There has been significant and important research into baby’s sleep environments and sleep positions. The application of these research findings have made a dramatic difference to the statistics for sudden and unexplained infant deaths over the past 20-plus years.
How to put your baby to sleep safely:
Follow the Red Nose evidence-based safe sleeping steps, to reduce the risk of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) or SUDI (Sudden Unexpected Death in Infancy) which is more common in babies aged between two and four months, but can also happen to younger and older babies, and bottle-fed or breastfed babies:
- Sleep your baby on their back: not on their tummy or side.
- Keep your baby’s head and face uncovered: Covering baby’s face or head with clothing such as a hat increases the risk of sudden infant death
- Keep your baby smoke free before and after birth: Help to quit smoking is available from your doctor, midwife or by contacting Quitline
- Have a safe sleeping environment night and day: Make sure the mattress is firm, clean and flat, in a safe cot that meets industry standards. Make sure there are no blankets, toys, pillows, or bumpers in the cot.
- Sleep your baby in your room: The safest place to sleep your baby for the first 12 months is in a safe cot next to your bed.
- Breastfeed your baby where possible.
Checkout the Red Nose website for more safe sleeping tips at https://rednose.org.au/section/safe-sleeping
It is recommended that you do not share a bed with your baby as it increases the risk of SUDI (Sudden Unexpected Death in Infancy) and fatal sleep accidents. An adult bed and bed coverings are not suitable for babies and young children as they put a baby at risk of overheating and suffocation. There is also a risk of an adult rolling over on their baby. This type of accident is heightened if the adult has been drinking or taking prescription or non prescription medication, or extremely tired or sleep deprived. It is much safer to sleep with your baby in their bassinet or cot beside your bed.