Thursday, February 28, 2008

Safer Sleeping for Infants

My 4th grader needed a science fair project for school. In part because I had just been at a meeting in which we discussed infant deaths in cribs with too soft bedding and from SIDS, I suggested a display pertaining to that topic. She thought it sounded good, however her teacher said no because she was supposed to do an experiment not just research and a display. I still think it would have made a good project and I always look for unique ways to get this sort of information out to the public. What a great way to get it out to parents of infants, a display by a kid at school with parents wandering through looking at it.

We recurrently have infant deaths, luckily not frequently, locally and regionally, that are due to soft bedding and “stuff” in their cribs, as well as due to co-sleeping and Sudden Unexplained Infant Death (SUIDS/SIDS). Quite often parents don’t know about safer ways to put their babies to bed in their cribs. (And I heard something on the radio today, so it is back in the news).

So as a reminder (and please pass the information on to any new and expecting moms):
Safe Bedding Practices For Infants
• Place baby on his/her back on a firm tight-fitting mattress in a crib that meets current safety standards.
• Remove pillows, quilts, comforters, sheepskins, pillow-like stuffed toys, and other soft products from the crib.
• Consider using a sleeper or other sleep clothing as an alternative to blankets, with no other covering.
• If using a blanket, put baby with feet at the foot of the crib. Tuck a thin blanket around the crib mattress, reaching only as far as the baby's chest.
• Make sure your baby's head remains uncovered during sleep.
• Do not place baby on a waterbed, sofa, soft mattress, pillow, or other soft surface to sleep.

1 comment:

Pam said...

Dr. Keller,
Thank you so much for your blog article on Safe Sleep for infants. This information cannot be repeat often enough for parents, grandparents and caregivers. Unfortunately, we know, that when our babies die due to a number of causes of sudden, unexpected death, these principals have not been followed. Great work!

If any childcare providers or community groups are looking for free trainings on this subject. Sudden Infant Death Services of Illinois is happy to help. In addition, if there are any families that need emotional support after the death of their infant, we're also here to help - regardless of the diagnosis.

For more information:
Pam Borchardt
Executive Director