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Durham University

Durham Infancy & Sleep Centre


Look here for the Durham Infancy & Sleep Centre's publications:


  • Blair, P. S., Ball, H. L., McKenna, J. J., Feldman-Winter, L., Marinelli, K. A., Bartick, M. C.. (2020). Bedsharing and Breastfeeding: The Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine Protocol #6, Revision 2019. Breastfeeding Medicine, 15(1), 5–16.
  • Ball HL, Tomori C, McKenna JJ. (2019) Towards and integrated anthropology of infant sleep. American Anthropologist (early view online published 8 July 2019).
  • Marinelli, K. A., Ball, H. L., McKenna, J. J., & Blair, P. S. (2019). An Integrated Analysis of Maternal-Infant Sleep, Breastfeeding, and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome Research Supporting a Balanced Discourse. Journal of Human Lactation, 35(3), 510–520.
  • Ball, H. L. (2019). Conducting Online Surveys. Journal of Human Lactation, 35(3), 413–417.
  • Helen L Ball. (2019) The Mother-Infant Sleep Nexus: night-time experiences in early infancy and later outcomes In The Mother-Infant Nexus in Anthropology: Small beginnings, significant outcomes. Edited by Rebecca Gowland. Sian Halcrow. Springer: London.
  • Helen L. Ball (2019) Breastfeeding and Infant Sleep: what medical professionals need to know Breastfeeding for Medical Professionals eds Brown and Jones. Routledge: London
  • C Tomori, K Boyer (2019) Domestic Geographies of Parental and Infant (Co-) Becomings: Home-Space, Nighttime Breastfeeding, and Parent–Infant Sleep Annals of the American Association of Geographers 109 (4), 1172-1187
  • M Bartick, C Tomori (2019) Sudden infant death and social justice: A syndemics approach Maternal & child nutrition 15 (1), e12652


  • Ball HL, Douglas PS, et al. (2018) The Possums Infant Sleep Program: parents' perspectives on a novel parent-infant sleep intervention in Australia. Sleep Health: Journal of the National Sleep Foundation. 4(6):519-526. 10.1016/j.sleh.2018.08.0076.
  • Rudzik AEF, Robinson L, Ball HL (2018) “Discrepancies in maternal reports of infant sleep vs. actigraphy by mode of feeding.” Sleep Medicine
  • Galbally M, Watson SJ, Ball HL, Lewis AJ (2018) Breastfeeding, antidepressants, and depression in the mercy pregnancy and emotional well-being study. Journal of Human Lactation.
  • Bartick M, Tomori C, Ball HL (2018) “Babies in Boxes and the missing links on safe sleep: Human evolution and cultural revolution.” Maternal & Child Nutrition 14(2) e12544
  • Cecilia Tomori (2018) Changing cultures of night-time breastfeeding and sleep in the US. In Social experiences of breastfeeding: Building bridges between research, policy and practice pp115-130 Policy Press


  • Ball, Helen L. (2017). Evolution-informed maternal-infant health. Nature Ecology & Evolution 1(3): 0073.
  • Ball, Helen L. (2017). The Atlantic Divide: contrasting U.K. & U.S. recommendations on cosleeping and bed-sharing. Journal of Human Lactation 33(4): 765-769.
  • Bartick, Melissa, Tomori, Cecília & Ball, Helen L. (2017). Babies in boxes and the missing links on safe sleep: Human evolution and cultural revolution. Maternal & Child Nutrition e12544
  • Robinson-Smith, Lyn & Ball, Helen L. (2017). Sleep and cognitive function in young children. The International Journal of Birth and Parent Education 5(1): 27-30.
  • Sullivan, S.S. & Ball H.L. (2017). Early Childhood Pediatric Sleep Concerns for Parents: Co-sleeping. In Reference Module in Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Psychology. Stein, John Elsevier.
  • Tomori, Cecilia (2017). The Inequities of Nighttime Breastfeeding. In Breastfeeding, Social Justice, and Equity. Smith, Paige Hall, Labbok, Miriam & Chambers, Brittany Praeclarus Press. 231-238.


