SIDS is the leading cause of death in infants between one month and one year of age. Although it is not completely preventable, you can still help to minimise the risks by creating a safe sleeping environment for your baby. Here are some tips on how.
Sleep your baby on their back or side which reduces the chance of SIDS by at least three times
Keep your baby in his own crib or co-sleeper next to your bed till they 4-6mths old and then make use of a reliable baby monitor when they move to their own room
If you choose to sleep with them in your bed please do not smoke, drink alcohol or take drugs
Keep his crib, cot or co sleeper free of any soft objects like toys, clothes or loose blankets
Never allow your baby’s head to be covered by any sort of bedding or a hat while sleeping
If you choose not to use a sleeping bag then place your baby at the bottom of his cot so he can’t move down under his duvet or blanket
Keep the room temp between 18-22degrees and don’t over dress them, babies sleep better in a cooler environment
Don’t use second hand mattresses, buy them new. Make sure your mattress is firm, fits the cot properly
Use fitted sheets rather than flat sheets
If you use a cot bumper ensure the ties are attached properly to the bumper (no loose threads) and then tied to the cot with knots not bows and that it fits snugly without space to move.
When you assemble the crib or cot, read all instructions properly before and after
Once it is assembled shake and bang them to check there that its 100% secure with no movement
If you buy second hand, go over it meticulously for any missing parts, repair jobs, breaks and dangers. If the instructions are missing download it off the internet or go into a baby store
Do not place mobiles over cots while they sleeping, rather use them over the nappy changing station
If you use a mosquito net over their cot make sure its attached to the ceiling securely and the bottom hem is weighted down on the ground so they can’t pull it into the cot.
Use either block out blinds or curtains especially during our longer summer days as it keeps the heat out as well as the light
White noise works well in getting baby to fall asleep and keeping them asleep
Always do the same routine before bed time and do it all under dim lighting
And lastly sleep your baby in a sleeping bag day and night, winter and summer
In my next article I will explain the benefits of using a sleeping bag