In recognition of Baby Safety Month, we remind parents of safe sleeping habits to reduce the risk of SIDs and Suffocation.
The American Academy of Pediatrics reminds us of the dangers of unsafe sleep environments. In fact, about 3,500 babies die each year in the United States by
entrapment, suffocation, or strangulation.
How do you create a safe sleep environment for babies up to 1 year old?
Please your baby on their back to sleep
This applies to any time your baby goes to sleep - during the day for naps, or at night. If they do roll over or go on their side when sleeping, it's fine not to disturb them if they are already able to roll back and forth.
If your child falls asleep in a car seat, stroller or carrier, move them to a firm sleep surface as soon as possible.
Swaddling is a great form of comfort for your newborn, however once your baby starts trying to roll, you should stop swaddling.
Put your baby to sleep on a firm surface
All cribs, bassinets and pack 'n plays should meet current safety standards - ensure there have been no recalls or broken parts.
Cover the mattress with a fitted sheet without blankets or pillows between the mattress and sheet.
Do not put your baby on chair, sofa, water bed or cushion to fall asleep.
Keep soft or small objects and loose bedding out of the crib to avoid suffocation their first year. Babies cannot turn or maneuver objects out of their way.
Place your baby to sleep in your room, not in your bed
Bassinets and cribs should be within an arms reach of your bed to have them nearby.
Babies who sleep in the same beds as their parents are at risk for SIDs, suffocation, strangulation, a parent rolling over on them in the night or getting tangled in adult bedding.
If possible, try to breastfeed for as long as can. Breastfeeding can help prevent SIDS. The recommendation is as a sole source of nutrition up to 6 months, then combining with solids up to 12 months.
Stay up to date with well visits - immunizations can have a positive effect against SIDS.
Avoid smokers and places people smoke.
If you are a smoker, it's advised to quit as soon as possible. Minimally, create a smoke-free home and car, and avoid smoking anywhere near your baby.
Keep your baby from getting too hot.
Maintain the room at comfortable temperatures and dress your baby in no more than one extra layer than you would wear.
If you are concerned your baby is too cold, use a wearable blanket fitted to your baby.
Offer a pacifier at nap and bedtime.
If you are breastfeeding, it is recommended to wait 3-4 weeks to ensure the baby latches well. If not, a pacifier can begin at any time.
Be cautious of using pacifiers that attach to clothing or objects that would cause a suffocation or choking risk.
Pacifiers are not a requirement - some babies do not like them.
cardio-respiratory monitors are not necessary to help reduce the risk of SIDS.
Use caution when using products that claim to reduce the risk of SIDS.
Products such as wedges, positioners, special mattresses, and specialized sleep surfaces have not been shown to reduce the risk of SIDS.
Remember Tummy Time
Give your baby plenty of "tummy time" when she is awake. This will help strengthen neck muscles and help prevent flat spots on the head. Always stay with your baby during tummy time, and make sure she is awake.
This information should also be shared with anyone who cares for babies, including grandparents, family, friends, babysitters, and child care center staff.
Source: American Academy of Pediatrics