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Visit a doctor when you suspect you are pregnant and attend all check-ups. Doctors prevent and treat risks that would otherwise weaken your baby. Don’t smoke, drink alcohol, or use illegal drugs.
Only let babies sleep on firm surfaces designed specifically for sleep safety. Cribs, play yards, and bassinets should have current approval of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (cpsc.gov). Cover each mattress in one tight-fitted sheet. Bare is best! So get rid of bed accessories that can suffocate or over-heat infants, such as blankets, pillows, hats, blankets, toys, and bumpers. Can’t find or afford a safe crib? Please call 303-914-6586 for help.
Sleeping in bed or on a couch with your baby doubles the chances of sleep-related death, but sleeping in the same room lessens the chances. To make soothing and night feedings convenient and safe, place a crib in arm’s reach of your bed. Stay awake during feeding and return your baby to her own bed when done.
Place babies to sleep on their backs every time they sleep. Babies cannot breathe as well when they sleep on their sides and stomachs. If your baby has a harder time falling asleep on her back, ask your doctor about alternate soothing methods. Discuss back-to-sleep requirements with every person watching your baby. Make sure they understand that back sleeping does not cause choking. Then make unannounced drop-ins to verify caregivers are placing your child to sleep safely.
Babies exposed to smoke are more vulnerable to sleep-related death. So are babies whose parents drink alcohol or use illegal drugs. Avoid these substances around babies to stay alert and attentive to their needs.
Breastfed infants arouse from dangerous situations better than formula-fed infants and develop fewer infections that may trigger sleep-related death. So, if you are able to breastfeed, it is recommended that you do so. Pacifier use at bedtime also protects your baby. Pacifiers do not need to be reinserted if they fall out of the baby’s mouth while sleeping. To eliminate the chance of entanglement, never clip or tie pacifiers to your baby’s clothing or body.
To learn more, please visit www.sidscenter.org and watch a safe sleep video here .
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