My favorite part of the day is when all the chores are done and I get to cuddle with my family on the couch. Little did I know, sofas are where many sleep-related infant deaths occur.
According to a new study by Pediatrics, 13 percent of infant deaths occur on the family couch. In most cases, the child was under the age of three months old. Many times, they had been placed on their stomach or side to sleep, or were snoozing in the arms of an adult relative.
Between 2004 and 2012, over 9,000 infants died on sofas. Experts say that it’s the most dangerous place for babies to sleep, even for a short period of time.
However, this doesn’t mean that you have to give up your family couch time. When it comes to infants and sleeping, there are four tips that can help avoid SIDS and other sleep-related deaths.
1. Infants should always be placed on a hard, flat surface, such as a crib or bassinet, for sleeping. While many parents take naps with their baby on the couch, experts now say that this increases their risk of SIDS.
2. If your infant sleeps in a crib, remove all bumpers, stuffed animals, and other loose material items that may cause suffocation. As the American Academy of Pediatrics reported, crib bumpers in particular are dangerous and have been linked to a number of deaths.
3. Always, always, ALWAYS put your infant to sleep on their back. Once they can roll over, they’ll have reached an age where it’s no longer dangerous to sleep on their stomach or side.
4. The number one safest place for babies to sleep is in a crib or bassinet in their caregiver’s room. As an added bonus, they won’t have to go far if the baby starts crying in the middle of the night.
To learn more about the study, click here. And don’t forget to share this important information with the new and expecting parents you know. It just might save a life.
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