“I am not bothered by my fitness as I am inspired by Leander Paes and Ashish Nehra, they both kept on playing even after reaching the age of 36. I just hope BCCI does not announce their decision on the 90th day, I hope they do it in a couple of weeks time,” Sreesanth said.The ball is in the BCCI’s court now and they have to decide on the fresh punishment they want to impose and leave any door open for Sreesanth to make a comeback to competitive cricket or even the Indian team. The apex court also said that its verdict will have no effect on the criminal proceedings pending against the former cricketer in the Delhi High Court, where the Delhi Police has challenged a trial court’s order discharging all accused, including Sreesanth, in the IPL spot-fixing case.The bench passed this order on Sreesanth’s plea challenging the decision of a division bench of the Kerala High Court which had restored the life ban imposed on him by the BCCI. New Delhi: Sreesanth, who tried for five long years to get the life-ban lifted has finally got a bit relief from the turmoil he has been through in the last six years as the Supreme Court revoked the life ban imposed on him from cricket on Friday. The apex court gave the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) three months (90 days) stint to decide afresh on the point of the quantum of punishment for the spearhead. When the news hit Sreesanth’s ears’ he was not only relieved but is hopeful to be back on the cricket field soon. “I need cricket back, I do not think it will take BCCI 90 days to make the decision but I am grateful that the life ban has been removed. I fought my battle all by myself. My practice is going on and the road ahead totally depends on the selectors,” Sreesanth told reporters after the verdict.”It was a huge fight and the Supreme Court has given me a lifeline. There were so many opportunities where I was even going to announce my retirement, but thank god I didn’t. I have started staying fit to play the game, thanks to the T20 and T10 leagues, I can still earn my bread and butter somewhere,” he said. Sreesanth’s life-time ban lifted by the apex board of India. The BCCI has been give 90 days to come up with their final decision. Sreesanth is hopeful to make a comeback into the Indian team. For all the Latest Sports News News, Cricket News News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps. highlights
Posted on February 1, 2011November 13, 2014Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)The mHealth Alliance and the World Economic Forum have a new publication out on relationships between mhealth and mobile financial services (MFS): “Amplifying the Impact: Examining the Intersection of Mobile Health and Mobile Finance.” The publication uses maternal health to illustrate some of the intersections of MFS and mhealth:Maternal health could greatly benefit from the use of mobile financial services. Along the continuum of the 14-month cycle of healthcare, there are key points where mobile financial access could address key issues in the patient, provider or service, and HR or administrative levels of support.With the MHTF newsletter on mhealth, a briefing in The Economist, and a host of other discussions, mhealth is becoming a hot topic for analysis. Be on the lookout here on the MHTF site for some more in-depth looks at mhealth in the future.Share this: ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read:
The Jamaica Productivity Centre (JPC), in a drive to inculcate a culture of productivity in all Jamaicans, has been engaging youth through an interactive campaign in primary and high schools, and colleges.The In-School Productivity campaign aims to help students apply relevant productivity tools and concepts to their personal and academic goals, through the use of comprehensible language and messages.Senior Communication Specialist with the JPC, Sashelle Gooden, told JIS News that the year-long initiative, which is part of an overarching Productive New Year Campaign, was rolled out at the start of the year.Twelve schools have been engaged since January.“We started to recognise that productivity in itself can be an elusive concept, and persons might not understand what it is and believe that it is something niche and for within the workplace. So we want to get the younger generation involved,” Ms. Gooden said.She said the JPC assesses specific goals or challenges in each school ahead of a visit and tailors the message in such a way that students can apply concepts to their own experiences.As a result, the In-School Productivity campaign will be touring five primary schools during the week of March 19, ahead of the sitting of the Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT), delivering sessions on how to apply GSAT lessons to the March 22 and 23 examination and how to overcome exam jitters.“We are trying to inculcate a culture of [productivity] in Jamaica, so we have to incorporate the younger ones. Even as we teach the adults, we want the younger ones to grow up with this embedded as well. It’s a matter of sustainability,” Ms. Gooden said.The In-School Productivity campaign was rolled out in schools following the launch of the pilot of a Productivity Club at the Immaculate Conception High School in December. Following the school visits, productivity clubs will be implemented in schools islandwide. An all-island competition will also be launched in the schools, which will help the JPC to assess how well students are applying the techniques taught to them.Ms. Gooden said participating schools have been very receptive to the campaign, and the JPC has seen a significant increase in the number of invitations it receives to host sessions.The In-School Productivity campaign is done through partnership with Lasco Distributors and the Gleaner Company.The Productive New Year campaign also includes hosting sessions in private- and public-sector entities as well as in community groups and clubs.The JPC looks at the operation of entities using a productivity audit, assesses their goals and identifies gaps in efficiency and effective use of resources, in order to help the organisations improve their level of productivity and achieve their goals. The Jamaica Productivity Centre (JPC), in a drive to inculcate a culture of productivity in all Jamaicans, has been engaging youth through an interactive campaign in primary and high schools, and colleges. Senior Communication Specialist with the JPC, Sashelle Gooden, told JIS News that the year-long initiative, which is part of an overarching Productive New Year Campaign, was rolled out at the start of the year. Story Highlights “We started to recognise that productivity in itself can be an elusive concept, and persons might not understand what it is and believe that it is something niche and for within the workplace. So we want to get the younger generation involved,” Ms. Gooden said.
