Safe Sleeping Practices
On October 18, 2011, The American Academy of Pediatrics announced their new policy statement, "SIDS and Other Sleep-Related Infant Deaths: Expansion of Recommendations for a Safe Infant Sleeping Environment."
The recommendations include:
- Breastfeeding is recommended and is associated with a reduced risk of SIDS.
- Infants should be immunized. Evidence suggests that immunization reduces the risk of SIDS by 50%.
- Bumper pads should not be used in cribs. There is no evidence that bumper pads prevent injuries, and there is a potential risk of suffocation, strangulation or entrapment.
- Always place your baby on his or her back for every sleep time.
- Always use a firm sleep surface. Car seats and other sitting devices are not recommended for routine sleep.
- The baby should sleep in the same room as the parents, but not in the same bed (room-sharing without bed-sharing)
- Keep soft objects or loose bedding out of the crib. This includes pillow, blankets, and bumper pads.
- Wedges and positioners should not be used.
- Pregnant women should receive regular prenatal care.
- Do not smoke during pregnancy or after birth.
- Offer a pacifier at nap time and bedtime.
- Avoid covering the infant's head or overheating.
- Do not use home monitors or commercial devices marketed to reduce the risk of SIDS.
- Supervised, awake tummy time is recommended daily to facilitate development and minimize the occurrence of positional plagiocephaly (flat heads).