1001kindernacht®
Die ganzheitliche Schlafberatung

1001babynights

What is 1001babynights?

1001babynights is the English branch of 1001kindernacht®, an international consulting and education offer for parents and experts on the topic of child sleep. 1001babynights is a holistic and attachment-oriented sleep consultation, which differs clearly from behavior-therapeutic sleep trainings (e.g. the Ferber method). The focus is on the individual needs of all family members, the development and maturity of the child and the development of a secure parent-child attachment. After examining sleeping habits of babies and children for decades, we know that families are more than ever massively unsettled by contradictory informations about how children „should“ sleep. We provide you with state-of-the-art science on infant sleep. Well-founded professional information is an important basis for all parents to be able to make good decisions and to find an individually harmonious way for the whole family.

Sincerely, Sibylle & Antonia

If you have any question please contact parafamilias@gmx.de

Consultants

In Europe there are currently over 200 active sleep consultants working according to the of concept of 1001kindernacht®. You can find the English speaking consultants here Germany / Austria / Switzerland  (they are signed with an E).

Safe infant sleep recommandations

See the ABM-Handout: Bedsharing & Breastfeeding handout.pdf

Recommended literature

This is the new book by Dr. James McKenna ("Safe infant sleep", 2020) on infant sleep, breastfeeding, a new concept called "breastsleeping" and its relationship to maternal and infant health. Here you will find up to date answers to many cosleeping questions.
"Cosleeping environments require considerable efforts by parents, but these efforts can lead to enormous rewards. It is important to consider the positive impact that the type of cosleeping you choose can have on establishing and maintaining a close bond (especially for parents who are away from their baby many hours during the day), and how it is especially beneficial in supporting the breastfeeding relationship. Now, and throughout history, cosleeping has played an important role in promoting infant survival and well-being, and has always made both short- and long-term contributions to healthy development."
More information: cosleeping.nd.edu

SIDS

Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), also known as cot or crib death, still raises many questions, even for scientists. We still do not know the exact causes of SIDS, but today we know the most important risk and protection factors. So we know that breastfeeding offers the greatest protectionDangerous on the other hand are smoking parents or those who consume alcohol and drugs, sleeping on the sofa, prone position and sleeping alone in the first year of life.

Experts today agree that a baby should not sleep alone in a room in the first year of life. It is safer in the room of its parents. Many experts do not agree on whether parents should/may let their child sleep in a cot next to their bed (cosleeping) or in their bed (bedsharing). However, recent studies show that it is not the fact that parents and babies sleep together that promotes SIDS, but dangerous variations of bedsharing.
The article in the Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine provides helpful answers: Bedsharing and Breastfeeding, 2019, www.bfmed.org.pdf

More information about safe infant sleep you can find here: cosleeping.nd.edu
Many professionals still discourage parents from taking their baby into their bed, without pointing out that it can be recommended under safe conditions. At home, many parents try therefore to let their child sleep alone, but take it into their bed at some point, as most babies cannot be alone at night and cry. These unplanned "emergency solutions" are the ones that are dangerous. It cannot be the solution to prohibit cosleeping in general, but to show parents safe and pleasant forms of cosleeping and bedsharing.

