Many parents and sleep consultants talk about the importance of giving your child a comforter. A comforter (small toy, small blanket, bunny) in psychological terms is a transitional object.
The idea of the comforter is that it allows your child to more easily ‘transition’ or separate away from you to become independent. This separation is made easier by giving your child a transitional object that they can eventually attach to and rely on when you are not around such as when they are sleeping. This gives them the confidence that otherwise you as a parent would be giving them.
In a sleep context, by giving your child a comforter you are teaching them how to become an independent sleeper and how to settle on their own without your involvement.
SIDS guidelines state no soft toys in a bed until baby is seven months old. However your baby can still develop an attachment to a particular toy, some recommend that when you are feeding your baby they play with it, or you (the parents), sleep with the toy so that it has your smell on it.
When your baby does become attached, we recommend buying a second item as a back up in case the original is lost. A comforter can quickly become one of those things that you won’t want to be without.
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