Monday’s Sleep Myth: Teething Causes Sleep Disturbances

“At WP, we talk about sleep a lot.  Parents ask whether or not teething is the reason why their child’s sleep is disturbed.  There is a wide range of when and how teeth come in and it therefore becomes a convenient scapegoat for all sleep problems.  Despite it being repeated over and over, there is very little evidence to support this myth that teething causes sleep disturbances.  Please read:  “Pediatrics” 105:747-752, 1999. Symptoms Associated with Infant teething: A Prospective Study. The author’s conclusion was that there was an association between teething and wakefulness one day before the emergence of the tooth and no association between teething and “sleep disturbances”.

For more parenting myths, check out our free iPhone App.

I am giving a talk at Prentice Tommorrow night on infant sleep-all are welcome. Call 1-877-926-4664 to register

I am giving a talk to our New Parent Support Group on Thursday- at WP – all are welcome.

Parents can quote these myths all the time- Please do what we do and ask for data to support it 🙂

-Dan Weissbluth

Here is another study for reference:

“Pediatrics” 106:1374-1379

Teething and Tooth Eruption: A Cohort Study

Page 1376: “This study did not confirm that tooth eruption in infants and toddlers is associated with …sleep disturbance.”

Page 1378: Using teething as an excuse means “that behaviors such as …sleep disturbances represent normal developmental stages rather than pathology…Nonetheless, these beliefs may prevent parents from implementing simple, effective measures such as sleep [training]”.


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