Understanding SIDS & Sleep Safety
Little strikes more terror into the heart of a new mama than the word SIDS.
Sudden Infant Death Syndrome is a nightmare every mother prays she’ll never have to live through, the unexplained death of her newborn while he sleeps. How do you enjoy the newborn stage without being consumed by fear?
You understand what you are dealing with, what the risks are, and you make the best choices for your baby.
What Is SIDS?
Sudden infant death syndrome is the unexplainable death of a seemingly healthy baby under 1 year of age, although it is most common from birth to 6 months old.
How Common Is SIDS?
There are more then 4 million babies born each year, and approximately 2,500 of them will be victims of SIDS. This rate is about half of what it used to be before the Back To Sleep campaign was launched in 1994.
Causes Of SIDS
While the very definition of SIDS is “unexplainable death”, there are some factors believed to help reduce the risk for your newborn.
Having a healthy pregnancy gives your child a strong start. Low birthweight and premature arrivals increase risks. Eating well and taking your prenatal vitamins is important not just for you, but your baby, too.
No Second Hand Smoke
Avoid being around smoke when you are pregnant and after your baby is born. Research points to second smoke doubling the risk of SIDS.
Back To Sleep
Babies who sleep on their back have a 50% less chance of SIDS than those who do not.
While research hasn’t revealed why this makes a difference, there is an undeniable correlation in the data that infants who nurse have a lower risk of SIDS.
Safe Sleep Environment
Don’t put your baby on a soft, fluffy surface to sleep. Avoid pillows and blankets and even plush toys that can smother. This includes couches, bean bag seats, and soft bedding.
Does Co Sleeping Affect The Risk Of SIDS?
There are studies that state co sleeping radically reduces the risk of SIDS and studies that show just the opposite to be true.
If you are going to co sleep, please do so responsibly by avoiding fluffy pillows and blankets. And never have a cocktail or medicine that deepens your sleep if you are sharing your space with your precious little one.
Even better, have a safe bed nearby that your newborn is in, void of fluffy accoutrement, and be right there for comfort.