The No-Cry Sleep Solution by Elizabeth Pantley
‘The No-Cry Sleep Solution’ offers gentle ways to help babies sleep through the night. Pantley, author, parent educator and mum of four developed a ten-step programme for improving a baby’s sleep. The book comprises the following topics: the sleep pattern of babies and realistic sleeping goals, analysing and improving sleep patterns with sleep logs, sleep solutions and how to create a customised sleep plan.
The book contains a wealth of information on the topic of baby sleep and tips for better sleep for all kinds of families – co-sleepers or crib sleepers, breastfed or bottle-fed, and so on. All the strategies are based on the intention that no baby should be left to cry in the process of falling asleep. On the contrary to most sleep advice books, Pantley’s solutions are gentle methods that require time, generally many weeks, for a success. But her strategies actually work in the long run, unlike most of the quick and dirty methods available today. Why? Try to think from a baby’s point of view; if you’ve ever tried to change your diet for example, it weren’t the quick methods that brought a long lasting change of your eating habits. The successful methods are the gentle ones, the ones that change your habits in a slow way that feels good, without pressuring yourself into something unknown and unwanted. It’s the same with babies and their sleep. Firstly the quick methods just don’t work in the long run, and secondly it’s only fair to respect our babies as human beings and treat them the same way we treat our adult friends. We’d never force our friends into a rigid scheme they absolutely hate and respond to with crying. In my opinion, the only downside of the no-cry sleep solution book are the rewards cards Pantley proposes for encouraging toddlers to change their sleep habits. But other than that I found the book very interesting to read. The best point of the book is the one when Pantley asks the reader if their baby’s sleep problem is actually a problem for the reader themselves, or if it’s only society who considers it as a problem. This is exactly what happened to me with my daughter. Until she was 8 months old I was very uncomfortable because I thought I need to ‘improve’ her sleeping habits, until I realised that for us, our sleeping arrangements are actually just perfect, even though she didn’t sleep through the night. I simply moved her into our bed and the problem was solved – I didn’t have to get up anymore and got all the sleep I needed. However, if a baby’s sleep is a problem for their parents, this is the sleep advice book I would most probably recommend.