Following a less-than-stellar first half of the season, the men’s hockey team is looking to improve in the second half, starting with two games against Bowling Green. The Buckeyes were just 7-12-1 through their first 20 games this season and are ninth in the Central Collegiate Hockey Association.But with 14 games remaining, all of them in-conference, the Buckeyes believe they can gain ground in the CCHA. “We’re feeling good about where we could be if we put things together and our guys are excited about that,” coach John Markell said.The Buckeyes haven’t played a game since Dec. 12, but resumed practice Dec. 28 and have used the time to improve on their power play and penalty kill. “We videoed our [penalty kill] everyday and our power play every day. We know how important that is,” Markell said. “The power play obviously needs to click for us.”The Buckeyes found themselves in the penalty box often in their first 20 games, which Markell acknowledged as another area of concern. “We can’t be caught in the penalty box a lot; that puts stress on too many things. Every little thing is magnified.” Improvement on the special teams — the power play and penalty kill — could reciprocate on the scoreboard and in the standings.Forwards Sergio Somma and Zac Dalpe noticed an increased intensity in practice since the team has come back. “In practice there were a couple scuffles on the ice and that’s good to see. Guys are working hard,” Somma said. “It says the intensity is there in practice. A high level of energy and intensity. Obviously that spawns winning and that spawns good teams.”Somma and the rest of the Buckeyes will put that intensity to the test against in-state rival Bowling Green this weekend. The teams have a bit of familiarity with each other from playing in the CCHA and having met in the postseason last year. Bowling Green comes into the weekend struggling (3-15-2), but no one at Ohio State is taking them lightly, especially coach Markell.“We know Bowling Green is a very hard-working team,” Markell said. “It’s going to take everything we can muster up to beat them. You have to be at a competitive level each and every night or it will sting you. You don’t get by with taking any short cuts in college hockey.”There is some concern whether OSU will be able to be at that competitive level after their recent hiatus from play. “Realistically we haven’t played a game in a month. There is going to be a little rust there,” Markell said. “Bowling Green is going to have two games under their belt.” The Falcons played two games last weekend and look to be sharp coming into Columbus.However, Somma is confident the team will be ready. “We’ve been conditioning a lot, but at the same time there is nothing like actually playing a game, so I’m sure it will take a good half period to get your legs back and get to game speed,” he said. “But we’re not out of shape by any means.”OSU will need to get back to game speed quickly if they’re going to beat Bowling Green this weekend. The games are Friday and Saturday at 7:05 p.m. at the Schottenstein Center.
