Let the Baby Cry?

Next, Dr. Phil asks the Sears doctors to address a myth. "The myth is that if you let the child scream it out, it really develops their lungs," he says.

"Absolutely wrong," says Dr. William Sears.

"When a baby screams for 10, 20 minutes, or a half-hour night after night, what actually happens to the baby's brain?" asks Dr. Bob Sears. "The blood pressure goes up. The pressure gets so high, new blood with oxygen can't flow into the brain. So the brain can be deprived of oxygen, you guys. And that's not all. It gets worse. The brain can be flooded with stress hormones, and we know that stress hormones can damage sensitive developing nerve tissue. So, night after night, weeks and weeks of crying can actually harm a baby's brain. That's why we encourage you both to respond to your maternal intuition. Robert, develop your fatherly intuition, so you can both really thrive as a family. Respond to your baby.

Dr. Phil addresses Robin, sitting in the audience. "Now, why are you giving me that, 'I told you so' look out there? You should see her! You should see her out there!"

"Thank you," she says to the Sears doctors. "Thank you so much, because I never let my boys cry. I picked them up and I soothed them. And he kept saying, 'You're going to have to let them cry. You're going to have to let them cry.' I never did."


"Robin, he was 12!" Dr. Phil quips.

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