Date of Award/Publication


Document Type


Degree Name

M.S. in Mental Health Counseling


The Ferber Method is a behavioral method for sleep training infants and young children that is also known as the “cry it out” method. Behavioral methods of sleep training is often recommended by pediatricians. However, many parents, sleep specialists, psychologists, and experts in infant mental health, find these methods controversial. Supporters of behavioral sleep training claim that it teaches children to “self soothe” and learn to regulate their own emotions. Those against the Ferber Method and other behavioral techniques claim that they not only cause infants and children distress, but they also teach them that their needs will not be met, at least during the periods they are expected to sleep. If the opposition is correct, the Ferber Method and other behavioral sleep training could actually be harmful to the parent-child bond and may even have a lasting impact on physical and psychological wellbeing.

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Nursing Commons