Foreign-exchange fluctuations are inescapable. Whether you are a professional trader or a stay-at-home mom, you will feel the effects of a big-time currency move. After a more-than-decade-long down cycle, the greenback has broken out in a big way. The US Dollar Index is up 18% since July. At the moment, American consumers are reaping the benefits of the strong dollar as prices for just about every commodity have tanked. In other words, the buck is going a lot further these days. Consumers may be relishing their enhanced purchasing power, but the strong dollar is giving US multinationals a serious headache. A year ago, Ford Motor Company (F) would have realized around $26,000 for every F-150 it sold in Mexico. Today, the auto manufacturer has to decide between selling the same truck for a 10 percent discount or jacking up the price, at the risk of losing market share, to make up for the foreign exchange differential. Neither option is ideal. The strong dollar has been a chief complaint of corporate America this earnings season, which is unsurprising considering that almost half of the revenues of the S&P 500’s constituents come from abroad. Coca-Cola (KO), Johnson & Johnson (JNJ), Yum Brands (YUM), Pfizer (PFE), and Procter & Gamble (PG) are among the many name-brand companies that have cited dollar strength as a headwind. In its latest earnings call, Procter & Gamble said sales would have been five percentage points better were it not for the pesky appreciating dollar. The company’s chief financial officer went so far as to say that this was “the most significant fiscal year currency impact” in the company’s long history. Not even the most innovative companies in the world can find a way around this problem. Google said the strong dollar cost the company a half-billion dollars in sales last quarter. And Apple claimed revenues would have been two billion dollars higher if not for the surging currency. So we aren’t just talking about a few pennies here. The dollar’s strength has even swung many companies’ bottom lines from profitable to in the red. Currency market cycles typically last between six and eight years. There’s no reason to think that this time will be any different. While the Federal Reserve has stopped buying bonds, the European Central Bank is about to commence a €1.1 trillion quantitative easing (QE) program, and the Bank of Japan is continuing to pursue the largest easing program in history. US firms are coming to grips with the fact that a strong dollar is probably here to stay. Earlier this month, Wal-Mart (WMT) slashed its annual sales growth rate projection in half, largely because of the appreciating dollar. United Technologies (UTX) and Under Armour (UA) also tempered guidance for the year due to foreign-exchange effects. The silver lining is that currency movements are a zero-sum game. What’s bad for US multinationals is good for foreign exporters. The trick is identifying the biggest winner. In the latest issue of The Casey Report, we recommended an investment that is not only on the winning side of the strengthening dollar trend, but is also a direct beneficiary of the eurozone’s QE experiment. Click here to take The Casey Report for a risk-free test drive. You’ll have 90 days to decide if it’s for you. If it’s not, no hard feelings. Just let us know within 90 days and we’ll give you a full and prompt refund. You literally have nothing to lose.
Justin Spittler: What evidence do you have that Italy could ditch the euro and go back to the lira?Nick Giambruno: Italy’s new government is on a collision course with the powers that be in the EU. Its spending plans are completely at odds with the EU’s rules on deficits. And it’s already called on the European Central Bank [ECB] to forgive €250 billion in Italian debt. The ECB owns €341 billion worth of Italian bonds, which it has been buying under its own version of quantitative easing [QE], or more accurately, its currency printing program.And Rome’s demands are going to get even more shrill. It knows a blowup of Italy’s $2.6 trillion debt pile would make the fallout from the Lehman Brothers collapse look like a picnic. And folks in Brussels understand all too well that this would be a mortal blow to the EU.The EU has a choice to make. It can accept Italy’s demands and create a moral hazard that will eventually unravel the euro and the EU… or it can reject them, at which point Italy’s government will have no choice but to leave the euro. And if Italy leaves, it’s unlikely the whole project would survive.Justin Spittler: But don’t Italians know that? Why would they press ahead with a plan that could blow up their economy?Nick Giambruno: What’s going on in Italy is a stark example of how central banks pervert the free market at their own peril. Just like the Fed bought up $3.6 trillion worth of U.S. government bonds under its QE program, the ECB is on course to buy more than €2.5 trillion under its QE program. That includes purchasing €3 billion worth of Italian government bonds a month.This has perverted Italians’ understanding of risk. As recently as the start of last month, two-year Italian government bonds traded on a negative yield. That’s insane. A