By Vanessa Mangru // SWNS
Most parents believe in sleeping myths, prompting many to keep their kids up all day to tire them out before bedtime.
A survey of 2,000 parents of children ages 0 to 5 looked at some of the concerns when it comes to their child sleeping and found that more than two-thirds of parents believe in sleeping myths or urban legends (68%).
Whether they hear it from their own parents (59%) or read it online (49%), new parents are open to testing out these sleep training methods — like keeping their baby on a strict sleep schedule (67%) or “camping out” so that their child becomes less dependent (60%).
Seventy percent of parents still believe that their baby will sleep later in the morning if they go to sleep later, and half would avoid rocking their baby to sleep to prevent dependency (53%).
On average, new parents test out these myths for five months before deciding whether or not it works for them.
Conducted by OnePoll and commissioned by Naturepedic for Baby Safety Month, the survey also found that parents of young children worry the most when their baby is sleeping than at any other time of the day.
One in 10 didn’t know about sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) prior to having children and another 11% weren’t previously aware of the ABCs of sleep (A for alone, B for back, C for crib).
And nearly a fifth of new parents had no idea that their baby could also develop sleep apnea.
After learning about potentially threatening sleep conditions, it’s no surprise that nearly all parents try to go the extra mile to make their child’s sleeping environment as peaceful, comfortable and safe as possible.
Seventy-eight percent of parents have purchased new bedding or a new mattress specifically to help their children learn how to sleep through the night.
They’ve also made their kids’ sleep environment comfortable by putting on a night light (44%), purchasing stuffed animals (41%) and giving their child comfortable clothing (39%).
On average, parents spend four hours a week researching the best products for their child — especially clothing (56%) and mattresses/bedding (46%).
And they’re most drawn to labels that say safe (50%), breathable/breathe safe (44%, 39%), non-toxic (37%) or organic (37%).
No matter how much research they do, four in five parents wish companies were more transparent about the materials they use in their baby products (81%).
Four in five parents are confident in their understanding of how safe the components that make up the products they purchase for their child are and 77% believe breathability and waterproofing are equally important when purchasing a crib mattress.
Additionally, 70% believe it's important to purchase organic for their baby.
“Since parents are most concerned when their babies are sleeping, it’s imperative that parents must have clear, transparent, and concise information about what’s truly safe for their children," said Barry A. Cik, founder and technical director of Naturepedic. "Unfortunately, there are many misleading claims out there which makes it very challenging for parents. The first step is to look for certain certifications like GOTS and MADE SAFE."
Seven in 10 also wish there was more information available on how to take care of the products they purchase for their child.
The mattress, in particular, is an area of concern for many parents since three of the top five myths/urban legends parents believe in involve their child’s sleep space.
One of the most overlooked aspects of the sleep space is cleaning the mattress (36%).
Since half of respondents’ children have frequent accidents on their mattress (54%), parents find themselves wondering how often they clean their child’s mattress.
"If parents have a breathable mattress, do they know exactly what their babies are breathing in? There are chemical concerns if the mattress is not certified organic, and hygienic concerns when breathable mattresses are not waterproof, which is frequently the case,” Cik added. "There are major concerns to think about as children have frequent accidents on their mattresses. That's why we waterproof the mattress first, then add breathability on top.”
LANGUAGE PARENTS ARE DRAWN TO
- Breathe safe
- Air flow
- Breathe right
MOST BELIEVED SLEEP MYTHS/URBAN LEGENDS
- Breathable mattresses are the most comfortable/healthy for babies (75%)
- Breathable mattresses prevent suffocation (73%)
- Babies will sleep later in the morning if they go to sleep later (70%)
- Breathable mattresses prevent SIDS (68%)
- Babies need to have a strict sleep schedule (67%)
- You shouldn’t wake a sleeping baby (66%)
- Sleep training works better if the baby is very tired from not napping or staying up late (64%)
- The “camping out” method will help my baby become less dependent on me (60%)
- I have to be quiet when my baby is sleeping (60%)
- Adding rice cereal to a night bottle will help them sleep better (60%)