Alicia Silverstone recently shared on a podcast that she and her 11-year-old son share a bed.
A pediatrician says co-sleeping shouldn’t happen until 12 months and should stop in prepuberty.
Co-sleeping can disrupt the sleep of children and parents.
Actress Alicia Silverstone is known for her unconventional parenting style, but after sharing that she still sleeps with her 11-year-old son Bear on ‘The Ellen Fisher Podcast’ this week, she received harsh comments. “Maybe it’s taking co-sleep a bit too far,” said one reviewer. tweeted. Another one intervened“How is he going to learn to be independent? She’s not helping him.”
But not everyone thought Silverstone’s co-sleeping arrangement was of concern. A person applauded her choice, tweeting, “There are a lot of dysfunctional people walking around in society right now…maybe a little more love from parents could be the answer.”
So is it appropriate for parents to share a bed with their child, and until what age? Here’s what a pediatrician and a child psychologist had to say.
Do what works for you and your family
“I’ve always told parents that sharing a bed with their child is a personal decision, not a medical decision,” Dr. Rebecca Fisk, a pediatrician at Northwell Health’s Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City, told Insider. That being said, Fisk said parents should never share a bed with a child under 12 months old due to an increased risk of death from SIDS and suffocation.
“We all come from different backgrounds, and the rules, or parenting guidelines, vary widely — that’s what works for you and your family,” Elizabeth Matheis, licensed clinical psychologist at Psychological and Educational Consulting, LLC, told Livingston. , New Jersey. Plus, sharing a bed with your child can be comforting, especially during times of family transition, like a divorce, Matheis said.
You can have a consistent relationship with your child, but have limits
Emotionally, it’s comforting to be around someone you feel safe with, Matheis said.
But due to varying sleep needs, co-sleeping can disrupt parent and child sleep, Fisk said. So if you’re sharing a bed, make sure your child is functioning well during the day – if they’re not well rested, other options will give them the same sense of security, she said.
Parents can lay a mattress on their bedroom floor for a child to lie on until they fall asleep, then walk them back to their own room or sit on the edge of their bed until they fall asleep. until he falls asleep. In this way, you promote your child’s independence while supporting him. “You can have a consistent relationship with your child but have boundaries,” Fisk said.
Prepuberty is when co-sleeping should stop
Co-sleeping should stop when you start to see your child’s body beginning to transition through puberty, Fisk said. Prepubescence is the stage when sexual characteristics begin to develop, such as budding breasts and the growth of hair in the armpits.
“I wouldn’t want a 14-year-old sleeping in the bed with their mom or dad. If you ask me to draw a line, I think it’s prepubescent,” Fisk said.
Matheis agrees. “Adolescence, or the onset of puberty, can be a good time to move on to different beds,” she said.
When a child reaches adolescence, they will likely seek out their own space anyway, naturally moving away from sharing a bed with a parent. But if your child is very anxious and finds comfort in being around you, you can put a mattress in the same room, Matheis said.
Read the original Insider article