bond costs you to own it if its yield is negative. It makes no sense.This happened because the ECB is printing euros to buy Italian debt. This is keeping bond yields artificially low… and bond prices artificially high. [Bond prices move inversely to yields.] Italians have gotten used to the idea that they can run up an ever-growing debt pile and the ECB will always be there to scoop it up.Justin Spittler: After Japan and Greece, Italy has the highest debt-to-GDP ratio of any major developed nation in the world. How did Italians run up so much debt?Nick Giambruno: Italy’s debt-to-GDP ratio stands at over 130%. But GDP isn’t a worthwhile measure—especially in Italy’s case.Government spending—no matter how wasteful or counterproductive—is counted as a positive in the calculation of GDP. And trust me, Italian government spending is not having a positive impact on the productive part of its economy.Italians, generally speaking, love big government. You still have remnants of fascism in Italy. You have the remnants of communism, too. You have big government on the right and big government on the left.If you want a more honest reflection of the indebtedness of the Italian economy, strip out government spending. It accounts for about half of Italy’s GDP. Do that, and Italy’s debt-to-GDP ratio doubles. It’s really 260%, not 130%.There’s no way Italy can ever repay its bondholders in the purchasing power that they borrowed in. It would take almost three years of using Italians’ taxes to only pay back bondholders. It’s ludicrous to believe that that’s possible.Italy is a prime example of how unsound money perverts a culture. It teaches people to be financially irresponsible. It teaches people that the magic money machine is always going to save their bacon.Justin Spittler: What can readers do to make sure their wealth is safe?Nick Giambruno: The next big crunch will be when the Italian government unveils its new budget. And it’s almost certainly going to be at odds with EU spending rules.So we’re talking about a crisis—that would dwarf the 2008 global financial crisis—happening as soon as later this year. The EU is in an impossible situation. No matter which way it goes, it’s in trouble. I certainly wouldn’t recommend holding any European stocks or bonds right now.But it’s also bullish for gold. Gold is a “crisis currency.” It’s what you want to own when there’s a panic in financial assets. In a crisis, people want the assurance of gold. There’s zero default risk when you own gold bars or gold coins.I also recommend holding some bitcoin. Bitcoin is starting to behave like a crisis currency. If we see the euro come apart, bitcoin could go exponentially higher.It’s not that bitcoin is without risk. We’ve seen the price bounce around a lot. But it is a way to get your wealth outside of the mainstream financial system. And that’s where you want to be when the financial system is plunged into a crisis.Justin Spittler: Thanks for chatting with me today, Nick.Nick Giambruno: No problem, Justin.Justin’s note: As Nick says, three steps you can take today are avoiding European stocks and bonds… owning gold… and holding some bitcoin. But there’s another way you can make a fortune while this crisis plays out… and Nick shares all the details in his Crisis Investing newsletter. If you’re not a subscriber, click here to see how you can join today.P.S. In a few weeks, Nick will be speaking in Bermuda at our first-ever Legacy Investment Summit. He’ll be revealing the six reasons why Trump will legalize cannabis… and how to make life-changing profits. And you’re invited.It’s a great opportunity for you to meet Nick, along with Doug Casey and all of our gurus, in what will be the most action-packed event in our company’s history. You can learn more about it by clicking here.Reader MailbagOn Monday, we asked if you were investing in cryptocurrencies… Here are some of the responses we received…Hello Justin, I’m a 61-year-old woman who has never invested a dime in her life until now. Last month, I did my research and decided that cryptocurrencies are the future of global financials.Then I invested some money in bitcoin and ether. I intend to buy more each time the prices drop on these cryptocurrencies and to buy others as well. I’m very certain the prices of these cryptocurrencies are going to explode by the end of the year. So, every time the price of cryptos drops, I’m happy to buy more and am not the least bit worried about my investments. Why else would big institutions like JPMorgan be investing heavily in cryptos? Have a marvelous day! —Joanne — Justin Spittler: Why is Italy a risk to the global financial system?Nick Giambruno: We had a European sovereign debt crisis, focused on Greece, a couple of years back. That sent shockwaves through global financial markets.But Italy is not Greece. Greece is a marginal economy. Its annual GDP is $200 billion. Italy has the ninth-largest economy in the world, with an annual GDP of about $2 trillion.Even more important, the value of Italian debt dwarfs Greece’s debt pile. Italian governments have run up the equivalent of about $2.6 trillion in debt—or about 130% of Italian GDP.And remember, Italy uses the euro. It