Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) - Safety Measures

Body Body
0-2 0-2
Radhika Krishnan
3 years ago
Sudden infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)

As mothers, we are always trying to ensure the safety of our little angel. Though doctors cannot specify the reasons for SIDs, it may happen due to a defect in a portion of the brain that leads to trouble in breathing. While SIDS can be unpredictable, there are external factors that can increase its chances. 

As parents, we can take the following measures to reduce the chances of a mishap:

  1. Make your baby sleep on the back: Whether it is for a nap or night time sleep, always ensure your baby is sleeping on her back. Till the baby is able to roll over on her own, never let her sleep on her tummy or sideways.  Back-sleeping increases baby's access to fresh air and makes her less likely to get overheated. 

  2. Never leave the baby alone during tummy time: Tummy time is essential for a baby's growth. However, always supervise your baby’s tummy time. 

  3. Keep baby in the same room: Making your baby sleep in the same room as you is the safest option for the first year after birth. 

  4. Do not rely on baby monitors: While baby monitors are a great tool to monitor your baby’s activities while carrying on with your work, don’t rely on it for SIDS prevention. 

  5. Do not rely on cardiorespiratory monitors and anti SIDS gadgets: There is no proof to show that these can accurately warn the parent before SIDS. They can in fact give parents a misguided sense of security. 

  6. Ensure proper clothing: Clothe your baby appropriately for sleep time, so that he feels warm and comfortable. Choose breathable clothing that avoids suffocation. Avoid clothes with a hood or drawstrings. Do not let your baby to sleep with his bib on.

  7. Have a firm mattress and fitted sheet for the bed/crib: Blankets, pillows, comforters, and stuffed toys can hinder your child's breathing. Soft, plush or improperly fitting mattresses can be dangerous. 

  8. Ambient room temperature: Choose a well-ventilated room for your baby. Do not overheat the room. The right ambient temperature plays a vital role in influencing the sleep quality of the infant.

  9. Ensure baby has enough space: Your little one should be able to move around and squirm while sleeping. Position your baby with their hands out above their heads so they are freely movable. 

  10. Breastfeed, if possible: Breastfeeding has immense benefits to the baby: 

    • Babies who are breastfed are more easily roused from sleep than formula-fed babies, hence less likely to die from SIDS. 

    • When co-sleeping, a breastfeeding mother is less likely to be in deep sleep, hence less chances of accidental suffocation. 

    • It is a common observation that babies who are breastfed right from birth are more immune to SIDS. Skin-to-skin contact is critical in the first few months after birth. Exclusive breastfeeding for the first 6 months can enhance the health and immunity and promote better brain development. 

  11. Educate your childcare providers: Review SIDS precautions with everyone who takes care of your child - day-care worker, babysitter, relative, friend etc. 

  12. Consult a paediatrician for baby’s cold or respiratory illnesses: Even a mild cold can get quite severe in infants. So, consult your baby’s paediatrician for any respiratory troubles.

  13. Lifestyle changes: Avoid smoking when you are pregnant and  after delivery. Avoid usage of alcohol or drugs. Do not allow anyone to smoke anywhere near the baby. Avoid allowing the baby to sleep near anyone who has consumed alcohol.

Ensuring the above measures will help you provide a safe environment for your baby’s sleep. And in turn, help you feel peaceful and relaxed.

Stay Tuned! Stay Relevant!

This article has been reviewed by our panel. The points, views and suggestions put forth in this article have been expressed keeping the best interests of fellow parents in mind. We hope you found the article beneficial.
• body
• prevention
• infant
• new born
• safety measures
• baby