Babies Should Sleep In Same Room As Their Parents To Prevent SIDS, Report Says

Posted: Oct 24 2016, 10:14am CDT | by , Updated: Oct 24 2016, 11:00pm CDT, in News | Latest Science News

 

Babies Should Sleep in Same Room as Their Parents to Prevent SIDS, Report Says
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AAP issues new safe sleep recommendations to prevent sudden infant deaths.

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has released new recommendations for babies’ sleeping environment with the aim of preventing Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) and other sleep-related infant deaths.

To reduce the risk of sudden death, babies should sleep in the same room as their parents but not in the same bed for at least the first six months and preferably for the entire first year of their life.  According to new AAP guidelines, infants should sleep on separate surfaces within the same room such as on their crib or bassinet but never on sofa, couch or cushioned chair as these surfaces are “extremely hazardous.”

"For the soft bedding, everybody thinks if it’s soft, then it can’t hurt the baby. But soft bedding is actually really a problem because it’s so soft they sink into it,” said lead author of the report Rachel Moon. 

“People will also use pillows to ‘cushion’ the babies and babies sink into them…That’s very dangerous.”

A previous guideline that urged parents to put their babies to sleep on their backs rather than bellies is already producing promising results. The tip has reduced the rate of sudden infant deaths by about 50 percent in just one decade. Still, more than 3,000 infants die due to SIDS, accidental suffocation or other similar causes each year in U.S.

The new guidelines are aiming to further decrease the risk of sleep-related deaths.

“We know that parents may be overwhelmed with a new baby in the home, and we want to provide them with clear and simple guidance on how and where to put their infant to sleep.” Moon said.

The guidelines are updated in the light of 63 new studies. They are not only intended to help improve the baby’s sleeping environment but to ensure the overall well-being of the child. 

Other recommendations include:

  • Offer a pacifier at naptime and bedtime
  • Avoid smoke exposure during pregnancy and after birth 
  • Avoid overheating and head covering in infants
  • Avoid using commercial devices that are inconsistent with safe sleep recommendations, such as wedges and postioners. 
Full guidelines can be viewed here.

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Hira Bashir covers daily affairs around the world.

 

 

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