can’t print money to pay off its debt, like the U.S. can. Rome has to take the money out of taxpayers’ pockets to cover the interest costs on the debt.Add in the new, populist, “Euroskeptic” government running the show in Italy, and you’ve got a highly combustible situation.These people are not reading Ludwig von Mises or Ron Paul. They don’t have sound economics. They’re not talking about balancing the budget and going back to sound money principles. The combination of extra spending and tax cutting they’re proposing is completely unsustainable.When you understand this, you’ll also understand the inevitability of an Italian debt crisis. It’s just a matter of connecting the dots to see that this is where the next major crisis is likely to start.Justin Spittler: Doesn’t that put Italy on a collision course with the EU?Nick Giambruno: That’s the point. Italy’s new government wants to leave the euro so it can finance its budget by going back to the old Italian currency, the lira, and printing money.That’s how it’s going to pay for its universal basic income and its extravagant pensions. It’s not going to pay for them with economic growth… or by making government spending cuts elsewhere. It’s going to pay for them by printing money. This is as clear as day.The reason the Italian government has floated the idea of breaking free from the euro is so that it can print a bunch of lira to pay for its stupid social programs. If these kinds of policies are implemented, it could eventually turn Italy into the next Venezuela. — FREE EVENT TONIGHT: “Give Me One Evening and I’ll Turn You Into a Money-Making Machine”Former hedge fund manager Teeka Tiwari reveals how you can use Wall Street’s best-kept money-making secrets to collect guaranteed “instant cash,” month after month. I have been averaging into four cryptocurrencies over the past few months. These holdings are all down about 25% to 30% right now. I don’t care! My goal is to accumulate positions in these at whatever price they happen to be. —ThomasAs always, you can send any questions or suggestions for the Dispatch right here. Justin’s note: In yesterday’s Dispatch, I showed you how Italy’s debt crisis could ultimately end Europe as we know it. Today, we talk with Crisis Investing chief analyst Nick Giambruno for a closer look at the situation.Nick’s been warning his readers about the crisis brewing in Italy. In our conversation below, he explains what’s really happening… why Italy could turn into “the next Venezuela”… and most importantly, what you need to do today to make sure your wealth is safe…Justin Spittler: You first wrote about the crisis brewing in Italy in your Crisis Investing advisory two years ago. But folks on Wall Street… and in the mainstream press… are only starting to wake up to the crisis there. Why has it taken them so long to see the danger Italy poses to the global financial system?Nick Giambruno: I’m an Italian citizen. So I have a fairly good grasp on the country. Back in the summer of 2016, the country was plunged into a political crisis. Folks started questioning whether it would stay in the European Union [EU] or leave, like Britain had just voted to do. I stayed there for several weeks—in Rome and Milan—figuring out what was going on.It was abundantly clear to me then that Italy was a systemic risk to the global financial system… and that it had unsolvable problems that were going to come to the fore sooner or later.It was also clear that Italy’s “Euroskeptic” populist political parties were going to come to power… and that they would try to steer the country out of the euro.It took Wall Street and the Establishment too long to connect the dots. But that all changed this past March, when the Italian populists took the reins of the government, as I had predicted. Recommended Link The “New Gold Standard” [FULL SCOOP] Recommended Link SPOILER: This has nothing to do with cryptos. Weird new “Gold Laws” popping up across AmericaThe “gold standard” may be coming back, but not in the way you think… Recently, several high-ranking officials and U.S. businessmen met to discuss a new “gold standard”—backed by 21st Century technology. Already, 142 U.S. cities have opened up to this radical idea. And Texas Governor Greg Abbott has moved part of his savings into a “prototype” for the “new gold standard.” One man involved in the discussions reveals what he’s learned, along with a potentially explosive opportunity—the same kind of opportunity he used to bag a 14,354% winner. Cryptocurrencies are going to fly! —Anonymous Get all the info here
