How to Decrease Your Baby’s Risk of SIDS and Other Sleep Dangers
If you’re scared to close your eyes when your baby’s sleeping because you’ve heard the horror stories about seemingly healthy babies dying in their sleep, we don’t blame you.
That’s one of the most terrifying things about being a parent – the overwhelming love you feel for your baby and the knowledge you can’t protect them from everything.
4 simple yet effective tips you can use to minimize your baby’s risk
While you’ll never be able to eliminate all the risks they face, there are steps you can take to make their sleeping environment as safe as possible, such as:
Avoid second-hand smoke
As if you needed one more reason to avoid smoking while you’re pregnant or allowing anyone to smoke around your baby, here it is — exposure to smoke increases your baby’s risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, also known as SIDS.
Keep away from germs as best you can
Viral illnesses are believed to potentially be a contributing factor to SIDS because some of the children, but not all, who died from SIDS had a viral illness before they died. Another reason to think there is some link is that SIDS strikes more often during winter months when children tend to have more illnesses.
The Babymoov Hygro+ Humidifier will help cut down on the number of germs in the home.
While you can’t eliminate all the germs your child encounters, you can cut back on them. You can stop guests from visiting your home when they’re sick. While you’re shopping, you can use a grocery cart cover to keep your baby’s hands from touching germs from the last person who used the cart.
If you’re anti-vaccination, reconsider your stance. Getting those vaccinations can help your child avoid illnesses that may end up contributing to SIDS.
Put those breasts to work
Breastfeeding is great for babies in many ways, and one big benefit is that breastfed babies have a decreased chance of dying from SIDS. No one is certain as to why that is, but one theory is that breastfed babies don’t suffer from as many respiratory illnesses.
Unleash the power of your breast milk by breastfeeding your baby until their first birthday.
That will get them past the point where most deaths from SIDS occur, which is around the age of 6 months.
Look out for suffocation threats
While SIDS might get more headlines than suffocation when it comes to babies, suffocation is on the rise in babies, unlike SIDS which has declined in recent years. Out of every 1,000 babies born in 1999, 12.4 died from suffocation. That number had climbed to 28.3 out of every 1,000 babies by 2015.
The place where the majority of those deaths happened was in a bed, and a parent’s bed proved to be particularly dangerous for babies.
Well-meaning parents might be creating suffocation dangers for their baby without even knowing it. Simple acts like putting a pillow in a crib can increase the risk. You might be trying to make your baby more comfortable, but babies don’t need pillows so they’ll do more harm than good at that age.
Try not to panic
While the threat of SIDS and other sleep safety issues is real, try not to panic over it. Instead, take charge of your concern by using it as fuel for taking action. Learn about the factors that increase the risk of SIDS and do your best to take steps that will protect your baby as much as possible.
It can be hard to let go of that worry, but doing all that’s in your power to do is a good start!