Infant Sleep Safety Tips

by Pat Ashley, RN, IBCLC, Lactation Consultant, Beaumont Hospital, Grosse Pointe

Safe sleep tips for infantsYesterday, Michigan First Lady Sue Snyder announced her support of safe sleep programs being launched by the Michigan Departments of Human Services and Community Health.

In Michigan alone, there were nearly 150 fully preventable accidental suffocation infant deaths annually due to unsafe sleep environments last year.

Here are some important things to remember when putting your infant to bed:

  • Do not fall asleep while feeding your baby.
  • Never put the baby in bed with you to sleep. Adult beds are not safe for babies. If you feed your baby in bed, make sure you are sitting up and stay awake.  Put baby back in his crib to sleep.
  • American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that “the safest place for your baby to sleep is in the rom where you sleep, but not in your bed. Place the baby’s crib or bassinet near your bed (within arm’s reach). This makes it easier to breastfeed and bond with your baby.”
  • Babies are not safe sleeping with other children, adults or pets.
  • Always keep baby’s sleep area clear. No blankets, toys, pillows, stuffed animals, bumper pads or other soft items.
  • Dress baby in the same amount of clothing you are in. Overdressing could cause him to overheat.
  • Keep baby’s face uncovered during sleep for easy breathing. Use a blanket sleeper or sleep sack rather than blankets that can move up around the baby’s face.
  • Do not put baby to sleep wearing a hat, bib or other loose items which can move and cover their face during sleep.
  • Smoking around the baby should not be allowed.
  • Use a firm mattress that fits snugly on all sides of the crib. Make sure the crib sheet complete covers the mattress and fits tightly.

Did you know? Beaumont, Grosse Pointe is the only hospital in Michigan designated as a Baby-Friendly® birth center by Baby-Friendly USA because of its high level of care and education for breast-feeding mothers and their babies.

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4 thoughts on “Infant Sleep Safety Tips

  1. Rebecca says:

    Are mobiles in cribs ok?

  2. Not in the crib, but as long as it is hanging out of the reach of your child and there aren’t cords or strings dangling into the crib, you should be fine. Make sure it is fastened securely and avoid mobiles with small parts that detach and could pose a choking hazard.

  3. Jill says:

    At what age is it safe for a child to start sleeping with covers and a pillow as opposed to a sleep sack?

    • Covers or blankets can be introduced at age 1. Sleepers are preferred over blankets because strangulation or suffocation can happen with blanket use. A reasonable age to introduce a pillow is around age 2, usually when transitioning to a toddler bed.

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