America’s big drugmakers and pharmacy chains are scrambling to respond to hundreds of lawsuits tied to the deadly opioid epidemic. Billions of dollars are at stake if the companies are found liable for fueling the crisis.Even before judgments are rendered, companies like Purdue Pharma, Johnson & Johnson and CVS are already suffering damage to their reputations as evidence in civil suits reveals more about their internal workings.”The narrative is clearly shifting on this story,” said David Armstrong, a senior reporter with ProPublica, who has covered the drug industry for years. “People want some sort of reckoning, some sort of accounting.”One reason for the shift is that cities and states filing these suits are moving more aggressively to pull back the curtain on the drug industry’s practices, urging courts to make internal memos, marketing strategies and reams of other documents public.”Our next battle is to get the depositions and the documents that are being produced made available to the public, instead of everything being filed under confidentiality agreements,” said Joe Rice, one of the lead attorneys bringing lawsuits against drug companies on behalf of local governments in Ohio.A growing number of documents have already been released or leaked to the press, and many of the revelations they contain have been troubling. In internal memos, Purdue executives acknowledged that their prescription opioids are far more addictive and dangerous than the company was telling doctors. At the same time, company directives pushed sales representatives to get even more opioids into the hands of vulnerable people, including seniors and veterans.Memos also show that Purdue executives developed a secret plan, never implemented, called Project Tango in which they acknowledged the escalating risk of the opioid epidemic. The program was allegedly designed to help Purdue profit from the growing wave of opioid dependency by selling the company’s addiction treatment services to people hooked on products like its own OxyContin.This increased transparency represents a big shift in the way opioid lawsuits are being handled. “We’ve done something that hasn’t been done before,” said Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey, who appeared in February on NPR and WBUR’s program On Point.Massachusetts is suing Purdue, like dozens of other states, and Healey fought successfully to make all the documents her office had uncovered public, without redactions. “What Purdue’s own documents show is the extent of deception and deceit. What’s important to me is that the facts come to light, and we get justice and accountability,” Healey said.Purdue Pharma declined to speak with NPR, but the drug industry has fought these disclosures at every turn. They describe the information in these documents as proprietary, asserting that it should be viewed by the courts as corporate property. For years, governments pursuing these cases mostly went along with those arguments.In past opioid settlements, companies paid fines but insisted on gag orders. “The way it usually works is the language in the settlement requires either that the records be destroyed very quickly after the settlement or that they physically actually return the records to the drug company,” said ProPublica’s Armstrong.That happened in 2007 when the Justice Department ended a criminal case against Purdue Pharma. It happened again a few years ago when the state of Kentucky settled a civil case with the company and that state’s attorney general destroyed thousands of pages of documents. As a result, few people in the wider public knew how serious the allegations were.As more information has been revealed, it’s sparking fury. At a February hearing on Capitol Hill, Sen. Maggie Hassan, D-N.H., blasted industry executives. “Companies like Janssen and Purdue Pharma fueled this epidemic, employing deceptive and truly unconscionable marketing tactics despite the known risk, so you could sell more drugs to maximize your profits,” she said.Jennifer Taubert heads the Janssen Pharmaceuticals unit of Johnson & Johnson, which makes and sells opioids. The company faces escalating lawsuits over its products, but Taubert denied any wrongdoing at the hearing. “Everything that we have done with our products when we’ve promoted opioid products, which we stopped marketing a long time ago, was appropriate and responsible,” she told lawmakers.Yet according to the drug companies’ internal documents, firms including Johnson & Johnson pushed unscientific theories about drug addiction. They allegedly did so as part of an effort to persuade doctors to prescribe even more opioids after patients showed signs of dependency.This kind of industry backlash has happened before, such as when tobacco companies faced lawsuits in the 1990s. As those trials unfolded, the public learned for the first time about widespread corporate wrongdoing.The difference here is that drug companies and their researchers have been seen by many in the public as healers and innovators, part of a trusted health care system.There could be more revelations. With another big opioid trial set to begin in May in Oklahoma state court, attorneys are still fighting over millions of pages of documents, most of which the public has still never seen.One possibility is that companies could agree to what is known as a global settlement of these opioid cases, paying billions of dollars in compensation in hopes of winning new secrecy agreements.If that happens, says ProPublica’s Armstrong, documents that help tell the full story of this drug epidemic could be destroyed or locked away for years. “I worry that we’re going to lose all this valuable information about how we got to this point with this crisis, who knew what when,” he said. Copyright 2019 NCPR. To see more, visit NCPR.
