About 3,400 infants die suddenly and unexpectedly each year in the United States. Most of these deaths result from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) and other sleep-related causes of infant death, such as suffocation.
SIDS is the sudden and unexplained death of a healthy baby who is put down to sleep and later found dead with no obvious cause. It is the leading cause of death in babies between 1 month and 12 months of age.
A higher risk of SIDS is seen in babies 2 months to 6 months of age and SIDS occurs more often in boys than in girls. SIDS has no known cause.
However, researchers believe that face-down sleeping is the most significant risk factor for SIDS. That’s because after the proportion of infants placed on their backs to sleep increased from 17 percent in 1993 to 73 percent in 2010, the number of SIDS deaths fell from 4,669 in 1993 to 1,910 in 2011. That’s more than half.
Follow these simple rules for keeping your baby safe while in Lullabyland: