Having a new baby really makes you value sleep. And part of what keeps new parents awake at night is worrying about baby. Most new moms can admit to getting up and checking on a sleeping infant at least once during the night (and probably more). While the late night feeding and fussing are parts of parenthood that will get better with time, baby’s sleep safety is something you can improve right away. You’ll worry less and sleep better knowing your baby is sleeping safely.
Here are four tried-and-true strategies to create a safe sleep environment for baby:
1. Put babies to sleep on their back.
2. Keep the sleep surface clutter-free (skip the pillows, bumpers, blankets, and toys).
3. Use a firm and flat mattress.
4. Put babies to sleep in their own space.
These simple steps can all reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). They also make sure baby doesn’t suffocate in soft bedding or get injured if a sleeping adult accidentally rolls over. It’s tempting to get in all the baby snuggles while they’re little. But getting babies used to sleeping in their own space now creates better bedtime habits for later. After all, we want to avoid them sleeping in bed with us forever!
Read more about safe sleep environments and helping children sleep through the night on The PediaBlog here.
October is Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) Awareness Month. Read about the Safe to Sleep campaign from the National Institutes of Health here.
Adapted with permission from Allegheny Health Network’s Pediatric Alliance