Welcome to parenthood! For many of us, parenthood is like being air-dropped into a foreign land, where protohumans rule and communication is performed through cryptic screams and colorful fluids. And to top it off, in this new world, sleep is like gold: precious and rare. (Oh, so precious.)Throughout human history, children were typically raised in large, extended families filled with aunts, uncles, grannies, grandpas and siblings. Adding another baby to the mix didn’t really make a big dent. Nowadays, though, many moms and dads are going about it alone. As a result, taking care of a newborn can be relentless. There are too few arms for rocking, too few chests for sleeping and too few hours in the day to stream The Great British Bake Off. At some point, many parents need the baby to sleep — alone and quietly — for a few hours. And so, out of self-preservation, many of us turn to the common, albeit controversial, practice of sleep training, in hopes of coaxing the baby to sleep by herself. Some parents swear by it. They say it’s the only way they and their babies got any sleep. Others parents say letting a baby cry is harmful. What does the science say? Here we try to separate fiction from fact and offer a few reassuring tips for wary parents. Let’s start with the basics. Myth: Sleep training is synonymous with the “cry-it-out” method.Fact: Researchers today are investigating a wide range of gentler sleep training approaches that can help.The mommy blogs and parenting books often mix up sleep training with “cry it out,” says Jodi Mindell, a psychologist at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia who has helped thousands of babies and parents get more sleep over the past 20 years. In fact, most of the time, it’s not that. “I think unfortunately sleep training has gotten a really bad rap because it’s been equated with this moniker called ‘cry it out,’ ” Mindell says.Indeed, the cry-it-out approach does sound cruel to many parents. “You put your baby into their crib or their room, you close the door and you don’t come back till the next day,” Mindell says. “But that’s not the reality of what we recommend or what parents typically do.”And it’s not what scientists have been studying over the past 20 years. Cry-it-out is an old way of thinking, says Mindell, author of one of the most frequently cited studies on sleep training (and the popular book Sleeping Through The Night). In today’s scientific literature, the term “sleep training” is an umbrella term that refers to a spectrum of approaches to help babies learn to fall asleep by themselves. It includes much gentler methods than cry-it-out or the so-called Ferber method. For example, some sleep training starts off by having the parent sleep next to the baby’s crib (a method called camping out) or simply involves educating parents about baby sleep.”All these methods are lumped together in the scientific literature as ‘sleep training,’ ” Mindell says. In several studies, parents are taught a very gentle approach to sleep training. They are told to place the baby in the crib and then soothe him — by patting or rubbing his back — until he stops crying. The parent then leaves the room. If the baby begins crying, the parent is supposed to check in after waiting some amount of time. In one study, these types of gentle interventions reduced the percentage of parents reporting sleep problems five months later by about 30%. Myth: There’s a “right” amount of time to let your baby cry when you’re trying to sleep train.Fact: There’s not a strict formula that works for every parent (or baby). There isn’t a magic number of minutes that works best for checking on a baby after you’ve put her down, Mindell says. It really depends on what parents feel comfortable with. “Doesn’t matter if you come back and check on the baby every 30 seconds or whether you come back every five minutes,” she says. “If it’s your first child you’re going in every 20 seconds.” But by the third, she jokes, 10 minutes of crying may not seem like a lot. There is no scientific data showing that checking every three minutes or every 10 minutes is going to work faster or better than checking more often. There are about a dozen or so high-quality studies on sleep training. Each study tests a slightly different approach. And none really compares different methods. In many studies, multiple methods are combined. For example, parents are taught both how to sleep train and how to set up a good bedtime routine. So it’s impossible to say one approach works better than the other, especially for every baby, Mindell says. Instead of looking for a strict formula — such as checking every five minutes — parents should focus on finding what Mindell calls “the magic moment” — that is, the moment when the child can fall asleep independently without the parent in the room. For some children, more soothing or more check-ins may help bring forth the magic, and for other babies, less soothing, fewer check-ins may work better. With my daughter, I finally figured out that one type of crying meant she needed some TLC, but another meant she wanted to be left alone. Even having a good bedtime routine can make a difference. “I think education is key,” Mindell says. “One study I just reviewed found that when new parents learn about how babies sleep, their newborns are more likely to be better sleepers at 3 and 6 months.””So you just have figure out what works best for you, your family and the baby’s temperament,” she says.Myth: It’s not real sleep training if you don’t hear tons of crying.Fact: Gentler approaches work, too. And sometimes nothing works.You don’t have to hear tons of crying if you don’t