  • Ball, H., Howell, D., Bryant, A., Best, E., Russell, C. & Ward-Platt, M. (2016). Bed-sharing by breastfeeding mothers: who bed-shares, and what is the relationship with breastfeeding duration? Acta Paediatrica 105(6): 628-634.
  • Collings, P., Ball, H., Santorelli, G., West, J., Barber, S., McEachan, R. & Wright, J. (2017). Sleep duration and adiposity in early childhood: evidence for bidirectional associations from the Born in Bradford study. SLEEP 40(2): zsw054.
  • Crane, D. & Ball, H.L. (2016). A qualitative study in parental perceptions and understanding of SIDS-reduction guidance in a UK bi-cultural urban community. BMC Pediatrics 16: 23.
  • Cronin-de-Chavez, Anna, Ball, Helen L. & Ward-Platt, Martin P. (2016). Bi-ethnic infant thermal care beliefs in Bradford, UK. International Journal of Human Rights in Healthcare 9(2): 120-134.
  • Rudzik, Alanna E.F. & Ball, Helen L. (2016). Baby-Lag: Methods for assessing parental tiredness and fatigue. In Biological measures of human experience across the lifespan: making visible the invisible. Seivert, Lynette Leidy & Brown, Daniel E. Cham: Springer. 29-46.
  • Rudzik, Alanna E. & Ball, Helen L. (2016). Exploring maternal perceptions of infant sleep and feeding method among mothers in the United Kingdom: A qualitative focus group study. Maternal and Child Health Journal 20(1): 33-40
  • Russell, Charlotte K., Volpe, Lane E. & Ball, Helen L. (2016). Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. In Evolutionary thinking in medicine: from research to policy and practice. Alvergne, A., Jenkinson, C. & Faurie, C. Cham: Springer. 61-74.
  • Russell, C.K., Robinson, L. & Ball, H.L. (2013). Infant Sleep Development: Location, Feeding and Expectations in the Postnatal Period. The Open Sleep Journal 6(Suppl 1): M9, 68-76.


  • Ball, Helen L. (2015). The BMJ illustrates hazardous co-sleeping. BMJ 350: h993.
  • Ball, Helen L. (2015). Empowering families to make informed choices about sleep safety. British Journal of Midwifery 23(3): 164-165.
  • Fairley, Lesley, Santorelli, Gillian, Lawlor, Debbie A., Bryant, Maria, Bhopal, Raj, Petherick, Emily S., Sahota, Pinki, Greenwood, Darren C., Hill, Andrew J., Cameron, Noel, Ball, Helen L., Barber, Sally & Wright, John (2015). The relationship between early life modifiable risk factors for childhood obesity, ethnicity and body mass index at age 3 years: findings from the Born in Bradford birth cohort study. BMC Obesity 2(1): 9.
  • Russell, Charlotte K., Whitmore, Mary, Burrows, Dawn & Ball, Helen L. (2015). Where might my baby sleep? Design and evaluation of a novel discussion tool for parent education. International Journal of Birth and Parenting Education 2(2): 11-15.
  • Russell, Charlotte K. & Ball, Helen L. (2015). Bed-sharing, co-sleeping and parent education--a time for change. International Journal of Birth and Parenting Education 2(2): 19-20.
  • Taylor, Catherine E., Tully, Kristin P. & Ball, Helen L. (2015). Night-time on a postnatal ward: experiences of mothers, infants, and staff. In Ethnographic Research in Maternal and Child Health. Dykes, Fiona C. & Flacking, Renée Routledge. 117-140.
  • Tomori, Cecilia, Palmquist, Aunchalee E.L. & Dowling, Sally (2016). Contested moral landscapes: Negotiating breastfeeding stigma in breastmilk sharing, nighttime breastfeeding, and long-term breastfeeding in the U.S. and the U.K. Social Science & Medicine 168: 178-185.
  • Tomori, Cecilia (2015). The Challenges of Nighttime Breastfeeding in the U.S. In It Takes a Village: The Role of the Greater Community in Inspiring and Empowering Women to Breastfeed. Smith, Paige Hall & Labbok, Miriam Amarillo, Texas: Praeclarus Press. 117-122.
  • Volpe, Lane E. & Ball, Helen L. (2015). Infant sleep-related deaths: why do parents take risks? Archives of Disease in Childhood 100(7): 603-604


