Having a newborn is scary at the best of times. Add in the fear of SIDS and anxiety can fly through the roof! While the topic is scary to think about, it is important that all new parents are aware of what it is, what the warning signs are, and how you can help prevent it.
What is SIDS? SIDS stands for Sudden Infant Death Syndrome and is a term used to describe an unexplainable death of an infant under the age of one.
When are babies most at risk? While SIDS can occur anytime between 1 month and 1 year of age, it most commonly occurs before 6 months of age.
What can parents do to help prevent SIDS?
- Always place baby on their back to sleep.
- Place your baby on a firm, flat surface for sleep. A swing is not recommended.
- Regulate their temperature and ensure they do not get too hot. A monitor will help with this!
- Clear the sleep space so it is free of blankets, pillows, or soft toys.
- Avoid using bumpers.
- Keep your baby in your room for at least the first 6 months, but not in your bed with you.
- If you are able to, breastfeeding is known to reduce the risk of SIDS.
- Offer a pacifier during sleep.
- Swaddle your baby for sleep, but only until they are able to roll over by themselves.
As a new parent, you will find there is just so much to learn in such a short period of time. When it comes to the safety of your children, it is always best to stay on top of the latest research and recommendations. Hopefully the above tips are a good starting point!