want, Mindell says. The scientific literature suggests all the gentler approaches — such as camping out and parental education — can help most babies and parents get more sleep, at least for a few months. In 2006, Mindell reviewed 52 studies on various sleep training methods. And in 49 of the studies, sleep training decreased resistance to sleep at bedtime and night wakings, as reported by the parents. There’s a popular belief that “cry it out” is the fastest way to teach babies to sleep independently. But there’s no evidence that’s true, Mindell says.”Parents are looking for like what’s the most effective method,” Mindell says. “But what that is depends on the parents and the baby. It’s a personalized formula. There’s no question about it.”And if nothing seems to work, don’t push too hard. For about 20% of babies, sleep training just doesn’t work, Mindell says. “Your child may not be ready for sleep training, for whatever reason,” she says. “Maybe they’re too young, or they’re going through separation anxiety, or there may be an underlying medical issue, such as reflux.” Myth: Once I sleep train my baby, I can expect her to sleep through the night, every night.Fact: Most sleep training techniques help some parents, for some time, but they don’t always stick.Don’t expect a miracle from any sleep training method, especially when it comes to long-term results. None of the sleep training studies are large enough — or quantitative enough — to tell parents how much better a baby will sleep or how much less often that baby will wake up after trying a method, or how long the changes will last. “I think that idea is a made-up fantasy,” Mindell says. “It would be great if we could say exactly how much improvement you’re going to see in your child, but any improvement is good. “Even the old studies on cry-it-out warned readers that breakthrough crying sometimes occurred at night and that retraining was likely needed after a few months. The vast majority of sleep training studies don’t actually measure how much a baby sleeps or wakes up. But instead, they rely on parent reports to measure sleep improvements, which can be biased. For example, one of the high-quality studies found that a gentle sleep training method reduced the probability of parents reporting sleep problems by about 30% in their 1-year-old. But by the time those kids were 2 years old, the effect disappeared. Another recent study found two kinds of sleep training helped babies sleep better — for a few months. It tried to compare two sleep training approaches: one where the parent gradually allows the baby to cry for longer periods of time and one where the parent shifts the baby’s bedtime to a later time (the time he naturally falls asleep), and then the parent slowly moves the time up to the desired bedtime. The data suggest that both methods reduced the time it takes for a baby to fall asleep at night and the number of times the baby wakes up at night. But the study was quite small, just 43 infants. And the size of the effects varied greatly among the babies. So it’s hard to say how much improvement is expected. After both methods, babies were still waking up, on average, one to two times a night, three months later. Bottom line, don’t expect a miracle, especially when it comes to long-term results. Even if the training has worked for your baby, the effect will likely wear off, you might be back to square one, and some parents choose to redo the training.Myth: Sleep training (or NOT sleep training) my children could harm them in the long term. Fact: There’s no data to show either choice hurts your child in the long-run. Some parents worry sleep training could be harmful long-term. Or that not doing it could set up their kids for problems later on.The science doesn’t support either of these fears, says Dr. Harriet Hiscock, a pediatrician at the Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne, Australia, who has authored some of the best studies on the topic.In particular, Hiscock led one of the few long-term studies on the topic. It’s a randomized controlled trial — the gold standard in medical science — with more than 200 families. Blogs and parenting books often cite the study as “proof” that the cry-it-out method doesn’t harm children. But if you look closely, you quickly see that the study doesn’t actually test “cry it out.” Instead, it tests two other gentler methods, including the camping out method. “It’s not shut the door on the child and leave,” Hiscock says.In the study, families were either taught a gentle sleep training method or given regular pediatric care. Then Hiscock and colleagues checked up on the families five years later to see if the sleep training had any detrimental effects on the children’s emotional health or their relationship with their parents. The researchers also measured the children’s stress levels and accessed their sleep habits. In the end, Hiscock and her colleagues couldn’t find any long-term difference between the children who had been sleep trained as babies and those who hadn’t. “We concluded that there were no harmful effects on children’s behavior, sleep, or the parent-child relationship,” Hiscock says.In other words, the gentle sleep training didn’t make a lick of difference — bad or good — by the time kids reached about age 6. For this reason, Hiscock says parents shouldn’t feel pressure to sleep train, or not to sleep train a baby.”I just think it’s really important to not make parents feel guilty about their choice [on sleep training],” Hiscock says. “We need to show them scientific evidence, and then let them make up their own minds.” Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.