  • Ball, H.L. & Russell, C.K. (2014). SIDS & Infant Sleep Ecology. Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health 2014(1): 146.
  • Ball, Helen L. (2014). Reframing what we tell parents about normal infant sleep and how we support them. Breastfeeding Review 22(3): 11-12.
  • Jones, Caroline H.D. & Ball, Helen L. (2014). Exploring socioeconomic differences in bedtime behaviours and sleep duration in English preschool children. Infant and Child Development 23(5): 518-531.
  • Jones, Caroline HD, Pollard, Tessa M, Summerbell, CD & Ball, Helen L (2014). Could parental rules play a role in the association between short sleep and obesity in young children? Journal of Biosocial Science 46(3): 405-418.
  • Tomori, Cecilia (2014). Nighttime Breastfeeding: An American Cultural Dilemma. Berghahn Books
  • Tully, Kristin P. & Ball, Helen L. (2014). Maternal accounts of their breast-feeding intent and early challenges after caesarean childbirth. Midwifery 30(6): 712-719.


  • Ball, H.L. (2013). Supporting parents who are worried about their newborn’s sleep. British medical journal 346: f2344.
  • Ball, Helen L. & Russell, Charlotte K. (2013). Effect of behavioural-educational intervention on sleep for primiparous women and their infants in early postpartum: multisite randomised controlled trial. Student BMJ 346: f1164.
  • Ball, H.L. & Volpe, L.E. (2013). Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) risk reduction and infant sleep location: Moving the discussion forward. Social Science & Medicine 79: 84-91.
  • Howel, Denise & Ball, Helen L. (2013). Association between Length of Exclusive Breastfeeding and Subsequent Breastfeeding Continuation. Journal of Human Lactation 29(4): 579-585.
  • Jones, C. & Ball, H.L. (2013). Napping in English preschool children and the association with parents’ attitudes. Sleep Medicine 14(4): 352–358.
  • Tully, K.P. & Ball, H.L. (2013). Misrecognition of need women's experiences of and explanations for undergoing cesarean delivery. Social science and medicine 85: 103-111.
  • Tully, K.P. & Ball, H.L. (2013). Trade-offs underlying maternal breastfeeding decisions: a conceptual model. Maternal & Child Nutrition 9(1): 90-98.
  • Volpe, L.E., Ball, H.L. & McKenna, J.J. (2013). Nighttime parenting strategies and sleep-related risks to infants. Social Science & Medicine 79: 92-100.


