Safe Sleeping Part 1: Why is it important?

Why is it important?

Unexpected accidental death refers to the death of a baby or toddler by a known cause e.g. suffocation by pillow or strangulation with a cot bumper, choking etc.  SIDS (or Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) refers to the sudden unexpected death of a baby for no known cause.  This generally occurs under 6 months (greatest time of risk is 2-4 months).

Okay this is scary stuff.  My husband was still checking my daughter’s breathing several times a night even when she was nearly 2.  Seem a little paranoid?  I think we are all just really aware of the high stakes.  Try not to let the anxiety rule your life, but here are some facts and things you can do to lower the risks.

Despite much research we still don’t know why SIDS happens but we do know that there are definite things parents can do to reduce the risks:

  • Put baby on her back to sleep
  • Sleep with face uncovered
  • Have a smoke free environment.  If mum smokes the risk of SIDS doubles, if father or partner smokes as well the risk doubles again.  The risk of SIDS is increased even if parents never smoke around the baby.  We don’t know why this is but the research shows it is true.  Also risks increase even if mum smoked in pregnancy and now doesn’t.
  • Breastfeed
  • Have baby sleep in the same room as parents

 

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Posted on July 22, 2011, in Safety, Sleep and Crying. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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