What are sleep props, and how can we avoid them? Sleep props are anything that helps your child (and YOU!) get to sleep. They can both helpful OR detrimental to good sleep.
If the sleep prop isn't available, and your child has a dependence on it to get to sleep, your child can have a difficult time getting to sleep.
Some common sleep props are:
Not all of these are bad—some are very helpful and recommended! The best sleep props are the ones that don't involve you. Your child can learn to get to sleep independently without you doing anything to get the child to sleep; that's sleep training—breaking the sleep associations that involve you so your child gets to sleep independently and can therefore get back to sleep connecting sleep cycles all night long.
The sleep props that are good are: swaddling (only for 8 weeks and under), sound machine, pacifier (as long as the parent doesn't replace it), blackout curtains, and comfort items (only for age 12 months and older).
Here are tips for avoiding sleep associations that do involve you getting your child to sleep:
If you need help with sleep training, reach out, and I will be glad to help you break sleep associations so your child can sleep great!