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Preventing SIDS

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Preventing SIDS

Understanding and Preventing Sudden Infant Death Syndrome

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there are more than 3,400 cases of sudden unexpected infant death (SUID) in the United States each year. There are three commonly reported types of SUID, which include: sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), accidental suffocation while sleeping and unknown causes. Of these, SIDS being the most commonly reported cause. CDC statistics show that at least one in three SUID that occur in the United States each year are from SIDS.

What is SIDS?

According to the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, SIDS, sometimes referred to as “crib death,” is the sudden, unexplained death of an infant younger than one year old that remains unexplained after investigation. It is the leading cause of death in children between one month and one year of age.

While the exact cause of SIDS is still unknown, there are ways that parents and caregivers can help to reduce the risk of SIDS.

Tips for Prevention

When it comes to protecting babies from SIDS and other sleep-related infant deaths, it is essential to create a safe sleeping area. Follow these tips to help you optimize your baby's sleep environment:

  • Use a firm, flat mattress for their crib or bassinet
  • Only use a fitted sheet on their mattress
  • Keep their sleep area free of soft bedding like blankets, pillows and plush toys
  • Try to keep your baby’s sleeping area cool to avoid overheating
  • Keep their sleeping area in the same room as you until the age of one year
  • Place your baby on their back for all naps and bedtimes
  • Don’t sleep in the same bed as your baby

If you have additional questions about how you can care for your baby, be sure to speak with your child’s pediatrician.

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