Book review: Sleeping Through the Night by Jodi A. Mindell

Obviously, I read this book because my child is not sleeping through the night. He also has started to refuse naps during the day. He is an eating machine. He just wants to eat, eat, eat.

I was disappointed in this book. It did not tell me anything I had not already heard. Basically, the premise was that if your child is not sleeping through the night it is because he or she has “negative sleep associations”, meaning that you have allowed your baby to become dependent on something to fall asleep (being rocked, being nursed, your presence, etc.), so that when the baby wakes up in the middle of the night he or she is unable to go back to sleep without that thing (being rocked, being nursed, your presence). The solution for this problem is to let the child Cry It Out (CIO) until they get over the negative association.

I would like to point out that this theory of all wakings being sleep associations is crap, in my humble opinion. My child can go to sleep from just laying in his crib awake with no problem. He doesn’t have any sleep associations that I can tell. When he wakes up in the middle of the night,  I have tried just putting in the pacifier and going away and he is very insistent that he is HUNGRY. It isn’t a sleep association. So is it right to claim that this is the case with all middle-of-the-night wakings? Wouldn’t you end up with starving babies who start to think no one cares? And if you think he won’t cry to the point where he chokes and gasps, you are wrong – he will if he is truly hungry. There is no way I am going to ignore that.

The only valuable piece of information in this book is the part where they recommend trying to nurse for smaller and smaller amounts of time each night for the middle-of-the-night feedings. I might actually try that, who knows.

2 thoughts on “Book review: Sleeping Through the Night by Jodi A. Mindell”

  1. I know I just commented on your other post, but I couldn’t resist…I think this theory is complete crap, too. August doesn’t have any problems falling asleep on his own either, yet he will wake up, too. And pacifiers just make him ANGRY. He wants boob.

    Just wanted to offer some support and let you know I totally agree!

  2. My baby had sleep problems–she could not go to sleep on her own at night and was waking several times at 10 months. She was nursing 2 times thru the night. This book is amazing…it changed my life! My baby now sleeps through the night, and I couldn’t have done it without the advice of this well qualified doctor. I would highly recommend this book.
    In response to the previous book review, if you are nursing at night under 6 months your child likely needs it. If they are over 6 months they no longer need to nurse at night, it is habit.

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