Healthy Sleep Habits Happy Child Book Review

By Misty on in Baby Sleep Help Baby Sleep Products with 1 Comment

Healthy Sleep Habits Happy Child Book Review
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I’ve been meaning to do a full review of the book “Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child for awhile now but kept putting it off to try out different things and to be able to really dive in to give a good solid review of it. So for those of you waiting for a review before purchasing, I hope you enjoy this one! On to the review…

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if our children would simply follow our cue to fall asleep at naptime and nighttime and then rest pleasantly until time to wake? As parents we know all too well that that is simply doesn’t happen easily nor does it happen the same for each child.

Some babies have a fairly easy time going to sleep and may even stay asleep for hours, rarely struggling with overtiredness. Others can simply be a challenge and require a bit more help. To make matters even harder on us parents, every baby’s sleep needs are different. They probably won’t even be the same as a sibling’s sleep patterns. That’s why we seek the wisdom of notable physicians/authors to save us from our groggy-eyed existence.

I recently read a book that is a wonderful resource for anyone who finds daytime or nighttime sleep to be a trying task for both you and your baby. The book is “Healthy Sleep Habits Happy Child” by Dr. Marc Weissbluth and I think any parent struggling with baby sleep is going to find several gems in this book to help you along.

While I don’t agree with all of Dr. Weissbluth’s theories, I do recommend this book for his innovative approach to an age old problem. Presented in a step-by-step manner for dealing with baby sleep issues, the book is great for explaining why sleep is so important for your baby’s development and behaviors.

The other aspect of this book that is a breath of fresh air is that it isn’t all about his own experiences. Many people who speak on the subject of baby sleep are speaking from their own personal experience, which is wonderful, it’s exactly what I do. However, as I’ve mentioned before, no two babies are a like. That’s where his mentioning of other studies and research that are brought into the book become very valuable to someone looking for a variety of representation on baby sleep.

The book also touches on the importance of good sleep habits and preventing problems as your baby grows to preschool age and on to adolescence with continued advice and guidance.

Being real

What I do like is that Dr. Weissbluth examines real life, helping you understand and accept that all babies will have fussy times, crying times, and that there may be times when you will feel at a loss for answers. This is normal and absolutely no reason to question your parenting skills.

Life often gets in the way of establishing healthy baby sleep schedules. There will always be health issues such as jaundice and the common cold, visiting relatives, outside noises such as traffic and dogs barking to make this a trying time.

For many of today’s parents there is the added pressure of dealing with both parents working outside of home which requires someone else to look after your little one. Dr. Weissbluth gives you the fundamental steps for starting early with your baby’s sleep training and addressing these life events.

Cry it out

Dr. Weissbluth endorses what is called the cry it out method, or “extinction”, which states that it is perfectly fine for your baby to be left to cry when unsettled. For many this is a time of crying for both you and your baby as it is difficult to listen to your baby cry and not rush to comfort them.

Advocates of this theory attest that when your baby cries, it is not disturbing to them but instead simply unsettling for you. They believe that intervening during these times will encourage your baby to develop a deeper dependence on you for falling asleep.

While the cry it out method is not my preferred choice for sleep training, some parents may find the technique to their liking in which case, Healthy Sleep Habits Happy Child is again a great resource of information.

What I didn’t like about the book

To be honest the biggest struggle I had with this book was it’s size. As a parent, picking up a book this size on a subject like baby sleep is mind boggling. It was like picking up a copy of Lord of the Rings, which took me 3 weeks to find the time to read. There was a lot of repetition and I think he could have gotten all of his points across in a book half the current size, and probably even less. My best advice for working through this book is to not read the entire thing and instead focus on the age group sections of the book that apply to the age of your child.

Final thoughts

Creating healthy baby sleep cycles through structured napping and bedtime sleep routines is vital to their overall development and progressive behaviors and this book can help you learn just how to do that. Remember that there is no one “right” way, the Dr. Weissbluth approach is practical and can work, it is always good to be open to multiple avenues of advice.

Dr. Weissbluth shares a quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson that I think will be fitting to wrap this little review up.

“There never was a child so lovely but his mother was glad to see him sleep.”

You can purchase your copy of Healthy Sleep Habits Happy Child on Amazon here.
If you’re a parent of twins, there is a version of this book just for you called Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Twins.

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1 Comment

  1. Salma

    March 20, 2015 at 3:23 pm · Reply

    I read this book and saw the video when my first was a baby, some good options!

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