Other recommendations for reducing SIDS risk include human milk feeding, using a pacifier, routine immunizations, as well as avoiding exposure to nicotine and abstinence from alcohol, marijuana, opioids and illicit drugs.
With its first update to safe-sleep guidelines for infants in more than five years, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) is emphasizing that co-sleeping and crib decorations are not safe for infants — under any circumstances.
People magazine reported that the group said these practices cause an “increased risk of (sudden infant death syndrome [SIDS]) and suffocation.”
The AAP update, a study titled “Evidence Base for 2022 Updated Recommendations for a Safe Infant Sleeping Environment to Reduce the Risk of Sleep-Related Infant Deaths,” makes several recommendations for reducing SIDS risk. They include human milk feeding, using a pacifier, routine immunizations, as well as avoiding exposure to nicotine and abstaining from alcohol, marijuana, opioids and illicit drugs.
Adobe Stock Image
Citing the AAP update, People reported that room-sharing can decrease the risk of SIDS by as much as 50 percent. While pointedly discouraging bed-sharing, the pediatric group said room-sharing has many benefits, including providing a sense of comfort for parents and infants and facilitating the feeding of infants.
“It is recommended that infants sleep in the parents’ room, close to the parents’ bed, but on a separate surface designed for infants, ideally for at least the first 6 months,” the study said.
Until infants are at least a year old, they should sleep on a “firm, flat, non-inclined sleep surface (e.g., tightly fitting mattress in a safety-approved crib) covered by a fitted sheet with no other bedding or soft objects to reduce the risk of suffocation or wedging or entrapment,” the study advised.
As reported by People, Dr. Rebecca Carlin, a co-author of the AAP study, said bed-sharing or co-sleeping is dangerous for infants. “The evidence is clear that (co-sleeping) significantly raises the risk of a baby’s injury or death. For that reason AAP cannot support bed-sharing under any circumstances.”
In the update, the AAP noted that the overall death rate of infants related to sleep has remained low — albeit with disparities — dating to 2000 after a steep drop in the 1990s. The group said, per the People article, that around 3,500 infants die each year from sleep-related incidents.
TheGrio is FREE on your TV via Apple TV, Amazon Fire, Roku and Android TV. Also, please download theGrio mobile apps today!
The post New infant death data warns against co-sleeping and crib decorations appeared first on TheGrio.