  • Ball, H.L., Moya, E. Fairley, L., Westman, J., Oddie, S. & Wright, J. (2012). Bed and sofa-sharing practices in a UK biethnic population. Pediatrics 129(3): e673-e681.
  • Ball, H.L., Moya, E., Fairley, L., Westman, J., Oddie, S. & Wright, J. (2012). Infant care practices related to sudden infants death syndrome in South Asian and White British families in the UK. Paediatric and Perinatal Epidemiology 26(1): 3-12.
  • Ball, H.L. (2012). Sleeping with the baby. Breastfeeding Briefs 53: 1-12.
  • Ball, H.L. (2012). The latest on bed-sharing and breastfeeding. Community Practitioner 85(1): 29-31.
  • Ball, H.L. & Russell, C.K. (2012). Night-time nurturing: an evolutionary perspective on breastfeeding and sleep. In Evolution, Early Experience and Human Development: From Research to Practice and Policy. Narváez, D., Panksepp, J., Schore, A. & Gleason, T. Oxford: Oxford University Press. 241-261.
  • Jones, C. & Ball, H.L. (2012). Medical Anthropology and Children’s Sleep: The Mismatch between Western Lifestyles and Sleep Physiology. In Sleep: multi-professional perspectives. Green, A. & Westcombe, A.M. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers. 86-103.
  • Russell, C.K., Howel, D., Ward-Platt, M.P. & Ball, H.L. (2012). Use of interactive telephone technology for longitudinal data collection in a large trial. Contemporary Clinical Trials 33: 364-368.
  • Tully, K.P. & Ball, H.L. (2012). Postnatal Unit Bassinet Types When Rooming-In After Cesarean Section Birth: Implications for Breastfeeding and Infant Safety. Journal of Human Lactation 28(4): 495-505.


  • Ball, H.L., Ward-Platt, M.P. Howel, D. & Russell, C.K. (2011). Randomised trial of sidecar crib use on breastfeeding duration (NECOT). Archives of Disease in Childhood 96(7): 630-634.


  • Ball, H.L. (2009). Bed-sharing and co-sleeping: Research overview. New Digest 48: 22-27.
  • Ball, H.L. (2009). Airway covering during bed-sharing. Child: Care, Health and Development 35(5): 728-737.
  • Tomori, Cecilia (2009). Breastfeeding as Men’s “Kin Work” in the United States. Phoebe: Gender and Cultural Critiques 21(2): 31-44.


  • van den Berg, Martina & Ball, Helen L. (2008). Practices, advice and support regarding prolonged breastfeeding: a descriptive study from Sri Lanka. Journal of Reproductive and Infant Psychology 26(3): 229-243.


  • Ball, H.L. (2008). Evolutionary Paediatrics: a case study in applying Darwinian Medicine. In Medicine and Evolution: Current Applications, Future Prospects. Elton, S. & O'Higgins, P. New York: Taylor & Francis. 127-152.


  • Ball, Helen L. (2007). Together or apart? A behavioural and physiological investigation of sleeping arrangements for twin babies. Midwifery 23(4): 404-412.
  • Ball, Helen L. (2007). Bed-sharing practices of initially breastfed infants in the first 6 months of life. Infant and Child Development 16(4): 387-401.
  • Ball, H.L. & Klingaman, K.P. (2007). Breastfeeding and mother-infant sleep proximity: implications for infant care. In Evolutionary Medicine and Health: New Perspectives. Trevathan, W., Smith, E.O. & McKenna, J.J. New York: Oxford University Press. 226-241.
  • Klingaman, K. & Ball, H. (2007). Anthropology of caesarean section birth and breastfeeding: Rationale for evolutionary medicine on the postnatal ward. Durham Anthropology Journal 14(1).
  • McKenna, James J., Ball, Helen L. & Gettler, Lee T. (2007). Mother–Infant Cosleeping, Breastfeeding and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome: What Biological Anthropology Has Discovered About Normal Infant Sleep and Pediatric Sleep Medicine. American Journal of Physical Anthropology 134(S45): 133-161.


  • Ball, H.L. (2006). Parent-Infant Bed-sharing Behavior: effects of feeding type, and presence of father. Human Nature: an interdisciplinary biosocial perspective 17(3): 301-318.
  • Ball, H.L., Ward-Platt, M.P., Heslop, E., Leech, S.J. & Brown, K.A. (2006). Randomised trial of infant sleep location on the postnatal ward. Archives of Disease in Childhood 91(12): 1005-1010.
  • Ball, Helen L. (2006). Night-time infant care: cultural practice, evolution, and infant development. In Childrearing and infant care issues: a cross-cultural perspective. Pranee Liamputtong Melbourne, Australia: Nova. 47-61.
  • Ball, Helen L. (2006). Caring for twin infants: sleeping arrangements and their implications. Evidence Based Midwifery 4(1): 10-16.
  • Ball, H.L. (2006). Bed-sharing on the post-natal ward: breastfeeding and infant sleep safety. Paediatrics and Child Health 11(Suppl A): 43A-46A.


