Prevent Sudden Infant Death Syndrome

An expert offers new advice to help protect your baby

infant on her back smiling

For years, parents have been urged to place healthy babies on their backs to sleep. That’s because researchers believe that face-down sleeping is the most significant risk factor for sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).

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But Skyler Kalady, MD, a pediatrician at Cleveland Clinic Children’s Hospital, says the protective measures don’t stop there. Here are some other things you can do to prevent SIDS: 

  • Don’t smoke around your baby
  • Breastfeed
  • Give your baby a pacifier at night (once breastfeeding is established)
  • Create a good sleep environment, with the baby alone in the crib or bassinet. Bumpers, blankets, pillows and stuffed animals should not be in the crib.

Dr. Kalady says that the National Institutes of Health’s “Safe to Sleep” campaign has helped significantly decrease the number of SIDS deaths.

More information

Sleep in Your Baby’s First Year, Preventing Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)

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