Since the 1990s, families have been told about the Back to Sleep program to reduce the risk of SIDS. Recently, the American Academy of Pediatricians, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and many other groups updated the recommendations of the Back to Sleep campaign to promote a safe sleeping environment for children. Updates to the program include a new name and additional recommendations to make infants’ (babies less than one year of age) sleeping environment safer to prevent accidental injury or death.
The Safe to Sleep program includes the following recommendations:
- Always place an infant on his/her back to sleep, even during nap time!
- The baby should have his/her own sleeping area. While it is beneficial to have an infant in the same room as the parents, the baby shouldn’t be in bed with the parents. This also includes not placing babies in car seats, swings, or on couches for naps.
- After late night feedings, place baby back in his/her own sleeping area.
- An infant’s crib should contain a firm surface with a fitted sheet only. Removing blankets, pillow, and crib bumpers reduce the risk of accidental suffocation
Please note that part of Safe to Sleep includes supervised tummy time during waking hours! See here for the benefits of tummy time and ways to incorporate tummy time into the day.
More information can be found in this brochure from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services or the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development’s SIDS website.
Along with your pediatrician, our therapists at Beyond the Clinic can help answer questions about the sleeping environment, tummy time, and how to prevent a misshapen head. We can be reached at (503) 496-0385.
(This blog was provided courtesy of Crystal Bridges, DPT.)