A pillar of blue manatee press’s mission is making sure we share the most current, up-to-date infant and baby health information. We do this in various ways—through the books we publish, with research done by blue manatee press founder Dr. John Hutton, and by talking and working with everyday parents, to name a few.
One such topic close to blue manatee press’s and Dr. John Hutton’s heart is SIDS.
We know SIDS is scary. We also know talking about scary health topics in relation to your baby is difficult. We want to help and be as sensitive as possible in the process.
October is SIDS Awareness Month. In honor of this, we want to share some information on the subject, and offer ways to ease your mind and comfort you, knowing you’re providing your baby with the safest and snuggliest home possible!
What Is SIDS?
SIDS is a sudden and silent medical disorder that can happen to an infant who seems healthy. SIDS stands for Sudden Infant Death Syndrome—the unexplained death, usually during sleep, of a seemingly healthy baby less than a year old.
Sometimes, SIDS is referred to as “crib death” or “cot death” due to its association with sleep-time, though the crib itself has nothing to do with SIDS itself.
How common is SIDS?
SIDS is the leading cause of death among babies between 1 month and 1 year of age. About 1,360 babies died of SIDS in 2017, the last year for which such statistics are available.
Most SIDS-related deaths occur between the ages of 1 and 4 months, but SIDS can happen anytime during a bay’s first year.
Although SIDS is the leading cause of death for newborns to one-year-olds, SIDS-related death rates for the United States have dropped steadily since 1994 in all racial and ethnic groups.
How Do I Keep My Baby Safe and Snug?
SIDS occurs most often during a baby’s sleeping hours, so the most important thing to remember is to make sure your baby is safe when napping or sleeping for the night. Below we’ve listed a few misconceptions about what is safe to do for bedtime and what isn’t. Follow the DON’Ts over to the DOs.
DON’T put your baby to sleep on their stomach.
DON’T sleep with your baby on a shared sleep surface.
DON’T put your baby to sleep on a couch, armchair, or adult bed.
DON’T fall asleep while holding or feeding your baby.
DON’T use a car seat, swing, stroller, or infant carrier for routine sleep.
DON’T have blankets, pillows, toys or bumper pads in the crib
DON’T smoke, drink or use drugs.
DON’T swaddle your baby if they show signs of rolling over.
DON’T let your baby overheat.
DO put your baby on their back for every sleep.
DO put your baby’s crib int he same room as your bed (room-sharing).
DO put your baby in a crib to sleep for nap and bedtime.
DO find your own way to stay awake while feeding your baby.
DO use a firm crib mattress covered by a fitted sheet.
DO breastfeed your baby.
DO offer a pacifier for sleep once breastfeeding is established.
DO use a wearable blanket to keep your baby warm.
DO vaccinate your baby.
Blue manatee press offers the Love Baby Healthy series—a series of board books designed to be not only soothing read-alouds for babies, but also important learning tools for parents. Covering topics such as SIDS, Shaken Baby Syndrome prevention, breastfeeding, early literacy, and developmental milestones, the books in this series are perfect for new parents (or any parents) who want to ensure that the story for their children is a happy and healthy one. Also available in Spanish. If you’re a non-profit or health organization, please follow our specific non-profit ordering page.