New Report Reminds us of Safe Sleeping Practices
A new report from the UK published today reminds us all about safe sleeping practices for babies. Babies who sleep with their faces covered are 27% more likely to die from SIDS or crib death, than those who sleep with their heads and faces uncovered.
It seems obvious. Actually, babies who die of SIDS usually don’t seem to have suffocated, and in most cases doctors are sadly mystified as to what happened, and don’t know why the baby stopped breathing.
Doctors speculate that it may be related to babies overheating. Overheating has long been known as a risk factor for SIDS, and a baby with his or her face or head covered is more likely to overheat.
It also may be related to the position that the baby sleeps in. A baby on his or her back can kick sheets or blankets off more easily than a baby on his or her front, especially a younger baby who can’t roll over yet. It reinforces the advice that babies sleeping on their backs are less at risk.
Wiggly, kicky, babies try their best every night to kick their sheets off, or wriggle underneath them. The safest thing a baby can sleep in, many experts agree, is a baby sleeping bag or sleepsack. There’s many adorable sleeping bags on the market – here’s a few of my favorite baby sleeping bags – many costing under $15.
If you don’t have a sleeping bag, put your baby to sleep with his or her feet against the foot of the crib (remember – feet to foot) and tuck the sheets or blanket in snugly under the mattress, and no higher than mid-chest. This makes it as difficult as possible for baby to wiggle down under, and harder to pull the sheets out and get tangled in them.
And always dress your baby appropriately for the temperature. Babies as a rule need the same amount of bedding we adults do, possibly slightly more, and perhaps a snug hat for newborns. Unless it’s very cold, babies just don’t need lots of layers.
Back to sleep, feet to foot, and sleep safe and sound, all our precious babies.