Co-Sleeping With A Newborn on The Chest

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Co-Sleeping With A Newborn on The Chest

As long as the parent stays awake and aware of the baby, it is fine for your little one to nap on your chest. However, if the parent falls asleep, the baby can get injured or increase the chance of SIDS.

If your baby is co-sleeping with you it’s important that you stay awake. If not, then the constantly changing position of the baby’s body on your chest can make breathing difficult for them.

There are also studies linking sleep apnea with co-sleeping deaths. As long as you stay awake it is fine for your baby to sleep on your chest, but if they need to be put down, place them in a safe location next to you.

However, the opinions are divided. Some people only want their newborn to sleep next to them, some prefer the baby’s crib. Some people say babies who co-sleep with mom or dad puts less pressure on both of them and they feel less alone at night.

It really depends on your personal preference as well as what you think is best for your child. The majority of experts actually tell expecting parents not to do it because it increases the risk of SIDS, but many parents ignore that and insist that it’s a safer option than having the baby in a separate bed or even room. 

A lot of doctors believe it makes more sense for moms with lactating problems and breastfeeding mothers who plan on bedsharing postpartum than those who plan on exclusively pumping or formula feeding from day one. However, if you do this please have in mind that there is a risk of co-sleeping that can be fatal to your infant. 

Is it bad to let a newborn sleep on you?

It’s not a good idea if both the parent and the baby are sleeping. If a newborn is napping while you watch tv or simply relax on the couch together that’s acceptable. We are not the only ones who think this way.

Moreover, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) says bed-sharing is not a good thing while room sharing is totally permissible. This is because when parents and the baby are sleeping in the same room, the infant is totally safe because everyone has their own sleeping space. 

While co-sleeping in the same bed can be somewhat dangerous for the baby especially at the earliest stages. There is a chance that a baby can get stuck between the blankets, bedsheets, pillows, and even parents and result in sudden infant death syndrome or other sleep-related fatalities.

What to do if the baby will only sleep on you?

Co-Sleeping With A Newborn on The Chest

You can’t blame your little one for wanting to sleep in the coziness of mother’s arms and warmness of its body, since that’s all that baby knows since in the womb.

Parents should know that this type of resting, like co-sleeping with a newborn on the chest, is totally acceptable and perfectly fine in the first couple of weeks of the baby’s life.

Skin-to-skin touch is very soothing especially for the newborn. It can calm the baby down, make them feel safe, and help them fall asleep. Contrary to what you may hear, it is perfectly normal for you to let your baby sleep in your arms in those first couple of weeks. And, let your baby sleep in your arms will not lead to clinginess later in life.

Parents should know that it might take a few weeks before their baby learns to sleep without being so close to them. As time goes by, infants will develop a better sleeping pattern which will help you settle them down to sleep much easier. 

Slowly, encourage your baby to start sleeping in its crib. There is also a high possibility that the baby will wake up as soon as you put him/her down in the crib, but try to resist picking the baby up. 

Can a baby lay on my chest after eating?

Yes, because this can even help your baby burp faster. Some babies don’t find shoulders such a comfortable place to burp, so after the feeding putting the baby on the chest can soothe them more. After the burp that position can be very comfortable for a baby to fall asleep just right after the feeding. 

In general, it really depends on your baby. Some babies don’t need it, while others do. However, if you’re worried about the effect of laying on your chest after eating – let us put your mind at ease! If you burp them on your chest, they will have more gas accumulation in their stomachs which leads to better digestion. 

But keep in mind that this has not been proven by science yet so there’s very little chance it will happen by accident. A word of caution also goes out for weak-stomached people, otherwise having a child lay down on them may result in vomit stains.

Are there warning signs for SIDS?

Co-Sleeping With A Newborn on The Chest

The symptoms of SIDS do not exist as well as their warning signs. Babies that had SIDS had no kind of health problems before going to bed. In many cases, they appear to be in the same position they were in when they were laid down, indicating no signs of struggle.

It’s also good to know what “risky” sleeping practices are so you can keep an eye on how your child sleeps and let them know when they might be inhaling children. One of the best things a parent can do is to at least put their children on their backs on a firm surface that will not allow them to suffocate on sleep-related movements or toys that might create a space where they cannot breathe freely.

The AAP also recommends that babies sleep on their backs in an empty crib or bassinet during their first year of life. In addition, some experts advise against using soft bedding as it may create problems with the child’s breathing. This also refers to co-sleeping with a newborn on the chest since there is also a chance that the baby can get SIDS if both parent and the baby fall asleep.

Do babies know when you kiss them?

Yes, but not immediately. When your baby is around its first birthday they are starting to be aware of affectionate behaviors like kissing.

A baby begins imitating these behaviors, repeating them on a daily basis and realizes that it brings happiness among people he/she is attached to. The baby is becoming aware that what he’s doing pleases its loved ones.

Babies learn to show affection at around 1-years old. For example, they may close their eyes and wait for a kiss from a family member. While babies can sense affectionate stimuli as early as birth thanks to detectors in the sensory cortex of the brain, it takes time for them to form memory associations. T

herefore, they need time so they can consistently respond with an emotional response. Research has shown that by the age of 1 year, babies have learned familiar emotional responses like smiling and kissing and will react positively when given these cues.


We can’t blame parents for deeply wanting to sleep with their newborns. It’s so cute, it helps build emotional relationships between the parent and the baby, and it’s also convenient especially for breastfeeding mothers. However, there are also risks when co-sleeping is involved. 

Sleeping together brings a high chance of SIDS which none of the parents want. Co-sleeping with a newborn on the chest is acceptable on the other hand as long as the parent stays awake and monitors the child’s behavior and breathing. 

This way the baby can get a rest and have a wonderful nap on its mother’s/fathers chest while the parent is resting on the couch reading a book or watching TV.

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My name is Catherine. I'm a Mom and one of the avid writers working on HerScoop!