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Let the baby cry it out

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Mothers always rush to a crying babe. But is it necessary that one should rush to a crying child? A new study shows that Mothers need not rush to the child. Let the child cry it out. The study shows that leaving a child to cry it out from birth to about 18 months does not affect its behaviour or attachment.

The study, detailed in Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, said that an infant’s attachment and development to their parents is not affected by leaving them to cry. On the other hand, the frequency and duration of crying decreases once the child is left out to cry, the study said.

Ayten Bilgin (University of Warwick, UK), who was involved in the study, said that it was a comprehensive study. Earlier only two studies had detailed about crying of babies. She said that the study documented contemporary parenting and the different approaches to crying.

The researchers followed 178 children and their mothers over a period of 18 months. The parents were asked about the frequency of the child’s crying at various stages when they were left alone. The study also analysed the child’s attachment to their parent and behavioural development. The analysts said that Crying Pattern Questionnaire was used to analyse the findings.

Gold standard experimental procedure was used to analyse attachment between the child and the mother. Behavioural development was analysed through direct observation of the child’s play with the mother. A psychologist analysed the development and a parent-report questionnaire was also used.

The research work says that about two third of the mothers intervene when the child was just born. But they wait as the baby grows older to see if they can calm themselves.

 

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