The only problem would be if your baby goes to daycare when he is old enough. If he can't roll over, they will force him to sleep on his back.

Kayla - posted on 07/19/2010

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My daughter won't sleep on her back either. She's 8 weeks old and sleeps in her swing. My son was premature and had a heart/breathing monitor, he wouldn't sleep on his back either, we had to let him sleep on his belly but with the monitor it was easier since i would know if he stopped breathing.

Kristy - posted on 07/19/2010

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Heidi Jeffrey I agree with you! there are medical conditions such as acid reflux which require tummy sleeping. Thats why this mum should seek the advice of a medical professional and listen to there recommendations. Also I hope people read my first post.

Heidi - posted on 07/19/2010

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My daughter is going to be 3 months old next week, and from about 1 1/2 months of age she has slept on her belly because she has terrible acid reflux; Which generally gets undiagnosed in infants. If you put her on her back she will flail about and scream so hard she is red in the face and barely breathing. I feel terrible about all of those mothers whom lost their children to SIDS but you also need to think of the pros and cons of the situation. In a case where acid reflux is involved you are doing more harm than good putting a baby on his or her back as the stomach acid is then eating away at the esophagus and more choking risk is involved. I myself had a close friend who had a baby die of SIDS, and it doesn't change my choice. I choose to have my daughter be comfortable rather than hearing her scream for all hours because she's in pain. ( Think about the heartburn you had when you were pregnant, its like 10x that that doesn't go away). @ The Mom who's friends baby died because they found her face down in bed; That was not SIDS, that was suffocation, and if a baby can roll over or not that is always a risk, even for a baby that sleeps on their back. If by fluke they rolled over one night on to their face... well you know the rest. It does not make you a bad parent for wanting your child to be comfortable.

Cherri - posted on 07/19/2010

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does he sleep in ur room? my son does not due well on his back either. but because of the increase in sids and suffocation in babys under the age of 6 months i have gotten him used to sleeping on his side. i have allowed him to sleep on his tummy 1x since birth but i am much to concerned to continue this unless he rolls on his own.

Kiri - posted on 07/19/2010

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i had the same problem with my little man and i say let him. as long as hes safe and sleeping you cant ask 4 much more

Stephanie - posted on 07/19/2010

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Kristy Adams,
The cause of SIDS is unknown for one. And for another there are many different risk factors such as:
* Babies who are around cigarette smoke while in the womb or after being born
* Babies who sleep in the same bed as their parents
* Babies who have soft bedding in the crib
* Multiple birth babies (being a twin, triplet, etc.)
* Premature babies
* Babies who have a brother or sister who had SIDS
* Mothers who smoke or use illegal drugs
* Teen mothers
* Short time period between pregnancies
* Late or no prenatal care
* Situations of poverty
You can't say parents are giving "bad advice" or they are "bad parents" just for allowing their child to sleep on his/her tummy. If you don't want to do it, then fine, but don't come on here and tell everyone else that they are "bad" and not protecting their children. Are you trying to tell this mommy that she needs to allow her child to only get 5 minutes of sleep? To me, THAT is "bad advice".

Stephanie - posted on 07/19/2010

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My daughter was the EXACT same way. At first I would get nervous about it, but then I just kept telling myself she'd be fine since when I was a baby, sleeping on the tummy was recommended and I have 6 brothers and sisters! =] I'd just let him do what he is happy and comfortable doing. My daughter has slept on her tummy since 2 weeks old and she is now 8 1/2 months and she has slept through the night since 1 month, started lifting her head at only a few weeks, been crawling since 5 months and is already beginning to walk.

Nicole - posted on 07/19/2010

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i dont think so my son is 11months old and has slept on his belly since birth....doctors say your not supposed to put them on their belly of their tummy......but on his tummy is the only way my son will sleep

Christine - posted on 07/19/2010

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I dont think so... My daughter loved sleeping on her belly as an infant... its the only way she'd sleep thru the nite... I say whatever works... And ur ok with it, then ya sleeping on the tummy is fine...

Tara - posted on 07/19/2010

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I don't think so. I let my son sleep on his tummy and I just made sure to turn his head to the side so he could breath good and I would check on him just to be safe. He uses a binky too which really helps with the whole SIDS thing. My daughter always slept on her back. Every baby is different. If you feel comfortable with him on his tummy, it should be fine.

Janet - posted on 07/19/2010

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all of my kids slept on their stomach....and yes my doctor was not happy but my babies were so with close supervision i did what my kids were most comfortable doing. Just keep a very close eye on him and monitor him well....he should be fine...congrats on your new baby...

Jessica - posted on 07/19/2010

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My little boy loved sleeping on his belly, I swaddled him and placed him on his back until he was old enough to roll himself. I figured if he could do it on his own it was okay. He'll be 2 in october an sleeps on his belly still...

Crystal - posted on 07/19/2010

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I think it's ok for him to sleep on his tummy...my son (now almost 3 months) loves it as well. Just make sure you watch him or check on him regularly. I am a super light sleeper so if my son even moves I wake up (he sleeps in the playyard with bassinet attachment, next to me). If it makes you at all nervous, I would suggest putting him on his tummy or kind of on his side/tummy on a boppy. I do this with my son and it makes it so that his face is never facing down onto the sleeping surface and I think the comfort of the boppy surrounding him is like me holding him (he hates being swadled though, too confining) but the boppy still give him that swadle feeling but lets him be a little more free.

Sarah - posted on 07/19/2010

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If i lays him on his back within 2 minutes hes screaming, ive tried and tried back sleeping for days and he was always waking screaming. he wont even sleep on his back in the swing or carseat or anything. the only way i can get him to sleep is on his belly or in my arms. people might think im selfish for wanting sleep but i got a 4 year old too, the father is constantly busy with work (he is in a very dangerous and stressful job) so i cant expect him to be up all night with him and work all day and i cant be falling asleep with the 4 year old awake, i tried the tummy sleeping when i fell asleep with him in my arms and my oldest woke me up. when he tummy sleeps he is asleep for 6 hours as opposed to 2 minutes literally (not exagerrating one bit) theres been 4 times we went in the crib and found him in a different position from when we left him (he went from his back to his side or belly) plus we have the angelcare moniter, and his crib is in our room for now

Hillary - posted on 07/18/2010

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At about 8 wks I HAD to put my guy on his tummy. He would not sleep for more than an hour or two on his back and I talked with lots of moms that I trust and have several kids and they tummy slept at least one of their kids. When our generation were infants docs told our moms to tummy sleep adn now they have switched their story. so who knows....My family doc has two kids adn she said she had to tummy sleep her boy for similar reasons. she said the only study that was done was one in NZ and it was babies on sheepskins. there was a very small increase in SIDS. basically if your baby can turn his head, if your home is non-smoking, if you and baby get better sleep from "breaking the rule" then go for it. you know what's best.

Donnesha - posted on 07/18/2010

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there is nothing wrong with him sleeping on his tummy. make him happy so u can get the rest u need

Elizabeth - posted on 07/18/2010

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My Daughter is the same. She 5 months and has been a tummy sleeper pretty much since we left hospital. Put her on her back and she will scream blue murder, Put her on her beely, she is as happy as a anything. In my opinion - whatever works, just keep checking on him and make sure he can't get his head under the blankets or put anything over his face.
AND a big CONGRATS on your new baby boy :)

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