  • Ball, H.L., Volpe, L.E., Heslop, E. & Leech, S.J. (2005). Observing mother-infant sleep behaviour. Measuring Behavior 2005, Wageningen, NL, Noldus.
  • Heslop, E., Ball, H.L. & Leech, S.J. (2005). Bedding-in and Rooming-in on the post-natal ward: breastfeeding initiation. Measuring Behavior 2005, Wageningen, NL, Noldus Information Technology.


  • Blair, P.S. & Ball, H.L. (2004). The prevalence and characteristics associated with parent–infant bed-sharing in England. Archives of Disease in Childhood 89: 1106-1110.
  • Ball, H.L., Blair, P.S. & Ward-Platt, M.P. (2004). 'New' practice of bedsharing and risk of SIDS (letter). Lancet 363(9420): 1558.
  • Wailoo, M., Ball, H.L., Fleming, P.J. & Ward-Platt, M.P. (2004). Infants bed-sharing with mothers: helpful, harmful or don't we know? Archives of Disease in Childhood 89(12): 1082-1083.


  • Ball, H.L. (2003). Breastfeeding, bed-sharing and infant sleep. Birth: Issues in Perinatal Care 30(3): 181-188.


  • Ball, H.L. (2002). Reasons to bed-share: why parents sleep with their infants. Journal of Reproductive and Infant Psychology 20(4): 207-222.
  • Ball, H.L. (2002). Risks to infants of sharing the parental bed: a physiological & behavioural study. Final report to Scottish Cot Death Trust. Glasgow.
  • Ball, H.L. (2002). Bed-sharing Research in Britain. Mothering Magazine (US) Sept.
  • Ward-Platt, M.P. & Ball, H.L. (2002). Rooming-in at the Hospital: Assessing the Practical Considerations. Mothering Magazine (US) Sept(114).


  • Ball, H.L. (2001). Triadic bed-sharing and infant temperature. Ambulatory Child Health 28(1): 55-58.
  • Ball, Helen L. & Panter-Brick, C. (2001). Child survival and the modulation of parental investment. In Reproductive Ecology and Human Evolution. Ellison, P. New York: Aldine de Gruyter. 249-266.Blair, P. Fleming, P.J.,
  • Ball, H.L. & Ward-Platt, M.P. (2001). Surprised by publication (letter). Pediatrics 108(5).


  • Ball, H.L., Hooker, E. & Heslop, E. (2000). Night-time caregiving and parent-infant sleep strategies in the North East of England. Final Report to Foundation for the Study of Infant Deaths. London.
  • Ball, H.L., Hooker, E. & Kelly, P.J. (2000). Where will the baby sleep? Attitudes and practices of new and experienced parents regarding cosleeping with their newborn infants. In Annual Editions: Child Growth and Development. Junn E.N. & Boyatzis, C. Dushkin/McGraw Hill. 00/01.
  • Ball, H., Hooker, E. & Kelly, P.J. (2000). Parent-Infant Cosleeping: fathers' roles and perspectives. Infant and Child Development 9(2): 67-74.
  • Ball, H.L. (2000). Babies and Infants Bed-Sharing. In Midwifery Practice in the Post-natal Period. Royal College of Midwives Royal College of Midwifes. 24-26.
  • Hooker, E., Ball, H.L. & Kelly, P.J. (2000). Sleeping like a baby: parent-infant cosleeping in North Tees, England. Medical Anthropology 19: 203-222.


  • Ball, H.L., Hooker, E. & Kelly, P.J. (1999). Where will the baby sleep? Attitudes and practices of new and experienced parents regarding cosleeping with their new-born infants. American Anthropologist 101(1): 143-151.