PERRYVILLE, MO (KFVS) - It's not easy to listen to your baby cry, but new research shows sometimes it might be the best thing for them.
Experts say letting your child "self-soothe" in the crib at bedtime can actually help them sleep better.
While some parents aren't crazy about the idea, others say allowing babies to cry themselves to sleep is well worth it for mom, dad and, mostly, the child.
Mother of two Renee Beinlein said resisting the urge to "over-comfort" at bedtime is well worth it.
"Last night she slept for five and a half hours. I was super excited," Beinlein said.
She said her four week old is already learning to self-soothe and sleeping better.
"She will just lay in there. I can put her [pacifier] in and she will take it and within like five minutes she will put herself to sleep," Beinlein said.
According to a recent study out of Australia, babies who "cry it out" at bedtime go to sleep faster and sleep more soundly during the night when compared to babies who are comforted as they drift off.
Director at Imagination Kids Preschool and Daycare in Perryville Jaimy Brown said kids who can put themselves to sleep become more independent.
"They are going to sleep better as toddlers, as younger children, as teenagers. They are going to be happier, they're going to sleep better, which makes everybody happier!" Brown said.
She suggests start when your baby is young. Let them cry for about five to ten minutes before going in to soothe them, but never comfort too long.
"Walk away. They know that you're not going to stay, so they learn to do it themselves. Then you don't have to do it anymore by the time they're usually one," Brown said.
She said it's a routine that keeps everyone in a good mood all day long.
Now all parents agree that "self-soothing" is the best method. Some parents say they always comfort their child if they're upset until they go to sleep.