Sleep training

Babies and toddlers rely upon the loving care and proximity of their caretaker(s) through both the day and the night. Their needs are the same around the clock and they have not yet developed a sense of time. When left alone, an infant will quickly succumb to panic and in a normal, healthy response will try everything within its power to regain the proximity of its caregiver. It will cry to alert its parents to its distress and to encourage them to come, comfort, and provide security.
If their cries go unheeded, the child will experience an intense separation anxiety and a breach of trust which can negatively affect the development of a secure attachment between the child and parent, which, ultimately, will negatively impact the child’s development. Considering all this, it is surprising that counselors still encourage parents today to use sleep training where children are left alone in the dark at night, even though they are so obviously overwhelmed by the situation. The once common “cry it out” method of sleep training is rejected by all experts nowadays because it is very damaging to the child. A modified cry-it-out-type sleep training where a child is given short periods of attention from time to time between spells of isolation (so-called conditioning with adapted doses of frustration or adapted extinction), is, however, often approved, although this method is just as unreasonable for the child. The short minutes of attention which the child is given are hardly registered by it in its state of stress and anxiety and serve mostly to relieve the parental conscience. So far, there is no prospective controlled study on the possible side effects of sleep training, as for example the Ferber method; such studies would not be permissible for ethical reasons. Why then do counsellors find it reasonable to recommend these sleep training methods to parents?
From sleep research, we know that one of the reasons people have to sleep regularly is to store impressions and learning contents. Emotionally linked experiences and those that are made shortly before sleeping are particularly well consolidated. This insight should make us even more sensitive to how important loving care and the associated positive feelings are in a child's sleep situation.
In the sleep counseling we meet numerous parents who have received the advice to carry out a sleep training with their child (e.g. according to the Ferber “Solve Your Child’s Sleep Problems” method). Those who use such a method usually feel additionally insecure by the violent screaming of their child.
The frequent awakening of a child is a challenge for most parents and can lead to great exhaustion. However, if they understand their child's sleep behavior better, thanks to professional information, and are encouraged in their sensitive behavior, they can deal with it better. There are also good ways to positively influence a child's sleep without leaving it alone and screaming.
On the one hand this booklet is addressed to parents who intuitively feel that the Ferber method cannot be good, but who lack the professional arguments, and on the other hand to all those who are active in advising parents. The use of sleep training is from a current, scientific view no longer justifiable. Such an approach can damage the development of the child and complicate a sustainable parent-child relationship. Long-term results of bonding and brain research and experiences from everyday counseling provide impressive evidence of this. I hope hereby to encourage you, with the statements of the experts, to think about these issues critically.

Sibylle Lüpold, Bern 2010 (new English version 2019)

Free download: Children also need us at night.pdf

Cosleeping

So-called "sleep disorders" are among the most common reasons why parents seek professional advice. Scientific sources say that in Western culture 25% of infants and 50% of school children suffer from sleep disorders at least temporarily. According to 1001kindernacht®, in most cases this is not a sleep disorder in the medical sense, but rather unfavourable sleeping conditions and inappropriate expectations of the parents on the child's maturity.

Cosleeping with an infant/child is quite normal in many cultures. Anthropologists assume that in the course of human evolution infants have always slept near or on their mother's body in order to be breastfed, which increased their chances of survival.
Cultures that practice cosleeping do not experience childhood sleep disorders. Can this habit of having the child in bed with the parents simply be transferred to Western society? Our experience shows that cosleeping in Western families is often accompanied by feelings of guilt or is seen as unsatisfactory by the parents.
"Cosleeping is also more common in the U.S. than most people believe. The typical American home has a room that contains a crib for the baby, and parents report that the baby sleeps in the crib. Yet when researchers ask specific questions about who sleeps where, it turns out that the majority of mothers sleep with their young children at least part of most nights. Parents present themselves as having babies who sleep alone, following the societal norm of the baby in the baby’s room and the couple in the master bedroom, but that is not an accurate representation of what is really happening." (James McKenna in "Safe Infant Sleep", 2020)

Cosleeping has numerous advantages:

  • Breastfeeding at night is simplified
  • A child who sleeps with his mother is breastfed longer
  • The sleep phases of mother and child are equalized and the mother is not awakened from deep sleep
  • The children cry less
  • Parents sleep better and are more rested during the day
  • Sleeping is associated with positive feelings and experiences and promotes good quality sleep for life

... just to name a few.

Cosleeping is good choice, but in Western culture it is no longer passed on from generation to generation. Instead, it triggers numerous fears and doubts.
Therefore, sleep consultants of 1001kindernacht®/1001babynights help parents on their way to find an individually suitable and above all safe form of sleep so that the whole family can sleep well.

Nighttime fears in children: A practical guide for the science-minded
Share ©Gwen Dewar 2014: 
parentingscience.com/nighttime-fears/