Parenthood is one of those things that one is never ready for; however much you want a child and research about it, one can never be fully prepared. It is one of those fields where you learn as the child grows, on-the-job training.
Parenting is not easy; especially immediately the toddler comes into the world; this is where the actual task is; the first 12 months are intensive and provide the best bonding time.
Sleeping offers the best time for the child to grow; during sleep, the muscles and brain of the child develop, and as a result, children spend a lot of time sleeping.
This may seem like it is their peaceful and safe time, but it also comes with lots of risks and can at times be so severe, and an infant may experience SUID (Sudden Unexpected Infant Death). Though rare, it impacts infants less than one year old. It includes all unexpected, sudden deaths with an unknown cause.
The most common include SID and Suffocation. Suffocation occurs when a toddler is strangulated, entrapped, or suffocated by beddings while in bed. It also can be caused by the sleeping position of the toddler.
Mostly, parents are advised to use the back sleep position for infants, this is easy to use until four months when they begin to roll over and develop strong muscles, and they assume a different sleeping position.
After a while, babies take the frog position or the roast chicken position. In fact, it is the most adorable sleeping position; babies sleeping with their butts in the air is pretty awesome.
Unfortunately, many parents lose sleep when their babies start sleeping using this position, which should not be the case. The position is safe, especially if your baby is the one who has placed themselves in that position.
It's completely alright to let them stay on their belly if they assume the said position alone. But at Sleep Underground what we observed is that many parents have never understood why their babies take this cute position and probably want to know the reasons behind this behavior.
Just like adults, babies too need to sleep in a position that is most comfortable for them. And to most babies sleeping on their knees provides the best comfort for them. If you have participated in Yoga, then you have found yourself assuming this position.
It is used to relieve stress and help reduce muscle tension, thus aids in the growth of the upper body part. The position eliminates the tension that has accumulated across the day in the baby's body. In addition, it stimulates oxygen and blood circulation to restore energy so that the physique can operate at its optimum.
Regardless of what you do, your baby must fall asleep in this posture. If your baby finds the knee posture comforting, it will be frustrating to get them in their back sleep position.
Lastly, babies find it easier to fall asleep in this position naturally, and this ease of falling asleep makes them prefer this position.
While in the womb, babies' muscles are usually cranked up due to being cocooned. As such, when they are out of the womb, they want to be free and let their muscles loosen up and lengthen. And when they assume this position, babies are able to develop arm muscles and thus start crawling faster than those children who lie on their backs.
While in the womb, your baby had assumed the frog position. Through muscle memory, they can recall their comfort while in the womb and the security, thus prefer sleeping in the position they find most familiar.
For babies who are used to cuddling and being rocked constantly, they prefer to sleep on their knees. The reason is simple with their legs pressing their stomach, and it feels like they are being held closely or being cuddled.
Babies fall asleep easily when held, and that's why when they sleep on their knees, they feel pretty comfortable and fall asleep relatively fast since they equate it to being held tightly.
As long as the baby has hit four months of age and can move themselves, it isn't dangerous for them to sleep on their knees. Babies place themselves in that position and will always be able to get themselves out of that position.
And when they are capable of moving, they can switch to sleep sacks and no longer need to be swaddled. Covering your babies in a swaddle at this age, when they are learning to walk independently, might cause them injury. It's recommended to avoid squirming out of a swaddle because it can lead children to become stuck in their blanket or choke.
As stated, when a baby sleeps on their knees, it should not cause any alarm, and as such, there is no need to keep flipping them onto their back. When a child flips over and sleeps on their tummy, it indicates that they are growing and will ultimately convert back to the original position if need be.
However, it is wise to place a baby on its back to avoid and reduce any risk. You won't need to regulate how your child sleeps once they've started turning over on their own since they'll be capable of moving into postures they enjoy on their own.
So, there is no need to keep on flipping your baby onto their back, and you enjoy your sleep or free time as the baby rests.
Sleep is vital for the baby's development, and there are specific ways to ensure that they enjoy their sleep. And one is letting them choose their sleeping position, especially after four months. This will allow them to enjoy peaceful rest and ultimately grow better and bigger both physically and mentally.