Controversy Brews Over ‘Cry It Out’ Sleep Method

Some pediatricians recommend it for infants who are 4-6 months old

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A group of pediatricians with offices in several states recommends that parents let their babies as young as 2 months old cry themselves to sleep — advice that other doctors say could be dangerous.

The practice, known as "extinction," was highlighted in an article in The Wall Street Journal on Monday. As part of sleep training, which encourages an infant to sleep through the night, this approach directs parents to let their baby cry it out and resist the temptation to console the little one after bedtime.

Some pediatricians recommend it for infants who are 4-6 months old, but Tribeca Pediatrics — which has offices in New York, New Jersey and California — says it's more effective in babies who are as young as 2 months.

Dr. Deborah Gilboa, a Pittsburgh-area family physician told  "Today"  she didn't recommended trying this approach.

"To be left to cry it out for 20 minutes, half an hour, or an hour at a time, causes trauma at that age," Gilboa said.

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